2010 NFL season
The 2010 NFL season was the 91st regular season of the National Football League. The regular season began with the NFL Kickoff game on NBC on Thursday, September 9, at the Louisiana Superdome as the New Orleans Saints, Super Bowl XLIV champions, defeated the Minnesota Vikings 14–9. Tom Brady, quarterback of the New England Patriots, was named MVP for the 2010 season. In Super Bowl XLV, the League's championship game played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 31–25 to win their fourth Super Bowl, spoiling the Steelers' chance for a 7th title; this season marked the first full-length season in which a team with a losing record made the playoffs, when the Seattle Seahawks won the NFC West with a 7-9 record, after defeating the St. Louis Rams in week 17 to clinch the division title. One week the Seahawks dethroned the defending champion New Orleans Saints in the Wild Card round, to become the first sub.500 playoff team to win a postseason game.
The 2010 regular season was the first year that the league used a modified version of the scheduling formula, first introduced in 2002, in which all teams play each other at least once every four years, play in every other team's stadium at least once every eight years. Under the original 2002 formula, since the pairings were based on alphabetical order, those teams scheduled to play the entire AFC West had to travel to both Oakland and San Diego in the same season, while those teams playing the entire NFC West had to make their way to both San Francisco and Seattle. In 2008, the New England Patriots and New York Jets each had to make cross-country trips to all four of the aforementioned West Coast teams. In an effort to relieve east coast teams from having to travel to the West Coast multiple times during the same season, teams will only have to visit one West Coast team, plus one western team from the same division closer to the Midwest, under the 2010 modified formula; those teams traveling to Oakland will now play at Denver, while those playing at San Diego will play at Kansas City.
For teams scheduled to play the NFC West, those traveling to San Francisco will go to Arizona, while those scheduled to play in Seattle would go to St. Louis. For the 2010 season, the intraconference and interconference matchups are: The entire 2010 regular-season schedule was unveiled at 7:00 pm EDT on Tuesday, April 20. Additionally, schedule release shows aired on both the NFL Network and as a SportsCenter special on ESPN2; the league's 75th annual selection meeting, more known as the NFL Draft, took place at Radio City Music Hall in New York City from April 22–24, the first time that the draft was held over three days instead of the normal two. In the draft with the first overall pick, the St. Louis Rams chose quarterback Sam Bradford from the University of Oklahoma; the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game was held on Sunday, August 8, 2010 at 8:00 pm EDT on NBC, with the Dallas Cowboys defeating the Cincinnati Bengals, 16–7 at Fawcett Stadium in Canton, Ohio. The remainder of the preseason game matchups were announced March 31, 2010.
Highlights, among others, include the New York Giants and New York Jets facing off in the first-ever game at New Meadowlands Stadium on ESPN. The preseason game in the Bills Toronto Series featured the host Bills defeating the Indianapolis Colts in Toronto on Thursday, August 19 by a score of 34–21. Exact dates and times for most games were announced in April, shortly after the regular season games were announced; the NFL Kickoff Game, the first game of the season, took place on Thursday, September 9, 2010, starting at 8:35 pm EDT, with the Super Bowl XLIV champion New Orleans Saints hosting the Minnesota Vikings, in a rematch of the 2009 NFC Championship Game. The Saints won 14–9. Like in previous years, the opening week's prime-time games were expected to be announced at the NFL's annual owners meetings in late March, but that wasn't the case this year, with the schedule announced on April 20. On March 15, 2010, the NFL announced that both the New York Giants and New York Jets will play at home during the opening weekend to open New Meadowlands Stadium.
The Giants played on Sunday with a 1 pm EDT kickoff against the Carolina Panthers and the Jets opened ESPN's Monday Night Football schedule against the Baltimore Ravens the next night. For the nightcap, the San Diego Chargers traveled to play their division rival, the Kansas City Chiefs, marking the first time that a team from outside the Mountain or Pacific Time Zones has played in, or hosted, the "late" game; the game started at 9:15 pm Kansas City time. While the Indianapolis Colts and New Orleans Saints had both started the year before 13–0, on October 10, the Kansas City Chiefs became the last team to lose, losing to the Colts 19–9, it would mark the first time that no NFL team reached 4–0 since 1970, when the Detroit Lions, Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Rams started the season 3–0 but all lost in Week 4. The 2010 season featured one International Series game, played at Wembley Stadium in London; the teams for this game were confirmed on January 15, 2010, with the San Francisco 49ers playing host to the Denver Broncos on October 31, 2010, at 1:00 pm EDT.
