Urban Meyer discussed what has been a tumultuous week during his weekly radio show Tuesday night. Meyer, who publicly addressed his recent conduct inside a Columbus, Ohio restaurant/bar during Monday’s press conference, said during his radio show that he has to earn back the trust of the Jaguars’ organization. Meyer’s comments came hours after Jaguars owner Shad Khan issued a statement that called Meyer’s behavior last Friday night “inexcusable.”
Images and videos began appearing on social media over the weekend of Meyer having close contact with a young woman during his time at the Ohio establishment. More videos have come out since this past weekend that further shows the close contact between Meyer and the young woman. Meyer said during Monday’s press conference that his family is “definitely upset” over his actions. Meyer said he had finished having dinner with his family before heading over to the neighboring establishment to take pictures. The situation escalated from there.
“The fact that I became a distraction, I’ve got to earn their trust back from that,” Meyer said, via ESPN’s Michael DiRocco. “I admire [Shad Khan] so much. … And so, that’s what makes me so angry at myself. I believe that, and I failed. And I’ve got to get it back, and I will.”
Meyer added that the recent conversations about the situation with Jaguars coaches and players “have been horrible.” When asked about preparing his team to play Sunday’s game against the Titans amidst the distractions, Meyer pointed to the Jaguars’ team leaders.
“I don’t believe that’s in my court. … The leaders on the team are going to make that decision,” he said, via Mark Long of the Associated Press. “It depends on how much trust you have built up with them, how we structure everything this week and focus on winning that game. …
“I’m going to be extremely clear as I can; our staff is working their tails off. But you know as well as I do that the ownership of this team is with the players.”
While Meyer works to rebuild trust, the longtime college coach will also have to win back any credibility he had previously had with his players. An unnamed Jaguars player told NFL reporter Michael Silver that Meyer “has zero credibility in that stadium. He had very little to begin with.” Players were reportedly put off by Meyer canceling Monday’s team meeting.
“It’s bad,” the Jaguars said of the current situation. “I don’t know how he’s gonna function.”
Along with his self-created distraction, Meyer has to figure out a way to snap the Jaguars’ 19-game losing streak. (Meyer’s name is next to four of those losses.) The Jaguars have upcoming games against Tennessee and Miami before heading into their Week 7 bye.
One positive for the Jaguars has been the recent play of rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence. The No. 1 overall pick in the the 2021 draft, Lawrence ran for a score while going 17 of 24 with 204 yards and no turnovers during last Thursday’s three-point loss to the Bengals.
“He’s fantastic,” Meyer said of Lawrence during Monday’s press conference. “The best thing is he took care of the ball, made great decisions, used his legs when necessary. He got down when he should have gotten down. He scored a touchdown. He’s playing like the Trevor skillset. Fantastic.
“The team sees it. They see it in practice. He’s a marked improved player right now.”