THIS WEEK: The Jacksonville Jaguars will try to break a three-game losing streak when they go on the road to face the New York Giants in a nationally televised game on Sunday night. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. EST at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
The game will be the Jaguars' only national TV game this season. They are coming off a 21-19 loss to the expansion Houston Texans last Sunday. Three of the Jaguars' next four games are against NFC East teams. They own a 15-13 record vs. NFC teams in eight seasons (1-0 this year) and are 1-2 on the road in 2002. The loss dropped them below .500 for the first time since the season opener. They are still in second place in the AFC South, tied with the Tennessee Titans and one game behind the Indianapolis Colts. The Giants 3-4 after losing to the Philadelphia Eagles 17-3 on Monday night.
The Jacksonville offense has struggled in the last three games. After scoring 23 or more points in their first four games, the Jaguars have totaled only 43 points in their last three games. That marks their lowest three-game total since October 2001. Defensively, the Jaguars have allowed only 133 points, an average of 19.0 points per game that ranks second in the AFC.
The game against the Giants is one of five road games for the Jaguars in a seven-week stretch from October 13 through November 24. The Jaguars closed out October with a 1-3 record and have now gone 2-10 in October over the last three seasons (October is the only month in which the Jaguars have a losing record in their eight-year history at 13-19). In November, the Jaguars have a 17-10 record, their best month in their first seven seasons.
In the last six seasons, the Jaguars are tied with the fifth-best record in the NFL, a 52-35 mark that is seven games behind the Green Bay Packers. The Jaguars are have the NFL's fifth-best home record, 37-15 dating back to 1996, and they are the NFL's fifth-best road team with a 24-21 record dating back to the 1996 season, only one game away from having the best record.
TELEVISION BROADCAST: The Jaguars-Giants game will be televised nationally on ESPN and locally on WJXX Channel 25 (Ch. 5 cable), with Mike Patrick calling the play-by-play and Joe Theismann and Paul Maguire adding analysis. The Jaguars Pregame Show airs at 11:30 a.m. on WTEV Channel 47 (Ch. 6 cable), with Brian Sexton, Ryan Elijah and Jordan Siegel.
RADIO BROADCAST: All Jaguars games are broadcast on WOKV (690 AM) and WKQL (96.9 FM) and the Jaguars Radio Network. Brian Sexton calls the play-by-play and former NFL quarterback Matt Robinson adds analysis, with Cole Pepper serving as field reporter for home games. Sexton and Robinson are in their eighth season together. Robinson, Vic Ketchman and Pepper handle the pre-game show (three hours before kickoff on both stations), and Pepper and ex-Oakland Raider Pete Banaszak do the post-game show. A total of 16 affiliates in three states on the Jaguars Radio Network will also broadcast the game.
The game will also be broadcast nationally on Westwood One/CBS Radio Sports, with Joel Meyers calling the action, Bob Trumpy adding analysis and John Riggins as the sideline reporter. In addition, Jones MediaAmerica Radio Network will broadcast the game in Spanish on national radio with Alvaro Martin (play by play) and Danny Marulanda (analyst).
ON THE INTERNET: The Jaguars website has unveiled a re-designed look for the 2002 season. For breaking news, columns, feature stories, press releases, historical information, video highlights, rosters, depth charts and statistics, go to www.jaguars.com Updated daily, the Jaguars' Official Web Site has been ranked among the 100 Best Sites in the World by PC Magazine. The site also features online ticket buying, new merchandise offerings and multimedia, including video of Jaguars television shows and live radio game broadcasts.
ON THE AIR THIS WEEK:
Monday — Jaguars Reporters, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio, with Brian Sexton, Vic Ketchman
The Jaguars End Zone, 7:00 p.m., WJXT-TV4, with Sam Kouvaris, Donovin Darius and a guest
Wednesday — Jaguars This Week, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio, with Brian Sexton, Vic Ketchman, Jeff Lageman
Thursday — Tom Coughlin Show, 6:00 p.m., WOKV Radio, with Tom Coughlin, Brian Sexton
THE Jaguars Show, 8:00 p.m., WJXT-TV4, with Brian Sexton, Jeff Lageman
Saturday — Tom Coughlin Show, 7:30 p.m., WJXT-TV4, with Tom Coughlin, Brian Sexton
THE OPPONENT: The Giants are the fourth-oldest team in the NFL, having played their first game in 1925. They have won two Super Bowls (1986 and 1990) and four NFL championships, and they played in the NFL title game 11 other times. Since Jim Fassel was named head coach in 1997, the Giants have won the division two times and appeared in Super Bowl XXXV two years ago, losing to the Baltimore Ravens. Last year the Giants finished 7-9 and tied for third place in the NFC East. They are 3-4 this season after losing to the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday night.
