Change is Coming for Jaguars

"Change is coming." That was the message from coach Jack Del Rio on Monday in the wake of the Jaguars' embarrassing 30-12 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

Most teams would fire the coach if he had just one playoff win in six years and was 4-7 in his sixth season.

But Del Rio has job security because he signed a four-year extension in the offseason that will run through 2012.

So he'll stay, although James Harris, the vice president of player personnel, could be on his way out along with several assistant coaches.

And a boatload of players will be departing.

"It's a replacement league," Del Rio said.

Del Rio also promised changes are coming, but he warned it won't be easy to turn things around.

When he was asked about his comment Sunday that "something was missing," he said, "I think what I recognize, there's not going to be any quick fix. What I recognize is that it's going to take commitment. It's going to take resolve. I have both. I have the resolve and a firm commitment to make sure that we're getting this thing turned in the right direction as we close out this year and look to build for next year. We're going to keep doing the right things for the right reasons, knowing it's going to get better."

But Del Rio, who's already replaced Mike Peterson and Paul Spicer in the starting lineup, didn't seem to be planning any immediate moves this season to give the younger players a longer look.

"Only guys that we feel give us the best chance to win are going to play. I'm not going to do anything other than compete our very best and hardest to win games," he said.

Del Rio did make two minor moves Monday, cutting offensive guard Milford Brown and defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy. Those moves were probably made because tight end George Wrighster (knee) and defensive end Jeremy Mincey (wrist) are ready to return from the physically unable to perform list.

But the major decisions are coming in the offseason.

"There is no time frame in terms of making those decisions now, the ones that'll impact next year," Del Rio said. "Those are decisions that you make in the offseason. You learn a lot about people when there are tough times. It gives you a good view into a player's makeup, character, commitment, toughness. So we'll have a watchful eye."

Del Rio also seemed convinced the players will play for pride.

"You're talking about ultra-competitive guys that whether you're playing tiddlywinks or a game of pick-up basketball, whatever it might be, there's pride involved," he said.


Jags Illustrated Top Stories