Newly signed Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Calais Campbell recently sat down and talked with John Oehser of Jaguars.com about a number of things — moving from Arizona to Florida, veteran leadership in the locker room, and more. It was mostly typical in-house interview stuff.
But one question and answer exchange caught my eye and it was about head coach Doug Marrone.
Q: You come from a place known for a disciplined, no-nonsense approach. Are you feeling that here?
A: Yes. Coach Marrone is cut from the same cloth as B.A. [Cardinals Head Coach Bruce Arians]. He’s a determined guy. He comes out with a game plan that’s laid out for you. It’s all organized so you know what you have to do. There’s no gray area. For me, it’s similar to what I’m used to with a sense of holding people accountable.
One thing that has stood out to me in recent weeks is just how much more prepared and intelligent Marrone sounds when speaking to the media about the game of football, the state of this franchise, etc... as compared to his predecessor. Gus Bradley was an inspirational, encouraging guy but the longer he stayed in Jacksonville, the less confident I think we all became that he knew — like, actually knew — how to fix this team. It got to the point where postgame press conferences were an exercise in counting idioms and mocking his coachspeak.
Marrone, however, gives me the impression he has a vision and he at least knows how to get there. Whether or not the team does, or if that vision leads to success, is another thing entirely. But when you’re 3-13, you have to take baby steps... and a guy who articulates vision well is a small, but very important, improvement over what we had at this point last year.