The 49ers won scoring 21 points in the 4th quarter. CBS televised this game on a regional basis; the Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks, who had expressed interest in previous games, were a possible matchup for a second NFL game, but league officials dropped a plan for two games in the UK, citing the economy and ongoin
A linebacker is a playing position in American football and Canadian football. Linebackers are members of the defensive team, line up three to five yards behind the line of scrimmage, behind the defensive linemen, therefore "back up the line". Linebackers align themselves before the ball is snapped by standing upright in a "two-point stance"; the goal of the linebacker is to provide either extra run protection or extra pass protection based on the particular defensive play being executed. Another key play of the linebacker position is blitzing. A blitz occurs; when a blitz is called by the defense, it is to sack or hurry the opposing offense's quarterback. Linebackers are regarded as the most important position in defense, due to their versatility in providing hard hits on running plays or an additional layer of pass protection, when required. Similar to the "free safety" position, linebackers are required to use their judgment on every snap, to determine their role during that particular play.
Before the advent of the two-platoon system with separate units for offense and defense, the player, the team's center on offense was though not always, the team's linebacker on defense. Hence today one sees four defensive linemen to the offense's five or more. Most sources claim coach Fielding H. Yost and center Germany Schulz of the University of Michigan invented the position. Schulz was Yost's first linebacker in 1904. Yost came to see the wisdom in Schulz's innovation. William Dunn of Penn St. was another Western linebacker soon after Schulz. However, there are various historical claims tied to the linebacker position, including some before 1904. For example, Percy Given of Georgetown is another center with a claim to the title "first linebacker," standing up behind the line well before Schulz in a game against Navy in 1902. Despite Given, most sources have the first linebacker in the South as Frank Juhan of Sewanee. In the East, Ernest Cozens of Penn was "one of the first of the roving centers," another, archaic term for the position coined by Hank Ketcham of Yale.
Walter E. Bachman of Lafayette was said to be "the developer of the "roving center" concept". Edgar Garbisch of Army was credited with developing the "roving center method" of playing defensive football in 1921. In professional football, Cal Hubbard is credited with pioneering the linebacker position, he starred as a tackle and end, playing off the line in a style similar to that of a modern linebacker. The middle or inside linebacker, sometimes called the "Mike" or "Mack", is referred to as the "quarterback of the defense", it is the middle linebacker who receives the defensive play calls from the sideline and relays that play to the rest of the team, in the NFL he is the defensive player with the electronic sideline communicator. A jack-of-all-trades, the middle linebacker can be asked to blitz, spy the quarterback, or have a deep middle-of-the-field responsibility in the Tampa 2 defense. In standard defenses, middle linebackers lead the team in tackles; the terms middle and inside linebacker are used interchangeably.
In a 3–4 defense, the larger, more run-stopping-oriented linebacker is still called "Mike", while the smaller, more pass protection/route coverage-oriented player is called "Will". "Mikes" line up towards the strong side or on the side the offense is more to run on while "Wills" may line up on the other side or a little farther back between the defensive line and the secondary. The outside linebacker, sometimes called the "Buck and Rebel" is responsible for outside containment; this includes the weakside designations below. They are responsible for blitzing the quarterback. Only is the OLB responsible for outside containment and blitzing the Quarter Back they have pass coverage in the flats sometimes call A drop. Outside linebackers pass; the "flats" are the edge of the field closest to the sideline, from the line of scrimmage down about ten yards. The strongside linebacker is nicknamed the "Sam" for purposes of calling a blitz. Since the strong side of the offensive team, is the side on which the tight end lines up, or whichever side contains the most personnel, the strongside linebacker lines up across from the tight end.
