Jaguars’ Urban Meyer accused of kicking a player; it’s a potential attack against him
The allegation sounds terrible: Urban Meyer kicked an NFL player. Former Jaguars striker Josh Lambo said he was on target and that happened in the lead-up to an exhibition game last August. He said he has made a claim now because of recent negative stories about Meyer. In Lambo’s mind, Meyer was a bully who needed to fight.
Meyer said Lambo didn’t tell an accurate story and there are witnesses who can prove it, but he also doesn’t deny putting his foot in Lambo’s feet.
So is this what convinced Jaguars owner Shad Khan to give the shoe to Meyer after a bad season and a lot of bad press?
Lambo told the Tampa Bay Times about a story published Wednesday that Meyer kicked him during practice before the Jaguars pre-season final against the Cowboys. Lambo did not make a single attempt to score during the first two weeks of last season. Meyer, Lambo said, kicked him as he was stretching and then sent this encouragement: “‘Hey, Dips—, do your f-ing.” Lambo rates the kick as a 5 on a scale of 1 to 10 in strength.
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Lambo, a seven-year NFL veteran, said he told Meyer to never kick him again, adding to his profanity, but Meyer hit him right back. “I’m the head coach of rugby, I’ll kick you whenever I want,” Lambo quoted Meyer as saying.
The two spoke again the next day at the team’s facility, Lambo told the Times. He said that Meyer had told him he should wait until the two could talk privately. Lambo also said that Meyer threatened him with his job, saying the kicker was “the first player I ever spoke to me that way in my career, and if you do that again , you’ll be gone.”
No wonder Meyer hasn’t been told by a player before; until this year, he’s only coached college athletes. The momentum was completely on his side.
Lambo told his agent, Richard Irvin, about the kick, and Irvin informed the Jaguars legal team. The Jaguars confirmed to the Times that they were made aware of the incident on August 27 and said it offered to set up meetings either face-to-face with Lambo or between Lambo and coaches. Lambo says he doesn’t remember being given the opportunity to do so.
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Meyer, who did not deny, said the incident never came up in subsequent conversations he and general manager Trent Baalke had with Lambo as Lambo continued to struggle to execute kicks.
Meyer told the Times: “Josh’s description of my personality and this incident is completely inaccurate, and there are witnesses to refute his account.
The Jaguars ultimately cut Lambo three games in the regular season after he missed all three of his on-field scoring attempts and two of seven additional point kicks. Jacksonville lost all three games.
Less than a week after Lambo’s release, Meyer was seen holding hands with a woman other than his wife at Meyer’s restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. Meyer stayed in Ohio instead of flying back to Jacksonville with the team after the Week 4 loss to the Bengals.
The negative press has not stopped. Last weekend, NFL Media reported that Meyer had a heated exchange with wide-ranging receiver Marvin Jones Jr. (Jones later lower the conversation) and insulted his assistants as “losers” (Meyer said the “losers” part was “incorrect”, but he also threatens to fire leakers “within seconds” move forward). He told the Times that commenting on the leak prompted Lambo to speak up.
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“Some of those guys are my duds, and the employees I’ve developed into a great relationship over the past five seasons,” Lambo told the Times. “He threatened them all for telling the truth. And that’s a bully, and people need to speak out against bullies.”
Khan told reporters on Monday that he tends to give Meyer more time to build Jags into winners, in keeping with his patient nature.
“I want to do the right thing for the team. I want to do the right thing for the city. That, for me, is more important than just acting on gut feeling. I think we have a real history,” Khan said. .
The truth was there for Khan. His team is 2-11 under Meyer. Rookie defender Trevor Lawrence hasn’t had a good season. Past and current team sources are portraying the freshman coach as a bully of power and ego. Now there is an allegation of physical abuse.
Khan has plenty of evidence that he should stop being patient.