THE SERIES: The Jaguars and Giants have played twice, with each team winning at home. The Jaguars defeated the Giants 40-13 in the second game of the 1997 regular season on September 6 at ALLTEL Stadium, and in the 2000 season finale on December 23, the Giants won 28-25 at Giants Stadium.
THE LAST GAME: The Jaguars lost their season finale 28-25 to the New York Giants on December 23, 2000 in Giants Stadium to drop to 7-9 for the year, their first losing season since their inaugural year of 1995. The Jaguars led 10-7 going into the fourth quarter, but they surrendered three touchdowns to the eventual NFC champions, thwarting the comeback efforts of Mark Brunell, who threw two touchdowns in the final period. The Jaguars played most of the game without WR Jimmy Smith, who was hit hard in the first quarter before returning for the final two drives, and RB Fred Taylor, who suffered a hip pointer on the second play of the second half and didn't return. The Brunell-to-Keenan McCardell connection was the team's main hope, as they hooked up on 11 passes for 131 yards. The Jaguars did stifle the Giants' running game, holding Tiki Barber and Ron Dayne to 81 yards on 30 carries, but Giants WR Amani Toomer did most of the damage with eight receptions for 193 yards and a touchdown. Two notable streaks ended in the game. Taylor rushed for 52 yards — including a 44-yard TD run — but his streak of nine consecutive 100-yard rushing games ended (tied for the third longest in NFL history). And Smith did not catch a pass for the first time in 87 games, dating back to mid-1995. The Giants opened the scoring in the first quarter with a TD run by Barber. The Jaguars tied the game in the second period on Taylor's long run, then they took a 10-7 lead in the third quarter on Mike Hollis' 36-yard field goal. The Giants took the lead early in the fourth quarter on a Kerry Collins to Ike Hilliard TD pass. Following was a frantic finish that saw four touchdowns in the final 3:05. Collins threw his second TD pass, then Brunell hooked up with Kyle Brady on a five-yard TD pass (and a two-point conversion). Next, Hollis' onside kick was caught and returned for a touchdown by New York's Jason Sehorn, ending the Jaguars' hopes of a non-losing season. In the final minute, Brunell threw a 12-yard TD pass to Alvis Whitted, and then Sehorn recovered another onside kick to end the game. The loss was the Jaguars' first ever in a regular-season finale and marked their earliest end to a season in franchise history.
A JAGUARS VICTORY OVER THE GIANTS WOULD: Snap a three-game losing streak and give the Jaguars a 4-4 record for their best mark at the midseason point in three years. It would be their second road win this season and their second win in three regular-season games against the Giants.
COUGHLIN IN EIGHTH SEASON WITH JAGUARS: Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin is in his eighth season as the team's head coach, tied for the third-longest tenure of any NFL coach with his current team. In addition, Coughlin has the seventh-best record of all current NFL coaches in division games (minimum of 20 wins) and the seventh-best record in home games (minimum of 16 home games). Records include all teams coached by an individual during the regular season.
