It was recently brought to my attention (and the rest of us at the Tailgate Society), that our fearless leader, Ted Flint, is seeking a new Fandom to embrace, having become completely fed up with his formerly beloved Dolphins. Well Ted, I don’t blame you – the Fins are god awful, and I for one would like to welcome you into the DUUUUUUVVVALLL family with open arms.
If you think about it, the Jags are the PERFECT team for you to follow – they’re fun, a bit trashy, loyal as hell and they get shit done. They might not always be the shiniest turd in the toilet, but they give it their all week after week and they’re on the cusp of greatness – so you’d be jumping on the Fanwagon at the right time.
Honestly, millions of football fans are in a similar position and don’t know who they should be following right now – and to you all I say this…come to Sacksonville, it’s a hell of a ride!!
So without further ado, I happily give you the 5 main reasons why the Jags, the team from Actionville, is the right one for you!! Soak it up, get hyped, and get ready to cheer DUUUUVAAALLLLLLLLLLL!!!
1.) Join a Fanwagon not a Bandwagon
Yes, the Jaguars had a historically surprising turnaround season in 2017 – going from 4th in the division at 3-13 in 2016 to leading the AFC South last season and taking the Dudes from Duval all the way to the AFC Championship.
For the past decade (more like their whole existence in the league) the Jaguars have been the butt of the joke – the Red Headed Step Child of the NFL. Simply put, the Underdog. And to be honest, we like it that way. People mock our fanbase but it’s some of the most loyal Son-of-a-Bitches you’ll ever meet. Who else could stay faithful through the Gus Bradley years, watching the most losing coach in NFL history destroy your weekends every Fall? But at the end of the day, while it’s easy to mock the little guy, if there’s one thing America loves it IS the Underdog. When the Jags faced off against the evil empire of Brady and Belichick in the AFC Championship it was shocking to see just how many “NEW” fans were pulling for the little team that could.
Let’s face it, last season was fun but could it be a fluke? Our Defense shocked the league but our Offense is young and needs a lot of work. This team is so much fun to watch right now but not a guaranteed lock to be back – which won’t make you a Bandwagon fan for jumping on the Fanwagon.
2.) Swagsonville – It’s Like 90s FSU over here
There is a certain swag coming out of this team from North Florida lately, and I’m not just talking about the uniforms. Yes, some call it Sacksonville for the ASTOUNDING Defensive Line that was 2nd in the league with 55 sacks last season. But let’s also not forget it’s more than just sacks – the Defense as a whole led the league in shutting bitches down with allowing only 169 yds per game!
I actually prefer the term Swagsonville right now because the confidence and swagger that’s exuding from this team right now is leading to entertaining comebacks, unbelievable trick plays like Corey Grant’s fake punt/60 plus yard run for a TD, to going into Pittsburgh and beating the living snot out of Big Ben and Co not once, but TWICE last season (FYI the only team to beat them at home two times in one season – and they’ve done it two seperate times on top of that!!!!). No other team can handle all this swag right now.
This new resurgence of confidence can be attributed mostly to the trash talking, money where his mouth is, pro-bowl shutdown Cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Week after week he is the spokesman for this team, boasting that they’re going to prove something each week before the game and actually going out there and shutting down top WRs like DeAndre Hopkins, Antonio Brown, TY Hilton – the list goes on. That confidence and swagger has bled over into this young team where rookie WR like Keelan Cole and Dede Westbrook have the audacity to play like veterans against league titans like The Patriots or Steelers. Gives Calais Campbell the motivation to go out and get a franchise record 14 sacks last season! Yes there’s a certain excitement going on with this team and they’re a young, fun team to watch – so if anything you’ll be entertained.
3) Pools – You heard me.
We have fucking Pools. Two. IN THE GODDAMNED STADIUM! We also have a dog park, a Tiki Bar and the The BudZone located in the North Endzone is the largest bar in Jacksonville. I mean, it’s located INSIDE TIAA Stadium. Not to mention state of the art facilities and TWO massive HD JumboTrons that are 21,000 square feet powered by 35.5 million LED’s that light up the entire city of Jacksonville every game. Some call it the 9th Wonder of the World (me…I call it that).
Point is – the place is an adult Disneyland – you got football on the field and entertainment everywhere you look. Where else can you bring your dog, get wasted, jump in the pool and watch your team on the largest tvs known to man? Jags owner Shad Khan is a modern day Willy Wonka and knows how to please.
4) Defense – Again.
That’s right – the defense is so nice, I had to mention it twice. My five reasons for being a Jags fan right now could have easily boiled down to these players: Ramsey, Calais, Telvin, Bouye and Yannick Ngakgoue.
They didn’t call it Sacksonville for nothing – #1 Defense in the league last year, shutdown league titans and mainstains – QBs feared this line and hated throwing towards both AJ & Ramsey.
Everyone knows Defense wins Championships – and It’s worth being a fan of Sacksonville for this D alone. And you know you want the D.
5.) The B.O.A.T.
That’s right – I’m talking about BB5 aka Blake Goatles aka The #BOAT (The Bortles of All Time) – the one and only, Blake Bortles. Best known for his quote “Try to throw to YOUR team as much as possible”, the guy is a living legend – an everyday american hero, becoming a modern day Chuck Norris, the facts surrounding this guy are truly unbelievable!
Thanks to @BortlesFacts on twitter, you can learn some amazing truths about this national treasure located in North Florida. Here are some of the best:
- Since 2000, there have been 238 QBs drafted into the NFL, including 32 Pro Bowlers, yet only 1 of them has a playoff victory against the Buffalo Bills? That’s right, Blake Bortles.
- Blake Bortles has never lost to the Warriors in the Finals
- Bortles has never failed to qualify for the World Cup.
- Blake Bortles remains Undefeated in the Superbowl
- Blake Bortles & Peyton Manning have a combined 2 SuperBowl wins, 1 SuperBowl MVP, 14 Pro Bowls, 5 NFL MVPs, & 2 Offensive Player of the Year awards!!
Joking aside, I love me some Bortles. He is an unpolished American Hero in board shorts and a constant 5 o’clock shadow. Sure he looks like he’s 50, wears cargo pants from time to time and has been known to throw the ball past the line of scrimmage on more than one occasion – but damn it, he’s one-of-a-kind and he’s our QB. Very few people have had to endure the constant media mockery, changing of Offensive Coordinators every year & he’s actually finally getting better. And like Zach Heisler(@zrheisler) responded to Ted on Twitter: “I’ve never had a beer I didn’t like” Blake Bortles is Literally the NFL Version of you! He’s your average everyday man and it’s easy to root for the guy. He’s not perfect and he knows it, but when he’s needed he rises to the challenge (see the beat down he gave Big Ben and going toe to toe with Tom Brady last season).
I’ll end with one last fact – while he may not have busted in like a wrecking ball, some of the all time greats didn’t exactly light the league on fire at first either:
- Peyton Manning’s 1st four seasons: 81 INT in 2,226 attempts (3.6%) and 0 Playoff Wins
- Blake Bortles’ 1st four seasons: 64 INT in 2,229 attempts (2.9%) and 2 Playoff Wins.
I truly believe his best days are ahead of him and he’s going to be fun to watch this year.
If you’re looking for a young, fun team that’s fun to watch grow into their true potential, then the JAGS are for you!! They have seen major improvements and still have a long way to go before they’re ready for the Big Dance but it’s going to be a hell of a journey watching them get there. You’d be joining a fandom at the right ripe time just as they’re ready to explode. They’re young, hungry and playing with a huge chip on their shoulder. There’s something special in this Jacksonville team. And you should definitely be paying attention.