THIS WEEK: The Jacksonville Jaguars will close out the 2002 preseason when they host the Dallas Cowboys at 8:00 p.m. EDT Thursday at ALLTEL Stadium. The Jaguars are 1-2 this preseason and are coming off a 24-16 come-from-behind victory over the Chicago Bears last Friday night. The Cowboys are 2-1 following a 21-19 loss to the Atlanta Falcons last Saturday night.
The Jaguars got their first taste of victory in 2002 with their win over Chicago. Rookie backup QB David Garrard led the team to 17 second-half points and the defense added a touchdown. QB Mark Brunell and RB Fred Taylor played only five series in the game and have played spraringly in the preseason. Taylor has now rushed 17 times for 90 yards, an average of 5.3 yards per carry. The Jaguars went into this year's training camp with 47 new players and could have as many as 10 new starters this season. In fact, only eight of the 22 starters in the Chicago game also started in the 2001 regular-season finale against Chicago last January 6. Eight players did not make the trip because of injuries, two of them starters, as well as WR Jimmy Smith, a holdout. The new players include six unrestricted free agents, six veteran free agents, 12 first-year free agents, two trade acquisitions, one player obtained off waivers, nine draft picks and 10 undrafted rookies.
"It's always great to win, always great to teach off of a win," Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin said about the team's preseason win over Chicago. "We had some things that we felt we needed to accomplish — obviously winning, but we wanted to have some opportunities strategically with our Xs and Os. We made some plays and won the game."
The Jaguars' overall preseason record is 19-13 in eight years, including an 11-4 mark at home. A win against the Cowboys would give the Jaguars their sixth consecutive non-losing preseason. Their only sub-.500 preseason campaign was their 2-3 mark prior to the 1995 inaugural season.
TELEVISION BROADCAST: The game will be televised locally on WJXT Channel 4, with Sam Kouvaris calling the play-by-play, former Jaguar Jeff Lageman adding analysis and ex-Jaguar Tom McManus as the field reporter. The game will also air in Savannah on WSAV-TV and in Orlando on WRBW-TV, as well as tape delayed on the Sunshine Network. The Jaguars Pregame Show airs 30 minutes before kickoff at 7:30 p.m. with hosts Jennifer Candelino and McManus.
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 Jennifer Candelino serving as field reporter for the preseason. Sexton and Robinson are in their eighth season together. Robinson, Vic Ketchman and Cole 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 Florida affiliates are: Altamonte Springs (WHOO-AM, 1080), Bradenton WAMR-AM, 1320), Brooksville (WRUF-AM, 850), Chiefland (WRUF-AM, 850), Cocoa Beach WHOO-AM, 1080), Crescent Beach (WFOY-AM, 1240), Crystal River (WRUF-AM, 850), Dade City (WRUF-AM, 850), Daytona Beach (WELE-AM, 1380), Deltona (WHOO-AM, 1080), Flagler Beach (WFOY-AM, 1240), Fort Myers (WAMR-AM, 1320), Fort Pierce (WPSL-AM, 1590), Gainesville (WRUF-AM, 850), Haines City (WHOO-AM, 1080), Lake Buena Vista (WHOO-AM, 1080), Lake City (WNFB-FM, 94.3), Lakeland (WHOO-AM, 1080), Live Oak (WNFB-FM, 94.3), Longwood (WHOO-AM, 1080), Madison (WSTI-FM, 105.3), Melbourne (WHOO-AM, 1080), Ocala (WRUF-AM, 850), Orlando (WHOO-AM, 1080), Ormond Beach (WELE-AM, 1380), Palatka (WIYD-AM, 1260), Palm Coast (WFOY-AM, 1420), Port Charlotte (WAMR-AM, 1320), Port St. Lucie (WPSL-AM, 1590), Sanibel (WAMR-AM, 1320), Sarasota (WAMR-AM, 1320), St. Augustine (WFOY-AM, 1240), Stuart (WPSL-AM, 590), Tallahassee (WNLS-AM, 1270), Titusville (WHOO-AM, 1080), Venice (WAMR-AM, 1320), Winter Garden (WHOO-AM, 1080). Georgia affiliates are: Brunswick (WWSN-FM, 103.3), Cuthbert (WCUG-AM, 850), Dawson (WCUG-AM, 850), Hinesville (WIFO-FM, 105.5), Homerville (WWSN-FM, 103.3), Jesup (WIFO-FM, 105.5), Quitman (WSTI-FM, 105.3), Savannah (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Thunderbolt (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Valdosta (WSTI-FM, 105.3), Waycross (WWSN-FM, 103.3). South Carolina affiliates are: Beaufort (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Hardeeville (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Hilton Head (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Port Royal (WFXH-FM, 106.1), Ridgeland (WFXH-FM, 106.1).
