Fred Taylor (American football): Wikis

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Fred Taylor

Taylor during the Jaguars 2008 training camp.
No. 21     New England Patriots
Running back
Personal information
Date of birth: January 27, 1976 (1976-01-27) (age 33)
Place of birth: Pahokee, Florida
Height: 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) Weight: 228 lb (103 kg)
Career information
College: Florida
NFL Draft: 1998 / Round: 1 / Pick: 9
Debuted in 1998 for the Jacksonville Jaguars
Career history
 As player:
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2009
Rushing yards     11,540
Average yards per rush     4.6
Rushing touchdowns     66
Stats at NFL.com

Frederick Antwon Taylor (born January 27, 1976, in Pahokee, Florida) is an American football running back for the New England Patriots of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars ninth overall in the 1998 NFL Draft. He played college football at Florida.

Contents

Early years

Taylor attended Glades Central High School in Belle Glade, Florida, where he played football as a running back. As a senior, he ran for 1,545 yards and 20 touchdowns, earning Florida "Super Senior" and all-state honors and was also Florida's "Mr. Football" in 1993.

College career

After graduating from high school, Taylor attended the University of Florida beginning in 1994. He started two games as a true freshman, picking up 873 yards and eight touchdowns. As a sophomore in 1995, he played in six games, gaining 281 yards and scoring five touchdowns. He returned in 1996 to start two of the seven games he played, running for 629 yards and five touchdowns. As a senior in 1997, Taylor was the team's leading rusher with 1,292 yards on 214 carries, while also scoring 13 touchdowns en route to a third-team All-American selection. He finished his college career ranked fourth in school history with 3,075 yards and 31 touchdowns.

Professional career

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Jacksonville Jaguars

1999–2001

Taylor was drafted ninth overall in the 1998 NFL Draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the first of two picks they acquired in a trade with the Buffalo Bills in exchange for quarterback Rob Johnson. Taylor started 12 of 15 games for the Jaguars as a rookie in 1998, rushing for 1,223 and 14 touchdowns, a career high, while also catching 44 passes for 421 yards and three touchdowns.

In 1999, Taylor played in ten games, starting nine, missing six due to a hamstring injury. He ranked second on the team with 732 yards, but posted two 100-yard rushing performances in the playoffs. He also recorded the longest run in playoff history with a 90 yard touchdown run in a 62-7 win over Miami. He missed three-and-a-half games in 2000, but still finished sixth in the NFL with 1,399 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns, while making 36 catches for 240 yards for another two touchdowns. Taylor played in the first two games of 2001 before suffering a groin injury and missing the rest of the season.

Overall, injuries caused Taylor to miss 23 out of a potential 48 games from 1999 to 2001. Fans and media were highly critical of Taylor's tendency to get injured, questioning his toughness and donning him the moniker "Fragile Fred", which deeply upset him, as he would later admit.[1 ] Despite knowing that Taylor's season was over in Week 3 of 2001, Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin listed him on the injury report as "questionable" every game for the remainder of the season, further fueling the doubts of Taylor's toughness in the minds of fans.[1 ] He still has not completely rid himself of the stigma and the nickname.[2]

Following the 2001 season, it was alleged that Taylor's agent William "Tank" Black had stolen between $12 million and $14 million from players he had represented, the majority of whom were University of Florida alumni, and that Black had laundered nearly all of Taylor's $5 million signing bonus, the only guaranteed money in his rookie contract.[3][4][5][6] In an interview with Vic Ketchman of Jaguars.com in November 2007, Taylor admitted he seriously considered retiring from football early in his career, because of the difficulties he experienced with injuries and Tank Black.[1 ]

2002–2004

In 2002, Taylor rebounded to start all 16 games for the Jaguars, finishing the season with 1,314 yards, third most in team history, while setting a then-team record with 1,722 yards from scrimmage. He also set a career high with 49 receptions, second best on his team, for 408 yards, and also recorded eight touchdowns. He again started all 16 games for the Jaguars in 2003 and set a career high with 1,572 yards on 345 carries for six touchdowns. He also caught 48 passes for 370 yards. In 2004, Taylor started the first 14 games of the season, recording 1,224 yards and two touchdowns. His streak of 46 consecutive starts ended when a knee injury sidelined him for the final two weeks of the season.

2005–2008

Injuries hampered Taylor again in 2005, as he started 11 games while missing five games with injuries throughout the season. He still led the team with 787 yards rushing while also recording three touchdowns. In 2006, Taylor was joined in the Jaguars backfield by Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars' second-round pick in the 2006 NFL Draft and Taylor's eventual replacement. Despite sharing carries throughout the season, Taylor started 15 games and posted a 5.0 yard-per-carry average with 1,146 yards on 231 carries for five touchdowns. He also added 23 receptions for 242 yards and one touchdown. Together, Taylor and Jones-Drew combined for 2,087 yards, the most by two rushers in Jaguars history.

