Sunday, October 12, 2003, 1:00 p.m. EDT
ALLTEL Stadium, Jacksonville, Fla.
Local Television: Regionally on CBS and locally on WTEV Ch. 47 (Ch. 6 cable),
Gus Johnson (play by play) and Brent Jones (color analyst)
Local Radio: WOKV (690 AM) and WKQL (96.9 FM) and the Jaguars Radio Network,
Brian Sexton (play by play), Jeff Lageman (color analyst) and Ryan Elijah (field reporter)
THIS WEEK: Coming off their first victory of the season, the Jacksonville Jaguars will attempt to make it two in a row when they host the Miami Dolphins at 1:00 p.m. EDT Sunday at sold-outALLTEL Stadium. Last Sunday, the Jaguars defeated the San Diego Chargers 27-21 for their first victory under new head coach Jack Del Rio and the first with rookie quarterback Byron Leftwich as the starter.
After starting 0-4 and then winning the fifth game — matching their start in 1995 — the Jaguars will now try to match the three victories they had in the month of October in their inaugural season. Following the Miami game, the Jaguars will have their bye week and then host the Tennessee Titans on October 26. The team will not leave home in October, with all three games at ALLTEL Stadium. The Jaguars are 41-25 at home in the regular season.
The first victory in the Jaguars' new era was sparked by one new face — Leftwich — combining with two veterans in Fred Taylor and Jimmy Smith. Taylor scored twice and turned in 164 combined yards, while Smith played for the first time this season and contrbuted 137 yards on eight receptions. Leftwich posted 336 passing yards, completing 19 of 28 passes with two TDs.
"I'm happy to put that (losing) streak to rest," said Del Rio. "There are a lot of good things going on. There were times in the (San Diego) game where you could really see it coming together. We just need to find that ability to sustain those moments over 60 minutes. I feel like a lot of good things are happening for this football team."
TICKET INFORMATION: Single tickets and Touchdown Club seats are still available. Ticket prices are $45, $65, $70 and $95 for single tickets and $216 for those in the Touchdown Clubs. Tickets can be purchased by calling (904) 633-2000.
JAGUARS ON THE AIR THIS WEEK:
Monday — Jaguars Reporters, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio, with Brian Sexton, Vic Ketchman
Monday — The Jack Del Rio Show, 7:30 p.m., WTEV Ch. 47
Tuesday — The Jack Del Rio Show, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio
Wednesday — Jaguars This Week, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio
Thursday — THE Jaguars Show, 11:30 p.m., WAWS Ch. 30
Saturday — Jaguars Weekend, 7:30 p.m. and 12:00 a.m., WTEV Ch. 47
THE OPPONENT: The Miami Dolphins were the first expansion team in the American Football League, beginning play in 1966. Following four losing seasons, the Dolphins hired Don Shula as head coach in 1970 and immediately turned into one of the most successful franchises in the NFL. They reached the playoffs in 1970, then advanced to the Super Bowl in 1971, losing to Baltimore. In 1972, the Dolphins completed the only undefeated season in the history of the NFL, finishing 17-0 after a 14-7 victory over the Washington Redskins in Super Bowl VII. A year later, Miami became only the second team to win back-to-back Super Bowls, as they defeated the Minnesota Vikings 24-7. The Dolphins played in Super Bowls following the 1982 and '84 seasons, then missed the playoffs from 1986 to '89. In the 1990s, they qualified for the postseason five times, though never advancing past the divisional playoffs. On January 5, 1996, Don Shula retired as the winningest coach in NFL history with an overall record of 347-173-6. He was succeeded by Jimmy Johnson, who had four non-losing seasons and three playoff berths in four years. Dave Wannstedt took over in 2000 and has led the Dolphins to a 31-17 record and two postseason appearances. In 2002, they finished 9-7 and in third place in the AFC East.
THE SERIES: The Jaguars and Dolphins have played once in the regular season and once in the postseason. On October 12, 1998, the Jaguars beat the Dolphins 28-21 on "Monday Night Football" at ALLTEL Stadium in the only regular-season matchup. And on January 15, 2000, the Jaguars won 62-7 in the AFC Divisional Playoffs in what would be the final game for Dan Marino and Jimmy Johnson.
