ORANGE PARK – The Jacksonville Jaguars wrapped up the 2013 offseason community tour schedule Thursday night with a Stand United Rally at Moosehaven, a retirement community on the St. Johns River in Clay County.
For Jaguars defensive end Jason Babin, it was his first community appearance since undergoing groin surgery in early June. Entering his 10th NFL season, Babin said that he is on schedule to be ready for training camp.
"I'm about nine days out from being 100 percent," Babin said.
Babin was in and out of on-field workouts during the offseason with the lingering injury, and after a second opinion with a specialist in Philadelphia, Babin underwent his first ever surgical procedure June 4.
"Milo (strength and conditioning coach Tom Myslinski) and Mike (athletic trainer Mike Ryan), they've got close watch over me," Babin added. "They don't let me go too hard."
In nine NFL seasons, Babin has played in 114 career games, including five games with the Jaguars in 2012. The Jaguars claimed Babin off waivers from the Philadelphia Eagles in November.
Babin is expected to start at the "leo" defensive end position. During Thursday's event, he told the crowd that the position is perfect for a pass rusher.
"It's a position that I can only dream about because you're going to line up on a tackle or you're going to line up on the open side, and you're going to rush the quarterback every down, for the most part," he said.
"I don't think I could ask for anything more than that."
The Jaguars report for training camp Thursday, July 25, and are on the field for the first time Friday, July 26.
Caravan schedule complete
Pride of the Jaguars member Tony Boselli led the Thursday evening presentation, joined by Babin, guard Will Rackley, punter Bryan Anger, tight end Brett Brackett, members of the ROAR of the Jaguars cheerleaders and mascot Jaxson de Ville.
The event wrapped up a lengthy offseason schedule of caravan stops and local rallies.
The Jaguars made caravan visits to nine communities outside of the Jacksonville metropolitan area including Daytona Beach, Fla., Altamonte Springs, Fla., Waycross, Ga., Valdosta, Ga., Palm Coast, Fla., Tallahassee, Fla., Gainesville, Fla., Savannah, Ga. and Brunswick, Ga.
"Great turnouts all over the place," Boselli said. "Everywhere we've gone there have been great Jags fans, great support, and I think people are very excited about what's going on in this organization."
Some of the biggest names on the Jaguars roster appeared during the 2013 caravan schedule, including quarterback Blaine Gabbert, wide receiver Cecil Shorts III, defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks and the entire 2013 draft class.
Boselli added that this support further proved the team's dedication to the fans.
"It just shows the commitment of the entire organization from the top to the bottom of coming out and engaging the fans and supporting these caravans and letting our fans know how thankful we are for their support," Boselli said.