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Jacksonville Jaguars

On 10th anniversary of last playoff win, where are some famous Jaguars now?

Olivia Stacey

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Jaguars went to Heinz Field and beat the Steelers in the first round of the NFL playoffs on January 5, 2008.

It seems ironic that the Jaguars’ last road playoff win was in Pittsburgh since they’re now preparing to do this again in Sunday’s AFC divisional round game.

A lot has changed for the franchise since their last playoff appearance 10 years ago.

Here’s a look at what a few of the players from the 2007-08 season are up to now:

David Garrard, Quarterback: Garrard provided late-game heroics to pull out the win against the Steelers back in 2008.

With the Steelers ahead 29-28 and 1:56 to go in the 4th quarter of the 2007 NFL Wild Card Playoffs, Garrard, facing 4th and 2 on the Pittsburgh 43-yard line, took off for a 32-yard gain that set up the Jaguars’ game-winning field goal.

Garrard played for the Jaguars for nine seasons and was released before the 2011 season. He spent time on the rosters of the Miami Dolphins and New York Jets, but he was plagued by injuries and in 2013, hung up his cleats.

Garrard owns two locations of the franchise, Retro Fitness in the Jacksonville area.

Maurice Jones-Drew, Running back: Jones-Drew was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the second round of the 2006 NFL Draft, 60th overall.

A three-time Pro Bowl selection, Jones-Drew spent eight seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars and holds the franchise record for single-season rushing yards (1,606 in 2011) and total touchdowns.

In his final season in 2014, he played for the Oakland Raiders.

Following his retirement from football in 2015, Jones-Drew entered broadcasting, serving as a football color analyst for NFL Now and other shows on NFL Network. He also has hosted his own fantasy football show on SiriusXM NFL Radio.

Jones-Drew now serves as an analyst on NFL Network shows such as NFL Fantasy Live, NFL Power Rankings and more.

Fred Taylor, Running back:

Taylor was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the ninth overall pick in the 1998 NFL Draft, and played for the Jaguars and New England Patriots of the NFL.

As a team captain in 2007, Taylor rushed for 1,202 yards on 223 carries, a career-best 5.4 yards-per-carry average, in 15 games started

On February 16, 2009, Taylor was released by the Jaguars after 11 seasons with the team.

Taylor contributes to jaguars.com as an on-camera analyst.

His son, Kelvin Taylor, is an NFL running back who has been signed to several teams, and is currently signed with the Cleveland Browns.

Kelvin followed in his father’s footsteps and played college football at Florida.

Rashean Mathis, Defensive Back

Mathis was a former 2nd round pick of the Jaguars in 2003 NFL Draft, and played 10 seasons in Jacksonville before finishing his career in Detroit.

Mathis had 63 yard interception return for a touchdown off of Ben Roethlisberger to help in the upset 1o years ago.

He eventually signed a one day contract and retired as a Jaguar in April of 2016.

These days, Mathis keeps himself very busy as a 2-handicap golfer, who dreams of playing, even part time, on a professional golf tour somewhere.

Will there be some more famous names to come out of Sunday’s match-up in Pittsburgh? It’s almost time to find out.

Olivia is a multi-faceted sports reporter based in Tampa Bay where she has covered events from the College Football National Championship to the Stanley Cup Final. A native Floridian, she grew up rooting for Tampa’s sports teams, and graduated from East Lake High in Tarpon Springs. Olivia continued her education at the University of Florida where she received her broadcast journalism degree.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. crosseyedlemon

    January 13, 2018 at 6:17 am

    Fred Taylor was a solid team guy and leader. Pro Football Reference has tagged him with the nickname “Fragile Fred” which seems absurd considering he played 13 seasons and scored 66 career TDs.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Titans smother Jaguars in low scoring win

Florida Football Insiders

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Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

It’s not a game that will go in “the Time Capsule” for NFL fans to watch decades from now, but Tennessee’s recent Mastery over the Jaguars continued Sunday with an ugly 9 – 6 win.

Both defenses played hard and played well, but in the end, the third of three Ryan Succop field goals with just over six minutes remaining was the difference, as Tennessee handed the Jaguars their first loss of 2018.

The Titans did not start franchise quarterback Marcus Mariota who has still been battling nerve problems from his elbow after a hit in the week 1 lost Miami. However, Mariota was forced into duty, when backup quarterback Blaine Gabbert suffered a concussion in the first quarter and could not return.

Mariota was not particularly effective finishing just 12 – 18 for 100 yards and did Rush for another 51 yards for the game.

Speaking of not effective, the Jaguar offense would also qualify in that category. Playing for the second straight game without Leonard Fournette due to his injured hamstring, Jacksonville mustered only six first downs, 100 yards and 3 points in the first half.

The second half was about ball control and time-consuming drives. And Jacksonville punted twice and had a Josh Lambo field goal, but it was not nearly enough.