The strongside linebacker will be called upon to tackle the running back on a play because the back will be following the tight end's block. He is most the strongest linebacker; the linebacker should have strong safety abilities in pass situation to cover the tight end in man on man situations. He should have considerable quickness to read and get into coverage in zone situations; the strongside linebacker is commonly known as the left outside linebacker. The weakside linebacker, or the "Will" in 4–3 Defense, sometimes called the backside linebacker, or "Buck", as well as other names like Jack or Bandit, must be the fastest of the three, because he
College football is American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities. It was through college football play that American football rules first gained popularity in the United States. Unlike most other sports in North America, no minor league farm organizations exist in American or Canadian football. Therefore, college football is considered to be the second tier of American football in the United States and Canadian football in Canada. However, in some areas of the country, college football is more popular than professional football, for much of the early 20th century, college football was seen as more prestigious than professional football, it is in college football where a player's performance directly impacts his chances of playing professional football. The best collegiate players will declare for the professional draft after three to four years of collegiate competition, with the NFL holding its annual draft every spring in which 256 players are selected annually.
Those not selected can still attempt to land an NFL roster spot as an undrafted free agent. After the emergence of the professional National Football League, college football remained popular throughout the U. S. Although the college game has a much larger margin for talent than its pro counterpart, the sheer number of fans following major colleges provides a financial equalizer for the game, with Division I programs — the highest level — playing in huge stadiums, six of which have seating capacity exceeding 100,000 people. In many cases, college stadiums employ bench-style seating, as opposed to individual seats with backs and arm rests; this allows them to seat more fans in a given amount of space than the typical professional stadium, which tends to have more features and comforts for fans.. College athletes, unlike players in the NFL, are not permitted by the NCAA to be paid salaries. Colleges are only allowed to provide non-monetary compensation such as athletic scholarships that provide for tuition and books.
Modern North American football has its origins in various games, all known as "football", played at public schools in Great Britain in the mid-19th century. By the 1840s, students at Rugby School were playing a game in which players were able to pick up the ball and run with it, a sport known as Rugby football; the game was taken to Canada by British soldiers stationed there and was soon being played at Canadian colleges. The first documented gridiron football match was played at University College, a college of the University of Toronto, November 9, 1861. One of the participants in the game involving University of Toronto students was William Mulock Chancellor of the school. A football club was formed at the university soon afterward, although its rules of play at this stage are unclear. In 1864, at Trinity College a college of the University of Toronto, F. Barlow Cumberland and Frederick A. Bethune devised rules based on rugby football. Modern Canadian football is regarded as having originated with a game played in Montreal, in 1865, when British Army officers played local civilians.
The game gained a following, the Montreal Football Club was formed in 1868, the first recorded non-university football club in Canada. Early games appear to have had much in common with the traditional "mob football" played in Great Britain; the games remained unorganized until the 19th century, when intramural games of football began to be played on college campuses. Each school played its own variety of football. Princeton University students played a game called "ballown" as early as 1820. A Harvard tradition known as "Bloody Monday" began in 1827, which consisted of a mass ballgame between the freshman and sophomore classes. In 1860, both the town police and the college authorities agreed; the Harvard students responded by going into mourning for a mock figure called "Football Fightum", for whom they conducted funeral rites. The authorities held firm and it was a dozen years before football was once again played at Harvard. Dartmouth played its own version called "Old division football", the rules of which were first published in 1871, though the game dates to at least the 1830s.
All of these games, others, shared certain commonalities. They remained "mob" style games, with huge numbers of players attempting to advance the ball into a goal area by any means necessary. Rules were simple and injury were common; the violence of these mob-style games led to a decision to abandon them. Yale, under pressure from the city of New Haven, banned the play of all forms of football in 1860. American football historian Parke H. Davis described the period between 1869 and 1875 as the'Pioneer Period'. On November 6, 1869, Rutgers University faced Princeton University in the first-ever game of intercollegiate football, it was played with a round ball and, like all early games, used a set of rules suggested by Rutgers captain William J. Leggett, based
The Pro Bowl is the all-star game of the National Football League. From the merger with the rival American Football League in 1970 up through 2013 and since 2017, it is called the AFC–NFC Pro Bowl, matching the top players in the American Football Conference against those in the National Football Conference. From 2014 through 2016, the NFL experimented with an unconferenced format, where the teams were selected by two honorary team captains, instead of selecting players from each conference; the players were picked in a televised "schoolyard pick" prior to the game. Unlike most major sports leagues, which hold their all-star games midway through their regular seasons, the Pro Bowl is played around the end of the NFL season; the first official Pro Bowl was played in January 1951, three weeks after the 1950 NFL Championship Game. Between 1970 and 2009, the Pro Bowl was held the weekend after the Super Bowl. Since 2010, it has been played the weekend before the Super Bowl. Players from the two teams competing in the Super Bowl do not participate.
