JACKSONVILLE – Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley won’t travel to London with the team Monday evening following the death of his father.
Bradley’s father, Roy James Bradley, died Sunday. He was 85.
Bradley, in his first season as the Jaguars’ head coach, left Jacksonville Monday to return to Minnesota to be with his family. The team is scheduled to leave Monday evening for London, where the Jaguars will play the San Francisco 49ers at Wembley Stadium Sunday afternoon.
Bradley will join the team later in the week, Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell said Monday.
“He really struggled with this decision, to lead his team or to be with family,” Caldwell said. “We made it for him to be with his family and his mom, Gloria. We have confidence in our coaching staff here and our team here that we’re going take care of business.
“Coach Bradley will rejoin the team as soon as he can. We support him and his family with that and ask that you respect his privacy as much as you can.”
DeWayne Walker, the Jaguars’ secondary coach, will serve as interim head coach until Bradley’s return, Caldwell said.
“Coach Bradley and I have talked about head coaching topics, so when he asked me to fill in I told him I had no problem,” said Walker, who served as New Mexico State’s head coach the past four seasons. “I know this is a sensitive situation for him right now.”
Walker said Jaguars players will be off Tuesday as planned with coaches game-planning that day. He did not address issues such as injuries or the quarterback position.
“Right now, we’re trying to get everybody situated for the trip,” Walker said.
Jaguars players were informed of the death of Bradley’s father around 3 p.m. Monday.
“I sensed a lot of sensitivity,” Walker said. “Coach Bradley has been good to all of us. Anytime a situation like this pops up and you’re a family, you’re going to feel bad and you’re going to have some sensitive feelings. Our team is a tight-knit family and I’m sure guys are hurting.
“I know they’re sad, but I know at some point – especially when coach gets back – it will be business as usual.”
Roy James Bradley is survived by his wife, Gloria, as well as Gus Bradley, and Gus Bradley’s five siblings: sister Jody, sister Lynne, brother Scott, brother Kelly and brother Pat.