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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars-Eagles London Game sold out already

Florida Football Insiders



Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

First, its owner Shad Khan is not only trying to purchase famed Wembley Stadium in London, and potentially, trying to convince the NFL to bring the Superbowl there someday. Now, there’s more good news for his Jaguars franchise: their October game in London is already “sold out.”

More on the the London Superbowl in a moment, but here’s why we put sold out in the quotes: it’s well known in NFL circles and the U.K. that NFL holds back thousands of tickets for their international games.

So, even though the tickets for the October 28th game with the defending Superbowl champion Philadelphia Eagles were only recently made available through the NFL to fans in the U.K. and online, that allotment is already gone.

As this item in Pro Football Talk points out, the tickets are also, already on the secondary market for over $700, U.S. currency, in the lower level of Wembley. And there is plenty of complaining by U.K. fans that they couldn’t get their hands on the seats to see a presumably healthy Carson Wentz and his teammates come to England the same calendar year after their triumph in Minnesota over the Patriots.

Again, in the past, the NFL has hung onto blocks of tickets, which they use for their corporate sponsors, the host team (in this case the Jags-who have a multi year deal to play “home games” in London) and the league will also use some tickets for other organizations to receive them, too.

You also have to believe that Eagles fans trying to plan trips to London to see the game also created a serious immediate demand. Philadelphia has one of the biggest traveling fan bases and also numerous fans of theirs live in other NFL cities, and come out in droves when Philly comes to town, too.

As for Khan trying to purchase Wembley Stadium, as we wrote last month, he said that’s in part to help the financial stability of the Jaguars, but it’s also very lucrative for him to control what is arguably the best stadium in Europe.

This includes, when English Premier League Soccer plays games there, and other outside events like concerts or like young popular unbeaten heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua of England fights there. He has done so numerous times in the last three years before sellout crowds. Joshua successfully defending his titles in front of 80,000 fans in a recent March 31st fight.

The seemingly crazier “pipe dream” idea is to play the NFL’s biggest game, the Superbowl, overseas, where so few of the “fans” of teams could afford to be there. This, without spending an extra $3, $4, or maybe $5 thousand dollars to fly, stay, eat and purchase game tickets to the February extravaganza.

Khan told the BBC in London in an answer Sunday about what motivates him to do this deal, “Wembley is a great stadium, and you want to get it configured to hold Super Bowl and World Cup finals.”

Again, it’s his dream, and who knows if the NFL would seriously consider it in the next 15-25 years.

As for now though, Khan’s Jaguars are coming off a great season and headed to 2018, and London, with optimism, momentum and now a sold out game, too.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars “cornerstone” player for 2018?

Florida Football Insiders



Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The third installment of our “cornerstone” players series takes us to North Florida. And, as the Jaguars get ready to start up 2018, we wondered which impact player would be the one to build around.

You could make arguments for last year’s top free agent acquisition defensive tackle Calais Campbell, or lock down corner Jalen Ramsey, as being that player. However, it’s a player on the offensive side of the ball that appears to be everything that Jacksonville could have hoped for in a running back. That running back is Leonard Fournette.

Fournette, whom the Jags took fourth overall in the draft, is fantastic physical talent at 6’0 230lbs. with a blend of speed and power. And in his debut season, repeatedly showed why you would want to have your offense centered on his ability pound on a defense.

He made a tremendous impact from the beginning of the Jags breakout 2017 with a 100 yard game in the opening win at Houston, and three more 100 yard games in the first nine.

There was lull in Fournette’s productivity due an ankle injury and he also missed a game in Indianapolis due disciplinary reasons, but eventually, Fournette got back on track. He ran for 109 yards and 3 TDs in Jacksonville’s statement win over Seattle in December that clinched the first playoff spot for Jacksonville in 11 seasons.

Then, in the post season Fournette was just okay against the Bills in the AFC Wildcard game with 57 yards on 21 carries. However the next week in Pittsburgh, Fournette set the tone early and often with two first quarter TDs. He finished with 109 yards and 3 rushing TDs, and Jacksonville stunned the Steelers to advance to the AFC Championship Game.

