Jags opt for underachieving Stokes

Updated: June 17, 2003, 11:48 AM ET
By By Darrell Trimble | NFL Insider
The Jacksonville Jaguars were desperate to sign a receiver to complement Pro Bowler Jimmy Smith, and that desperation showed when management inked J.J. Stokes to a one-year contract on Monday. The nine-year veteran received a $150,000 signing bonus that pushed the value of his deal with the Jaguars to $805,000. Stokes also could earn more than $300,000 in incentives tied to receptions and playing time.

The contract certainly isn't significant, but then, Stokes' contribution to the passing game probably won't be either. In Stokes, the Jags got a player who never finished with more than 63 catches or 770 receiving yards in a season, and that was on a team that had Jerry Rice and Terrell Owens taking siphoning coverage away from him.

Yet the Jags expect Stokes, who couldn't be productive in the West Coast offense in San Fran, to flip the script and put up numbers in their version of the oft-copied offense.