THE COACHES: Jacksonville head coach Tom Coughlin (65-54 in regular season, 4-4 in postseason) has led the Jaguars to two AFC Central Division championships and two appearances in the AFC Championship game in seven seasons as the only head coach in franchise history. In his first seven seasons, Coughlin posted a 39-23 division record against the AFC Central, including 22-9 at home and 17-14 on the road. The Jaguars made the playoffs all four seasons from 1996 to '99 — a first for an NFL expansion team. In 1999, the Jaguars had the best record in the NFL (14-2), advancing to the conference championship game before losing to Tennessee. In 1998, Coughlin guided his team to its first AFC Central Division championship with an 11-5 record. The Jaguars defeated the New England Patriots in a Wild-Card game before losing to the New York Jets in the Divisional playoffs. In 1997, the Jaguars were 11-5 and finished second in the AFC Central, and they were defeated by Denver in the Wild-Card playoffs. In their second season in 1996, the Jaguars advanced all the way to the AFC Championship game, finishing second in the division with a 9-7 record. In the playoffs, the Jaguars upset the Bills and Broncos on the road before losing at New England. In 1995, the Jaguars finished with four victories in their inaugural season. Coughlin became head coach of the Jaguars on February 21, 1994 following three successful seasons as head coach at Boston College. He compiled a record of 21-13-1 from 1991 to '93 at Boston College, and had two bowl game appearances, as well as a ranking of 13th in the final AP poll of 1993. A veteran of 31 years in coaching, he was previously an NFL assistant coach with the New York Giants (wide receivers, 1988-90), Green Bay Packers (wide receivers and passing game coordinator 1986-87) and Philadelphia Eagles (wide receivers, 1984-85).
Jim Fassel is in his sixth year as the Giants' coach. The Giants won the NFC championship and advanced to Super Bowl XXXV following the 2000 season, but fell to 7-9 in 2001. Fassel notched a 46-37-1 record in his first five seasons and guided the Giants to two NFC East division titles (1997 and 2000). He won NFL Coach of the Year honors in 1997. Prior to becoming the head coach of the Giants, Fassel spent one year as the Arizona Cardinals' offensive coordinator (1996) and the Oakland Raiders quarterbacks coach (1995). Fassel coached the Giants' quarterbacks in 1991 and was elevated to offensive coordinator in 1992. He served as the Broncos' offensive coordinator (1993-94). He groomed John Elway at Stanford (1979-1983) as offensive coordinator. Fassel was a quarterback for Fullerton (California) College, winning the junior college national championship in 1967. He also played at Southern California and Long Beach State. He was selected by the Chicago Bears in the seventh round of the 1972 NFL draft. Fassel was an assistant at Fullerton College (1973), Utah (1976), Weber State (1977-78), the USFL's New Orleans Breakers (1984), and head coach at Utah (1985-89).
JACKSONVILLE-NEW YORK GIANTS CONNECTIONS: Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin was born in Waterloo in upstate New York and was the Giants' receivers coach from 1988 to '90, contributing to the franchises' Super Bowl XXV victory over Buffalo in his last season with the team … Giants TE coach Michael Pope was on that coaching staff with Coughlin. … Jaguars that are former Giants include: TE Pete Mitchell (1999-2000) and QB Kent Graham (1992-94 and 1998-99) … Nine Giants have ties to the state of Florida: LB Mike Barrow (Homestead, University of Miami), WR Tim Carter (Lakewood), WR Ron Dixon (Wildwood), DE Kenny Holmes (Vero Beach, University of Miami), G Tam Hopkins (Winter Park), LB Kevin Lewis (Orlando), WR Daryl Jones (University of Miami), QB Jesse Palmer (University of Florida) and TE Jeremy Shockey (University of Miami) … The only Jaguar with a tie to New York is SS Donovin Darius (Camden, N.J., Syracuse). … Jaguars OL coach Mike Maser was born in Clayton, N.Y. and entered his coaching career at the University of Buffalo in 1969 … Jaguars strength and conditioning coach Jerry Palmieri was born in Englewood, N.J … Jaguars QB coach John Hufnagel coached the Arena League New Jersey Red Dogs from 1997 to '98 … Jaguars WR coach John McNulty coached Giants WR Amani Toomer at the University of Michigan in 1994 … Jaguars LB coach Steve Szabo coached at Syracuse in 1977 and '78 … Giants LB coach Tom Olivadotti has made three stops in the state of Florida as a defensive coordinator during his coaching career (University of Miami 1980-83, Miami Federals-USFL 1984 and Miami Dolphins 1987-95) Players who were college teammates include: Jaguars LB Akin Ayodele and Giants OT Ian Allen and DT Matt Mitrione at Purdue; Jaguars MLB Wali Rainer and Giants RB Tiki Barber at Virginia; Jaguars RB Dan Alexander and Giants CB Ralph Brown at Nebraska; Jaguars TE Kyle Brady and Giants QB Kerry Collins at Penn State; Jaguars S James Boyd and Giants DE Bob Jones and LB Brandon Short at Penn State; Jaguars CB Fernando Bryant and Giants DT Cornelius Griffin at Alabama; Jaguars RB Fred Taylor and Giants WR Ike Hilliard on Florida's 1996 national championship team; Jaguars OT Mike Pearson and Giants QB Jesse Palmer at Florida; Jaguars LB Bobby Brooks and Giants S Omar Stoutmire at Fresno State; Jaguars SS Donovin Darius and Giants CB Will Allen at Syracuse; Jaguars CB Robert Bean and Giants S Johnnie Harris at Mississippi State; Jaguars CB Jason Craft and Giants RB Damon Washington at Colorado State; and Jaguars DE Javor Mills and Giants WR Tim Carter at Auburn.
