JACKSONVILLE – The Jaguars are expected to have a new football structure.
Owner Shad Khan, speaking Saturday while announcing Doug Pederson as head coach, said the team expects to interview for an executive vice president of football operations.
"We have filed request with the NFL for EVP, so we'll be doing that process," Khan said.
Trent Baalke has served as the Jaguars' general manager in an official capacity since January 2021 after moving into the interim general manager role in late November 2020.
"It frees me up to focus on personnel," Baalke said of the planned organizational change. "There's nothing more important in an organization than the personnel. Whether that's players, coaches, scouts, support staff. It's all about the people. It will allow me to focus directly on that, more importantly free agency and the draft."
Khan said a task during the last month's head-coach search was to learn about other organizations and to determine the ideal structure for the Jaguars.
"One of the reasons we had the search was not only looking for the head coaching candidate but really to learn about other organizations," Khan said. "That's a by-product of the coaching search. Some of the practices, some of the structure that works, we got a great insight into it. Strengthening the football operations, more staff, definitely, that's part of our goal.
"We've had too flat an organization, and we want to add brainpower and more people to strengthen that."
The Jaguars have had multiple football front-office structures during Khan's 10-year tenure as owner, including a three-year period (2017-2019) during which former Jaguars Head Coach Tom Coughlin served as EVP with Doug Marrone as head coach and David Caldwell as general manager.
Marrone and Caldwell reported directly to Khan in 2020, with Head Coach Urban Meyer having final say over football decisions in 2021 – also in a collaborative head coach-general manager structure under ownership. Khan has emphasized in the last year a desire for a coach-centric organization.
"We haven't had players here in the last year that it was one person's decision," Khan said. "And that's how it should be moving forward because we want players here who want to win and players Doug wants. So our culture is not about just coming up with players and asking him to coach them."
Khan added, "It's going to be a collaborative process. All of us are aligned. The goal here is to win."
Pederson said, "That's what draws you to organizations where the head coach has also some say in picking the ingredients, so to speak. And I think that's important because we're the ones out there coaching these players and getting them right on game day. I just love the fact that we can get in a room and we can dialogue and make these hard decisions."
Khan on Saturday said his priority for football operations is "to have the best people here that are going to help us win."
"I look at the organization, we need to strengthen it," he said. "We'll be doing that. We're looking at additional people to strengthen the front office. Definitely we're going to be strengthening the front office.
"The NFL has a process. We'll be following that, interviewing people, then coming up with a structure that helps us win."