As a team captain in 2007, Taylor rushed for 1,202 yards on 223 carries, a career-best 5.4 yards-per-carry average, in 15 games started. On November 11, Taylor surpassed 10,000 yards career rushing in a game against the Tennessee Titans. Taylor rushed for five straight 100-yard games in late November and December, earning him AFC Offensive Player of the Month honors. He tied for first in the NFL with four rushes of 50-plus yards and finished with two of the four longest rushes in the NFL in 2007. Following the season, he was named to the Associated Press second-team All-Pro team and was named to the 2008 Pro Bowl as an injury replacement, the first such honor of his career.

In his final season with the Jaguars in 2008, Taylor started the first 13 games of the season before being placed on injured reserve for the first time in his career with a thumb injury on December 11. A team captain for the second straight season, Taylor surpassed both the 11,000 yards career rushing and 13,000 career all-purpose yards milestones on the year. He finished the season with 556 yards on 113 carries; meanwhile, Jones-Drew, now a third-year player, rushed for 824 yards on 197 carries.

After his 2008 season had ended, when asked about his future with the team, Taylor said, "All of that still has to handle itself. I don't know how it's going to play out." Taylor said that it was clear to him that the organization was headed in "another direction" as a result of his reduced role with the team and the rise in his salary that was due to receive if he had remained on the roster.[7]

On February 16, 2009, Taylor was released by the Jaguars after 11 seasons with the team.

New England Patriots

Taylor was signed to a two-year contract by the New England Patriots on February 27, 2009.[8] He played in the first four games of the season for the Patriots, starting one, before suffering an ankle injury in Week 4 against the Baltimore Ravens. Despite the fact that the injury was expected to keep him out until late in the season, the Patriots chose not to place Taylor on injured reserve, and instead de-activated him.[9] Taylor returned to the field for the Patriots' Week 16 matchup with his former team, the Jaguars, on December 27, 2009. He did not play until the fourth quarter, but managed to rush for 35 yards on 11 carries. He finished the season with 269 yards on 63 attempts and four touchdowns.

Personal

Taylor is a first cousin of Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Santonio Holmes. Both scored a touchdown in the 2007 AFC wildcard game in which the Jaguars defeated the Steelers 31-29.[10]

His son, Kelvin Taylor, is a freshman at Glades Day School who has received interest from the University of Florida and the University of Tennessee.[11]

References

  1. ^ a b c Ketchman, Vic (2007-11-17). "Fred Taylor Interview at 10,000 Yards". Jacksonville Jaguars. http://www.jaguars.com/multimedia/video.aspx?id=2569. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  2. ^ Reiss, Mike (2009-10-08). "Fragile Fred sidelined again". ESPNBoston.com. http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/9552/fragile-fred-sidelined-again. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  3. ^ "Suit filed against former agent claims millions in losses". Associated Press. Sports Illustrated. 2000-05-17. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/nfl/news/2000/05/17/black_sued_ap/. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  4. ^ "Fred Taylor: Agent Black 'robbed everybody blind'". Associated Press. Sporting News. 2002-01-23. http://archive.sportingnews.com/nfl/articles/20020123/376987.html. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  5. ^ "Agent guilty of swindling football pros". Associated Press. The Cincinnati Enquirer. 2002-02-01. http://www.enquirer.com/editions/2002/02/01/spt_agent_guilty_of.html. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  6. ^ "Sports agent Tank Black convicted of defrauding NFL players". Associated Press. The Florida Times-Union. 2002-01-31. http://www.jacksonville.com/apnews/stories/013102/D7HCRAM80.html. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  7. ^ "Thumb injury ends Taylor's season; are his Jags days done, too?". Associated Press. NFL.com. 2008-12. http://www.nfl.com/news/story?id=09000d5d80d389aa&template=with-video-with-comments&confirm=true. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  8. ^ Pasquarelli, Len (2009-02-27). "Taylor joining Patriots as free agent". ESPN.com. http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3939283. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  9. ^ Reiss, Mike (2009-12-04). "Taylor could be closer to return". ESPNBoston.com. http://sports.espn.go.com/boston/nfl/news/story?id=4713709. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  10. ^ Young, Shalise Manza (2009-02-27). "Fred Taylor chooses to join the Patriots". The Providence Journal. http://www.projo.com/patriots/content/projo-20090227-fred-taylor.b1562e9.html. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  
  11. ^ Hutchins, Andy (2009-12-12). "Remember the Name: Kelvin Taylor". Sporting News. http://www.sportingnews.com/blog/the_sporting_blog/entry/view/47445/remember_the_name_kelvin_taylor. Retrieved 2009-12-30.  

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
James Stewart
Jacksonville Jaguars
starting running backs

1998–2008
Succeeded by
Maurice Jones-Drew

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