Remember these names? They’re heading to the Super Bowl in Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette (28) runs against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of an NFL divisional round playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette (28) runs against the New Orleans Saints during the first half of an NFL divisional round playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Butch Dill) (Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – They are names that area football fans know well.

While they’re no longer playing football in Jacksonville, six players with area ties are headed to the Super Bowl on Feb. 7 in Tampa Bay. A look at those players on the rosters of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs who have ties to the area.

Position, Player

RB Leonard Fournette

Team: Tampa Bay

Age: 26

Years in league: Four

Area tie: Former Jaguars player

Stats this season: Had 97 carries, 367 yards, 6 TDs in regular season; 48 carries, 211 yards, 2 TDs in playoffs.

Notable: Jacksonville’s first-round draft pick in 2017 (No. 4 overall), Fournette was cut in a surprising move before the season began. He had two 1,000-yard rushing seasons (1,040 as a rookie, 1,152 in 2019), but is largely viewed as a disappointment considering his draft status. Rushed for 2,631 yards, 17 TDs during his career here.

QB Blaine Gabbert

Team: Tampa Bay

Age: 31

Years in league: 10

Area tie: Former Jaguars player

Stats this season: Is 9 of 16 passing for 143 yards and a pair of TDs while serving as backup to Tom Brady.

Notable: Jacksonville expected Gabbert to be its franchise QB when it traded up to select him at No. 10 overall in 2011. He played in 28 games for the Jaguars before being dealt to San Francisco in 2014. Has been a backup much of his career, playing for five different teams. Has a 13-35 record as a starter.

S Javon Hagan

Team: Tampa Bay

Age: 23

Years in league: Rookie

Area tie: Trinity Christian

Stats this season: None

Notable: An undrafted player out of Ohio University, Hagan had a stellar career in college. He signed with the Bucs as a free agent in early May and spent this season on the practice squad … until the biggest game of the season. Hagan was elevated from the practice squad for Sunday’s NFL championship game to replace Antoine Winfield Jr. Hagan logged 10 snaps on special teams in Tampa Bay’s 31-26 win over Green Bay.

QB Chad Henne

Team: Kansas City

Age: 35

Years in league: 13

Area tie: Former Jaguars player

Stats this season: Is 28 of 38 passing for 248 yards, 2 TDs in the regular season. Came on in relief of Patrick Mahomes in playoff opener and went 6 of 8 for 66 yards and an INT.

Notable: Spent six seasons on Jacksonville’s roster, most of them as the backup quarterback. Left for the backup job with the Chiefs in the 2018 offseason. Started 22 games and played in 31 during his career in Jacksonville, going 5-17 as a starter. Passed for 5,817 yards, 27 TDs and 26 INTs during his time here while backing up Blaine Gabbert and Blake Bortles.

WR Jaydon Mickens

Team: Tampa Bay

Age: 26

Years in league: Three

Area tie: Former Jaguars player

Stats this season: Has seven catches for 58 yards. Has 99 yards on 16 punt returns and 340 yards on 14 kickoff returns.

Notable: Played 16 games with the Jaguars in 2017-18. Had 346 yards, TD on 39 punt returns in Jacksonville. Had 77 yards and a pair of TDs receiving on six catches with the team in 2017. Mickens had a very inspiring story that people probably remember. Mickens lived the life of a practice squad player during his time in the league and spent his early time in Jacksonville sleeping in his car instead of renting somewhere because he knew his time in town could be limited.

OT Josh Wells

Team: Tampa Bay

Age: 29

Years in league: Seven

Area tie: Former Jaguars player

Stats this season: Played in 15 games with one start.

Notable: Played in 39 games over four seasons in Jacksonville after being signed as an undrafted free agent. Made nine starts with the team. A spot starter for the Jaguars after an injury to Cam Robinson in 2018. Made one start for the Buccaneers this season after signing with the team in 2019.


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