Tom Coughlin admitted to being anxious about an expected end-of-the-season decision by owner Wayne Weaver on Coughlin's status as the team's head coach.
"Sure it worries me. Everything worries me," Coughlin told reporters during today's noon press conference. "We have young guys who just got here; Christmas time and that," Coughlin added.
At 6-9 with only this Sunday's game in Indianapolis remaining of this season, the Jaguars are assured of their third consecutive losing season. And these are the hardest of times for Coughlin, who clearly wants to remain the team's head coach through the rebuilding phase the team began this season.
"I'm trying to deal with this in the proper way," he said of Sunday's 28-10 loss to Tennessee and the frustration it caused.
Coughlin said he traditionally meets with Weaver "within the first 2-3 days" after the season is over. That would suggest the real drama begins next week.
Sunday's loss, the only lopsided defeat of the season for the Jaguars, was exactly what Coughlin didn't want. He perceived the game as an opportunity to create a positive late-season feeling about this season. It produced the opposite.
"I expected that playing at home, and having the circumstances of our first game, this would be really, really special," he said, referring to ill feelings left from the Jaguars' loss in Nashville on Oct. 13, when quarterback Mark Brunell suffered a game-ending concussion on the first offensive series.
Instead of avenging that injury, the Jaguars were pushed around by the Titans and, eventually, Brunell was forced to leave the game with a hamstring injury. It marked the third time in four seasons Brunell has not finished a game against the Titans he started.
"Our offensive line played poorly. Their defensive line did what they wanted to do. It made it difficult to evaluate any other part of the game," Coughlin said.
Now, Coughlin wants his team to cancel Sunday's hurt with a win in Indianapolis. "We don't want to end the season with that game. I hope that is the dominating theme," Coughlin said.
But the Jaguars may have to play without Brunell, whose right hamstring was "sore" today, Coughlin said. "We'll see how Mark progresses and how much practice time he gets. I'll still make the decision based on who gives us the best chance to win," Coughlin added.
If Brunell is unable to play, rookie quarterback David Garrard would be the starter. Garrard replaced Brunell in the fourth quarter against the Titans and led the Jaguars on an 85-yard touchdown drive.
But Sunday's starting quarterback is not what's on everyone's mind.