INJURY UPDATE: No serious injuries were suffered in the Texans game. The status of all players will be updated during the week.
LAST WEEK: The Jaguars were defeated by the Houston Texans 21-19, losing for the third time to an AFC South team. The loss dropped the Jaguars to 3-4 for the year and put them below .500 for the first time since the opening week of the season. The Texans' Kris Brown kicked the game-winning field goal with 2:11 to play, capitalizing on a 47-yard punt return off a lateral that put the ball on the Jacksonville 33-yard line four plays earlier. Houston then held off the Jaguars' desperation drive, with a Hail Mary pass falling incomplete at the goal line as time ran out. On the final drive, Mark Brunell completed only 2 of 8 passes and was sacked twice. The Jaguars held the Texans to 242 yards but allowed them to stay in the game, never leading by more than seven points. Jimmy Smith opened the scoring in the second quarter with a 25-yard touchdown pass from Brunell, but the Texans evened the score at 7-7 with their first TD ever by a running back. Eric Westmoreland blocked a punt for a safety and a 9-7 lead at halftime. But two missed field goals in the first half by Tim Seder, who was signed six days before the game, prevented the Jaguars from stretching their lead. In the third quarter, the teams traded field goals, with Houston taking a 10-9 lead on a 43-yarder by Brown and then Jacksonville going back ahead 12-10 after a 34-yarder by Seder. In the fourth quarter, the two teams alternated touchdowns. First the Texans scored on a one-yard pass from David Carr to Billy Miller and were successful on a two-point conversion for an 18-12 lead. The Jaguars took their last lead, 19-18, midway through the fourth period on a two-yard run by Stacey Mack. They were unable to run out the clock the next time they got the ball back, with Micah Ross dropping a pass that would have given them a first down with 3:32 remaining.
NOTES FROM THE TEXANS GAME: The Jaguars lost for the first time to an expansion team, after sweeping the Cleveland Browns in 1999. … Tom Coughlin's record against his former assistant coaches is now 2-2 (0-1 to Capers, 2-0 to Chris Palmer, 0-1 to Dick Jauron). Coughlin did beat Capers in a 1996 game against Carolina. … The Jaguars lost for the second time at home this season, dropping to 2-2 for the season. … The Jaguars are 0-3 in the AFC South. … Mark Brunell dropped to 35-21 in career in division games. … Returning to Jacksonville with the Texans were head coach Dom Capers, offensive coordinator Chris Palmer, OT Tony Boselli (on I.R.), DE Gary Walker, DT Seth Payne, LB Jeff Posey and OT Jimmy Herndon. … WR Bobby Shaw made his first NFL start in place of Patrick Johnson (abdomen), who missed his first game as a Jaguar. … For the second straight week, the Jaguars lost a game in which they had more yards (290 to 242), more first downs (18 to 12) and more time of possession (33:39 to 26:21). They had 71 plays, but they converted only 6 of 17 third downs (35 percent) and were 0 for 1 on fourth down. The Texans converted only 3 of 13 third downs (23 percent). … The Jaguars had no turnovers and one takeaway and are now plus-four for the season. … Mark Brunell completed only 16 of 34 passes for 202 yards, 1 TD and 0 INTs and a passer rating of 75.9. He had a completion percentage under 50 percent for the first time since October 1, 2000 vs. Pittsburgh. … Fred Taylor led the team in rushing with 84 yards on 25 carries (3.4 average, 16 long). He added three receptions for 22 yards, giving him 106 total yards from scrimmage. … Stacey Mack added 38 yards on six carries, including one TD, his fifth of the season, giving him a team-leading 30 points. … Jimmy Smith led the team with 80 yards receiving, and he tied with Bobby Shaw for the team lead with four catches. Smith's touchdown was his second of the season and 48th of his career, extending his team record. … Chris Hanson punted eight times for a 44.1-yard average, with two touchbacks and one inside the 20. He had 5 punts returned for 62 yards and a net average of 31.4. … PK Tim Seder scored five points on one field goal and two extra points. He hit from 34 yards but was wide left from 50 and 35 yards. … Bobby