For years, the game has suffered from lack of interest due to perceived low quality, with observers and commentators expressing their disfavor with it in its current state. It draws lower TV ratings than regular season NFL games, although the game draws similar ratings to other major all-star games, such as the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. However, the biggest concern of teams is to avoid injuries to the star players; the Associated Press wrote that players in the 2012 game were "hitting each other as though they were having a pillow fight". Between 1980 and 2016, the game was played at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii except for two years. On June 1, 2016, the NFL announced that they reached a multi-year deal to move the game to Orlando, Florida as part of the league's ongoing efforts to make the game more relevant; the first "Pro All-Star Game", featuring the all-stars of the 1938 season, was played on January 15, 1939 at Wrigley Field in Los Angeles. The NFL All-Star Game was played again in Los Angeles in 1940 and in New York and Philadelphia in 1941 and 1942 respectively.
Although planned as an annual contest, the all-star game was discontinued after 1942 because of travel restrictions put in place during World War II. During the first five all-star games, an all-star team would face that year's league champion; the league champion won the first four games before the all-stars were victorious in the final game of this early series. The concept of an all-star game was not revived until June 1950, when the newly christened "Pro Bowl" was approved; the game was sponsored by the Los Angeles Publishers Association. It was decided that the game would feature all-star teams from each of the league's two conferences rather than the league champion versus all-star format, used previously; this was done to avoid confusion with the Chicago College All-Star Game, an annual game which featured the league champion against a collegiate all-star team. The teams would be led by the coach of each of the conference champions. Prior to the Pro Bowl, following the 1949 season, the All-America Football Conference, which contributed three teams to the NFL in a partial merger in 1950, held its own all-star game, the Shamrock Bowl.
The first 21 games of the series were played in Los Angeles. The site of the game was changed annually for each of the next seven years before the game was moved to Aloha Stadium in Halawa, Hawaii for 30 straight seasons from 1980 through 2009; the 2010 Pro Bowl was played at Sun Life Stadium, the home stadium of the Miami Dolphins and host site of Super Bowl XLIV, on January 31, the first time that the Pro Bowl was held before the championship game. With the new rule being that the conference teams do not include players from the teams that will be playing in the Super Bowl, the Pro Bowl returned to Hawaii in 2011 but was again held during the week before the Super Bowl, where it remained for three more years; the 2012 game was met with criticism from fans and sports writers for the lack of quality play by the players. On October 24, 2012, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell had second thoughts about the Pro Bowl, telling a Sirius XM show that if the players did not play more competitively, he was "not inclined to play it anymore".
During the ensuing off-season, the NFL Players Association lobbied to keep the Pro Bowl, negotiated several rule changes to be implemented for the 2014 game. Among them, the teams will no longer be AFC vs. NFC, instead be selected by captains in a fantasy draft. For the 2014 game, Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders were chosen as alumni captains, while their captains were Drew Brees and Robert Quinn, along with Jamaal Charles and J. J. Watt. On April 9, 2014, the NFL announced that the 2015 Pro Bowl would be played the week before the Super Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on January 25, 2015; the game returned to Hawaii in 2016, the "unconferenced" format was its last. For 2017, the league considered hosting the game at Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, which if approved would be the first time the game had been hosted outside the United States; the NFL is considering future Pro Bowls in Mexico and Germany. The NFL hopes that by leveraging international markets with the star power of Pro Bowls, international pop
Stephen Orr Spurrier is a former American football player and coach referred to by his nickname, the "Head Ball Coach". Steve Spurrier was born in Miami Beach and grew up in Tennessee, where he was a multi-sport all-state athlete at Science Hill High School in Johnson City, he attended the University of Florida, where he won the 1966 Heisman Trophy as a college football quarterback with the Florida Gators. The San Francisco 49ers picked him in the first round of the 1967 NFL draft, he spent a decade playing professionally in the National Football League as a backup quarterback and punter. Spurrier was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a player in 1986. After retiring as a player, Spurrier went into coaching and spent several years as an assistant at several college programs, including at Duke University, where he began to develop his innovative offensive system while serving as the Blue Devil's offensive coordinator in the early 1980s, he was hired to his first head coaching job by the Tampa Bay Bandits of the United States Football League in 1983.
