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Why Jacksonville Jaguars could make it back to NFL Playoffs in 2022

After the failed Urban Meyer experiment, the Jaguars have appointed Super Bowl LII winner Doug Pederson as their new head coach.

Trevor Lawrence y Doug Pederson con los Jaguars
James GilbertAFP

In 2021, franchise owner Shahid Khan took a gamble by appointing Urban Meyer as head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars Jaguars. A series of controversies, culminating in an alleged assault on Josh Lambo, prematurely ended Meyer’s tenure, damaging the start of quarterback Trevor Lawrence’s career.

Pederson brings NFL pedigree to Jaguars coaching role

Ahead of the 2022 season, Khan was keen to avoid risky experiments and hired a head coach with NFL experience. The arrival of Doug Pederson is the first indication that the Jaguars will improve considerably this season and will be able to fight for a ticket to the Playoffs.

Super Bowl champion during five-season Eagles tenure

In five years with the Philadelphia Eagles, the only other NFL franchise he has taken charge of, Pederson registered a 42-37-1 record (with two losing seasons); managed three straight postseason appearances; and lifted the Super Bowl LII title.

In addition, the 54-year-old recruited Carson Wentz and under his tutelage, the North Dakota State alum put up his best numbers as a pro. In 2017, the 29-year-old QB had his most successful season as a professional and was a serious candidate for the MVP award, until a knee injury sidelined him from the final stretch of the regular season and the Playoffs.

Jaguars rebuild in Draft, free agency

Another problem for the Jaguars in 2021 was that they didn’t operate properly on either side of the ball. Offensively, they were 27th in the league with 5,191 total yards; defensively, they ranked 20th, allowing 6,002 yards.

The Jaguars have sought to solve those problems via two avenues: the Draft and free agency. In the Draft, Jacksonville used their top two picks, both in the first round, to take defensive backs Travon Walker and Devin Lloyd to Florida. And the franchise came flying out of the blocks in the market, investing $259 million early in free agency to sign players such as Christian Kirk, Brandon Scherff and Darious Williams.

Finally, another factor that may ease Jacksonville’s path to the Playoffs is their schedule, which is the sixth-easiest in the entire league. Their opponents combined for a 135-153-1 record in 2021.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Record in 2021: 3-14

Stadium: TIAA Bank Field

Super Bowl titles: 0

Head coach: Doug Pederson

Offensive coordinator: Press Taylor

Defensive coordinator: Mike Caldwell

Jaguars’ 2022 NFL schedule

Week 1Week 2Week 3Week 4Week 5
at Commandersvs Coltsat Chargersat Eaglesvs Texans
Week 6Week 7Week 8Week 9Week 10
at Coltsvs Giantsvs Broncosvs Raidersat Chiefs
Week 11Week 12Week 13Week 14Week 15
BYEvs Ravensat Lionsat Titansat Cowboys
Week 16Week 17Week 18
at Jetsat Texansat Titans