EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 28: Dave Tollefson #71 of the New York Giants tackles David Garrard #9 of the Jacksonville Jaguars on their final drive in the fourth Quarter during their game on November 28, 2010 at The New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
NFL Training camp season is always a time for irrational exuberance. Every team thinks it can win the Super Bowl, even though 31 of those teams will end being horribly wrong. And so, to preview the upcoming NFL season, which could be the most unpredictable ever, we now give you five reasons why your favorite team could win the Super Bowl. Today, it's the Jacksonville Jaguars.
1. Because this ragtag group of misfits is just crazy enough to win it all! To say the Jags are irrelevant in the grand scheme of the NFL isn't that far from the truth. No team has a harder time getting fans to come to its stadium. They're constantly being named as one of the teams to move to Los Angeles. Coach Jack del Rio is a decent coach who everyone is a bit tired of. The starting quarterback is a lame duck. The running back, Maurice Jones-Drew, is still recovering from knee surgery. The team lost three in a row to close out an 8-8 season last year. There's not much about this team that's inspiring. And yet, you dismiss them at your own peril, because the Jags remain mildly talented, and perhaps motivated by the fact that people find them inherently forgettable. This has been a mediocre team for three straight years. But it wasn't that long ago when Silky Garrard beat the Steelers in Pittsburgh in the playoffs and this appeared to be a team on the rise. There's still enough here to work with. There's still enough there to surprise you, including...
2. Trust any linebacker named Clint. Clint Session was brought in from the Colts to bolster the linebacking unit, and the Jags have had a history of success with linebackers pilfered from Indianapolis (see: Mike Peterson). Paul Posluszny was also signed in free agency, but has trouble staying healthy. Walter Football notes that this team spent $38 million in the offseason to make this defense better. Which is good, because it was horrid last year. Session and Posluszny could help bring this defense back to respectability.
3. It's not like they can't get any more hurt at running back.. Pocket Hercules got knee surgery in the offseason, which is alarming since he's by far the best weapon on the Jacksonville offense. And capable backup Rashad Jennings also just got hurt, leaving the team woefully thin at the position if MJD has difficulty returning. Maybe this team is using up all its bad injury karma early on purpose, just so they can have the always-beloved "fresh legs" come December. Jack del Rio has had crazier ideas, speaking of which...
4. I love a coach who wears a suit and looks like Eddie Money. I don't want Jack del Rio to ever get fired. I always want him rocking the shades and putting axes in the center of the Jacksonville locker room. He's the perfect coach for the town that spawned Limp Bizkit. And finally, as with every other AFC South team that isn't the Colts, I must remind you that...
5. Hey! Peyton might be hurt! It's okay for root for neck injuries, people. It doesn't make you a bad person. Unless you're the one doing the neck-injuring.