Shaw returned four punts for 69 yards, including a 47-yarder that is the second-longest of his career. … The team got four sacks, one each by John Henderson (team-leading fifth of the season), Wali Rainer (first as a Jaguar) and Marlon McCree and Danny Clark (first of their careers), The Jaguars allowed five sacks, their most since allowing eight sacks on December 16, 2001 at Cleveland. … MLB Wali Rainer led the team with 16 tackles (6 solo), followed by WLB T.J. Slaughter and DT John Henderson with 11 tackles each. … Eric Westmoreland's blocked punt was the team's first since Donovin Darius on September 9, 2001 vs. Pittsburgh. … Every player saw action except G/OT Daryl Terrell, WR Henry Douglas, TE Chris Luzar and QB Kent Graham. The inactive players were: CB Robert Bean, RB Dan Alexander, LB Bobby Brooks, G/OT Leander Jordan, C/G Drew Inzer, WR Patrick Johnson, DT Clenton Ballard and QB David Garrard (third QB).
FROM COACH TOM COUGHLIN ON THE TEXANS GAME: "They made the plays and we didn't. There are plenty of explanations. We would have had a first down if we had caught the ball and it's all over right there, and we didn't do that. Offensively, up front, we got our butts kicked. There is no explanation, no other words needed. We got beat up front badly. We knew going in we would have to win the line of scrimmage. The overall execution wasn't very good. Our pass game was hit or miss. We had some people open and didn't get them the ball. I felt like the team was ready to play, but I don't think we do anything to inspire each other. We didn't make plays. We made a couple but we didn't make enough. There's no continuity when you don't make first downs.
(on the Texans' last punt return) "The frustration lives on with the punt. You have to open your eyes and see who's back there on the punt return and see who's not back there (Jermaine Lewis). They beat us on a play which they were alert and we weren't. When there's a different punt returner back there, something's up. It shouldn't happen. We dropped the ball on third down or else it's a first down. Catch the ball in your hands. The situation was perfect for them. All the attention was on the ball being dropped rather than being caught. All the special teams guys didn't think they'd have to be out there. The situation was perfect for them to pull something off. The dropped ball should have never happened.
(on his frustration) "(I am) as frustrated as I have ever been in my life. I don't even know if that's the right word — frustrated.
(on PK Tim Seder) "Two missed field goals. We thought going out there we would have a wind field position factor, and he missed two in a row left before he made one. I'm going to look at it tomorrow like I always do, try to assess what is there. I certainly wasn't impressed by the kickoffs.
(on Mark Brunell being off) "Yes, he was. He was not comfortable. He took too many hits. They had five sacks, but how many times did they hit him? He's tough and he'll go play.
(on the future) "We have to find a way to come fighting back. We're 3-4. We were 3-1. It doesn't get easy. You want to have a win in the division to go on the road with a win, and it didn't happen. Where do we go from here? You go back to work. We don't have a lot of options personnel-wise. You have to line up and play and do your job. And we have to do our jobs."
FROM QB MARK BRUNELL: (on his game) "I was real frustrated. I wasn't as sharp as I needed to be. I had some opportunities that we didn't take advantage of. I have to be more accurate. It was a combination of things. But, regardless, you have to put the ball where it needs to go.
(on his frustration) "Honestly, it's hard to put into words. It's frustrating. We were 3-1 and now we're 3-4. We have good football players with the ability to be a good football team. We're just not doing that as a team. The defense played well. Special teams contributed. Offensively, we just didn't have continuity.
(on the offensive line) "That was a problem today that we need to clean up. It's hard for me to tell right now (what the problem was). Regardless, I don't think there was one position on the offense that feels good about how they played. I'm certainly no exception. We need to improve."