THE LAST TIME: The Jaguars scored the second-most points ever in NFL postseason history as they defeated the Miami Dolphins 62-7 in the AFC Divisional Playoffs at ALLTEL Stadium on January 15, 2000. Mark Brunell and Fred Taylor were part of an offensive explosion that accounted for 34 of the 41 points scored in the first half, as the Jaguars had the second-largest margin of victory in an NFL playoff game. Jacksonville scored on each of its first five possessions (four touchdowns, one field goal) and had seven takeaways. Brunell and Taylor left the game in the second quarter, by which time Brunell had thrown for two touchdowns and Taylor had rushed for 135 yards and scored twice. Jimmy Smith also had two TDs and a 100-yard receiving game, and the Jaguars scored their most points ever in one game. The 62 points were the most ever allowed by a Miami team.
There are only eight players on the current Jaguars roster who played in that game: QB Mark Brunell, RB Fred Taylor, WR Jimmy Smith, TE Kyle Brady, DE Tony Brackens and DBs Fernando Bryant, Jason Craft and Donovin Darius. Dolphins QB Jay Fiedler was Brunell's backup in that game. He played the last two-and-a-half quarters, completing 7 of 11 passes for 172 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He connected with Jimmy Smith on a 70-yard TD pass and with WR Alvis Whitted on a 38-yarder.
A JAGUARS VICTORY OVER THE DOLPHINS WOULD: Be their second victory of the season and the first two-game winning streak since last November. It would give the Jaguars a 2-0 record against the Dolphins and a 2-1 mark at home this year.
INJURY UPDATE: There were no major injuries in the San Diego game. Four players missed the game because of injuries: QB Mark Brunell (elbow), CB Kiwaukee Thomas (groin), LB Eric Westmoreland (knee) and LB Shannon Taylor (calf). The status of all injured players will be updated on Wednesday.
THE COACHES: Jack Del Rio was named Jaguars head coach on January 17, 2003, becoming the second head coach in Jaguars' history. At 40, Del Rio is the second youngest head coach in the NFL (four months older than Jon Gruden). Del Rio spent 11 years as an NFL linebacker and had a standout college career at the University of Southern California. He previously coached in New Orleans (1997-98), Baltimore (1999-2001), and Carolina (2002). He was the Panthers' defensive coordinator, and in his only season with the club the defense improved from 31st in the NFL to second, the biggest one season defensive improvement in NFL history. Del Rio was the linebackers coach for three seasons in Baltimore, where the Ravens' defense also ranked second each season. He helped the team win Super Bowl XXXV over the New York Giants and coached the Ravens' talented linebackers, overseeing the development of Peter Boulware, Jamie Sharper and Ray Lewis, the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year in 2000 and the MVP of Super Bowl XXXV. Prior to coaching, Del Rio played 11 seasons in the NFL, with New Orleans (1985-86), Kansas City (1987-88), Dallas (1989-1991) and Minnesota (1992-95), playing in the Pro Bowl following the 1994 season. Del Rio was a starter at linebacker for Southern California (1981-84), where he earned All-America honors, was a runner-up for the Lombardi Award and co-MVP of the 1985 Rose Bowl. Del Rio has learned from some of the best coaches in all of football. He was recruited to USC and played for John Robinson, and in the NFL he played under Bum Phillips, Jim Mora, Jimmy Johnson and Dennis Green. As an assistant coach, he has worked for Hall of Famer Mike Ditka and Super Bowl winner Brian Billick, as well as John Fox. Drafted by baseball's Toronto Blue Jays, Del Rio batted .340 while playing catcher on USC's baseball team in 1983 and 1984 with future stars Randy Johnson and Mark McGwire. He was a third-round choice by the New Orleans Saints in 1985 and was named to the NFL's All-Rookie team.
Dave Wannstedt, in three seasons as the Dolphins' coach, has led the club to a regular-season record of 34-18 and a pair of playoff appearances. He made his debut as the Dolphins' coach in 2000, finishing 11-5 as the club claimed its first AFC East title since 1994. The Dolphins finished 11-5 again in 2001, advancing to the playoffs for the fifth consecutive year. Wannstedt joined the Dolphins in 1999 as assistant head coach to Jimmy Johnson. Prior to coming to Miami, Wannstedt served as head coach of the Chicago Bears (1993-98), leading the team to a 9-7 record in his second season as he was named NFC Coach of the Year. He spent four seasons as defensive coordinator in Dallas, building a defense that propelled the club to three Super Bowl victories. Wannstedt was an offensive lineman and team captain at the University of Pittsburgh (1971-73). As a senior, he played with future Heisman Trophy-winner Tony Dorsett. Wannstedt was selected in the fifteenth round of the 1974 NFL draft by the Green Bay Packers and spent the season on the injured reserve. He began his coaching career as an assistant at Pittsburgh (1975-78). He also served as an assistant at Oklahoma State (1979-1982), Southern California (1983-85) and Miami (1986-88). Wannstedt has a career record of 75-75 in the regular season.
