JACKSONVILLE – Shad Khan sees the direction, and likes what he sees.
And while he said he very definitely didn't expect a 1-8 start in his third season as the Jaguars' owner, he said he does sees the team progressing in its second season under General Manager David Caldwell and Head Coach Gus Bradley.
That, he said, allows him to balance being patient with very much wanting to win.
"It's still hard, but you see behind the curtain, and that gives you encouragement," Khan said told jaguars.com early Saturday morning in the Library at 45 Park Lane in downtown London.
Asked if he liked what he saw behind the curtain, he said, "Yeah, I really do. And the most important thing is I see also the needle moving on economic growth in downtown Jacksonville. I think it's a great community, a lot of potential …
"We've got to help knit some of those elements into economic success."
Asked if he was prepared for 1-8, Khan replied, "No."
"I thought some of the games we didn't win would have gone our way," Khan said. "We were very close on three or four games – the Tennessee game, the Steelers game, even the Cincinnati game last week ... so, no, I would have thought we would have had more 'Ws.'''
Still, Khan said overall his experience as an NFL owner has been a positive one. Khan, who officially took ownership in January 2012, was asked if he was still having fun.
"You know, for me, if it was any better it would be illegal," he said.
Khan said his experiences in business have allowed perspective on the process of building a roster, and doing so in a competitive environment such as the NFL. A key difference, he said, is to do it in the NFL is to do it in a very public, highly-scrutinized environment.
"With the success I've enjoyed in life, you go through a lot of failure," he said. "The only difference is that failure is not public. You don't have sportswriters talking to you about it, or even financial reporters talking to you about it: 'You build this plan on this process for an automotive part, and it doesn't work … what are you going to do?' You're going to do it again, or figure something out, but it's not on the front page or the sports page.
"So, the concept of failure, learning from it, getting yourself out … that, I think, is one of the most important experiences. The difference here is we're failing in public, but my experiences – having been around the block a few times helps."
Khan also said the Jaguars are close. After losing their first three games by a combined 119-47, they have gone 1-5 in the last six with the average score 22-15.
"The last several games, it has been down to the last play," he said. "If we had made it or not made a mistake on it, we could have won the game. So, it's very close, but as a growing, maturing team you have to be able to get over that."
This article is presented by VisitFlorida.com.