Jags waive starting WR Jason Hill

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars have waived starting receiver Jason Hill, taking a step toward preparing for next year.

Hill had a disappointing season, catching 25 passes for 367 yards and three touchdowns, and dropped several balls. Since the Jaguars (3-8) plan to revamp their receiving corps in the offseason, waiving Hill forces Jarett Dillard, Chastin West, Cecil Shorts and Brian Robiskie onto the field more for evaluation.

The team also signed running back DuJuan Harris to the active roster from the practice squad, a move that could mean less playing time for Deji Karim.

Jacksonville also signed free agent cornerback Morgan Trent and placed safety Courtney Greene on injured reserve with a hamstring injury. The Jaguars have a league-high 18 players on injured reserve.

One day after firing coach Jack Del Rio and announcing the impending sale of the team, interim coach Mel Tucker shook up his staff on his first full day, firing receivers coach Johnny Cox and shuffling other assignments.

Tucker essentially made Cox the scapegoat for the team's poor offensive performance this season. The Jaguars (3-8) rank last in the NFL in offense and have been plagued by poor routes, dropped passes and inconsistent quarterback play.

Tucker also moved quarterbacks coach Mike Sheppard to work with receivers, a position he held the previous four years in Cincinnati.

Offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter will serve as quarterbacks coach, tutoring rookie Blaine Gabbert for the remaining five games of the season.

The moves mark a significant shakeup for a team out of playoff contention, but could help shake up the Jaguars as Tucker auditions for the permanent gig.

"I think Mel has been one of the bright spots of our football team this year, taking charge of the defense and calling the defensive plays," owner Wayne Weaver said. "I was very explicit with Mel that it's an interim position, that at the end of the season we're going to conduct ... a very extensive coaching search to make sure that we bring in someone that can help us really build this franchise and return to what we expect -- into a winning franchise.

"I did assure Mel that he would have an opportunity to be interviewed for the job, and I think he certainly deserves that and he's earned that."

Del Rio hired Tucker as his defensive coordinator in 2009, but Del Rio mostly handled the calls during Tucker's first two years. That changed in January, when Weaver told Del Rio to give up play-calling duties.

The defense hasn't been the same since.

The unit was one of the worst in the league the last two seasons, failing to pressure quarterbacks and struggling to slow down anyone on the back end.

"Good players make a good coach," Tucker said. "I believe in keeping it simple, simple enough where we can line up and play fast and we can be relentless and we can be aggressive. But we have enough where we can be confident in regards to covering whatever we need to cover, whatever offenses throw at us, multiple sets, things like that.

"The thing that you'll see when you watch our defense is that they play with great technique and fundamentals. They play hard, they're relentless, they play through the echo of the whistle and those are things we believe in and those are things we emphasize every day, and you get what you emphasize."

Tucker, 39, began his coaching career as a a graduate assistant at Michigan State under Nick Saban in 1997. He coached defensive backs at Miami (Ohio), LSU and Ohio State before moving to the NFL with the Cleveland Browns in 2005. He was Cleveland's secondary coach for three years before getting promoted to defensive coordinator.

Having never been a head coach, Tucker doesn't plan on getting overly involved with the offense. Nonetheless, he knows this is a big opportunity.

"I'm always motivated to do the best that I can, and right now, my focus is on these next five weeks to do everything that I possibly can to get this team prepared to play," Tucker said. "There's a certain brand of football that we need to show out there. It's relentless, it's attention to detail, it's high effort, it's high energy, it's high impact. Those are things that we're going to work on.

"In terms of my future as a head coach, that's for another day. ... Only time will tell what opportunities I will have in the future, but I am confident and comfortable where I am right now."

Jacksonville hosts San Diego on Monday night.

Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.