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.
THE OPPONENT: The Cowboys have won five Super Bowls during their 40-year history. Dallas was awarded the NFL's first-ever expansion franchise, and the Cowboys began play in 1960, going 0-11-1. They advanced to the playoffs for the first time in 1966 and lost to Green Bay in the league title game two straight seasons. The Cowboys lost their first Super Bowl in 1970 to Baltimore, then defeated Miami the following season for their first NFL championship. Jerry Jones purchased the club in 1989 and hired Jimmy Johnson as head coach, and Dallas won Super Bowls in 1992 and '93 and again in 1995 under Barry Switzer. The Cowboys have appeared in the playoffs 19 times in the last 24 years. They finished 5-11 in 2001 and in fifth place in the NFC Eastern Division.
THE SERIES: The Jaguars and the Cowboys have played two times in the regular season, with the Cowboys winning 26-22 in 1997 and the Jaguars winning 23-17 in overtime in 2000. Both games were played at Texas Stadium. They have also played three times in the preseason, with Jacksonville winning the first two games 42-20 in 1998 in Jacksonville and 27-6 in 1999 in Dallas and the Cowboys winning 27-17 last August 30 in Dallas.
THE LAST TIME:The Jaguars ended a five-game losing streak with a 23-17 overtime victory over the Dallas Cowboys at Texas Stadium on October 29, 2000. Alvis Whitted scored on a 37-yard pass from Mark Brunell on the first series of overtime for his second touchdown of the game, as the Jaguars ended their longest losing streak in five years. The Jaguars did not turn the ball over and were not sacked in the game. Brunell threw for three touchdowns and tied a team record for passing accuracy, as he completed 20 of 24 passes. Tight end Kyle Brady caught 10 of those passes for 134 yards, both career highs, as he eclipsed the 100-yard mark for the second straight week. Fred Taylor had his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game, setting another team mark, as he gained 107 yards on 31 carries. The Jaguars jumped out to a 17-7 halftime lead but then struggled in the second half, scoring no points until overtime. Meanwhile, the Cowboys rallied for 10 points in the second half, scoring the tying touchdown with 1:07 to play. Dallas opened the scoring on its initial possession, marching 64 yards. The Jaguars struck back with 17 points in the second period, 10 of them off Dallas turnovers. Mike Hollis kicked a 42-yard field goal, Brunell connected with Brady on a three-yard TD pass, and, with 13 seconds left before halftime, Brunell found Whitted on a fade in the end zone.
THE COACHES: Jacksonville head coach Tom Coughlin (62-50 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. 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).
Dave Campo, in his third season as the Dallas Cowboys' coach, is the fifth head coach in franchise history. He was promoted to head coach after spending 11 years as an assistant with the club. Campo joined the franchise as an assistant on Jimmy Johnson's staff in 1989 and was instrumental in the club's victories in Super Bowl XXVII, XXVIII, and XXX. Campo had stints as defensive assistant (1989-1990) and secondary coach (1991-94) before being named defensive coordinator (1995-1999). Campo's defenses ranked in the top 10 four of his five years as coordinator, including finishing second in 1997 and third in 1996. In 2001, the Cowboys defense ranked fourth in the NFL, including third against the pass. Campo was a defensive back and standout shortstop on the baseball team at Central Connecticut State. He began his coaching career as an assistant at his alma mater (1971-72), and also served as an assistant at Albany State (1973), Bridgeport (1974), Pittsburgh (1975), Washington State (1976), Boise State (1977-79), Oregon State (1980), Weber State (1981-82), Iowa State (1983), Syracuse (1984-86), and the University of Miami (1987-88).
