Leftwich to remove himself from Jaguars coaching search: report

Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich congratulates tight end Cameron Brate (84) after a catchagainst the Philadelphia Eagles during the second half of an NFL wild-card football game Sunday, Jan. 16, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio) (Mark LoMoglio, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Byron Leftwich is expected to remove himself from consideration for the Jaguars head coaching position, according to a report from the Tampa Bay Times.

While the Jacksonville coaching search drags on, Leftwich apparently won’t be the choice to help turn the franchise around. The Times’ Rick Stroud posted that update on Twitter on Thursday afternoon, saying Leftwich was “expected to remove himself from consideration for the Jaguars head coaching job soon.”

Jacksonville fired Urban Meyer on Dec. 16, and had a head start in its coaching search in front of all but one NFL team — the Raiders’ Jon Gruden. Las Vegas hired Josh McDaniels last week. The Giants, Broncos and Bears have also filled their vacancies.

The Saints, Dolphins, Texans and Vikings remain head-coachless.

Leftwich was reported to be the pick by Jacksonville a week ago and fans largely reacted positively to that news. But things never materialized between its former first-round pick and the Jaguars. Leftwich was said to have wanted a new general manager, reportedly Arizona’s Adrian Wilson, and the Jaguars wouldn’t move on from Trent Baalke.

Leftwich started 44 regular season games for the Jaguars and had a 24-20 record as a starter. He passed for 9,042 yards in Jacksonville, along with 51 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. Leftwich was cut in favor of David Garrard just before the start of the 2007 season.

Leftwich also played for the Buccaneers, Steelers and Falcons in an NFL career that ended in 2012. His coaching career began as an intern with the Cardinals in 2016. Bruce Arians made Leftwich the team’s quarterbacks coach the following year.

When Arians was hired by the Buccaneers in 2019, he hired Leftwich to run the offense. That move was the biggest in Leftwich’s career. He coached iconic quarterback Tom Brady in 2020 and ‘21 and the tandem helped lead Tampa Bay to a Super Bowl championship last year.

About the Author:

Justin Barney joined News4Jax in February 2019, but he’s been covering sports on the First Coast for more than 20 years.