Listening to Jaguars This Week on Wednesday night, there were some pretty revealing comments. Once again a lot of the talk was centered around the short comings of James Harris, the former personnel director for the Jacksonville Jaguars. It was talked about ad nausem on Monday with current general manager Gene Smith where Jaguars.com editor Vic Ketchman hammered Gene with difficult questions.
Harris' first round drafting is the reason this football team is in the state it's in right now, but some interesting comments made me as a question...
How much blame for the past is on owner Wayne Weaver?Part of this was sparked by something Gene Frenette of the Florida Times-Union wrote a few days ago pointing that a lot of the blame needs to go to the top. Frenette points out that Weaver ultimately gave the okay in extending David Garrard with the $60 million contract and Jack Del Rio with a contract extension. Then also going kind of free agent "happy" after the 2007 season, similar to what the Jaguars did in their push in the late 90's.
I think it goes beyond this, however.
Vic Ketchman made an almost surreal comment that really made me raise my brow. He implied that the Jaguars coaching staff in 2003 knew before the conclusion of Byron Leftwich's first season that he was not the guy.
Do what? That sounds ridiculous.
For the sake of my point, we'll assume it's true. If that's the case, why did Wayne Weave let James Harris stay as long as he did? If it's true that Gene Smith was the "voice" in the War Room on draft day saying "Suggs" and "Roethlisberger" and "Rodgers" or whatever... Why didn't anyone speak up? If the coaching staff knew Leftwich wasn't the guy that soon, why didn't the coaching staff speak up? Why didn't the scouts speak up? Why didn't Gene Smith speak up?
If James Harris was so stubborn and set on drafting pieces to assist his quarterback that the coaching staff didn't believe in, why was it allowed to continue? If Harris was rogue, how come no one brought it up? If Harris was just being stubborn and refusing to draft another quarterback to replace the one the staff didn't think was the guy, why? Why was it allowed to continue for six drafts?
If they did, why didn't Wayne Weaver listen?
I know Wayne Weaver is loyal and models himself after the Pittsburgh Steelers and his friend Dan Rooney, you can see that in the fact that the Jaguars have only had two head coaches in their existence. This however, is going to be an issue if Wayne Weaver is this loyal to a fault.
This isn't a round about way of trying to defend James Harris either, he's ultimately the reason this football team is in dire straits roster wise right now. We don't need any more dirt shoveled on him for us to know he was a terrible personnel director.
Just something that struck me as odd, ya know?