Urban Meyer Rumors: NFL Insiders Believe Former OSU HC Will Take Jaguars Job

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJanuary 13, 2021

Former Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer watches during the second half of the Big Ten championship NCAA college football game between Ohio State and Wisconsin, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Former Ohio State and Florida coach Urban Meyer is reportedly "close" to accepting the Jacksonville Jaguars' head coaching position.

According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk, there are "rumors" floating that Meyer is leaning toward taking the job and retaining interim general manager Trent Baalke. The Jaguars' search is essentially at a standstill as they await Meyer's decision.

Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo of NFL Network report Meyer has also been in contact with the Los Angeles Chargers about their head coaching job.

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Jan. 5 that the team would interview San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy and Atlanta Falcons interim head coach Raheem Morris. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the team also interviewed Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith.

The 56-year-old Meyer has never coached at the NFL level but is one of the most successful college coaches in history, as his .854 winning percentage (187-32) ranks third all-time. His runs at Florida and Ohio State took both programs back to national prominence and saw him win three national championships (two at Florida, one at Ohio State). The Ohio native's teams have finished in the Associated Press Top 10 nine times, and he had at least eight wins in each of his 17 years of collegiate coaching, which includes stops at Bowling Green and Utah.

While the history of college coaches who take the leap to the pros is littered with cautionary tales, several of Meyer's offensive philosophies have been making their way to the NFL in recent seasons. If anything, Meyer has been ahead of the curve schematically for his entire career and may see the NFL as the final test in his coaching legacy.

With Trevor Lawrence almost certainly headed to Jacksonville in April's draft, the Jags will hope that pairing the Clemson star with another college legend will turn around the woebegone franchise.