The USFL folded after three seasons, Spurrier returned to the college ranks, serving as the head football coach at Duke and South Carolina. Between his stints at Florida and South Carolina, he led the National Football League's Washington Redskins for two seasons. Spurrier retired from coaching in 2015 and became an ambassador and consultant for the University of Florida's athletic department, though he returned to the sideline as the head coach of the Orlando Apollos of the short-lived Alliance of American Football in 2019, he was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a coach in 2017, making him one of four members to be inducted as both a player and a coach. Spurrier's teams were known for winning with aggressive and high-scoring offenses, he became known for teasing and "needling" rivals both before and after beating them on the field, he is the winningest coach in both Florida and South Carolina program history, his last Duke squad won the program's only Atlantic Coast Conference championship over the last half-century in 1989.
Florida's four consecutive Southeastern Conference championships in the mid-1990s is the second-longest streak in conference history behind Bear Bryant's 1970s Alabama teams, Spurrier and Bryant are the only coaches to hold the record for most conference wins at two different SEC schools. Spurrier is second to Bryant in total wins; when Florida quarterback Danny Wuerffel won the Heisman Trophy during the Gators' 1996 national championship season, Spurrier became the only Heisman Trophy winner to coach another Heisman Trophy winner. In September 2016, the University of Florida renamed the Gators' home field to Steve Spurrier-Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Spurrier was born on April 1945, in Miami Beach, Florida, he is the second son of a Presbyterian minister, J. Graham Spurrier, his wife Marjorie. Graham Spurrier changed congregations during Steve Spurrier's early childhood, resulting in several moves for the family; the Spurriers left Miami Beach before Steve Spurrier's first birthday, moving to Charlotte, North Carolina to live near his paternal grandparents.
His father accepted pastorships in Athens, Tennessee and in Newport, Tennessee before settling in Johnson City, Tennessee in 1957, when Steve Spurrier was 12 years old. The youngest Spurrier began to earn his reputation as a good athlete and a fierce competitor in Johnson City, impressing his peers and his older brother's friends with his tenacity in sandlot sports. Steve Spurrier's skills as a young baseball player caused a local businessman to talk the Reverend Spurrier into coaching the Little League team sponsored by his business so that Spurrier's son would be on the squad; the younger Spurrier has repeated an anecdote about playing baseball on a team coached by his father. "How many of you believe that it's not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game, that counts?" the elder Spurrier once asked his players. When some raised their hands, he told them, "Well, I don't believe in that saying. If they're keeping score, we're going to play to win." Spurrier attended Science Hill High School in Johnson City, where he was a three-sport letterman starring in high school football and baseball for the Science Hill Hilltoppers, was an all-state selection in all three sports.
In three years as the starting pitcher for Science Hill, he never lost a game and led his team to two consecutive state baseball championships. On the basketball court, Spurrier played point guard and was known for his ability to run his team's offense with flashy passes and dribbling and his knack for scoring in many different ways, attributes which earned him his high school conference's player of the year award for his senior year. Many observers in Johnson City thought that Spurrier's best sport in high school was basketball, his father thought that he was best as baseball. While Spurrier agreed that basketball and baseball came more he preferred playing football, he worked hard to improve as a quarterback. Spurrier was Science Hill's starting quarterback for two years, during which time Coach Kermit Tipton installed a passing offense to take advantage of Spurrier's talents and allowed him to call plays. Boosted by a post-season game at the end of his senior year in which he brought the Hilltoppers back from a 21–0 second-half deficit to win 28–21, Spurrier was a high school All-American and drew the attention of many college programs.
After winning multiple all-state honors in high school, Spurrier was recruited in one or more sports by many colleges, including Alab
The Jacksonville Jaguars are a professional football franchise based in Jacksonville, Florida. The Jaguars compete in the National Football League as a member club of the American Football Conference South division; the team plays its home games at TIAA Bank Field. The Jaguars and the Carolina Panthers joined the NFL as expansion teams for the 1995 season. Since their inception, the Jaguars have won division championships in 1998 and 1999 and 2017 and have qualified for the playoffs seven times, most in 2017 after a ten-season playoff drought. From their inception until 2011, the Jacksonville Jaguars' majority owner was Wayne Weaver; the team was purchased by Pakistani-born businessman Shahid Khan for an estimated $770 million. In 2015, Forbes estimated the team value at $1.48 billion. In 1989, the prospective ownership group Touchdown Jacksonville! was organized. The group included future Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Jacksonville developer Tom Petway, came to be led by shoe magnate Wayne Weaver, founder of Nine West.
