JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Urban Meyer hasn’t given much thought to the NFL draft or free agency.
The new Jaguars coach is dialed in on one thing — filling out a coaching staff.
Meyer said on Thursday that the bulk of his time since being named the new coach last week has been on trying to find the right coaches to bring to town and who to retain. He and new general manager Trent Baalke have had a crash course relationship over the past week in getting acclimated with one another. Meyer was hired on Jan. 14 and Baalke introduced as the new GM on Thursday.
“Obviously I didn’t know Trent, we met years ago, so I knew him but I didn’t know him. I’ve been very fortunate, my entire head coaching career, I’ve always looked at everything that I’ve done is a partnership. Whether it be athletic directors, whether it be just people we work with,” Meyer said.
“And as Trent said, I can’t imagine spending more time with someone in the last few days, really the last week or so. With Trent, we’ve been really impressed and alignment is going to be a big word that our owner, Shad, is going to use, and Trent and myself. It’s going to be a partnership and we’re going to be aligned.”
Reports continue to trickle out about Meyer’s hires and candidates for those positions.
On Thursday, ESPN’s Dan Graziano reported that Ravens defensive line coach Joe Cullen was leaving Baltimore to become the Jaguars defensive coordinator. And the NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported that Meyer was hiring Darrell Bevell as the team’s offensive coordinator.
Bevell served as the Lions’ offensive coordinator the past two seasons and finished the year as the interim head coach.
Cullen worked in Jacksonville before. He coached the defensive line from 2010-12 under Jack Del Rio and Mike Mularkey. He has spent 14 seasons as an assistant in the league, but Cullen has never been a coordinator.
When asked if current Jaguars assistants were being retained or if they were all released, Meyer deferred answering that until he had a better idea of who was being hired.
“Yeah, next week I’d like to, we’ll give a deep dive into what’s taken place because there’s been no finality to where were at as a coaching staff,” Meyer said. “So, I’d like to hold on that until next week, because there’s been nothing set in stone yet.”
Meyer’s focus on Thursday was clearly on filling out his staff and said that he and Baalke hadn’t spent much time looking too far down the line. That includes any free agency targets or potential draft picks, including at No. 1 overall.
“No, we’ve talked. That’s a three-month, two-month, I think we all know there’s a couple incredible players out there, but my focus has been on the staff,” Meyer said. “But to say we haven’t talked about it, of course we have, and that’s going to be a deep, deep dive.”