TODAY'S GAME: The Jacksonville Jaguars, still seeking their fourth victory of the season, host the Cincinnati Bengals today at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium. It is the second meeting of the season between the two teams. The Bengals defeated the Jaguars 24-17 in the second week of the season, on September 10 in Cincinnati. The Jaguars have a 3-8 record following a last-minute 17-16 loss in Tampa last Sunday, while the Bengals are 4-7 after losing to the Pittsburgh Steelers 49-31.
RADIO BROADCAST: All of the Jaguars' games are broadcast on WOKV (690 AM) and WKQL (96.9 FM) and the Jaguars Radio Network, with Brian Sexton calling the action and analysis by Matt Robinson and Deron Cherry. Jennifer Kumik and Bill Riley, sports director of WOKV, handle the pre-game and half-time shows. More than 30 affiliates in five states on the Jaguars Radio Network will also broadcast the game. Sexton, 27, is the NFL's youngest play-by-play announcer, while Robinson and Cherry bring a total of 17 years of NFL playing experience to the broadcast booth.
TELEVISION BROADCAST: Today's game will be televised regionally by NBC and locally on WTLV, Channel 12. Calling the action will be Dan Hicks and Tunch Ilkin.
A JAGUARS VICTORY OVER THE BENGALS WOULD: Give the Jaguars their elusive fourth victory of the season and assure them at least a .500 record vs. division opponents this season, making them the first expansion team to do so in its first year. The Jaguars have already beaten the Steelers, Browns and Oilers.
A BENGALS VICTORY OVER THE JAGUARS WOULD: Give the Bengals their fifth victory, their most since 1992, when they also won five games.
INJURY UPDATE: Jacksonville Jaguars ' Questionable: WR Willie Jackson (knee/ankle)' Probable: LB Santo Stephens (knee), CB Vinnie Clark (knee).
Cincinnati Bengals 'Questionable: G Scott Brumfield (groin)' Probable: CB Rod Jones (thumb), G Trent Pollard (shoulder), CB Adrian Hardy (ankle), DT Dan Wilkinson (back).
INACTIVE PLAYERS: The following players were designated as inactive on Friday (four more players from each team will be designated as inactive 1 1/2 hours before kickoff):
Jacksonville' QB Mark Brunell, DE Jeff Lageman, RB Randy Jordan, CB Rogerick Green
Cincinnati' WR Thomas Bailey, CB Mike Brim, LB David Neal and OT/G Bruce Kozerski
ROSTER ADDITION: On Wednesday, the Bengals signed LB David Neal, a 6-3, 236-pound rookie out of Virginia who had been on Green Bay's practice squad. He took the roster spot of LB James Francis, who was placed on injured reserve with a leg injury. Neal was one of the Bengals' four deactivations on Friday.
THE COACHES: Jacksonville head coach Tom Coughlin has led the Jaguars to three victories already this season. He became head coach of the NFL's newest franchise on February 21, 1994 following three successful seasons as head coach at Boston College. Coughlin compiled a record of 21-13-1 from 1991 to '93 at Boston College, and had two appearances in bowl games and a ranking of 13th in the final AP poll of 1993. A veteran of 25 years of 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). He was a member of the Giants' 1990 Super Bowl XXV champions coaching staff.
Cincinnati head coach Dave Shula is in his fourth year with the Bengals. The son of Miami's legendary coach Don Shula and the NFL's youngest head coach, he has an overall coaching record of 15-44.