COUGHLIN ENTERS 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 fifth-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.
JACKSONVILLE-DALLAS CONNECTIONS: Three Cowboys are former Jaguars: LB Kevin Hardy (1996-2001), G Jason Gamble (2000 training camp) and WR Randal Williams (2001) … Seven Jaguars have ties to Texas: DE Tony Brackens (Fairfield, University of Texas), WR/KR Damon Gibson (University of Houston), LB Aaron Humphrey (University of Texas), FB Detron Smith (Lake Highlands, Texas A&M), LB Akin Ayodele (MacArthur High in Irving), DE Randy Garner (Douglasville), DT Clenton Ballard (Southwest Texas State; San Antonio) … Four Cowboys have ties to the state of Florida: RB Emmitt Smith (Escambia, University of Florida), CB Mario Edwards (Florida State), OT Char-ron Dorsey (Jacksonville, The Bolles School, Florida State), DE Colston Weatherington (Graceville) … Cowboys WR coach Wes Chandler was born in New Smyrna Beach and played for the University of Florida (1974-77), Cowboys RB coach Galen Hall (head coach, University of Florida 1984-89; head coach, Orlando/NFLEL 1992; head coach, Orlando-XFL 2001) … Players who were college teammates include: Jaguars CB Fernando Bryant and Cowboys DL Michael Myers at Alabama; Jaguars DT Marcus Stroud and Cowboys QB Quincy Carter, LB Orantes Grant and DE Demetric Evans at Georgia; Jaguars S James Boyd and CB Bruce Branch with Cowboys DT Brandon Noble at Penn State; Jaguars S Marlon McCree and Cowboys TE James Whalen at Kentucky; Jaguars LB Eric Westmoreland and DT John Henderson with Cowboys CB Dwayne Goodrich and WR Jermaine Copeland at Tennessee; Jaguars CB Damen Wheeler and Cowboys G/C Andre Gurode at Colorado; Jaguars LB T.J. Slaughter with Cowboys DTs John Nix and Daleroy Stewart at Southern Mississippi; Jaguars CB Ike Charlton and Cowboys TE Bob Slowikowski at Virginia Tech; Jaguars DE Tony Brackens and Cowboys CB Bryant Westbrook at Texas; Jaguars WR Darnay Scott and Cowboys DT La'Roi Glover at San Diego State; and Jaguars DT Jovon Bush and Cowboys RB Woodrow Dantzler, G Jason Gamble and LB Keith Adams at Clemson.
INJURY UPDATE: Three players were injured in the Chicago game: LB T.J. Slaughter (elbow), WR Darnay Scott (shoulder) and WR Damon Gibson (back). Eight players missed the game because of injuries or surgery: S Donovin Darius (shoulder), CB Ike Charlton (foot), LB Eric Westmoreland (hamstring). C Kevin Long (knee), G/OT Derrick Chambers (neck), TE Ryan Prince (ankle), DE Tony Brackens (knee) and DT Tim Morabito (groin). The status of all players will be updated during the week.
NEXT WEEK: The Jaguars will open the 2002 regular season at 1:00 p.m. September 8 at ALLTEL Stadium when they host the Indianapolis Colts, a rival in the new AFC South Division. The Jaguars have won six consecutive season openers, the second-longest streak in the league behind Miami's 10 straight victories. The Jaguars and Colts have played two times, with the Colts winning both games. In 1995, Indianapolis won 41-31 in Jacksonville, and in 2000, the Colts won 43-14 at home on "Monday Night Football."
