The Jacksonville Jaguars fired offensive coordinator Greg Olson today, just 24 hours after saying that there would be no staff shakeup in lieu of the 36-22 loss to the Tennessee Titans.
The team proceeded to promote quarterback coach Nathaniel Hackett to the vacant offensive coordinator spot. Promoting Hackett was the most logical move to make in regards to experience as an offensive coordinator, as he was the Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator from 2013-2014 and Syracuse University offensive coordinator from 2011-2012.
I wrote yesterday that the there was nothing to look forward to, as it has become apparent that this team was doomed. The offense looks broken beyond prepare, and that wasn’t going to change with Greg Olson in charge of it.
I’m still leery on whether or not this offense can turn it around, as the team appears to have turned on QB Blake Bortles. News broke yesterday that the team views him as “a basket case” and that he “has the team on pins and needles”, and that’s not what you want to hear about a young, struggling QB, especially coming from his own teammates.
However, Hackett gives this offense the only chance it has to turn things around as an offensive coordinator.
In 2013, Hackett’s first year as Buffalo’s offensive coordinator, he continued the team’s trend as one of the best rushing attacks in the league, led by Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller. The team totaled 2307 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns, ranking 2nd in the league.
The following season, the Bills’ total offense took a step. Although the running game didn’t perform as well as the year before, it still totaled 1482 and seven touchdowns, but was limited due to injuries to both Jackson and Spiller.
This year, the Jaguars are on pace to hit 1161 yards and about seven touchdowns, for comparison.
However, the Bills’ passing game was much, much better than the Jaguars’, thus meaning the Bills’ offense had a solid all-round offense. Kyle Orton — yes, the Kyle Orton, the journeyman QB who hadn’t started for a team in over two years unless it was due to injury — was named the team’s starter in week five and never looked back.
Orton threw for 3018 yards and 18 touchdowns in 12 games, with a 64% completion rate, the third best season of his nine year career.
I’m not saying that Hackett is the answer to the Jaguars’ offensive woes, but he certainly put together a respectable offense in his two years in Buffalo under then head coach, now Jaguars’ offensive line coach, Doug Marrone. Perhaps he could make a difference for this struggling Jaguars offense.
One could only hope.