FROM WR JIMMY SMITH: "The defense played well enough to win the game. The offense, I mean you can't play like that and win in the National Football League. You can't have the three and outs for whatever the reason is. We just didn't get it done today. This is a low point for us. Our only option is to come out and fight. We have no other option. What are you going to do, quit? We've got nine games left. You can't quit."
FROM S DONOVIN DARIUS: (on the loss) "Sometimes when these things happen, you don't have the words to explain it because you've given all you have in an effort to win. It doesn't matter what team you're going against, it humbles you to a great deal."
(on his role as a veteran on the team): "Most important thing you always do is lead by example. At a time like now when we do have young players, they may be looking to someone to show what we should do in a time like this. As far as I'm concerned, and because I've been here through hard times like these, I'll just try to keep everything in perspective. You never get too high or you never get too low."
(on how the team can prepare for next week) "You always look at yourself. I'll do a self-assessment and find out what I could I have done differently. Could I have been a half step closer to a ball? Could I have made a tackle in the backfield? What could I have done differently that would have changed the outcome of the game? That is going to be important for everybody to do."
FROM DT JOHN HENDERSON: (on getting over the loss) "We've just got to get over it. We've got to move on. There's a lot more football to be played. The playoffs are still there."
NEXT WEEK: The Jaguars will return home to host the Washington Redskins at 4:05 p.m. Sunday, November 11 at ALLTEL Stadium. The Redskins are coached by Steve Spurrier, who was head coach at the University of Florida from 1990 to 2001. It will be the third game between the two teams, and the Redskins have won both times. Washington won 24-12 at home in 1997 and 35-16 in 2000 in Jacksonville. This season, the Redskins are 3-4 after defeating the Indianapolis Colts 26-21 on Sunday night.
THE TEAL IS REAL . . . In the last six seasons, the Jaguars' record is tied for the fifth best in the NFL, seven games behind the Green Bay Packers. The Jaguars have won 52 of their last 87 regular-season games (they also won their final five games in 1996).
JAGUARS HAVE FIFTH-BEST HOME RECORD AND FIFTH-BEST ROAD RECORD SINCE 1996: After the Jaguars went 7-1 at ALLTEL Stadium four times from 1996 to '99, they have a 37-15 record that is tied for the fifth-best mark at home since the start of the 1996 season. On the road, the Jaguars have the fifth-best record (one game behind the New York Jets and Tennessee Titans) and they are one of only eight NFL teams with a better-than-.500 mark on the road dating back to November 24, 1996.
CONSISTENT SACKERS: The Jaguars have made at least one sack in 31 consecutive games, the fourth-longest active streak in the NFL. Also, since 1999, the Jaguars have made 155 sacks, the sixth-highest total in the NFL.
JAGUARS HAVE BALANCED OFFENSE: In the last five seasons, the Jaguars have rushed for 8,795 yards on the ground, the fifth most in the NFL. They were the only team to have more than 2,000 yards rushing each of the three seasons from 1998 to 2000 (an injury to Fred Taylor held them to 1,600 rushing yards in 2001).
JAGUARS SCORE ON THE GROUND … In the last six seasons, the Jaguars have rushed for 99 touchdowns, the second most in the NFL.
TAYLOR HAS SEVENTH-MOST TOUCHDOWNS LAST FIVE YEARS: Despite missing 24 full games and parts of nine others, Jaguars RB Fred Taylor has the seventh-most touchdowns over the last five seasons among active players.
THE BRUNELL AND SMITH CONNECTION: Mark Brunell and Jimmy Smith have connected on one touchdown this season, giving the tandem 40 scores in eight seasons, ranking second among active players.
SMITH RANKS 24TH AMONG ALL-TIME RECEIVERS: Jaguars WR Jimmy Smith is in 24th place on the NFL's all-time receiving list, and he ranks 33rd in career receiving yards. Smith has 617 career receptions for 8,740 yards.
SMITH IS NFL'S LEADING RECEIVER SINCE 1996 ... Since the start of the 1996 season, Jaguars WR Jimmy Smith has the most receptions in the NFL. He was the NFL leader in 1999 with 116 receptions — the sixth most in a season in NFL history — and he finished the 2001 season with 112 catches to rank second in the league. Smith has a total of 617 career receptions.