LAST WEEK: The Jaguars scored 24 points in the second half to rally and defeat the Chicago Bears 24-16 in Champaign, Ill. last Friday night. QB David Garrard led the Jaguars from a 13-0 deficit, throwing two touchdown passes, including the go-ahead score with 7:35 to play. Trailing 13-0 at halftime, Garrard led the Jaguars to a score on the first drive of the third quarter, a five yard scoring pass to Bobby Shaw that snapped the team's streak of six straight quarters without a score. Hayden Epstein kicked a 45-yard field goal late in the third period, and then Chicago stretched its lead to 16-10 on Paul Edinger's third three-pointer of the game early in the fourth quarter. On the next series, Garrard drove the Jaguars 68 yards, throwing a 32-yard TD pass to Henry Douglas for the winning points. With 3:05 remaining, No. 1 draft choice DT John Henderson sacked Bears QB Ken Mastrole and forced a fumble that was recovered by DE Javor Mills in the end zone for the final score, and then CB Kiwaukee Thomas intercepted a pass on Chicago's final possession. Mark Brunell started and played the first five series but the Jaguars were forced to punt each time. RB Fred Taylor also played the first one-and-a-half quarters and rushed five times for 23 yards.
NOTES FROM THE BEARS GAME: The Jaguars have a 19-13 record in the preseason in eight seasons. … The Jaguars had four plays of 30-plus yards (3 pass, 1 run), their first of the preseason. … The Jaguars had more yards (333 to 214) and more time of possession (30:21 to 29:39) and as many first downs (14 to 14). … The Jaguars converted only 5 of 16 third downs (31 percent), while the Bears converted only 2 of 13 (15 percent). … The Jaguars allowed 43 yards in the second half, and the Bears gained only 103 yards passing in the game. … The Jaguars had their second turnover of the preseason and two takeaways (for the third straight game). … Mark Brunell played five series and completed 3 of 9 passes for 42 yards. He was sacked twice on the team's first three plays, and then the Jaguars did not allow a sack the remainder of the game. David Garrard played eight series and completed 9 of 18 passes for 165 yards, two TDs and one interception. … RB Stacey Mack led the team with 56 yards rushing on 12 carries, followed by Elvis Joseph with 12 carries for 48 yards. … WR Darnay Scott played for the first time this preseason and led the team with three receptions for 59 yards. Patrick Johnson and Henry Douglas each caught two passes. … The Jaguars made four sacks, one each by Paul Spicer, Rob Meier, Stalin Colinet and John Henderson. … Chris Hanson punted seven times for a 39.9-yard average, no touchbacks and three inside the 20 (he had four kicks returned for 15 yards). … Jaguars captains were: LB Danny Clark, CB Kiwaukee Thomas, WR Damon Gibson and OT Maurice Williams.
FROM COACH TOM COUGHLIN ON THE BEARS GAME: "Defensively, we did OK in the very beginning, but offensively we didn't, obviously. We had a bunch of three-and-outs. We didn't click on some things that we had felt good about and really just couldn't get it going. But we hung in there and we battled. We came in at the half and we had missed a field goal, the game was still out there it was only 13-0 so we felt we could overcome that. After the half, we came back with the starters for a series with Garrard as the quarterback and we got a touchdown, so we felt good about that. We stopped their first team and then we just let the guys play and they played hard and made plays. It's always fun to win but you have to keep all things in perspective. The interesting thing and the real positive is that the Chicago Bears are an exceptional football team and I thought physically we held our own in there. We had a repeat of what happened a year ago, being down 13-0, but we battled back and I was pleased with that."
(on David Garrard) "He showed much better poise tonight. The Bears came right after him and we were able to get him in some things that he could control, and he did a very nice job with that. I think he's getting really close to grasping the speed of the game. It's coming. It's been a while, but it's coming."
