JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — No sports team can survive without a fan base.
For season after losing season, Jaguars fans have been among the most loyal in the League.
Thursday night, they finally got rewarded for their loyalty.
The Jaguars are more than just a football team for the city of Jacksonville.
In many ways, they’re the anchor that holds downtown together.
Jags fan Joash Brunet said there’s so much riding on this season.
“It’s kind of a rising-tide-lifts-all-ships type of situation where if the Jags do well that’s going to coincide with the city and the downtown starting to really take off and do well,” said Brunet.
Thursday’s draft will represent an entire city that wants to see itself succeed, to stop being the butt of jokes in the NFL and to finally, one day, make it all the way.
“I’m a diehard fan and I ain’t going nowhere; win or lose I’m going to be a fan,” said Aaron Bowers.
There are no fair-weather fans in Jacksonville. Granted, there hasn’t been that much “fair-weather” but you either hate ‘em or you love ‘em.
For those who’ve stuck around despite the letdowns, there could be a sweet, sweet reward.
“How optimistic are you about tonight?” asked Lorena Inclán.
“Super optimistic, I mean we’ve been waiting on something big for a long time,” said Joe Davis.
Brunet’s shirt says it all.
“‘I survived Blaine Gabbert’, about 1100th iteration of bad Jaguars quarterbacking,” said Brunet.
But there’s something in the air tonight, something different, something good and Jaguars fans deserve some glory.