The Jaguars recent history lacks 1,000-yard receivers
On a team that famously fielded Jimmy Smith, Keenan McCardell, the Jaguars recent history is lacking. How many receivers caught passes for 1,000 yards?
The true mark of today’s starting wide receiver rests at 1,000 yards in receptions. An attainable mark by players on other teams, yet somewhat of a rarity in Duval. Rare like… an Albino Tiger. Newly acquired quarterback Nick Foles routinely excites conversation about a functional passing offense in 2019. Hopefully, they get a receiver over the thousand-yard mark where recent history has not been kind to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
In 2005 beloved wide receiver Jimmy Smith caught and ran for 1,023 yards and for years, that stood as tall as a statue around Duval County in the infamous way that one fondly remembers football in the month of June. It was the last time a player topped 1,000 yards receiving until 2015.
In 2009 Mike Sims-Walker almost topped 900 yards. Mike Thomas finished with 820 in 2010. Cecil Shorts came close in 2012 with 979 yards and he unfortunately only played 14 games that season. Never forget 2011, the year tight end Marcedes Lewis finished with a team-leading 460 yards receiving. Against all odds, in 2015’s unofficial ‘Year of the Allens,’ the Jaguars finished with both Allen Robinson (1.400 yards) and Allen Hurns (1,031) getting the threshold.
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Unfortunately for the team and it’s fan’s, this accomplishment would not be repeated and neither player currently plays for the team.
With each drafted quarterback, many believed new opportunities would arise for the offense – opportunities such as breaking the 1,000-yard mark and ending the streak. David Garrard threw for over 3,000 yards in 2008 and still no pass catcher to hold the distinction. Blaine Gabbert never once threw 2,500 yards in a season. In 2013 Chad Henne topped over 3,000 passing yards and then we got Blake Bortles, the accidental savior, who made it happen with the Allens in 2015.
With newcomer Terrelle Pryor being the only one on the roster to notch 1,000 yards in a season in the NFL, the roster doesn’t stand out as the who’s who of consistency. Yet these receivers bring potential. Potential that may just grow into something this season behind a Super Bowl MVP winning quarterback. Granted, we took him from another team.
When Bortles topped 4,000 yards passing in 2015, it gave each starting receiver ample opportunity to hit the often eluded mark.
In 2015 the offense totaled so many passing yards due to the high play count and high amount of passes. Many were at the end of games, but many still were just great plays made downfield on leaping attempts. High play number leads to high statistics.
Another thing that leads to high stats would be throwing to the open receiver in stride and I believe the Foles-led offense remains one of consistency. It allowed for the sure play and hits the open man downfield.
Face it Jaguars fans, we are tired of watching a receiver hit on the shoe five yards from the line of scrimmage on a 3rd-and-8. Merely hitting the open man in stride would do wonders and likely return stolen opportunities for great seasons to our starting wide receivers.