In 1991, the NFL announced plans to add two expansion teams in 1994, its first expansion since the 1976 addition of the Seattle Seahawks and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Touchdown Jacksonville! announced its bid for a team, Jacksonville was chosen as one of five finalists, along with Charlotte, St. Louis and Memphis. Jacksonville was considered the least expansion candidate for several reasons; the Jacksonville metropolitan area and television market were smaller than those of nearly every team in the league. Jacksonville was the 54th largest television market, only Green Bay had a smaller TV market Although Jacksonville was the 15th largest city in the nation at the time, it has always been a medium-sized market because the surrounding suburbs and rural areas are far smaller than the city itself. There were 635,000 people in Jacksonville proper according to the 1990 census, but only 900,000 people in the metropolitan area. Additionally, the Gator Bowl was outdated, the ownership group struggled to negotiate a lease with the city.
The troubled negotiations over the Gator Bowl lease led the ownership group to withdraw from the NFL expansion bidding in July 1993. Charlotte was awarded the first franchise – the Carolina Panthers – in October 1993; the naming of the second expansion city was delayed a month. Most pundits speculated. At the time, St. Louis was considered the favorite for the second franchise, with Baltimore's three bids considered strong. However, in a surprising move, the NFL owners voted 26–2 in favor of awarding the 30th franchise to Jacksonville. After the Gator Bowl game on December 31, 1993, the old stadium was demolished and replaced with a reinforced concrete superstructure. All that remained of the old stadium was the west upper concourse and a portion of the ramping system. To accommodate construction, the 1994 and 1995 games of "The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party" were split between the home fields of Florida and Georgia, the 1994 Gator Bowl was played at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville.
In January 1994 Wayne Weaver chose Tom Coughlin as the first-ever head coach of the Jaguars. Coughlin had worked in the NFL as a position coach, but he had been neither a head coach nor a coordinator in the NFL; the Jaguars' hiring of Coughlin contrasted with the hiring moves made by their fellow expansion team. The same month that Weaver hired Coughlin as his head coach, Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson went a more conventional route and hired former Buffalo Bills general manager Bill Polian as the Panthers' first GM; as it emerged that Weaver had no intention of hiring a general manager, it became apparent that Coughlin would have most of the authority regarding hiring decisions. Coughlin spent his year as "head coach without a team" preparing for the personnel moves that would come from the expansion draft, free agency, the rookie draft in the spring of 1995. Along with the Carolina Panthers, the Jacksonville Jaguars entered the NFL as the first expansion teams in 20 years. Both teams participated in the 1995 NFL expansion draft, with the Jaguars taking Steve Beuerlein with the first pick.
Beuerlein lost his starting job to former Green Bay Packers backup Mark Brunell. The Jaguars finished their inaugural season with a record of 4–12. Both the Jaguars and the Panthers broke the previous record for most wins by an expansion team set by the Cincinnati Bengals in 1968; the inaugural season featured many of the players who would lead Jacksonville into the playoffs in the team's next four seasons, including quarterback Mark Brunell, offensive lineman Tony Boselli running back James Stewart, wide receiver Jimmy Smith. The team played its first regular season game at home in front of a crowd of 72,363 on September 3, 1995, a 10–3 loss against the Houston Oilers; the team picked up its first win in Week 4 as the Jaguars defeated the Oilers 17–16 on October 1 in Houston. The next week against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Jaguars earned their first home win by defeating the eventual AFC Champions 20–16; the team's other two wins came in a season sweep of the Cleveland Browns including a Week 17 24–21 victory sealed by a Mike Hollis 34-yard field goal in the Browns' f
Florida–Georgia football rivalry
The Florida–Georgia football rivalry is an American college football rivalry game played annually by the University of Florida Gators and the University of Georgia Bulldogs. The game was first played in 1915, has been played every season since 1926, except for a war-time interruption in 1943; this match-up between Southeastern Conference opponents is one of the most prominent rivalry games in college football, has been held in Jacksonville, Florida since 1933, with only two exceptions, making it one of the few remaining neutral-site rivalries in college football. The game attracts huge crowds to Jacksonville, the associated tailgating and other events earned it the nickname of the "World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party", although that name is no longer used officially; this high-intensity rivalry has gone through several periods in which one team has been dominant for a decade or more. Georgia dominated the early rivalry, while Florida held an advantage in the 1960s. Georgia won most of the games in the 1970s and 80s under coach Vince Dooley, Florida dominated the 1990s and 2000s under coach Steve Spurrier.
