Gus Bradley Won't Be a Quick-Fix for the Jaguars, but He Will Be a Fix

Nate DunlevyGuest ColumnistJanuary 17, 2013

Jan 18, 2013; Jacksonville FL, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars new head coach Gus Bradley (left), owner Shad Khan (middle) and general manager Dave Caldwell pose for photos after a press conference at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports
Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports

David Caldwell doesn't mess around.

The new general manager of the Jacksonville Jaguars has settled on Gus Bradley of the Seattle Seahawks to be the Jaguars' next head coach, according to Jay Glazer of Fox Sports.

Most around football expected an announcement to come later next week, as the Jags were allegedly interested in interviewing Greg Roman, a friend of Caldwell and offensive coordinator for the 49ers.

Instead, Caldwell has apparently settled on Bradley.

The former Seahawks defensive coordinator helped construct the best scoring defense in the NFL in 2012, and was part of the rebuilding process for what has become one of the NFL's most up-and-coming teams.

Bradley's star has risen in recent years. He's a 4-3 coach who learned from famed ex-Buccaneers coordinator Monte Kiffin. That's good news for players already on the roster, because it means there won't be a scheme change in Jacksonville.

What is still up in the air is what direction the offense will take. In a sense, that's what makes the hiring of Bradley make so much sense.

The Jaguars have massive quarterback issues, and don't currently have a viable NFL starter on the roster. Moreover, they aren't likely to get one this year.

The presumed plan to hire Roman and pick up Alex Smith in free agency would have been costly and was hardly the stuff championships are made of.

Instead, the Jaguars have gone with someone who can help rebuild a defense that fell to 28th in DVOA and 31st in points allowed.

The Jaguars will still have to find an offensive coordinator and someone to play quarterback, but at least they'll develop an identity in the meantime. While it may eventually take a year or two to find a competent signal-caller, the rebuilding process will already be well underway when he eventually arrives.

Bradley's first task will be rebuilding the defensive line. The lack of talent along the front has hampered the Jaguars' ability to rush the passer.

In Seattle, Bradley developed a system that relied heavily on 3-4 concepts on early downs, but moved to 4-3 to rush the passer. Jacksonville will need to secure better anchors in the middle of the line to pull off that tactic.

Of course, Bradley has never been content to rush with just his front four. He actually uses the secondary to pressure the passer as well.

Fans should be aware that the Seahawks defense did not improve immediately under Bradley. In fact, it was quite poor in his first two seasons. He's not a quick-fix hire, but rather someone who will be working with Caldwell to rebuild the franchise from the ground up.

He wasn't the biggest or sexiest name on the board, but it's clear he fits David Caldwell's vision for the future perfectly.