The Jaguars today placed veteran offensive tackle Leon Searcy on injured reserve after he had missed the entire preseason and first 12 games of the regular season with a quadriceps injury suffered on the first full day of training camp. The team had hoped Searcy would return to the lineup this month, but he had a setback after returning to individual drills on the practice field last week. Searcy had suffered a tear of the quadriceps tendon above his right knee during the morning practice of July 24 and underwent surgery three days later.
"We expected that Leon would be back to practice prior to and then have a chance to play in the Tennessee game," said Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin. "Unfortunately, it didn't work that way. Although progress was being made, it was very slow. In the best interest of Leon and the club, we just needed to move forward."
The Jaguars made several other roster changes. They activated LB Edward Thomas from the practice squad to the 53-man roster, waived DT Richard Seals from the practice squad and signed S Craig Miller and DT Jeff Marriott to the practice squad.
Thomas was elevated in part due to an injury to linebacker Erik Storz. Storz had started two of the last three games before breaking his thumb in the game against Tennessee. He underwent surgery at Baptist Medical Center yesterday to insert two screws into his fractured left thumb and is listed as out of the upcoming game against Cleveland. The surgery was performed by Dr. Bruce Steinberg. In addition to Storz, other injuries to the linebacking corps include Hardy Nickerson (knee - out), Kevin Hardy (ankle - probable) and Lonnie Marts (groin - probable), leaving veteran Brant Boyer and rookies Danny Clark and T.J. Slaughter as the three healthy linebackers.
Thomas, 26, had been signed to the practice squad on November 21. He played in four games earlier this season for the San Francisco 49ers after being signed as a first-year free agent in June. He spent the 1997-99 seasons with the Montreal Alouettes in the CFL before being signed by the 49ers last June. The 6-0, 235-pound Thomas is a native of Thomasville, Ga. who attended Georgia Southern, where he was first-team Division I-AA All-America in 1996. He had two sacks of Florida's Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel in a 1996 game. He will wear jersey No. 59.
Miller, added to the practice squad, played in the Jaguars'first four October games until being waived on October 28, starting twice in nickel formations and making three tackles (one solo) and one pass defensed. He had been signed off the Colts' practice squad on September 27. A 5-11, 199-pounder out of Utah State, Miller, 23, spent all of the 1999 season on the Colts' practice squad, as well as the first four weeks of this season. He was a three-year starter in college and is a native of Bakersfield, Calif.
Marriott, 23, was a fifth-round draft choice of the New England Patriots this year who was waived in the final cuts on August 28. The 6-4, 300-pound Marriott was a four-year letterman at Missouri, where he started 25 of 44 games played, making 110 tackles, six sacks and two blocked field goals. Seals had been signed to the practice squad on November 15.
As an additional note, the seventh anniversary of the Jaguars franchise being award is tomorrow, November 30th at 4:12 p.m.