Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Jaguars Miss Taylor Ingredient; Toefield in Line as RB's Backup

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Jaguars Miss Taylor Ingredient; Toefield in Line as RB's Backup

Article excerpt

Byline: Vito Stellino, Times-Union sports writer

The Fred Taylor and Byron Leftwich watch will continue today.

Coach Jack Del Rio said yesterday that Taylor won't be on the field today when the Jaguars resume practice and that he has no news on the Leftwich holdout, which reaches its 18th day today.

Taylor, who missed the Aug. 1 scrimmage and the 16-14 victory over the Minnesota Vikings in the preseason opener Saturday night, has been sidelined for close to two weeks with a bone bruise in his leg.

Del Rio said he hasn't made a determination on whether Taylor will play Friday night in the home preseason opener against the Miami Dolphins.

Although LaBrandon Toefield took a step toward winning the backup job when he gained 33 yards in eight carries, the Jaguars appeared to miss Taylor's explosiveness.

The Jaguars converted on only one of 10 third downs and could have used the extra dimension that Taylor brings to their offense.

The first-team offense had the ball for four series and put together drives of 65 and 45 yards on two of them -- the other two were three-and-out -- but scored only three points.

"It'll keep going on," Del Rio said of Taylor's absence. "I'll let you know when it changes."

Del Rio said Taylor's injury is not a matter of concern.

"Not for me, only for you. We're following the plan. Just like I said over and over, we understand what's going on. We're doing the right thing and we're going to be patient with it," he said.

Taylor suffered the injury on July 30 and Del Rio originally said he "sprained his knee a little bit" and added that day, "We don't anticipate there will be any problem there."

The only definitive thing he said was that Taylor would start the season on Sept. 7 in Carolina.

In Taylor's absence, Toefield solidified his spot as the backup while Joe Smith struggled and gained just 9 yards in six carries.

"I thought that Toefield ran with poise. It looks like he belongs," Del Rio said. "He did a nice job for us. Joe was a little anxious as you might expect in his first game playing in the NFL. He'll get better."

On the Leftwich front, Del Rio said there were no new developments. …

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