Del Rio making changes in Jacksonville

After a 30-12 loss to the Vikings, former Vikings linebacker and current Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio is making changes, releasing two players, and promising more change in the future.

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.

NOTES

  • Coach Jack Del Rio is getting a lot of heat from the fans in the wake of the team's 4-7 start this year. In six years, he's won only one playoff game.

    So he made a point to praise the fans Monday.

    "We're a part of this community, we're all members of this community. Our fans have been terrific, really," he said. "I think it's as good as our fans have been at our home games since I've been here. I think they've been great, and they've come with a lot of energy and really (want) us to play well and we haven't delivered. So we all feel bad about that."

    The Jaguars are 1-5 at home this year and have lost four consecutive home games for only the second time in the team's history.

  • The Jaguars made two roster moves Monday, waiving a pair of veterans, OL Milford Brown and DL Jimmy Kennedy.

    Both were trying to resurrect their careers with the Jaguars, but neither made an impact.

    Brown started four games at right guard after Mo Williams was injured, but he was ineffective. Brown was replaced by Tutan Reyes, who was replaced by Dennis Norman when Brad Meester returned and Norman didn't have to play center and could move to guard. Brown was originally signed on Sept. 9 after both Williams and Vince Manuwai were injured in the opener.

    Kennedy was drafted 12th overall in 2003 by St. Louis, but he was a disappointment and later played for the Broncos and Bears before signing with the Jaguars.

    The departure of the two players probably opens the door for TE George Wrighster (knee) and DE Jeremy Mincey (wrist) to return from the physically unable to perform list.

  • A week ago, P Adam Podlesh set a team record, but it wasn't exactly one the Jaguars celebrated. He punted 10 times, the most in one game in Jacksonville history. He had a 51-yarder and had a gross average of 40.9 and a net average of 39.5.

    Against the Vikings, he punted only three times, but he strained his knee making a tackle on one of them. The Jaguars may have to sign a punter to replace him against Houston on Monday night.

    Podlesh said he was fine after the game, but coach Jack Del Rio said the team will have to make a decision on his status later in the week.

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