Jacksonville Jaguars finally land their coach: Doug Pederson
After more than 50 days of searching, the Jacksonville Jaguars have finally found their new head coach.
The team announced late Thursday that former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson will be the new head coach of the Jaguars.
While with the Eagles, Pederson amassed a record of 42-37-1 as well as leading the team to its first Super Bowl victory in franchise history during the 2017 season.
Pederson also played in the NFL for 12 years as a quarterback and won a Super Bowl in 1996 while with the Green Bay Packers.
“Doug Pederson four years ago won a Super Bowl as head coach of a franchise in pursuit of its first world championship. I hope Doug can replicate that magic here in Jacksonville," Jaguars’ owner Shad Khan said in a statement.
Khan went on to say that Pederson’s knack for handling the offensive side of the ball was one of the main reasons he was considered.
The hiring was not well received by fans, as many had hoped the team would hire former Jaguars quarterback Byron Leftwich. Leftwich reportedly had a deal in place with the team, but it fell through due to his feelings toward the Jaguars general manager, Trent Baalke.
Baalke was one of the main focuses of the search, as it was reported that several candidates told the team that they would not work with him as the general manager.
Fans also have voiced their frustration with the length of the process in finding the new coach. The team fired former coach Urban Meyer on Dec. 17.
Fans also complained about the lack of transparency in the process. Pederson was the first candidate the team brought in to interview for the head coaching job but did not have a second interview until earlier this week.
Sources have also reported that the team will bring in Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman as a member of the front office, though this has not been confirmed.
Pederson now inherits a team that holds the first overall pick in the upcoming NFL draft for the second year in a row. The team also has a plethora of salary cap space to bolster the team in free agency.