FROM QB MARK BRUNELL: "Too many plays not enough production. We ran the ball decent, but did not throw it the way we wanted to throw it. We had a lot of single-high, which you should be able to take advantage of. They matchup outside and bring the safety up to try to take the run away, and we were not effective with the pass, which was frustrating."
(on getting a win) "We all needed a win. That was good. The first-team offense obviously was not real pleased, but we needed a win to feel good about ourselves and get a taste of victory. Hopefully that can carry on to the next preseason game."
(on his performance) "There were some plays and a couple of calls and situations which I would like to change. It starts with the quarterback position if the offense is not making plays or moving the ball. It starts with the guy behind center, and that's me."
(on what it's going to take to get ready for the season opener) "It will take a number of things. I thought tonight we never got into a groove or rhythm. You can do that, it's not to tough to fix. We have a lot of work to do and we don't have a lot of time to make this thing click, but I'm confident that we will."
FROM QB DAVID GARRARD: (on taking a step forward) "I think I did. I have to build on this and come out next week, do everything the coaches ask and compete. I can't come back next week and look like I didn't play tonight. I have to come back and compete next week, show my talents, move the ball up and down the field and put the ball in people's hands and let them make plays like they did tonight."
(on the backup job) "I'm trying not to think about the whole picture as much. I'm trying to concentrate on the few things that I need to concentrate on. I'm trying to learn the plays and concentrate on the little things I need to concentrate on. I can't worry about outside things like them bringing in another quarterback. If a quarterback comes in, that's out of my control. I can do fine and they still can bring another guy in. I can't worry about those things, I just have to play football.
(on Tom Coughlin's words after the game) " He was very happy to have a win. Now we just have to move on and do some more positive things next week."
NEW FACES: There were 46 new players among the 88 on the Jaguars' current training camp roster as of August 24. Here is the breakdown:
Unrestricted free agents (6) — WR Patrick Johnson, C Kevin Long, G Chris Naeole, G/OT Raleigh Roundtree, WR Bobby Shaw, FB Detron Smith
Veteran Free Agents (6) — DE Marco Coleman, DE Stalin Colinet, DT Jeff Miller, TE Pete Mitchell, DT Tim Morabito, G Daryl Terrell
First-Year Free Agents (12) — OT Mark Bristol, DT Donald Broomfield, S Noah Burroughs, DE Mike Cecere, C Carey Clayton, WR Henry Douglas, TE Stevan Fontana, MLB Rashad Harris, LB Aaron Humphrey, WR Jimmy Redmond, PK Derek Schorejs, S James Watkins
Trade (2)— CB Ike Charlton, LB Wali Rainer
Waivers (1) — DL Matt Sweeney
Draft Choices (9) — DT John Henderson, OT Mike Pearson, LB Akin Ayodele, QB David Garrard, TE Chris Luzar, DT Clenton Ballard, WR Kendall Newson, CB Steve Smith, PK Hayden Epstein
Undrafted Rookies (10) — CB Bruce Branch, G Chrys Bullock, DT Jovon Bush, CB Jermaine Chatman, LB Victor Ellis, QB Quinn Gray, DE Javor Mills, WR Corey Parchman, WR Ellis Spears, RB Adam Tate
2002 POSITION ANALYSIS: Here is a position-by-position breakdown of the Jaguars:
Quarterbacks (4) — Mark Brunell returns for his eighth season with the Jaguars and remains one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL. In 2001, he started 15 games and completed 289 of 473 passes for 3,309 yards (numbers that were the third highest of his career) and passed for 19 touchdowns, one short of his career high. The No. 6-ranked passer in NFL history, Brunell is the only quarterback in the league who has ranked among the top 11 in each of the last six seasons. He has a 57-42 record as a starter. Vying for the No. 2 job are rookies David Garrard and Quinn Gray and second-year pro Roderick Robinson. Garrard, the team's fourth-round draft choice out of East Carolina, is playing with the second unit and trying to prove that he can earn the backup role. In college, he passed for more than 9,000 yards and 60 touchdowns while starting all four seasons, and he also ran for 21 scores. Gray is an undrafted rookie out of Florida A&M, and Robinson has had previous stints with the Colts and Jaguars, though he has never played in a regular-season game. Gone: Jonathan Quinn