... AND SMITH LEADS ALL RECEIVERS IN YARDAGE: Over the last seven seasons, Jaguars WR Jimmy Smith has amassed more receiving yardage than any receiver in the NFL.
SMITH HAS MORE RECEPTIONS THAN 14 OF 19 HALL OF FAME RECEIVERS: Even though he is in only his eighth season as a Jaguar, Jimmy Smith already has more receptions and receiving yards than 14 of the 19 receivers who have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
SMITH HAS SIX STRAIGHT 1,000-YARD SEASONS: Jaguars WR Jimmy Smith has surpassed the 1,000-yard mark receiving six straight seasons, a feat accomplished by only four other players in NFL history. Currently, he ranks fifth all time behind Jerry Rice (11 straight 1,000-yard seasons), Tim Brown (9 straight), Cris Carter (8 straight) and Lance Alworth (7 straight).
BRUNELL'S TOUCHDOWN TARGETS: Mark Brunell has thrown 131 TD passes in eight seasons with the Jaguars. Here are the 20 players who have caught them: Jimmy Smith (40), Keenan McCardell (26), Damon Jones (11), Willie Jackson (10), Pete Mitchell (8), Kyle Brady (6), James Stewart (5), Fred Taylor (4), Ernest Givins (3), Cedric Tillman (3), Alvis Whitted (3), Andre Rison (2), Elvis Joseph (2), Patrick Johnson (2), Derek Brown (1), Ty Hallock (1), Desmond Howard (1), Natrone Means (1), R. Jay Soward (1), Stacey Mack (1).
BRUNELL HAS 10TH-BEST WINNING PERCENTAGE: Jaguars QB Mark Brunell has the 10th-best career winning percentage of active quarterbacks (minimum 20 wins). Also, in the last eight seasons, Brunell has the most victories of any quarterback other than Green Bay's Brett Favre.
JAGUARS AMONG THE LEAGUE LEADERS: Through eight weeks, the Jaguars rank 17th in the NFL in total offense (8th rushing, 25th passing), and they are 12th in defense (23rd rushing and 13th passing). They have allowed 133 points, an average of 19.0 per game that is the second best in the AFC. … The offense is 11th in the AFC with 18.1 first downs per game and 11th in the conference in third-down percentage (37 of 94, 39.4 percent). The defense is sixth in allowing 19.3 first downs a game and is 13th in the AFC in opponent's third-down conversions (46 of 101, 45.5 percent). … The Jaguars are plus-four on the turnover table, second in the AFC. … The Jaguars are sixth in the AFC with a 57.9 percent rate on scoring touchdowns inside the red zone (11 of 19). Defensively, the Jaguars are seventh in the AFC with opponents scoring touchdowns on 52.2 percent of red zone opportunities (12 of 23). … QB Mark Brunell is 12th in the AFC in passing with a 81.2 passer rating. … RB Stacey Mack is tied for 13th in the AFC with five touchdowns. … RB Fred Taylor ranks fifth in the AFC with 681 rushing yards and is third in the AFC with 944 yards from scrimmage. … WR Jimmy Smith is tied for 20th in the AFC in receiving with 33 receptions. His 480 receiving yards is tied for ninth. … Chris Hanson is second in the AFC in gross punting (45.8) and eighth in net punting (34.4). … Bobby Shaw leads the AFC with a 15.3 average on punt returns. … S Marlon McCree's two interceptions is tied for ninth in the AFC. … DT John Henderson's five sacks is tied for sixth in the AFC and leads AFC rookies and AFC defensive tackles. … The Jaguars are tied with the NFL's second-fewest fumbles lost (2).
