Former Florida Gator and Jacksonville Jaguar tailback Fred Taylor joined “XL Primetime” this week to discuss a variety of topics, beginning with his thoughts on second-year Florida head coach Dan Mullen.
“I think Coach Mullen was the best man for the job,” Taylor told 1010XL. “He understands the dynamics of the South, more so than a Chip Kelly, who was another potential candidate. He’s personable, he can go into anyone’s home and understand the person and what he can provide to that child. From my understanding, he’s extreme when it comes to him keeping his word.
“He has done a great job of changing the character and the chemistry on that team. He’s developing young men and you don’t hear about guys running all over the place, getting in trouble or being undisciplined. “
Taylor gave his outlook for this Saturday’s game between Florida and Georgia.
“The guys are going to get after each other and they’re going to keep coming and keep coming until someone eventually taps out,” Taylor said. “There are a lot of things that could shape this game, but I’m not going to worry about the past games. I’m a Gator and I always see we are going to win and I believe we are going to win.
“We just have to protect the football. Kyle Trask has to get the ball out and the wide receivers have to continue to be dynamic. We have also gotten big plays out of the running game and they need to continue to execute in that fashion if we are going to beat the Bulldogs.”
Taylor also gave his thoughts on some Jaguar related issues beginning with the comeback year running back Leonard Fournette is having.
“This is year three for Leonard and at some point the light has to come on for each guy,” Taylor said. “At some point guys just have to grow up and Leonard took it upon himself after an under par season a year ago and he went out to Wyoming to get himself together. He got himself in great shape and it has shown.
“What I’m most impressed by is his professionalism. There have been so many opportunities for him to get up after a negative play and chew his lineman out, but I haven’t seen that. Instead, he has been very patient and has tried to encourage the guys. That is just a testimony to his development and I would like to see him continue to grow as a person more than anything.
“He’s always been a great talent since high school, but if he can continue to grow as a person, he’s going to win over the Jacksonville community and everyone else that he comes across.”
Finally, Taylor was asked what every sports fan in Jacksonville is asking: what do you do when quarterback Nick Foles is healthy. Do the jags stick with rookie sensation Gardner Minshew, or turn the reigns back to their 88 million dollar man in Nick Foles?
“That’s going to be the toughest decision anybody in that building has ever made, I think,” Taylor said. “Money is involved and then you have a young kid who is playing lights out. A lot of coaches believe you don’t lose your job due to injury and some will give you an opportunity to come back out there.
“We know what Nick Foles is and he has been very capable. I think 90 percent of me wants to ride the hot hand, but I also would want to give the veteran guy that we paid a ton of money for an opportunity to get out there and show what he is capable of doing.
“It’s so tough man, but I think I’d play Nick in a game or two and if it’s not working, I’d go back to Minshew and at that point it would be a permanent move.”
(You can follow Ryan Green on Twitter @RyanGreen1010XL)