JACKSONVILLE-MIAMI CONNECTIONS: Dolphins head coach Dave Wannstedt was Jack Del Rio's defensive coordinator with the Dallas Cowboys from 1989 to '91, and he was the DL coach at Southern California during Del Rio's final two collegiate seasons. … Del Rio spent part of the 1996 preseason with the Dolphins before retiring. … Miami assistant head coach/offensive coordinator Norv Tuner was the QB coach and offensive coordinator at Southern California when Del Rio started for the Trojans in the early 1980s. … Jaguars coach Paul Boudreau held the same position with the Dolphins in 1999 and 2000 … Dolphins QB Jay Fiedler played for the Jaguars in 1999 … Jaguars LB coach Mike Haluchak coached Dolphins LB Junior Seau to his first Pro Bowl in his rookie year with the San Diego Chargers in 1990 … Jaguars G Jamar Nesbit, OT Leander Jordan and Dolphins DE Jay Williams were teammates with the Carolina Panthers from 2000 to '01, Jaguars G Chris Naeole, Dolphins S Sammy Knight and RB Ricky Williams were teammates with the New Orleans Saints from 1999 to '01, Jaguars FB Marc Edwards and Dolphins CB Terrell Buckley were teammates with the New England Patriots from 2001 to '02 … Jaguars C Brett Romberg played at Miami (Fla.) and won the 2001 national championship with the Hurricanes … Players who were teammates in college include: Jaguars G Jamar Nesbit and Dolphins S Arturo Freeman at South Carolina; Jaguars QB David Garrard and Dolphins RB Leonard Henry at East Carolina; Jaguars DT Marcus Stroud and Dolphins TE Randy McMichael at Georgia; Jaguars DE Tony Brackens and Dolphins RB Ricky Williams at Texas; Jaguars FB Marc Edwards with Dolphins C Tim Ruddy and S Shawn Wooden at Notre Dame; Jaguars OT Maurice Williams and Dolphins LB Tommy Hendricks at Michigan; and Jaguars SS Donovin Darius with Dolphins FB Rob Konrad and PK Olindo Mare at Syracuse.
Practices are held at the new practice fields adjacent to ALLTEL Stadium. Check with the Jaguars' Communications office (633-6000) to schedule interviews.
LAST WEEK: The Jaguars got their first win of the season 27-21 over the San Diego Chargers at ALLTEL Stadium, with rookie Byron Leftwich passing for 336 yards and two touchdowns. Jimmy Smith returned to the lineup and caught eight passes for 137 yards, and Fred Taylor scored touchdowns both rushing and receiving and had 164 combined yards, as the Jaguars snapped a six-game losing streak dating back to the 2002 season. In only his second NFL start, Leftwich led the Jaguars to 436 yards on offense, their most in more than a year. Taylor put the team on the scoreboard in the first quarter with a one-yard touchdown run, and he iced the game in the fourth quarter with his second TD. The latter score came on a third-down play with 1:47 left in the game and the Jaguars clinging to a 20-14 lead. Taylor took a screen pass from Leftwich and raced 60 yards for his longest receiving score since his rookie season. Seth Marler kicked two field goals — including a team-record-tying 53-yarder — and Troy Edwards had an 18-yard TD reception from Leftwich for his second score in two games with the team. The Jaguars held San Diego's star RB LaDainian Tomlinson to 38 yards rushing on 10 carries, although WR David Boston caught 14 passes for 181 yards and two touchdowns, tying for the most receptions ever against the Jaguars in a game.
