It's safe to say that the Jacksonville Jaguars need some serious help, but what is really the answer for this sick team? Do they need a new head coach? A new defensive coordinator, as rumored? Or a new defense, period! Maybe a more consistent Quarterback might help some. Hey, how about more depth in the receiving class. They have to be Jonesing for something, now that Matt the crack head is gone, and Jerry Porter is on Injured Reserve. What a waste Porter has been , costing the Jaguars approximately $1 million dollars per catch, after making 11 catches all year, but was paid $10 million just to sign on the dotted line before the season even started.
Anyways, there are plenty of areas to address with this team, but I want to try and break it down, one section at a time. The first, but not necessarily the most important, will be the running backs, or lack there of. I'll tackle the other problems later.
One of the areas that Jacksonville needs help, is at the running back position. I'm not suggesting that they get rid of Maurice Jones-Drew. Drew in my opinion is one of the elite running backs in the league. Jones-Drew leads Jacksonville in rushing, ranks second in receptions and is one of the league's top scoring threats. He has 14 touchdowns in as many games this season, 40 in his three-year career and hasn't missed a single game because of injury. And for $445,000, he's a steal.
What I am suggesting, is that Jacksonville get Jones-Drew some help. I'm proposing a duel threat, such as the type that the Carolina Panthers present each and every game. The old one-two knockout combination called DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart.
I have always loved Fred Taylor. His work ethics are unmatched, and he's also just a great guy. The Ex-Florida Gator, is 16th on the NFL's all-time rushing list with 11,271 yards, 81 behind John Riggins. He had 556 yards on the ground this season, splitting time with Maurice Jones-Drew, and averaged a career-low 3.9 yards a carry behind an injury-riddled offensive line.
Taylor was a first-round draft pick from 1998 who has played his entire career in Jacksonville. I hate to see him go. But that day has come. Lets face something right now, Freddy T has probably played his last game for Jacksonville. On Thursday, Taylor was placed on injured reserve because of a thumb injury, ending his season with three games left and questions about his future with the franchise are flying rampant.
Taylor has said as recent as two weeks ago, that he never wants to leave Jacksonville. But with a $6 million dollar check due next year, it's likely that Taylor is gone. Taylor did say that he would consider staying for a reduced rate. But just how much reduction in pay is he willing to take? I'm telling you, the Jaguars won't pay him anywhere near $6 fat ones for a part-time player. So, the Jags need a second productive running to help Marice-Jones-Drew. The answer is not Chauncey Washington or Alvin Pearman. The question might remain unanswered until the 2009 draft. There are plenty of good running backs coming out of college this year and the Jags should take their sweet time before making any selection.
No need to rush now Jacksonville, because one thing is for sure certain, you'll be watching the playoffs from your sofa this year. So take it easy, and think about the wasted year, and why it all went wrong. Make a list, and check it twice, because the crew you got now won't suffice. Look down south, and check out what Big Tuna has done. And maybe one day, one day, you too can make a run. But for now, just take your medicine.
By: Charles J Asbury II