The Jacksonville Jaguars made the splash of the offseason after announcing that former Florida Gators and Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer would become the 6th head coach in franchise history.
This news came just a couple of weeks after the team moved on from fourth-year head coach Doug Marrone.
While the team filled its head coaching position, the general manager role had yet to be solidified. Upon firing Dave Caldwell in late November last year, the Jaguars named Director of Player Personnel Trent Baalke the team’s interim general manager. Today, they will reportedly make that move permanent, making Baalke the team’s new GM to go along with Meyer, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
The #Jaguars are expected to hire Trent Baalke as their GM, sources tell me and @MikeGarafolo. The top internal candidate, he stays to work with new coach Urban Meyer. The deal isn’t done and official, but it is slated to be soon.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 20, 2021
Baalke, 56, last held the title of general manager with the San Francisco 49ers from 2011-16. Prior to earning a GM role, Baalke was a director of player personnel and a team scout for several years since 1998, starting his career with the New York Jets in 1998.
The connection between Baalke and Meyer dates back to Meyer’s time at Utah when he coached former 49ers quarterback Alex Smith. At the time of Smith’s selection, Baalke was the team’s western regional scout. The relationship between Meyer and Baalke will be important moving forward.
It has long been thought that Meyer would take on more responsibilities than that of a typical NFL head coach, making personnel decisions, and handpicking his own GM to help guide him through his first year at the professional level.
According to CBS Sports reporter, Jonathan Jones Meyer didn’t want to “bite more than he can chew” during year one, allowing Baalke to introduce him to the NFL before making a final decision after year one.
“As of now, the expectation is Trent Baalke, who has been the interim GM since Dave Caldwell was fired and who has been coming into work every day since Doug Marrone was fired, will remain as the GM,” writes Jones.
“Baalke has more than 20 years of NFL experience as a scout and personnel chief. He ran the 49ers from 2011-2016, where he and Jim Harbaugh took San Francisco to three consecutive NFC title games and one Super Bowl appearance.”