Running Backs (8) — Fred Taylor is back and 100 percent after missing the final 14 games of last season with a torn groin muscle. In 2000, Taylor missed the first three games of the season with a knee injury, then went on to rush for 1,399 yards and score 14 touchdowns, including a streak of nine consecutive 100-yard rushing games that tied for the third-longest streak in NFL history. He is the Jaguars' all-time leading rusher. There is plenty of depth behind him. While Taylor was out last season, Stacey Mack took over and rushed for 877 yards and 10 touchdowns, totals that are the fourth highest in franchise history. Mack has started 13 games in three seasons since coming out of Temple as an undrafted rookie in 1999. Another rookie free agent, Elvis Joseph, was a surprise in 2001. As a rookie, he was the team's third-down specialist most of the year, rushing for 294 yards and catching 18 passes. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown. The starting fullback is Patrick Washington, another rookie free agent who returns for his second season. Washington opened six games and was the lead blocker all of 2001. Former Denver Bronco Detron Smith is pushing Washington and is also one of the league's best special teams players. Gone: No one
Wide Receivers (11) — Jimmy Smith is a holdout. Even at 33, he remains one of the finest receivers in the NFL. Since 1996, he has been the NFL's most prolific receiver, with the most receptions (562) and the most yards (7,972) — numbers that are second to only Jerry Rice in any six-year span in NFL history. Smith, who has been voted to the last five Pro Bowls, has six straight 1,000-yard seasons and in the past three years has caught 116, 91 and 112 passes. Behind Smith are veterans Darnay Scott, Bobby Shaw and Patrick Johnson. Scott, who was signed on July 23, caught 386 passes for 5,975 yards and 36 touchdowns during his eight years with the Bengals. He is one of the NFL's best deep threats, averaging 15.5 yards per catch over his career. Shaw is a possession receiver who plays out of the slot. He caught 92 passes for 1,468 yards (15.9 average) in four years in Pittsburgh. Johnson is the fastest of the group, a second-round draft choice of the Ravens in 1998 who has 59 career receptions for 898 yards (15.5 average) and seven TDs. One of the three will start opposite Smith, but all four will play in multiple-receiver formations. Vying for a backup role are Damon Gibson (the team's punt returner), first-year pro Henry Douglas, Jimmy Redmond (who starred in the NFL Europe League in the spring), seventh-round draft choice Kendall Newson, Jacksonville native Micah Ross and two others. Gone: Sean Dawkins, Keenan McCardell
Tight Ends (6) — Kyle Brady has developed into one of the league's best all-around tight ends in his three seasons with the Jaguars, during which time he caught 132 passes for 1,461 yards and six touchdowns. He is also one of the best blocking tight ends and a key to the team's passing game. Back after a three-year absence is Pete Mitchell, who remains the Jaguars' third-leading all-time receiver (166 receptions for 1,845 yards and nine TDs). Following three years with the Giants and Lions, Mitchell will back up Brady but will also play a role as a possession receiver and as an H-back. Rookie fourth-round pick Chris Luzar is the tight end of the future. At 6-7, 265-pounds he complements Brady well, and he is a fine pass receiver who could see ample playing time as a rookie. Ryan Prince is back for this second season, and Joe Zelenka is the team's long snapper. Gone: No one