THE LEFTWICH LINE: Jaguars QB Byron Leftwich was the seventh overall choice in the 2003 draft. He achieved a number of notables in Sunday's win over the San Diego Chargers:
Won for the first time as a starter (1-1)
Became the seventh quarterback to win a game as the Jaguars' starting quarterback
Completed 19 of 28 passes for 336 yards, two TDs and no interceptions for a passer rating of 132.4, the fourth highest in team history
His 336 yards passing were the 11th most ever by a Jaguars quarterback and the most by anyone other than Mark Brunell
Has thrown at least one touchdown pass in all four NFL games in which he has played
NOTES FROM THE CHARGERS GAME: It was the first game ever between the Jaguars and Chargers. They are scheduled to play again in 2004 in San Diego. … The Jaguars and Chargers each had 21 first downs, but the Jaguars had more yards (436 to 346) and more time of possession (33:13 to 26:47). … The Jaguars had one turnover and two takeaways and are now plus-one for the season. … Their 436 yards on offense were their most since 9/15/02 at Kansas City (450) and their second most in the last 39 games. Their 313 net yards passing were their second most in their last 44 games. … The Chargers gained only 69 yards on the ground. Jacksonville has the AFC's best defensive rush average, allowing only 3.0 yards per carry. … Fred Taylor led the team with 87 yards rushing on a season-high 27 carries. He had his first two-TD game since 12/10/00 vs. Arizona. … Taylor gained 164 combined yards (87 rushing and 77 receiving) and moved into second place in team history with 6,535 career yards, moving ahead of Keenan McCardell, who had 6,393 combined yards from 1996 to 2001. Taylor also moved into second place in all-purpose yards (rushing, receiving and returns), moving ahead of McCardell (6,495). Taylor now has 6,535 all-purpose yards. … Jimmy Smith caught eight passes for 137 yards. He moved into 18th place on the NFL's all-time receiving list, passing Herman Moore (670). Smith now has 672 career receptions. He also moved into 20th place on the all-time receiving yardage list, passing Rob Moore (9,368). Smith now has 9,424 receiving yards. It was Smith's 38th career 100-yard game and his most receiving yards since 12/10/00 vs. Arizona. … Troy Edwards has two TDs in two games with the Jaguars, giving him as many scores as in his last three seasons combined. … Seth Marler's 53-yard field goal tied the franchise record held by Mike Hollis (10/8/95 vs. Pittsburgh and 9/29/96 vs. Carolina). Marler has hit his last five field goal attempts. … Chris Hanson punted four times for a 42.0-yard average, with his first touchback of the season, one inside the 20, and a long of 58. He had two kicks returned for 11 yards and a net average of 34.3. … The Jaguars made four sacks, their most since the season opener at Carolina (5). Four players made one sack each: LB T.J. Slaughter (second of his career in his first start of the year), DT Marcus Stroud (second of the year in back-to-back games), DE Tony Brackens (team-leading third of year) and DE Lionel Barnes (first of his career). … LB T.J. Slaughter led the team with seven tackles (four solo), followed by LB Akin Ayodele and SS Donovin Darius with six tackles each. … Mike Peterson and Rob Meier had fumble recoveries. … Every player who dressed saw action except QB David Garrard and G/OT Leander Jordan. The inactive players were: CB Kiwaukee Thomas, LB Eric Westmoreland, LB Shannon Taylor, OT/G Sammy Williams, OL Marques Ogden, WR J.J. Stokes and QB Mark Brunell (third QB). … Jaguars captains were: DT John Henderson, S Donovin Darius, C Brad Meester, RB Fred Taylor and P Chris Hanson.
FROM COACH JACK DEL RIO ON THE CHARGERS GAME: "I'm happy to put that (losing) streak to rest. It's nice to finally get the win. I am more relieved than joyed. There's a lot of things that we're going to want to go back and correct, and there is after both wins and losses. It's just a whole lot more fun to do it after you've won. There are a lot of good things going on. There were times in that game where you could really see it coming together. We just need to find that ability to sustain those moments over 60 minutes. I feel like a lot of good things are happening for this football team. The only thing that was lacking before was getting the reward. Guys have been giving great effort.
(on Byron Leftwich) "He made a lot of nice throws for us today. I thought he played well. He obviously made some big plays that we needed and gave us the opportunity to win the game. He continues to impress me with his mind, his ability to understand football. He's a very intelligent young man. He keeps everybody on the field alive in his mind, thinking about every route, not just the one it's designed to go to. He has an ability to see the entire field; that is rare.
