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Jaguars fire offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett

Changes have begun in a disappointing season for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Jags fired offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett on Monday, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported, via a source informed of the move.

The team later confirmed the firing.

"We would like to thank Nathaniel for his hard work and dedication to the Jaguars organization, and we wish him and his family the best moving forward," coach Doug Marrone said in a statement. "These are always tough decisions, but as the head coach, I have to do what I think is best for this football team."

Hackett becomes the first fall-man for a continually inept Jacksonville offense. The termination comes after the Jags' seventh straight loss to fall to 3-8 after starting the season 3-1.

"It wasn't anything negative, [Marrone] just decided to make a move," Hackett told Rapoport. "I guess he didn't think I was good enough, that's the only thing I can think of. It's a shock."

Hackett added: "I knew Doug had thought about it. I guess the football Gods had it out for me. We started off hot, had so many injuries, we were a completely different team. Guys busted their butts, but you can only do so much. I wish I could've figured something out."

Hackett joined the Jaguars in 2015 as quarterbacks coach and was elevated to offensive coordinator in 2016 after the team fired previous OC Greg Olsen. He kept the job when Marrone took over full-time in 2017.

Saddled with enigmatic quarterback Blake Bortles, Hackett employed a run-heavy offense that attempted to hide the signal-caller at every turn. In Sunday's loss to the Buffalo Bills Bortles completed just 12 of 23 passes for a measly 127 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. It marked Bortles sixth game of the season with under 200 yards passing.

Hackett told Rapoport he thought Monday's meeting with Marrone was called to discuss a QB change.

In today's NFL of high-flying offenses, the Jags run-heavy approach never got off the ground.

After the Jags' playoff run last year, Hackett was hailed by some as a coordinator who could coach around Bortles' flaws and milk the most out of the QB. With Leonard Fournette rarely healthy for long stretches, a rag-tag group of receivers, and a flawed, injured offensive line, however, Hackett becomes the scapegoat in Jacksonville after a team with Super Bowl aspirations sits staring at a top-10 pick.

Hackett's firing portends to Marrone taking a heavier control of the Jags offense in the final five weeks as the coach attempts to save his job. Barring an incredible turnaround, however, it's unlikely the last big move from Jacksonville. If the losing continues, Bortles, Marrone and the rest of the staff could all be looking for new jobs in 2019.

UPDATE: The Jaguars ultimately also decided to move on from Bortles, benching the QB in favor of Cody Kessler on Monday afternoon.

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