JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Five days after hiring Urban Meyer as head coach, the Jaguars appear to be close to promoting interim general manager Trent Baalke to the role of general manager, according to a report from NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
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 joined the Jaguars before the 2020 season in a support role under then-general manager Dave Caldwell. When the early reports of Urban Meyer’s connection to the Jaguars came out, Baalke was the name most connected to Meyer as a general manager.
The Jaguars’ job would be Baalke’s second shot in the GM’s office. He served as the general manager of the San Francisco 49ers from 2011-2016. In that time, the 49ers went to the playoffs three straight years, including the 2012 season when they lost the Super Bowl to the Baltimore Ravens. Baalke’s final three years saw the 49ers fall off to seasons of eight wins, five wins, then the low water mark, a 2-14 season.
Baalke’s most significant draft picks include defensive end Aldon Smith and quarterback Colin Kaepernick in 2011, defensive back Eric Reid in 2013 and defensive end DeForest Buckner in 2016. Smith made the Pro Bowl in 2012, his second year in the league when he was also named a first-team All-Pro. Reid made the Pro Bowl as a rookie in 2013. He was one of Kaepernick’s most vocal supporters. Buckner made the Pro Bowl in 2018 and was voted a first-team All-Pro in 2020 with the Indianapolis Colts.