(on Jimmy Smith) "What a treat having Jimmy Smith back. He showed up big. We knew we'd have some opportunities if the offensive line gave us time, and Byron put the ball in there and Jimmy made some nice plays. He did a fabulous job. We knew we had some one-on-one routes and Byron got the ball in there. He made some huge plays, especially early.
(on the defense getting four sacks) "It really starts up front and if we limit that running back (LaDainian Tomlinson) to less than 50 yards. He's a fine running back. It was a tremendous job by our defense. That was a good start. You have to be able to stop the run. Sacks come in bunches and they came today.
(on stopping Tomlinson) "I'm most proud of what we did against their run offense. That team knows how to run the football. Marty has always been able to run the ball. Hudson Houck has been an offensive line coach since my USC days. He knows how to run the ball. So I am very proud of the way we took them out of the run game completely. It's a team game and guys stepped up. Defensive linemen refused to be single blocked. Linebackers tackled the gaps and it all came together. They sustained it. If one part of that breaks down, they break out a run on you. Tomlinson had almost 200 yards last week against Oakland.
(on Troy Edwards) "He's been a very nice addition. The guy is explosive. He's hungry. He came in here and just wanted an opportunity to compete. He showed some explosiveness and some skill levels that help us. Adding him and getting Jimmy back and our wide receiver corps all of a sudden became pretty solid.
FROM QB BYRON LEFTWICH: "It's a great feeling anytime you can win in this league. When you get them you have to celebrate them and have a lot of fun. This has to be one with meaning. We're not going into this thing to win one game. We're trying to get on a roll here and win five, six or seven games straight. That's how we have to look at it."
(on having Jimmy Smith in the lineup) "Anytime you add a guy like Jimmy Smith to any team, any of the 32 teams, it makes a big difference. They gave us some man coverage out there, and Jimmy took advantage of it. He did the hard part. He did everything he had to do to get open, and I just put the ball out there. Anytime you have No. 82 out there, it's a respect thing. The second half, they had two or three guys on him."
(on the screen pass for a TD to Fred Taylor) "It was just a great call by coach (Bill) Musgrave. Once Fred got the first down I was thinking just fall down, but then I saw him running and I was thinking, 'Run Fred run.' When he got in the end zone, I finally started thinking this might be the one, because you never know in this league."
(on being confused by different coverages) "Every team we play is going to try to confuse me by doing certain things. My goal is to go out there and compete and make sure I'm prepared. Some things they do you will have never seen before, so you just have to react to it and try to put your team in a successful situation."
(on Miami next week) "You have to keep fighting. We can't be satisfied with one win. I think our guys understand that sometimes all it takes is getting that one win. Once you get it you have to keep rolling."
FROM WR JIMMY SMITH: "It always feels good to get a win. It's good to get a win here in front of our home fans. I was very grateful to go out there and do whatever I could to help the team."
(on the fans' reaction to his return) "It felt good. I got a heartwarming response from the crowd. What can I say? These are the best fans in the world to play in front of."
(on Byron Leftwich's performance) "It's outstanding for him to be so young and to be poised and confident. He has all the tools. It's just scary, it really is. He's only going to get better."
FROM DT MARCUS STROUD: (on the win) "Everything feels better after a win, even the nicks feel better. We did the things we had to do, and we didn't break down in the second half. Now we have one win under our belt. We know how to do it, so hopefully we can start a little roll here."
(on the run defense) "We have been pretty good against the run thus far this season, and we are just trying to get better. We're getting off the ball really well, and the most important thing is that we're having a little bit of fun and you can see it in our play. Like our motto says, we're just chopping wood every day."
(on the future) "We're looking to Miami. We're going to be at home all month and we're going to try and turn this thing around."
NEXT WEEK: The Jaguars will have their bye week and will not play on October 19. They will return to action on Sunday, October 26 when they host the Tennessee Titans at ALLTEL Stadium. In their first eight seasons, the Jaguars are 5-3 in the game before a bye week and 5-3 in games following their bye week.
SMITH'S RETURNS: Jaguars wide receiver Jimmy Smith started off his season with a 100-yard game, which is nothing new for him. In three straight seasons when returning to the team's lineup following extenuating off-field circumstances, he has opened up with 100-yard outings.
2001 — Smith underwent three abdominal surgeries in the offseason and spent 35 days in the hospital. In the season opener against Pittsburgh, he caught eight passes for 126 yards and two touchdowns.
