Bob Babich Fired by Jaguars: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction

Adam WellsFeatured ColumnistJanuary 5, 2016

May 28, 2015; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars defensive coordinator Bob Babich reacts during OTAs at the Florida Blue Health and Wellness Practice Fields. Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports
Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports

Defensive coordinator Bob Babich has been fired by the Jacksonville Jaguars after three seasons with the team. 

The Jaguars announced the firing of Babich on Tuesday, per ESPN's Michael DiRocco. The Jaguars later confirmed the move on Twitter. 

Per NFL media insider Ian Rapoport, the Jaguars made the announcement not long after general manager Dave Caldwell "said to expect" changes on defense. 

Following the Jaguars' season finale against the Houston Texans on Sunday, head coach Gus Bradley said (per the team's official website) he would wait to speak with his staff before making any final decisions.

Until I get a chance to do that, I won’t be able to provide any insight into what’s taking place. As coaches, we have to dig deep. Our central theme is compete. That’s what we need to do this offseason. We have a lot of areas we can build on and some weaknesses we have to get straightened out. That’s what we’ll devote all of our attention to.

The Jaguars defense has been at or near the bottom of the NFL in during Babich's tenure with the team, including finishing 24th in yards allowed and 31st in points allowed in 2015. 

Jaguars' Key Defensive Rankings Under Babich (2013-15)
StatHighest Ranking
Points Allowed Per Game26th (2014; 25.8)
Yards Allowed Per Game24th (2015; 375.0)
SacksT6 (2014; 45)
Turnovers24th (2014; 20)

This was Jacksonville's most successful season (5-11) since 2011, with many young players on offense taking a step forward that give the franchise options to build around. Second-year quarterback Blake Bortles set a franchise record with 4,428 yards and 35 touchdown passes. 

Wide receivers Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns became the first Jaguars duo since 2001 with over 1,000 receiving yards. 

The defense has to start showing improvement so those young offensive skill players are putting up huge numbers in Jacksonville while the team is competing for a playoff spot. 

The Jaguars aren't far away from contending in the AFC South, which Houston won this year with just nine wins. Finding consistency on offense and showing signs of improvement on defense will help them get there. 

Babich was given time to work with the unit and never showed signs of helping to fix things. Bradley will have to do a thorough search to make sure the next defensive coordinator is a coach who can handle X's and O's, as well as help develop the young talent to keep the franchise moving forward.