Jacksonville Jaguars, professional football team and one of six teams in the Central Division of the American Football Conference (AFC) of the National Football League (NFL). Under the league’s realignment plan, which will take affect in 2002, the Jacksonville Jaguars will play in the South Division of the AFC. The Jacksonville Jaguars play at ALLTEL Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida, and wear uniforms of teal, black, and gold.
Jacksonville joined the NFL as an expansion team in 1995. During the Jacksonville Jaguars’ first year, the team fielded the AFC’s worst defense, losing nine games by more than 24 points. Offensively, however, they were successful. Mark Brunell—who had previously played in only two NFL games—posted the highest rating of any expansion-team quarterback in league history. He also led all NFL quarterbacks that year in rushing, becoming the first AFC quarterback to run for more than 400 yards in a season since Mike Pagel of the Baltimore Colts (now Indianapolis Colts) in 1983. Overall, Jacksonville Jaguars' offensive performance ranked third all-time among first-year franchises.
In 1996 the Jacksonville Jaguars won nine games and earned a wild-card berth to the playoffs. Wide receivers Keenan McCardell and Jimmy Smith each compiled 1,000 or more yards receiving. Brunell passed for more than 4,300 yards and was Jacksonville Jaguars' third-leading rusher, averaging five yards per carry and scoring three touchdowns. In the playoffs the Jacksonville Jaguars advanced to the AFC title game, where they lost to the New England Patriots.
Jacksonville Jaguars advanced to the playoffs again in 1997 but lost in the first round to the Denver Broncos. In 1998 Brunell and rookie running back Fred Taylor led the team to a 11-5 win-loss record and the Central Division championship. They defeated the New England Patriots in the first round of the playoffs before being bested by the New York Jets. In 1999 the Jacksonville Jaguars repeated as Central Division champions but lost to the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship Game.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have never played in the Super Bowl.