2002 — Smith missed the entire preseason because of a contract holdout. In the season opener against Indianapolis, he caught eight passes for 104 yards.
2003 — Smith missed the first four games of the regular season after being suspended by the NFL for violating the league's substance abuse policy. In his season opener against San Diego on October 5, he caught eight passes for 137 yards.
THE EUROPEAN CONNECTION: Two Jaguars players who spent the spring playing in the NFL Europe League are already making their presence felt.
WR Matthew Hatchette, who led the NFL Europe League in receptions in the spring, is the Jaguars' third-leading receiver through five games, with 13 catches for 187 yards and two receiving touchdowns.
KR David Allen, who was the NFLEL's Special Teams Player of the Year in the spring (breaking the league's kickoff return yardage record with 915 yards), has played in the last three games and is ninth in the AFC with a 23.6-yard average on kickoff returns. He set up the team's only touchdown at Indianapolis with a 61-yard return.
SMITH 18TH AMONG ALL-TIME RECEIVERS: Jaguars WR Jimmy Smith returned to the lineup last Sunday and caught eight passes for 137 yards, moving him into 18th place on the NFL's all-time receiving list and 20th in career receiving yards. Smith has 672 career receptions for 9,424 yards.
BRADY RANKS NO. 5 AMONG TIGHT ENDS: In the last five seasons, the Jaguars' Kyle Brady has the fifth most receptions of active tight ends.
DOUGLAS IS EIGHTH-LEADING ACTIVE SACKER: Jaguars DE Hugh Douglas ranks eighth among active players in sacks.
TAYLOR HAS SEVENTH-MOST TOUCHDOWNS LAST FIVE YEARS: Despite missing 24 full games and parts of nine others, Jaguars RB Fred Taylor has scored the seventh-most touchdowns over the last six seasons among active players.
MORE TOUCHDOWNS THAN INTERCEPTIONS: Jaguars QB Mark Brunell has the fifth best ratio of touchdown passes to interceptions in NFL history. In 11 seasons, Brunell has 144 TD passes and only 86 interceptions (none this season).
NEW FACES: There are 26 new faces among the 53 players on the Jaguars' current roster. Here is the breakdown.
Unrestricted Free Agents (4) — DE Hugh Douglas, FB Marc Edwards, LB Keith Mitchell, LB Mike Peterson
Veteran Free Agents (11) — DE Lionel Barnes, S Deke Cooper, WR Troy Edwards, RB Chris Fuamatu-Ma'afala, WR Matthew
Hatchette, G Jamar Nesbit, S Nick Sorensen, WR J.J. Stokes, LB Shannon Taylor, CB James Trapp, OT/G Sammy Williams
First-year free agents (1) — RB/KR David Allen
Trade (1) — S Anthony Mitchell
Waivers (1) — CB Brad Franklin
Draft Choices (6) — QB Byron Leftwich, DB Rashean Mathis, G Vince Manuwai, TE George Wrighster, RB LaBrandon Toefield,
OT Marques Ogden
Undrafted Rookies (2) — WR Cortez Hankton, PK Seth Marler
JAGUARS IN THE COMMUNITY: Each Tuesday during the NFL season, Jaguars players are involved in the community making visits to schools and other non-profit agencies. Here are some visits for this week:
Monday, October 6
4:30 – 5:30 p.m. LB Akin Ayodele, TE George Wrighster and LB Eric Westmoreland and other Jaguars players will visit children at Wolfson Children's Hospital.
6:30 – 7:30 p.m. S Donovin Darius will make an appearance at the Winn-Dixie Deerwood Marketplace in Jacksonville to meetcustomers and sign autographs.
Tuesday, October 7
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. S James Trapp will visit Eugene Butler Middle School to congratulate 25 winning students who attended yesterday's Jaguars game. The students were rewarded with tickets to a game by showing improvement in their attendance, behavior and schoolwork throughout the week.
3:00 – 6:00 p.m. Several Jaguars players will participate in the fifth annual United Way Hometown Huddle Day, a national day of community service at ALLTEL Stadium. Players will interact with United Way youth recipients to emphasize teamwork and helping others. Those scheduled to participate include: James Trapp, Joe Smith, George Wrighster, Kiwaukee Thomas, Vince Manuwai, Matt Leonard, Marcus Ogden, Eric Westmoreland, Matthew Hatchette, Cortez Hankton, Jimmy Redmond, Joe Zelenka, Chris Hanson, Seth Marler and Brett Romnberg.
