Countdown to Jaguars Football: No. 41 and Who Has Donned it Best

John Shipley

In fewer than 100 days, Jacksonville Jaguars will return ... at least as things stand today.

While there is still some uncertainty surrounding the start of the NFL season, the league office has made it clear that they are planning to kick the season off on Sept. 10 and then have every other team play on Sept. 13.

By going off that timeline, we are now just 41 days from watching the Jaguars take the field against the Indianapolis Colts for the first regular season game of 2020.

In an effort to countdown to the start of the season, we will now be going from 95 through 1 to determine the best players to don the teal, black, and white for the Jaguars at each specific number.

So, who has been the best No. 41? Below is a list of each of the players to wear the number for the Jaguars since the team's inaugural season. 

  • Josh Allen: 2019
  • Tre Herndon: 2018
  • Nick Marshall: 2015
  • Akwasi Owusu-Ansah: 2011
  • Tyron Brackenridge: 2009-10
  • Nick Sorensen: 2003-06
  • Kiwaukee Thomas: 2000-02
  • Dave Thomas: 1995-99

So, who has been the best No. 41 in team history? We narrow our top-3 list down below. 

No. 3: Nick Sorensen

Nick Sorensen may have never started a regular season game for the Jaguars, but he is still one of the most dependable special teams aces the team has ever had, which became his true calling during his 10-year NFL career that saw him spend time with the Jaguars, Rams and Browns. Sorensen was a multiple-time special teams captain for Jacksonville during his time with the team, a major reason he makes this list. 

In four years in Jacksonville, Sorensen appeared in 52 games and made 42 tackles and recorded one forced fumble. He wasn't a major factor on defense on Jack Del Rio's early teams, but his ability to make impact plays in all aspects of special teams is good enough for No. 3 on these rankings.

No. 2: Josh Allen 

It is obviously early for Josh Allen in his Jaguars career, but it would likely be a pretty big disappointment if he doesn't claim the top spot here once it is all said and done. Even so, the 2019 No. 7 overall pick was a standout rookie for Jacksonville last season, breaking the team's rookie sack record with 10.5, a figure that led all NFL rookies last season.

In 16 games, Allen played only 60% of Jacksonville's defensive snaps. Compare that to Yannick Ngakoue (75%) and other pass-rushers such as Nick Bosa (76%), and Allen's production is even more impressive. In his rookie campaign, Allen managed to record 10.5 sacks, 11 tackles for loss, 23 quarterback hits and two forced fumbles. By recording 10.5 sacks, Allen became only the sixth player since 2011 to record double-digit sacks as a rookie, joining the likes of Von Miller, Aldon Smith and Bradley Chubb. Since sacks became an official stat in 1982, only 35 rookies have reached double-digit sacks and only 23 players had at least 10.5. The start to his career has been spectacular, and it should be only the beginning. 

No. 1: Dave Thomas

The player on this list with the most appearances for the Jaguars, Dave Thomas was a key member of the early secondaries in Jaguars' history. Thomas appeared in 130 regular season games in his nine-year career, and a majority of those came with Jacksonville from 1995-99. 

In five years of Jacksonville, Thomas appeared in 70 games and started 35. He  recorded 245 tackles, seven interceptions, four pass deflections, five forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. He also appeared in five playoff games (starting three). While Allen will likely surpass him in a short period of time, Thomas is one of the more underrated defensive backs from Jacksonville's early years.

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