STATS AND SUCH: There are 24 new players on the Jaguars' roster: six of the nine draft choices (DT John Henderson, OT Mike Pearson, LB Akin Ayodele, QB David Garrard, TE Chris Luzar and DT Clenton Ballard), three unrestricted free agents (WR Patrick Johnson, G Chris Naeole and WR Bobby Shaw), seven veteran free agents (LB Bobby Brooks, DE Marco Coleman, QB Kent Graham, G/OT Leander Jordan, TE Pete Mitchell, PK Tim Seder and G Daryl Terrell), two first-year free agents (WRs Henry Douglas and Jimmy Redmond), one undrafted free agent (DE Javor Mills), two trade acquisitions (CB Ike Charlton and LB Wali Rainer) and three waiver pickups (RB Dan Alexander, CB Robert Bean and C/G Drew Inzer). Jacksonville opened the season with 10 new starters: C John Wade, RG Chris Naeole, WR Patrick Johnson, LDE Marco Coleman, DTs Larry Smith and Marcus Stroud, SLB Danny Clark, MLB Wali Rainer, WLB Eric Westmoreland and RCB Jason Craft (Zach Wiegert also moved from RG to LT). There were no rookies in the starting lineup on Opening Day for the first time since 1997, although Ayodele has started three games at strongside linebacker, DT John Henderson started the last four games, and OT Mike Pearson started the last two games.
Mark Brunell is 60-46 in 106 regular-season starts, 64-50 overall. He has won more games under head coach Tom Coughlin than any current NFL quarterback under his head coach. … In seven games, the offense has used four different starting lineup combinations and the defense has used four different starting combinations. … The Jaguars have had nine plays of 30 or more yards so far this season. They had only 11 plays of 30-plus yards 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 only four 30-plus plays this season… Of the Jaguars' 117 completed passes, 60 have been to wide receivers, 25 to tight ends and 29 to running backs. … The Jaguars are 7 for 10 on fourth-down conversions this season; their opponents are 5 for 9. … On 19 drives inside the opponent's 20, the Jaguars have scored 11 touchdowns and 6 field goals (and two drives with no points). Their opponents have had 22 trips inside the red zone and have come away with 13 touchdowns and 5 field goals (and 4 drives with no points). … Jaguars opponents have begun 13 possessions inside their own 20 and they scored on 3 of those drives (2 TDs and 1 FG). The Jaguars have begun 19 possessions inside their own 20 and scored on 4 of those drives (2 TDs, 2 FGs). … The Jaguars have used turnovers to score 54 points, while their opponents have scored 20 points off Jaguars' turnovers. … In eight seasons, the Jaguars are 16 for 23 on two-point conversions (2 for 2 in 2002), while their opponents are 7 for 23 (2 for 2 in 2002). … In eight seasons, the Jaguars have a winning record in every month except October (they are .500 in January). They are 1-0 in August, 16-13 in September, 13-19 in October, 17-10 in November, 17-11 in December and 1-1 in January. … In 2002, the Jaguars have outscored their opponents in the second quarter (57-43) and third quarter (34-23), have been outscored in the first quarter (10-17) and fourth quarter (46-50).
The average age of the 53-man roster as of October 28 is 26.01 years old. … There are 28 players 25 or younger, 18 players between 26 and 29 years old, and seven players 30 or older. The youngest player is G Drew Inzer (22 years, 11 months); the oldest player is QB Kent Graham (34 years). … More than two-thirds of the players (38) have four years or less of NFL experience, and seven players are in their eighth season or more. … The Jaguars have eight players who were first-round selections in the college draft, including five of their own picks: DE Marco Coleman (1992, Dolphins), TE Kyle Brady (1995, N.Y. Jets), G Chris Naeole (1997, Saints), RB Fred Taylor (1998, Jaguars), S Donovin Darius (1998, Jaguars), CB Fernando Bryant (1999, Jaguars), DT Marcus Stroud (2001, Jaguars) and DT John Henderson (2002, Jaguars). … WR Jimmy Smith has played in 118 of the 119 games in Jaguars history. Of this year's players, next are QB Mark Brunell (109) and DE Tony Brackens (92, on injured reserve). … The longest streak of consecutive starts is held by G Brad Meester (39), followed by TE Kyle Brady (37) and WR Jimmy Smith (30). … Five players have played in 100 or more games during their careers: DE Marco Coleman (162), WR Jimmy Smith (125), TE Kyle Brady (115), QB Mark Brunell (111) and TE Pete Mitchell (105). Last Sunday, Brunell played in his 109th game as a Jaguar, moving ahead of Mike Hollis (108) into second place in team history behind Jimmy Smith. Smith played in his 118th game as a Jaguar. … Coleman leads with 160 career starts, followed by TE Kyle Brady (109) and QB Mark Brunell (106).