The Jags sledgehammer back scored another early TD and finished with 76 yards rushing as the Patriots rallied to win 24-20 scoring in the final three minutes to knock the Jaguars out of the Superbowl.

Of course there will be great scrutiny on the play of quarterback Blake Bortles, and rightfully so.

However, much of the Jaguars success offensively, the identity of what they want to do, will be centered around Leonard Fournette.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Why is Jalen Ramsey Twitter feuding with NFL Network analyst?

Florida Football Insiders



Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

There is no mistaking that Jaguars defensive back Jalen Ramsey is talented, and in 2017 he was named as an All-Pro by his peers and most recenlty in the player polled “Top 100.” So, that’s a validation that doesn’t need a whole lot else.

Yet, an NFL Network analyst and a former NFL defensive back himself, is questioning part of his game.

And, Jalen Ramsey got annoyed. Like, really annoyed.

It all began when, Bucky Brooks, who hosts a successful podcast and appears regularly on the NFL Network questioned another player, DB Casey Hayward of the Chargers, and whether he was a “transcendent talent” in coverage.

The exchanges with Hayward on Twitter Thursday went on for a bit and then, Ramsey jumped in here:


And, when Brooks tweeted about Ramsey and why he was drafted two years ago in the top five by Jacksonville, things cranked up on social media:

Next, Ramsey questioned whether Brooks believes Ramsey is only a product of the Jaguars “defensive system” and not of his ability to shutdown the opposing team’s top wideout, one on one:

Brooks referenced former fellow Noles All American and Pro Football Hall of Famer, Deion Sanders as one of those rare “lock down” corners, and of course, that someone that Ramsey, two years removed from FSU, wants to be compared to with his own game.

Brooks then explained further about his own analysis and teams/GMs/personnel executives thinking:

In the end, Ramsey, who is not bashful about expressing his opinions on or off the field, finally gave some props to Brooks for having an informed opinion:

The bottom line is that analysts get paid to analyze. And the good ones are always soliciting the opinions of others, who are actually coaching and working in the NFL Front office.

And further, if Ramsey keeps “locking down” the likes of the Texans DeAndre Hopkins, and the Colts T.Y. Hilton, who he sees twice a year, then he will continue to get the respect he wants. And, he’ll get the second contract dollars that come with it, too.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

NFL Network will show Jaguars preseason game at Minnesota nationally

Florida Football Insiders



Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off a tremendous surprise turnaround season that included a division win and two playoff victories, the Jaguars have everyone in North Florida buzzing for 2018. And the NFL Network is interested enough that it has announced it will be showing their second preseason game, at the Vikings, to the nation on Saturday August 18th.

This information was included in the NFL’s announcement that NFL Network will televise a total of 15 preseason games live, nationally:

The Jaguars will practice against the Vikings in Minnesota on Wednesday and Thursday (8/15-16) prior to playing the game at U.S. Bank Stadium. Minnesota, who won the NFC North and made the NFC Championship Game last year, signed arguably the top free agent on the market last March. That’s when they inked former Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins to a massive three year fully guaranteed $84 million deal.

Jacksonville will open the preseason the previous week against the NFC South champion Saints at newly renamed TIAA Bank Field in North Florida.

The good news in addition to the practice time with the Vikes, most of the starters on both sides of the ball will see action into the second quarter, if not halftime of the second preseason game.

This will be good work for QB Blake Bortles and his new assortment of targets like WR Donte Moncrief and TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who both signed with the Jags in March.

And for the stout Jaguars defense led by DT Calais Campbell, LB Telvin Smith and CB Jalen Ramsey (all of whom made the Pro Bowl last year) will get a good opening half challenge from Cousins, and receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen. It will also be curious to see if second year former FSU star running back Dalvin will be fully recovered from his ACL tear. And, we’ll see if the Vikings want to give him some work or rest him completely in August.

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