JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Following a report that Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan plans to keep general manager Trent Baalke in place next season, fans and journalists on social media were quick to criticize the move as a mistake.
Some fans on Twitter even went as far as to change their avatar to a clown emoji with a mustache, a clear shot at Khan, who has amassed a woeful 41-118 record since he took over as owner 10 years ago.
“No one worth a damn should want the Jaguars HC job with GM Trent Baalke staying in place (of course someone will take it because it’s one of 32 and people are desperate),” Associated Press Jaguars reporter Mark Long tweeted.
Another fan urged Jim Caldwell, one of the potential candidates to become the next Jaguars head coach, to not take the job if Baalke is still in place.
Jaguars keeping Trent Baalke is another awful decision by Shad Khan. He hasn’t made many good decisions and worked behind the scenes to get rid of Dave Caldwell, Doug Marrone and Urban Meyer (even though all three doomed themselves).— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) December 28, 2021
Would think this affects the HC search.
No one worth a damn should want the Jaguars HC job with GM Trent Baalke staying in place (of course someone will take it because it’s one of 32 and people are desperate).— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) December 28, 2021
Seriously, how hard is it to ask around and get the real story on a guy with a horrible NFL reputation?
Love it. Gotta hit them from every available angle. pic.twitter.com/Yj6EBzOOyv— Ricky (@HHHHHawg) December 28, 2021
Year 2056— AB (@downbad69_) December 28, 2021
Me telling my grandchildren that Jaguars twitter got Trent Baalke fired because we changed our twitter avi’s to clown emojis: pic.twitter.com/DYItoU049k
If you’ve got any dirt on Baalke, now’s the time to leak. @CoachUrbanMeyer— Dan (@ThatStatBoy) December 28, 2021
.@JimCaldwell_NFL don’t take the Jaguars job. It’s toxic with Trent Baalke involved.— madebytim (@MadeByTim) December 28, 2021
I don’t get the Jaguars keeping Baalke. Start over.— Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) December 28, 2021
These clown avis have me cackling every time I open Twitter. I love jags fans.— Cortlyn Stovall (@CortlynSto) December 28, 2021
The report that the Jaguars will keep their GM came as a surprise to many fans who expected the Jaguars to move on from Baalke and hit the reset button after owner Khan fired coach Urban Meyer after a 2-11 record and numerous public relations nightmares.
One fan said he even decided to send a clown doll straight to Khan at TIAA Bank Field.
On the news that Khan is sticking with Baalke as @Jaguars GM, please join me in sending the man this clown with a thoughtful note in the "gift options" field. The man needs fan feedback and this seems like a creative way to give it to him for only $6.80: https://t.co/P8vob9jWjd pic.twitter.com/FL5EV80T6b— Joe Sampson (@JoeSampsonFL) December 28, 2021
Baalke, 57, joined the team in 2020 as director of player personnel. He took over as GM in November of that year after former GM David Caldwell was fired.
When he was the GM for the San Francisco 49ers, Baalke saw some success when his team made it to the Super Bowl in 2011. But since then it’s been a different story.
Since 2012, Baalke’s teams have gone a combined 17-51 with him as GM, according to CBS Sports.
While it’s presumed Baalke will be around next season after the report from NFL.com, it’s important to note that the team has not made any official statement on Baalke’s future and likely won’t until the season is over.
The Jaguars travel to New England to face the Patriots on Sunday and end the season in Jacksonville with a game against the Indianapolis Colts.