Offensive Line (16) — Tony Boselli is gone, but the additions include five veterans and one high draft choice, in addition to several returnees, making for fierce competition in training camp. The right side of the line is set, with former Saints No. 1 pick Chris Naeole at right guard, and Jaguars 2001 No. 2 pick Maurice Williams at right tackle. The No. 1 center is John Wade, who started 18 straight games in 1999 and 2000 before losing his job because of a foot injury. He is healthy again. The left guard is Brad Meester, who has started 32 straight games since being drafted in the second round in 2000. The starting left tackle will be either second-round draft choice Mike Pearson or veteran Zach Wiegert. Pearson, a three-year starter at Florida, is a skilled pass blocker was briefly sidelined by a sprained ankle. Wiegert has started 82 games in seven NFL seasons, though never at left tackle. There is quality depth in Raleigh Roundtree (who started 41 games the last four years in San Diego), Daryl Terrell (who started 10 games for the Saints a year ago), and Todd Fordham, who started 20 games for the Jaguars the last two seasons. All three players can play both guard and tackle, and Fordham is now the backup center. Gone: Tony Boselli, Aaron Koch (I.R.), Jeff Smith
Defensive Line (16) — With three players who started all 16 games a year ago having departed, the defensive front will be the most revamped position on the team. The lone returning starter is Tony Brackens, the all-time leading sacker in Jaguars history, although he is still rehabbing from offseason knee surgery and hasn't played in the preseason. In 2001, Brackens made 11 sacks in the final 12 games. He is still rehabbing from offseason knee surgery and has been sidelined since the first day of training camp. The new left end will be 10-year veteran Marco Coleman, a skilled pass rusher with 56.5 career sacks. A Pro Bowler just two years ago when he notched 12 sacks with Washington, Coleman is being counted upon for veteran leadership as well. The starting tackles are projected to be Marcus Stroud and either Larry Smith or John Henderson, the Jaguars' first-round draft pick. Stroud did not make any starts as a rookie in 2001, but he played in all 16 games and came on late in the season. Henderson, the highest-drafted defensive lineman ever by the Jaguars (No. 9), was the 2000 Outland Trophy winner at Tennessee and the second defensive tackle selected in 2002. The backups at end will be Paul Spicer, Rob Meier and five-year veteran Stalin Colinet, with undrafted rookie Javor Mills drawing praise early in training camp. At tackles, the reserves are expected to be Tim Morabito and sixth-round draft choice Clenton Ballard. Gone: Seth Payne, Gary Walker, Renaldo Wynn
Linebackers (10) — T.J. Slaughter returns at weakside linebacker. He has started 15 games in two seasons at both weakside and in the middle. Eric Westmoreland is pushing for playing time at weakside and plays linebacker in the nickel defense. Former Cleveland Brown Wali Rainer was obtained in a Draft Day trade and is the new starting middle linebacker. He has 44 starts in three NFL seasons, making 436 tackles. The new starter at strongside linebacker is expected to be Danny Clark, who has been the Jaguars' top special teams player since being drafted in the seventh round in 2000. Clark started three games late last season and shows lots of promise. Another possibility at the strongside is Akin Ayodele, a third-round draft pick this year out of Purdue who is making the transition from collegiate defensive end to pro linebacker. Ayodele has impressed so far in the preseason and sees action in third down packages. Again, there is a lot of depth. Backup MLB Joseph Tuipala made a team-high 20 tackles on special teams a year ago, and reserve WLB Edward Thomas started four games in 2001 and is also a stellar special teams player. Gone: Donny Green, Kevin Hardy, Hardy Nickerson, Jeff Posey, Joe Wesley
Defensive Backs (15) — Hard-hitting Donovin Darius will start at strong safety for the fifth straight season. He has led the team's secondary in tackles each of his four years, and he has started all 57 games in which he has played. Darius was a Pro Bowl alternate in 2001. There is competition at free safety between Marlon McCree and Ainsley Battles, each of whom started 11 games last season. McCree was a seventh-round draft pick a year ago who was converted from college linebacker and quickly earned a starting role. Battles was a waiver pickup from the Steelers prior to the 2001 opener who has a knack for forcing turnovers (he also scored a TD last year). Backing up Darius is James Boyd, a third-round draft