Jacksonville, Florida, was not an ideal city for an NFL franchise. However, the city has proven to be loyal to its team, and Jacksonville has benefited from being the home of the Jacksonville Jaguars. Jaguar tickets, every year, almost sell out for home games, and merchandise sells out like there’s no tomorrow. The Jacksonville Jaguars made a quick profit for the NFL and should be around for years to come.
The NFL was looking for a city to start a new franchise in 1992. They had their hopes for Charlotte, NC, St. Louis, MO, Baltimore, MD, Memphis, TN, or, their last choice, Jacksonville, FL. Florida already had two professional soccer teams; there was really no need to add another.
Jacksonville was not only at the bottom of the list, but it was almost predetermined that the new franchise would not be in Jacksonville. TV ratings were low, the town was small, and there wasn’t enough of it to justify this decision. Well, until the city sold 10,000 tickets in 10 days, there wasn’t. These ticket sales demonstrated, to the league, that Jacksonville was franchise-worthy and that residents would fully support their new team.
The 2009 season will be their 17th year in the league. So far, the Jaguars haven’t made it to a Super Bowl game, but they continually come close. In fact, they made the playoffs three times in their first four years, an NFL record. In both 1996 and 1999, the team challenged for the AFC Division title, but did not prevail, but did try.
The 2007 season was a successful one for the Jaguars as they closed out the season with a 14-2 record. One of their best seasons yet and fans expected them to finish the job in 2008. However, there was a different story to tell in 2008.
Fans expected to see their team in the Super Bowl in 2008, or at least, in the playoffs again. With multiple injuries and the players not working as a team, it became clear that the team was not going to get very far this year. What sealed the deal was when the Jaguars lost to the Bengals, who hadn’t won a game all year. The sad thing is that they only lost by three points, which was even more devastating for the team.
Even though there were glitches and mistakes, the team played hard in every game, they just squandered opportunities that would have gotten them more wins. The team and management took a beating in 2008 and started showing up at their games. Finally, when they played the Lions, their loss pushed them to win by a field goal right at the end of the game. This right here could be the turning point, for the team, after an embarrassing year.
With a 5-11 record, the Jaguars put their heads down and moved on. The 2009 season brings back many injured players, along with some new blood. Fans are hopeful that the combination of these two advantages will give the Jaguars the edge they need to get back in the game. Ticket sales are expected to be as high, if not higher, than normal, and those who don’t rush to the box office may miss out on watching the Jaguars play, live.