6:30 – 7:30 p.m. S Donovin Darius will make an appearance at the Winn-Dixie at Medical & Merchants Center in Mandarin to meet customers and sign autographs.
7:00 – 9:00 p.m. LB Akin Ayodele will meet and greet Jaguars fans at All-Sports Collectibles
JAGUARS AMONG THE LEAGUE LEADERS: The Jaguars rank 12th in the NFL in total offense (17th rushing, 10th passing), and they are 16th in defense (6th rushing and 27th passing). The Jaguars are plus-one on the turnover table, tied for sixth in the AFC. … The Jaguars are fifth in the AFC with a 58.3 percent rate on scoring touchdowns inside the red zone (7 of 12). … QB Mark Brunell is fifth in the AFC in passing with a 89.7 passer rating. … PK Seth Marler is fifth in the AFC with 34 points (10 of 10 PATS, 8 of 12 FGAs). … RB Fred Taylor is tied for seventh in the AFC among non-kickers with 18 points (3 TDs). Taylor ranks fifth in the AFC with 422 rushing yards and is tied for 16th in the AFC with 20 receptions (third among running backs). He ranks fourth in the conference with 598 yards from scrimmage. … Chris Hanson is fourth in the AFC with a 43.5 gross punting average. … David Allen is ninth in the AFC with a 23.6 average on kickoff returns, and LaBrandon Toefield is 10th with a 22.9 average on kickoff returns.
STATS AND SUCH: A total of 18 players have started every game this season (8 on offense and 10 on defense): OTs Mike Pearson and Maurice Williams, Gs Vince Manuwai and Chris Naeole, C Brad Meester, TE Kyle Brady, RB Fred Taylor, FB Marc Edwards, DEs Tony Brackens and Hugh Douglas, DTs Marcus Stroud and John Henderson, LBs Mike Peterson and Akin Ayodele, CBs Fernando Bryant and Jason Craft, and Ss Donovin Darius and Rashean Mathis.
The Jaguars have had eight plays of 30 or more yards in 2003. They had only 16 plays of 30-plus yards in 2002, 11 in 2001, 26 in 2000, 23 in 1999, 29 in 1998, 22 in 1997, 26 in 1996 and 12 in 1995. The Jaguars have allowed six 30-plus plays this season… Of the Jaguars' 102 completed passes, 52 have been to wide receivers, 13 to tight ends and 37 to running backs. … The Jaguars are 4 for 6 on fourth-down conversions; their opponents are 3 for 4. … On 12 drives inside the opponent's 20, the Jaguars have scored seven touchdowns and four field goals. Their opponents have had 13 trips inside the red zone and have come away with nine touchdowns and three field goals. … Jaguars opponents have begun seven possessions inside their own 20 and scored on one of those drives (1 TD), while the Jaguars have begun 14 possessions inside their own 20 and scored on four of those drives (3 TDs, 1 FG). … In nine seasons, the Jaguars are 17 for 27 on two-point conversions (0 for 1 in 2003), while their opponents are 7 for 25 (0 for 2 in 2003). … In nine seasons, here is the Jaguars' record in each month: 1-0 in August, 16-17 in September, 14-19 in October, 19-12 in November, 18-15 in December and 1-1 in January. … In 2003, the Jaguars have outscored their opponents in the second quarter (34-21), and have been outscored in the first quarter (10-21), third quarter (26-41) and fourth quarter (30-47). … The Jaguars have used turnovers to score 17 points, while their opponents scored 13 points off Jaguars' turnovers.
Mark Brunell is 63-54 in 117 regular-season starts, 67-58 overall. Byron Leftwich is 1-1. … WR Jimmy Smith has played in 128 of the 133 games in Jaguars history. Of the current players, next are QB Mark Brunell (120) and DE Tony Brackens (97). … The longest streak of consecutive starts is held by C Brad Meester (53), followed by TE Kyle Brady (51). … Eight players have played in 100 or more games during their careers: CB James Trapp (147), WR Jimmy Smith (135), TE Kyle Brady (129), QB Mark Brunell (122), WR J.J. Stokes (115), DE Hugh Douglas (111), WR/KR Jermaine Lewis (102) and FB Marc Edwards (101). … Brady leads with 123 career starts, followed by Brunell (117) and Smith (107).