JACKSONVILLE – The Jaguars' coaching staff will have a new face in a high-profile spot.
Jedd Fisch, the Jaguars' offensive coordinator the past two seasons, was relieved of his duties Tuesday. And Head Coach Gus Bradley said despite the team's struggles in that area, his decision to let an assistant go for the first time in his two seasons wasn't easy.
It also wasn't entirely about production. Or scheme.
"This is tough on me," Bradley said early Tuesday afternoon, minutes after team announced Bradley's decision part ways with the 37-year-old Fisch. "I know it's tough on our staff and our team. Jedd's a very good friend of mine, and a guy who put his heart and soul into this organization and what we're trying to build."
Bradley, speaking at his annual end-of-season media availability days after the Jaguars finished his second season with a 3-13 record, stressed that the move wasn't just about the Jaguars' back-to-back 31st ranking in the NFL in total offense.
The Jaguars also finished last in the NFL in scoring the last two seasons.
"We just had some philosophical differences," Bradley said. "We observe daily and evaluate weekly. This was more 'observe daily and evaluate at the end of the year.'"
Bradley said he met with Fisch individually Tuesday, then again after a meeting with the entire offensive staff. He informed Fisch of the decision at the second individual meeting.
He also said the final decision came Tuesday, though he had been evaluating the offense and was aware that conversations in the area were needed.
He said while he foresees no other changes on the offensive staff – and while he would argue for keeping current staff members – the decision ultimately would be that of the new coordinator. Bradley said he has no timetable on a new coordinator, and no criteria that the new coordinator have NFL coordinating experience.
"When we find the right guy, then it will be time," Bradley said.
The Jaguars this season struggled offensively partially because of a young offense that included six rookies consistently starting: quarterback Blake Bortles, wide receivers Allen Hurns, Allen Robinson and Marqise Lee and center Luke Bowanko and right guard Brandon Linder. Left tackle Luke Joeckel, right tackle Austin Pasztor and running back Denard Robinson were in their second seasons.
Bradley called Fisch "an extremely knowledgeable coach" and a very good scheme coach.
"We want precision, we want execution and we want our team to play fast," Bradley said. "I think that's where there was a difference. I'm more of the type of, 'Let's make sure our players can execute at the highest level and make sure there's a lot of precision to it.'
"It's kind of like defensive philosophy: do you want to play a few things and do it well or do you want to be multiple and do a lot of things and create confusion? Both have been very successful. Both work. It was somewhat those conversations with us offensively."
Bradley added, "Whatever we can do to play fast – guys knowing what they're supposed to do. We have a culture of execution that requires precision. That's what we're looking for on offense. …
"You might have to find areas to simplify things so that you have the ability to play fast."
The Jaguars allowed 71 sacks this season, the most in the NFL and the most in franchise history. They ranked 21st in rushing and 31st in passing this season. The team averaged 289.6 yards a game offensively, rushing for 102.1 yards a game and passing for 187.6 yards a game.
The Jaguars ranked 31st in the NFL in total offense in 2013 with 293.8 yards per game, ranking 22nd in passing with 215.1 yards a game and 31st in rushing with 78.8 yards per game.
The Jaguars' 247 points last season were the fewest in NFL. They scored 249 points this season, also the lowest in the NFL.
"It was about (youth) and it wasn't about the 31st-ranked offense – it really wasn't," Bradley said. "It just felt like, 'What do we need to do to ensure we get better in the direction we want to go?' As far as our approaches and where we wanted to go from here, that's where it was different."
Bradley also said the Jaguars likely will continue to use the zone-blocking schemes employed by the offensive line the past two seasons, with the team having drafted and acquired players to play that style.