The Jaguars have been pretty much mediocre to simply bad since making it to the divisional round of the playoffs in January of 2008. Since then, they've hired a new GM, a new head coach, and the team now has a new owner.
The franchise is currently in a bad place, but I don't believe it's as bad as it really looks, and it does look bad. There are some very big problems with the Jaguars that need to be addressed over the course of the next year. If that happens, the Jaguars should be able to turn a corner, and make it back to where the franchise was in the mid to late 90s. Here's what needs to be done.
1) Find a new GM: The Gene Smith era, to this point, has been filled with unfulfilled promises and missed opportunities. I realize that Smith is a very popular person around the league, but being a nice guy doesn't build a great team. It's time for the Jaguars to find a new GM.
2) Find your franchise quarterback: This point may require the Jaguars to draft another top draft pick, and it may only involve the development of Blaine Gabbert. Either way, the Jaguars need a quarterback to lead the franchise on the football field, and right now, it's not Blaine Gabbert. He still has eleven games to prove that he can be the right man for the job.
3) Spend a little money: The Jaguars were outspending only one other franchise in the NFL prior to the start of the season (Philadelphia Eagles). That's not how you build a solid team. I'm not saying the Jaguars need to be in the top five or even top ten in spending, but there's a big difference between being smart and being stingy, and the Jaguars are most definitely on the stingy side right now.
4) Modernize the roster: In 2007, the Jaguars were a dominant team, but they were also backwards. They ran the ball well, and they stopped the run. Since Jack Del Rio took over in 2003, that's largely been the theme of the team, and it's continued on the offensive side of the ball this season. My point is this. The NFL is a throwing league, and winning rosters, for the most part, reflect that. The Jaguars have no pass rush, and they can't throw the ball. That doesn't get it done in today's game.
5) Establish an identity: The Jaguars' identity used to be a team that runs the ball and stops the run. Those days are gone. The Jaguars need to find a new identity for themselves, and it won't happen overnight. I'm curious what the team's uniforms will look like following this season, but that's even a part of forming their identity. Regardless of how/what that identity is, it needs to begin taking shape after this season is over, if not before the conclusion of 2012.
The Jaguars have looked lost in 2012. These five points are a place to start rebuilding. They're all important, and if you look at every successful team in the league, they all have at least three or four of these points nailed down, and many of them are solid in all five areas. That's where the Jaguars need to be.