Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Taylor Makes Some Memories at Reunion; Former Jaguar Enters Game during Fourth Quarter and Celebrates an AFC East Title

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Taylor Makes Some Memories at Reunion; Former Jaguar Enters Game during Fourth Quarter and Celebrates an AFC East Title

Article excerpt

Byline: MICHAEL C. WRIGHT

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - Patriots tailback Fred Taylor compared the first game against his former team to training camp in Jacksonville.

Only this time, the temperature was more than 40 degrees cooler.

"Looking across, it was like practicing again where you go all out, actually hit each other," Taylor said. "Only difference is in the real game, they get to throw you on the ground."

The Jaguars did that to Taylor 11 times Sunday in a 35-7 loss to the Patriots. It was probably the best thing that could've happened to the running back, who hadn't played since October because of an ankle injury. Taylor didn't run wild on the Jaguars or score a touchdown, finishing with 35 yards rushing.

The numbers were a far cry from his monster outings in 11 years as a Jaguar, but Taylor was grateful to return from injury in time to play against his former teammates.

"A lot of laughs, friendly trash talking," Taylor said. "Overall, it was good to see all those guys and get a chance to just play - more so than play against them."

Taylor entered the game with 12:41 remaining and the Patriots leading 35-7. After mishandling a short pass from Tom Brady on first down, Taylor ran around left end for a 2-yard gain.

Taylor's longest gain of the afternoon was 8 yards. But fullback Montell Owens, whose locker was next to Taylor's during his time in Jacksonville, noticed a little explosion in his former teammate's step. Owens said Taylor hasn't lost any speed, and appears to be a little faster since leaving the Jaguars.

"He's the same Fred," Owens said. "He didn't look any different to me. He looked the same way he did when he was with us, just faster. He had a little chip on his shoulder [with the way he was running], but that's to be expected. There's going to be one day when I go somewhere else and I guarantee when I come back to play Jacksonville, I'm gonna lay the knock on somebody. …

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