The 2001 NFL season was the Jaguars' seventh season in the league, and its second season in "Salary Cap Hell." The club's salary mismanagement led to the exile of a number of talented and popular players, such as Carnell Lake, Reggie Barlow and former Pro Bowl RT Leon Searcy.
Jaguars' coach Tom Coughlin claimed his roster in 2001 had less talent than the patchwork expansion roster the team originally put together back in 1995 when the Jaguars entered the league.
Considering this bold statement, the Jaguars 6-10 record in 2001 seems slightly less disappointing.
With the 13th overall selection in the 2001 NFL Draft, the Jaguars selected DT Marcus Stroud, who enjoyed a successful rookie season and would go on to become a Pro Bowl player in the coming years.
The team's other draft picks didn't pan out so well, with only guard Maurice Williams and defensive back Marlon McCree becoming eventual long-term contributors.
The Jaguars opened the 2001 season with impressive home victories against the Pittsburgh Steelers and Tennessee Titans before dropping five straight games down the early stretch.
The club also put together a three-game winning streak in December, but it was too little, too late, as the team was already out of playoff contention.
Jaguars' quarterback Mark Brunell enjoyed a solid season, finishing with more than 3,000 yards, 19 touchdowns and an 84.1 passer rating.
Jaguars' backup running back Stacey Mack filled in admirably for star RB Fred Taylor, who missed all but two games of the season. Mack finished with 841 yards rushing and scored 10 total touchdowns.
Wide receiver Keenan McCardell, one of the team's first free agent signings in 1996, enjoyed a fine final season with the Jaguars, finishing with 93 catches for more than 1,100 yards. Jimmy Smith, the teams number one wide receiver, finished with 112 catches and eight touchdowns.
Defensively, the Jaguars were led by DE Tony Brackens, who finished with 11 sacks, and DT Gary Walker.
The Jaguars sent two players to the Pro Bowl following the 2001 season: Jimmy Smith and Gary Walker. Walker would go on to become a salary cap casualty following the season.
Tony Boselli, widely considered to be the best offensive tackle in the NFL at the time, was made available in the Texans' expansion draft following the 2001 NFL season, along with DT Gary Walker. The moves helped the Jaguars meet the league's salary cap requirements and continue rebuilding for the future.
Long-time kicker Mike Hollis, the Jaguars all-time leading scorer at the time, was also a salary cap casualty.
While the Jaguars limped through the 2001 season, the offseason moves the club made allowed it to move forward in the following years, as the team hit another peak in the mid-2000s, making the playoffs in 2005 and 2007.