Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

FRAGILE FRED; Taylor Opens Another Camp with Hamstring Pull

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

FRAGILE FRED; Taylor Opens Another Camp with Hamstring Pull

Article excerpt

Byline: VITO STELLINO

Fred Taylor wanted to put on a show for the 2,474 fans who attended the Jaguars' first training-camp practice Saturday morning.

After spending the offseason working at a training facility in Davie, the veteran running back arrived in great shape and was eager to hit the ground running.

"I really wanted to come out the first day and give the fans something to ooh and aah about,'' he said.

Instead, Taylor, who has been slowed by injuries in the last three training camps, saw limited action after suffering what he and the Jaguars said was a mild right hamstring pull during a conditioning drill Thursday.

"This is the first day of camp, and we're still in skirts right now [they don't put on the full pads until Monday night], but it's just an initial impression I'm most disappointed about," Taylor said. "It's kind of sad.''

Actually, he believed it was more than just sad.

"The timing stinks,'' he said, adding, "It's hard to understand. Some things in life, you just can't figure out why they happen. They just do.''

Despite the fact he has rushed for 8.367 yards during his NFL career, injury concerns have dogged Taylor, and his latest ailment will just add to that.

"That's fine,'' Taylor said. "I expected that. I knew it was going to happen [questions about whether he can stay healthy].''

Players who don't participate in 85 percent of the Jaguars' voluntary offseason program must run conditioning drills before they report to camp to show that they're in shape. For the running backs, the regimen is a series of 20 runs of 50 yards.

Taylor said he had run those drills during his offseason training and believe they would be a "piece of cake.'' He said players usually rest after running the first 10, but he didn't believe he needed to do that.

Then, on the second to last sprint, Taylor suffered the injury.

Taylor suffered a severe torn groin injury in the second game of the 2001 season that sidelined him for the rest of the season. He came back to play 46 games in a row until the 14th game of the 2004 season in Green Bay, where he suffered a major knee injury that needed surgery. …

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