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Coughlin ready to move forward


He was three days removed from his team's loss in Baltimore, but Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin was no less irritated.

"I'll be grinding over Sunday for a long time, but it's time to move forward. It's enough of a negative feeling to not want to feel that way again," he told reporters today, during a press conference that included a line of questioning to which Coughlin took exception.

"Hey, fellas, we're 1-1. We lost 39-36. We've got a long way to go. Coming home is great," Coughlin said after sensing that the questions were focusing on the loss to the Ravens, and not on Sunday's home-opener against the Cincinnati Bengals.

These are tense times. It was announced today that running back Chris Howard had been cut, following a game in which Howard fumbled twice. The Ravens recovered one of those fumbles and quickly scored their first touchdown of the game, cutting the Jaguars' lead to 17-7.

Asked if he cut Howard because of the fumbles, Coughlin said, "No, the circumstances roster-wise forced me to make a decision."

He will likely have other decisions this week. Primary among those is the status of running back Fred Taylor, who practiced today on a limited basis. "We'll see. It's been a long time since he's been out there," Coughlin said of Taylor's status for Sunday's game against the Bengals.

Center John Wade, out since training camp with a fractured foot, returned to practice "full go," Coughlin said.

However, in a major bit of news, it was revealed that kicker Mike Hollis is experiencing back problems, again. Hollis had back surgery following the 1998 season. There's concern he won't be able to kick against the Bengals Sunday, which would force kickoff specialist Steve Lindsey to handle the placement chores.

The Jaguars injury report officially lists Taylor, Hollis and defensive lineman Emarlos Leroy (calf) as questionable; linebacker Brant Boyer (groin) as doubtful; and Wade as probable.

"Home-opener, new opportunity; hopefully, by the time we get to Sunday, the Ravens will be in the past. The Bengals can smack you in the mouth like anybody else," quarterback Mark Brunell cautioned.

However, most everybody else wanted to talk about what happened in Baltimore. Where was the pass-rush? What happened to the running game? How could the defense blow a 23-7 halftime lead?

"Did we blitz? No, we did not blitz. We'll have to live with that," Coughlin said.

"You're not going to have success in the big games of the season if you don't have balance," he added of the Jaguars' lack of a running game in Baltimore.

"(The Bengals) will certainly do some things similar, after watching the (Ravens) tape," Coughlin said, referring to his defense's pass-coverage failures.

Clearly, Coughlin was ready for different questions about a different team.

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