JACKSONVILLE-CINCINNATI CONNECTIONS: Jaguars defensive coordinator Dick Jauron was a defensive back with the Bengals from 1978 to '80. He led Cincinnati with six interceptions in 1979. …' Bengals defensive coordinator Larry Pecciatello and Jaguars DL coach John Pease coached on the Redskins staff from 1981 to '83. …' 'Bengals DB coach Ron Meeks is from Jacksonville and attended Robert E. Lee High School. …' Bengals offensive assistant John Garrett and Jaguars special teams assistant coach Joe Baker were both wide receivers on the 1987 Princeton team. …' Jacksonville OLB Santo Stephens spent last season with the Bengals, playing in 14 games and recording 13 tackles. …' Cincinnati offensive coordinator Bruce Coslet was the head coach of the Jets from 1990 to '93 when current Jaguars DE Jeff Lageman and DT Paul Frase were Jets. Coslet named Lageman captain of the Jets for the 1992 season. …' Jaguars CB Vinnie Clark is from Cincinnati, having played at Cape High, and G/OT Greg Huntington played at Moeller High. …' The Bengals have four players on their roster who claim Florida as home, most notably starting QB Jeff Blake, who was born in Daytona Beach and now lives in Sanford. Other Bengals from Florida include starting S Darryl Williams, who is from Miami and attended the University of Miami' CB Corey Sawyer, who attended Florida State and resides in Key West' and C Greg Truitt from Sarasota.
STATS AND SUCH: The Jaguars have thrown at least one touchdown pass in every game since the season opener. …' Jacksonville ranks first in the AFC in touchdown percentage inside the red zone. In 11 games, they have scored 18 touchdowns in 29 possessions inside the 20 for a 62.1 percentage (they also have 9 field goals). The only NFL team ahead of the Jaguars is Dallas (68.2%). …' The Jaguars have won 3 of the 4 games in which they have held opponents to fewer than 100 yards rushing. Jacksonville lost to the Jets (79 yards), but beat the Oilers (91), Steelers (68) and Browns (89). …' 'The following 9 players have started every game: C Dave Widell, G/OT Jeff Novak, OT Brian DeMarco, DT Kelvin Pritchett, DT Don Davey, DE Jeff Lageman, CB Vinnie Clark, CB Mickey Washington and S Harry Colon. Lageman, out today with a sprained foot, had started a team-leading 33 consecutive games until today. He had not missed a game since the 1992 season. …' In the last 8 games, Jacksonville has lost the ball only 10 times, with 11 takeaways.
Cincinnati QB Jeff Blake leads the AFC in passing yards (2,669) and TD passes (23). …' 'WR Carl Pickens has 14 TD receptions and has led the NFL in that category the last four weeks. He is on pace to score 20 TD's this season, two short of Jerry Rice's NFL record. Pickens is also bidding to become the first Bengals player to lead the AFC in receiving. …' PK Doug Pelfrey is on pace to break club records for field goals and points. Pelfrey currently has 21 field goals and 89 points. …' The Bengals already have 32 sacks, one more than their 1994 total and within reach of the team record of 46 sacks set in 1976.
TODAY'S ENTERTAINMENT: The National Anthem will be sung by Mrs. Toni E. Banks. The halftime entertainment will be the first annual ì'Be Fit to Breathe Halftime Challenge,î' featuring more than 300 Jazzercizers.
NEXT WEEK: The Jaguars will travel to Denver to face the Broncos, while the Bengals will be in Green Bay to meet the Packers.
JACKSONVILLE STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN CINCINNATI
3-8 Record 4-7
5th, AFC Central Divisional Standing 2nd (T), AFC Central
29th NFL Offensive Ranking 14th
264.7 Offensive Yards Per Game 336.5
110.7 Rushing Yards Per Game 97.1
154.0 Passing Yards Per game 239.4
184/16.7 Points Scored/Average 269/24.5
44/260 Sacked/Yards 19/129
20th NFL Defensive Ranking 30th
340.0 Yards Allowed Per Game 406.7
127.1 Rushing Yards Allowed Per Game 135.5
212.9 Passing Yards Allowed Per Game 271.3
250/22.7 Points Allowed/ Average 277/25.2
11/59 QB Sacks/Yards 32/213
13/16 Field Goals/Attempts 21/26
63/44.1 Punts/Average 48/43.0
82/628 Penalties/Yards 68/615
16/9 Fumbles/Balls Lost 19/14
-2 Turnovers (Net) -6