pick in 2001. The starting left cornerback will be Fernando Bryant for the fourth straight year. Bryant was named to every All-Rookie team in 1999 and specializes in man coverage. He missed six games with a foot injury in 2001. The new starter at right cornerback will be Jason Craft, who replaces the departed Aaron Beasley. Craft, who started eight games last season and was the team's nickel back for the other eight, has never missed a game in three seasons. He's the fastest defensive back on the squad. The nickel back will be third-year pro Kiwaukee Thomas, while the dime role will be either Boyd, trade acquisition Ike Charlton (a second-round pick of the Seahawks in 2000) or rookie Steve Smith, a seventh-round pick this year. Gone: Aaron Beasley
Kickers (3) — For the first time in franchise history, Mike Hollis is not the placekicker. Competing for the job are Hayden Epstein, a seventh-round draft pick, and Derek Schorejs, who has had previous tryouts with three NFL teams and played in the Arena League. At Michigan, Epstein was a candidate for the Lou Groza Award (nation's top placekicker) as both a junior and senior. He scored 163 points in college, hitting 26 of 42 field goal attempts. Returning for his second season as the punter is Chris Hanson, who joined the team midway through last year's training camp and was a big surprise. In his first full NFL season, Hanson ranked sixth in the NFL with a 43.6 gross average and fourth with a 37.1 net average. He also holds for placekicks. Joe Zelenka will handle the short and long snapping duties. Gone: Mike Hollis, Jaret Holmes
A LOOK BACK AT THE 2001 SEASON:
- Finished fifth (tied) in the AFC Central Division with a 6-10 record
- Lost six games in the final 5 minutes and 13 seconds
- Are one of only eight teams that have been in the playoffs four of the last six seasons. Miami and Minnesota have
been in the playoffs five times since 1996. Joining Jacksonville with four postseason appearances in the last
six seasons are Denver, New England, Green Bay, San Francisco and Tampa Bay
- Won three road games in three consecutive weeks over the Bengals, Browns and Vikings to become the first team
to do so since the 1997 Green Bay Packers
- Won three of eight games at ALLTEL Stadium. In seven years, they are 37-19 at home
- Won three games on the road. Over the last six seasons, they are 23-19 on the road.
- Won five of 10 games in the division
- The franchise's seven-year record in the regular season moved to 62-50
- The offense ranked 20th in the NFL in yards gained (26th rushing, 18th passing)
- The defense ranked 16th in the NFL (tied) in yards allowed (10th rushing, 22nd passing)
- Allowed only 286 points (17.9 per game), fourth lowest in the AFC
- Scored 294 points (18.4 per game)
- Had two receivers with more than 90 receptions and 1,100 yards — Jimmy Smith (112, 1,373) and Keenan
- McCardell (93, 1,110). Smith was one catch short of tying for the league lead. The two players tied the NFL record with their fourth year of both players having 1,000 yards receiving in the same season.
- WR Jimmy Smith was selected to his fifth consecutive Pro Bowl
- RB Stacey Mack replaced an injured Fred Taylor and rushed for 877 yards, the fourth-highest season total in franchise history
- Averaged 60,443 in attendance in 2001, and average of 66,326 in seven seasons
THE AFC SOUTH: The Jaguars will play in the AFC South Division this season, along with the Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans and expansion Houston Texans.
THE TEAL IS REAL . . . In the last five seasons, the Jaguars' record is tied for the fifth best in the NFL, four games behind the Green Bay Packers. The Jaguars have won 49 of their last 80 regular-season games (they also won their final five games in 1996).
JAGUARS HAVE FIFTH-BEST HOME RECORD AND THIRD-BEST ROAD RECORD SINCE 1996: The Jaguars went 7-1 at ALLTEL Stadium from 1996 to '99 and finished 3-5 last season, giving them a 35-13 record that is the fifth-best mark at home since the start of the 1996 season. On the road, the Jaguars have the third-best record (one game behind Tennessee and the New York Jets) and they are one of only five NFL teams with a better-than-.500 mark on the road dating back to November 24, 1996.