Report: Keenan McCardell expected to join Vikings’ staff

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James Johnson
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The Jacksonville Jaguars’ staff will look dramatically different this season as most, if not all, of their coaches from 2020 aren’t expected to be retained. Per The Florida Times-Union, one coach who won’t be returning is Jags legend Keenan McCardell, who had been coaching the receivers since 2017. Instead of returning under Urban Meyer, he’ll be heading to Minnesota to join the Vikings’ staff.

McCardell, 51, was the coach fans wanted to retain the most, but Meyer seemingly wanted to make a change. In the process of conducting a search, Meyer decided to bring longtime receivers coach Sanjay Lal aboard, who will likely replace McCardell and has coached in the NFL since 2009.

McCardell, who has six years of coaching experience in the NFL and played in it for 16 seasons, did an excellent job with the Jags’ young receiving corps while in Jacksonville. Notables like Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns, Marqise Lee, D.J. Chark Jr., Laviska Shenault Jr., Keelan Cole, and Collin Johnson all had the luxury to learn under him. Of the group, Chark became a Pro Bowler under the tutelage of McCardell and registered over 1,000 yards in 2019.

The good thing about McCardell’s unfortunate departure is that he’s going to coach one of the league’s best receiving duos as the Vikings have Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen atop their depth chart. Both accumulated totals of 1,400 and 925 yards, respectively, and combined for 21 touchdowns.