JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – For two of the Jags in Saturday’s wild-card playoff, home-field advantage had an even more special meaning.
Hometown guys Darious Williams and Shaquille Quarterman had added incentive to bring home a big win Saturday against the Chargers at TIAA Bank Field.
“Just knowing I’m going to have friends there, family there, it’s going to be an exciting time,” said Williams, a cornerback who played at Creekside High School, and has five years of NFL experience, which includes a Super Bowl ring last year with the LA Rams.
Linebacker Quarterman, who played at Oakleaf High School and then at the University of Miami, said it was hard to put into words what it was like for him heading into Saturday’s game after seeing the last Jags’ playoff run in 2017 when he was in college.
“The amount of people blowing up my phone about the Jags at that time -- just to bring it back full circle,” said Quarterman, who was drafted by the Jags in 2020. “To be back here again, it’s just a testament to the work that everybody’s put in since OTAs -- since before then. The goal is to make the home team the greatest so we’re just focusing on us.”
Williams, who signed a three-year, $30 million contract with the Jags last March said the team’s focus narrows in during the postseason.
“It’s a whole different season,” Williams said. “Just the young guys, I tell them all the time, ‘We had the regular season, but now it’s the post-season. … It’s do or die. It’s win or go home.’”
And Williams, Quarterman and the Jags aren’t going home just yet. They beat the Chargers 31-30 with a historic rally from a 27-0 deficit in the AFC wild-card playoff game.