Welcome to the Urban Meyer Postgame Physical, in which our expert medical team provides an occasional evaluation of former Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer, who has previously been forced to resign from two college coaching jobs for reasons that were entirely related to his health and had absolutely nothing to do with underperformance, mismanagement, or scandal. Meyer was fired by the Jaguars in December 2021 after posting a 2-11 record.
Under the guidance of new head coach Doug Pederson, the Jacksonville Jaguars pulled off a dramatic turnaround and clinched an AFC South title on Saturday night with a win over the Tennessee Titans. Though the Jags played from behind for most of the game, and a couple of mistakes in scoring position by QB Trevor Lawrence hampered the comeback effort, a fumble returned for a touchdown with under three minutes remaining boosted Jacksonville into a 20-16 lead that soon became the final score. The win gave the 9-8 Jaguars their first winning record and first playoff appearance since 2017.
Pederson's Jags, particularly the 6-1 team they've been since their bye week, look like a photo negative of the miserable, directionless group Meyer coached last year. Lawrence has quickly matured into a mostly reliable signal-caller who won't give away games. Rookie Travis Etienne is a versatile and explosive weapon out of the backfield. The defense, which has given up just one touchdown in its last three outings, has proven at least that it can pummel an offense with an inferior quarterback. And maybe most importantly, everyone seems like they're having a blast. All through the year various Jaguars have sung the praises of Pederson, comparing him favorably to Meyer's messiness. After Saturday's win, which gives them not just continued life but an actual home playoff game, those compliments feel more genuine than ever.
Around midnight on Saturday, the Defector medical team caught a glimpse of Urban Meyer sitting alone in a back corner booth at the Columbus steakhouse that once bore his name. It is their understanding that he is currently suffering from Stage IV FOMO. Signs of this syndrome include "Charlie Brown posture," a sudden intense interest in claymation, and texts to Power Five athletic directors saying "Hey buddy! You free?" Meyer was overheard attempting to order "The Giant Shelleytini," only to be informed by a somber waiter that this item was no longer on the menu.
Urban Meyer is feeling a void at the center of his soul. The Urban Meyer Postgame Physical reflects this.