Fred Taylor's 13-year career cemented his place not only as one of the best players in Jaguars history, but as one of the best running backs of his era. Taylor's 11,695 career rushing yards places him 15th in career rushing yards. He is the Jaguars franchise record holder in a number of categories including career rushing attempts and rushing yards. Taylor was also quite underrated, or perhaps overlooked. He was only selected to one Pro Bowl (1997).
Before Taylor found success in the NFL, he was an all-state running back for Glades Central High School in Belle Glade, Florida. Following a senior season in which he ran for over 1,700 yards, Taylor took his talents to the University of Florida. During his career at Florida, he would rush for over 3,000 yards, win a national championship and be named first team All-SEC. Taylor was then drafted in the 1998 NFL Draft by the Jaguars with the ninth overall pick.
Taylor made an immediate impact with the Jaguars. In his rookie season of 1998, Taylor ran for over 1,200 yards and scored 14 rushing touchdowns. He also added 3 touchdowns on pass receptions. In his second season, Taylor’s numbers would go down due to injuries, but he would play a key role for the Jags by rushing for over 100 yards in each of the team’s two playoff games as they advanced to the AFC Championship game.
Throughout the rest of Taylor’s tenure in Jacksonville he would put up impressive numbers. Taylor rushed for more than 1000 yards during the 1998, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007 seasons while scoring 62 touchdowns for the Jags. During the 2000 season, he led the league in rushing yards per game with 107. In addition to rushing, Taylor would add over 2,000 yards receiving and an additional 8 receiving touchdowns in his 11 years in Jacksonville.
Taylor finished his career playing in 2009 and 2010 for the New England Patriots. During those two years injuries limited his playing time. However, Taylor gained over 400 yards and scored 4 touchdowns as a Patriot. Following the 2010 season with the Patriots, Taylor signed a one day contract with the Jaguars so that he could retire as a member of the team where he played for so many years and is still remembered fondly by the Jaguar fans.
Taylor was inducted into the Pride of the Jaguars in 2012. He was just the second member inducted. The first member inducted was Tony Boselli, Taylor’s teammate during his first four years in the league. Taylor was inducted due to both his impact on the team and his impact on the community. Today, Taylor is active with the Fred Taylor Foundation which works with physically disabled children as well as other charities.