Week three of the 2001 NFL season finds the Jaguars hosting the Cleveland Browns this Sunday. Here's what happened in past year's week-three games. They're ranked in the order of their prominence in Jaguars history.
Titans 20, Jaguars 19 (9-26-99)
It is one of the most memorable games with one of the most memorable finishes in Jaguars history. Unfortunately, it was for all of the wrong reasons and, even worse, it was a harbinger of things to come.
On a day of relentless and, at times, torrential rain, the Jaguars moved the ball up and down the field, but failed to score often enough and at the right times.
This was a game of big plays and infamous decisions:
• Leading 3-0 near the end of the first half, the Jaguars lined up for an apparent field goal attempt on fourth-and-goal from the Titans eight-yard line. However, coach Tom Coughlin ordered holder Bryan Barker to attempt a run around right end. Barker was shoved out of bounds at the Titans two-yard line. It was a fake-field goal attempt that would become a major issue at game's end.
• Aaron Beasley intercepted a Neil O'Donnell pass and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown that gave the Jaguars a 17-7 lead with 22 seconds to play in the third quarter. The Jaguars appeared to be on their way to victory.
• O'Donnell led the Titans back to within 17-13, then found tight end Michael Roan for a 12-yard touchdown pass that gave the Titans a 20-17 lead with 3:26 to play.
• Mark Brunell drove the Jaguars to the Titans three-yard line. On third-and-goal with 57 seconds remaining, it appeared the Jaguars were headed for either a game-winning touchdown pass or a game-tying field goal. Nobody considered a third possibility, which was a Samari Rolle interception in the back-left corner of the end zone.
The Jaguars held Eddie George to 57 yards rushing, while James Stewart rushed for 98 yards in Fred Taylor's absence. Titans quarterback Steve McNair did not play, the result of recent back surgery.
It was Tennessee's ninth consecutive win against AFC Central Division opponents and their second straight in Jacksonville. They would beat the Jaguars twice more in 1999, most recently on Jan. 23, in the AFC title game at Alltel Stadium.
Jaguars 24, Ravens 10 (9-20-98)
This one will forever be remembered as Fred Taylor's debut game. James Stewart suffered a season-ending knee injury in the first quarter, and Taylor went 52 yards for a touchdown the first time he touched the ball.
The first-round pick from Florida rushed for 128 yards and a touchdown, and caught nine passes for 85 yards, in what was the starting point to a record-breaking rookie season.
Baltimore held a 10-7 lead in the second quarter, following quarterback Eric Zeier's 56-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Jermaine Lewis. The Jaguars cut the deficit to 14-13 with a 34-yard, Mike Hollis field goal with six seconds to play in the half.
In the second half, Taylor and the Jaguars dominated. Mark Brunell threw touchdown passes of 72 yards to Jimmy Smith and of one yard to tight end Damon Jones, and the defense sat on the lead.
At 3-0, the Jaguars were all alone in first place and headed for their first-ever AFC Central Division title.
Jaguars 13, Bengals 0 (9-17-00)
The Jaguars scored the first shutout in franchise history, though only 45,653 were in attendance for this home-opener.
A tropical storm forecast kept attendance down, and the Jaguars defense provided a deluge of sacks. Bengals quarterback Akili Smith was sacked five times, and the Bengals never really threatened the end zone.
In a game played in a steady rain, Mark Brunell provided just enough offense. His 21-yard touchdown pass to Keenan McCardell in the first quarter was the game-winner.
The Jaguars were playing without Fred Taylor for the third consecutive game, and managed just 84 yards rushing and 241 yards of total offense. The win left the Jaguars at 2-1, but the real storm was about to begin.
Jets 27, Jaguars 10 (9-17-95)
Mark Brunell made his first professional start at quarterback in Giants Stadium. Six sacks later, Brunell was a battered and beaten quarterback.
He threw for a mere 138 yards, and was forced to run from the Jets pass-rush 10 times in a game that saw the winless Jaguars score their only touchdown with 1:06 to play in the game.
Starting quarterback Steve Beuerlein suffered a sprained knee the previous week. He would return to the starting lineup one more time before Brunell would claim the job for good.
Raiders 17, Jaguars 3 (9-15-96)
The Jaguars made their first-ever trip to the West Coast. They returned to Jacksonville empty-handed: no win, not even a touchdown.
They had a chance late in the game. Trailing 10-3, Brunell marched the Jaguars to the Raiders 26-yard line, after having converted a fourth-and-five play with 2:30 to play in the game.
On the next play, Brunell's left arm was hit by linebacker Rob Frederickson as Brunell attempted a pass. The ball squirted into the hands of burly defensive tackle Jerry Ball, who waddled 66 yards for a game-clinching touchdown.
The Jaguars were 1-2 and headed for a game in New England.
Vic Ketchman is the Senior Editor of Jaguars Inside Report, the official team newspaper of the Jacksonville Jaguars. One-year subscriptions may be purchased by calling 1-888-846-5247.