Former Jaguars kicker Josh Lambo, now forever known as the kicker kicked by Urban Meyer, is suing the Jacksonville team for creating a 2021 season Hostile work environment.
Meyer’s tenure was less than a year, but he did make his mark on the group and on Rambo, who claims the physical and verbal abuse he suffered on Meyer’s hands (and feet) affected his Ability to sleep, practice, and play. Rambo, who has been with the team since 2017, went from being the most accurate kicker in Jags history to being released by the team in October.according to tampa bay timeshe asked for a salary of $3.5 million in 2021, as well as compensation for mental distress.
Football coaching culture has long been defined as a face-to-face, physical, and sometimes demeaning style to bring out the best in a team’s players. Seeing a coach grab a player’s helmet on the grill, or inflict harsh corporal punishment, or even force a player to practice after an injury, is seen as part of a sport that requires tenacity.A lot of this culture is getting better now – coaches who emotionally or physically abuse their players are being held more accountable speed, even if they win the game, which has long been seen as a cover for any kind of evil. (Urban doesn’t have that cover — if he did, it’s hard to say if Shad Khan would still fire him. Probably not.)
“Based on what we know about the security movement today, we know that past approaches may not have worked for people adequately, and in the process of rethinking our approach, there will be this transition period,” said George Washington University law professor Ellen Zavian , serves as a trustee for Safe Sport International and has worked in the NFL and NFLPA. “I believe we are in a transition period where coaches are part of the old approach and young people are part of the new approach. We will have a rocky road until we complete this transition.”
Rambo’s lawsuit is certainly a bump on the road to another coaching style becoming more mainstream, one that doesn’t involve kickers and swearing at them in practice. Meyer’s fiasco with the Jaguars may be a sign that more traditional coaching styles have become increasingly unsuccessful in developing talent. Because of his semi-fascist approach to work, he is not respected by assistants or players – a practice that has apparently worked for him in the past, but now seems to have come to an end.
But as for whether the lawsuit itself will change the NFL’s workplace culture? suspect. These changes may already be in the pipeline, but I suspect we’ll see a slew of hostile workplace lawsuits across the league as a result — mostly because of Urban Meyer’s fault. Everyone hates Urban Meyer.You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who wouldn’t automatically agree that he may have created a very toxic work environment, especially in That The sports movie is out.
While it’s likely Rambo is taking advantage of anti-City public sentiment, he’s not trying to set an example for the rest of the league for his team. The Jags may eventually settle out of court, but the lawsuit will still mark a major turning point in what Zavian describes as a bumpy transition. Abusive coaching is no longer ignored. It will be punished.