Blake Bortles, off of a four-touchdown game against New England last week, was mostly ineffective at sustaining drives, must less getting them in the end zone. He was 21 – 34, but for 155 yards only.

Backup running back TJ Yeldon carried seven times for 44 yards and third string running back Corey Grant 6 times for 11 yards. And, the credit goes to Tennessee’s defense, which smothered Jacksonville for much of the day at TIAA Bank Field by forcing eight punts for the game.

With the road win, the Titans assumes first place in the AFC South on the tiebreaker over the Jaguars, which combined with their season sweep last year means they’ve beaten Jacksonville three straight times.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Gameday- Jaguars host Titans in AFC South showdown

Florida Football Insiders

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Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Who: Jaguars (2-0) vs. Titans (1-1)

Where: TIAA Bank Field, Jacksonville

When: Sunday 1 p.m.

Spread: Jaguars by 9 1/2 (Courtesty VegasInsider.com)

The 2-0 Jaguars are ready to play host to AFC South rival Tennessee on Sunday and try to break the Titans 2017 headlock they put around Jacksonville in sweeping them.

Here’s what we are watching in their first match-up of the year Sunday:

Who’s running the ball in Jacksonville?

As we documented, both Leonard Fournette and T.J. Yeldon are banged up and were limited in practice this week. Fournette is unlikely to play or even if he is, he may not be that effective with a hamstring injury suffered two weeks ago.

Yeldon had 51 yards rushing last week against the Patriots in Fournette’s absence, but he has a sprained ankle. Yeldon is also listed as questionable.

If Yeldon cannot go, the third running back is Corey Grant, a four year veteran, who has only started one game in his career. Grant did have six catches and four runs last week in the New England win.

QB Blake Bortles played well without Fournette throwing four TDs in the win. He desperately needs some rushing attack for drive momentum and to set up play action.

Who’s the QB for the Titans?

Marcus Mariota has been battling an injury to the nerve in his elbow after taking a hit in the week one loss to the Dolphins. Mariota did not play in their win last week against Houston and is officially questionable for this game in North Florida.

If he cannot play, veteran backup Blaine Gabbert will fill in as he’s done the last two games. Gabbert was just 13-20 for 117 yards and a TD pass against the Texans, but he didn’t have to have great numbers.

The Titans got a fake punt TD pass, played solid defense and still won.

It’s possible that Mariota may try to play, but Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel will have use of both QBs, too.

Which leads to, will the Jaguars D lock down the Titans?

It’s no secret that the Jags want to win with defense, and this game is no exception. They were really good against the Patriots last week holding Hall of Famer Tom Brady in check for much of the day. Jacksonville is fifth in points allowed and seventh in yards allowed in the NFL.

Plus, Jacksonville still has one of the most feared pass rushes in the league, as Brady found out the hard way last week. In a critical third quarter sequence, Bortles had thrown an interception, but right away, defensive end Dante Fowler got the ball back on a strip sack of Brady.

They will need plays like that to get the win and keep their perfect season in tact.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars may have to go deeper into running back depth chart Sunday

Florida Football Insiders

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Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

More concern for the Jaguars running back situation at the conclusion of Friday’s practice. This is because not only is Leonard Fournette still questionable to play with his injured hamstring, but now so too is his backup, T.J. Yeldon.

Both players were limited in practice on Friday for Sunday’s game with the Titans. Yeldon has a sprained ankle suffered during Sunday’s win over New England 31-20. He did carry the ball 10 times for 58 yards rushing last week, which was a solid performance.

Coach Doug Marrone was his usual non-forthcoming self post Friday practice, when it came to conversation about the injured backs. However, you can use previous precedence and injury designation to draw some conclusions.

For example, Fournette’s hamstring was bad enough that he never returned to the opening game with the Giants, and even though he and the Jaguars said the right things leading up to last week’s game, he was unable to practice fully, was listed as questionable, and they held him out of the Pats game.

And with the understanding that we are not in the Jacksonville training room and don’t know the full updates, the fact that now Fournette and Yeldon were unable to practice fully at all this week, has to be a concern for the Jaguars running attack.

If neither of those two are active or, let’s say they are active but not effective, the third string running back is fourth year veteran Corey Grant. The former undrafted player from Auburn has been active for 35 games in his career including all 16 a year ago and the first two in this season.

He has only one career start, but Grant against the Patriots last week had six catches for 56 yards and four carries for 13 yards. And he’s clearly who Marrone and offensive coordinator Nate Hackett will turn to to establish the ground game and the play-action for quarterback Blake Bortles.

Again, there’s always the possibility that they were just being precautionary with Yeldon’s ankle this week and that with 48 hours more rest and treatment, he will be ready to start.

But, let’s just say that if you have the former Bama tailback or Fournette, you might need to look at other options for your Fantasy Football lineup this week.

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