The years since 2010 have been unusually with Georgia holding a 5-4 edge in the decade as of the 2018 contest. The two universities do not agree on; the University of Georgia's athletic department counts a 1904 match its football squad played against a team from a school known as the University of Florida. The game was held in Macon and Georgia won 52–0. However, this was not the modern University of Florida in Gainesville, but one of its four predecessor institutions: a school known as Florida Agricultural College, based in Lake City. Florida's University Athletic Association does not include this game in the series record, as it occurred before the modern university was established by the Florida Legislature in 1905, before the new entity fielded its first recognized football team in 1906. UGA sports historian Dan Magill sums up Georgia's attitude: "That's where Florida was back then. We can't help it if they got run out of Lake City." The first game acknowledged by both schools was held in Jacksonville in 1915.
The rivalry has been renewed annually since 1926, except for the 1943 season when Florida did not field a team due to World War II. The game has had championship implications, with both teams competitive in the Southeastern Conference. Florida, which did not win the SEC title until 1991, had its hopes dashed several times by a loss to Georgia in Jacksonville, including during Steve Spurrier's senior season in 1966; the game took on new importance when the SEC split into Eastern and Western Divisions in 1992, with both Florida and Georgia in the Eastern Division. As the two teams are at or near the top of the division standings, the game has determined who will represent the Eastern Division in the SEC Championship Game. To date, Florida has fourteen Eastern Division titles. While the two universities agree that Georgia leads the overall series, they disagree as to the overall series record due to the disputed 1904 game; as of the 2017 contest, Georgia leads with a 51–43–2 record by its reckoning, 50–43–2 by Florida's count.
Georgia dominated the series with Florida winning just five of the first 29 contests. Georgia had an advantage in the 1970s and 1980s, leading the series 15–5 during those decades. Florida dominated the series 18-3 in the two decades following Steve Spurrier's return to Florida in 1990. Since 2010, the series has been split, 5–4. Since the game is played at a neutral site, the designated "home" team alternates from year to year, with ticket distribution split evenly between the fans of the two teams; the Florida–Georgia game has been played at neutral sites rather than the schools' respective home fields since the beginning of the rivalry. Florida played "home" games against major college opposition at off-campus sites before Florida Field was constructed in 1930. Up until that point, Florida's "home" games against Georgia were held in Jacksonville and Tampa, along with three Georgia home contests in Athens; the teams met in Gainesville for the first time in 1931 returned to Athens in 1932. From 1933 onward, the game has been played in Jacksonville except for a home and home set in 1994 and 1995 when the old Gator Bowl was being rebuilt as Everbank Field for the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL.
In 100 meetings, the game has been played in Athens or Gainesville a total of only seven times, there are no plans to do so in the future. By playing the game at a neutral site rather than on their respective campuses, both universities' athletic programs derive more revenue from the game than if the site rotated on a "home-and-away" basis; as of the 2009 contest, the universities made $1.7 million every year, or $3.4 million every two years, as opposed to an expected $2.2 million every two years if the game were played at their respective home stadiums. The game weekend is extremely lucrative for Jacksonville businesses in the downtown area, with many reporting that it is their busiest weekend of the year.. In addition to being important to the city of Jacksonville, the Georgia Golden Isles depend on the game to sustain businesses through the winter season as many Georgia students and alumni elect to spend the weekend on the Georgia Coast on Saint Simons Island, where 10,000 Georgia students gather each year at the aptly named "Frat Beach" on Friday before commuting to Jacksonville the next day.
There has been calls to move the game from Jacksonville when either Georgia or Florida is dominating the rivalry