Jags may not be city’s biggest joke

At this point, the city of Jacksonville looks downright desperate.

The Jaguars have been perhaps the biggest laughingstock in football, having just won their first game last week. They are one of the few teams to not sell out home games — as The Associated Press put it: "Oakland and Jacksonville swath their stadiums in massive drapes that cover entire sections. … More than 10 percent of those with tickets in Jacksonville don’t bother to get an eyeful of one of the league’s worst teams."

They have not won a home game at EverBank Field in almost a full calendar year — and have scored one touchdown at home all season. And they have been constant subjects of rumors of a move, from Los Angeles to London.

So with a team that can’t sell out, can’t win, can’t ignite a fan base, and apparently has eyes on leaving town, the Jacksonville city council finally took a stand this week and …

Gave the club $43 million. Of course.

Jacksonville’s city council approved funding for EverBank Field upgrades Tuesday night, voting 14-2 to authorize enhancements that include $63 million scoreboards, which are expected to be the largest in the world.

Construction is scheduled to begin in January, with an expected completion date in July. The scoreboards should raise the city’s profile in regards to bidding for the college football playoffs.

The city will pay $43 million, with much of it coming from a 2 percent charge on area hotel guests. Jaguars owner Shad Khan has committed to pay the remaining $20 million, bringing his investment in stadium improvements to $31 million since buying the team in November 2011.

Yup, the worst team in pro football getting the largest scoreboards in the world to increase their chances of getting big-time college football games.

As you can imagine, Twitter was pumped.

One the one hand, if they get college football playoff games, they’ll get an up-close look at who their team will take with its latest top-5 pick. But on Sundays they’ll be seeing some of the worst football around in bigger, brighter colors than ever before.

That is, if there’s still an NFL team in Jacksonville once the scoreboards are in place.

Now let the people speak.




It’s a true half-full, half-empty scenario for Jaguars fans — however many are left.

—The Associated Press contributed to this report