What If Tony Boselli Stayed Healthy?

Richard O'NealSenior Analyst IJune 18, 2009

9 Sep 2001:  Tony Boselli #71 of the Jacksonville Jaguars comes out onto the field during the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida. The Jaguars defeated the Steelers 21-3.Mandatory Credit: Scott Halleran  /Allsport

My fellow Jag fans...I know this is a painful subject but where do you feel the Jacksonville Jaguar organization would be right now if Tony Boselli had stayed healthy and was still playing? 

Boselli, the 6-7, 322 pound tackle from the University of Southern California was selected as the 2nd overall pick in the 1995 NFL draft, the franchises' first ever pick, and set a huge trend for powerful tackles in the league.  He quickly became a centerpiece for the Jaguars' organization on and off the field.  By being active in the community churches with fellow player Mark Brunell, as well as appearing in many local commercials and even having his own McDonald's burger named after him (The Boselli Burger), Boselli became the figurehead for the organization and the Jaguar community. 

Although Boselli started 90 out of his 91 games for the Jaguars, tough times would lay ahead for the imposing left tackle.  The five time pro bowler would endure a chronic shoulder problem that would ultimately cause him to be placed in the 2002 Expansion draft for the Houston Texans and he would never play a down for their team. 

Looking back on such a promising career, one can't help but think "What would the Jaguars' organization be like right now if Tony hadn't had the shoulder problem that cost him his great career?"

The team surely would have kept a player that could have went on to have a Hall of Fame worthy career so this would have only translated into great things for the team. (Boselli could actually still be voted in to the Hall of Fame based off of his career as it stands)  They wouldn't have had to spend as many draft picks trying to rebuild an offensive line that took a huge hit when Boselli went down with the devastating injury. 

As mentioned earlier, Boselli continues to do great things in the Jacksonville community such as founding an "Every Nation" church with former Jaguar Mark Brunell and owning all of the Whataburger restaurants in the Jacksonville area. 

In 2006, the Jaguars signed Boselli to a one-day contract that allowed him to retire as a Jaguar and was then inducted as the first player in their Pride of the Jaguars Hall of Fame.

An extremely solid career that could have been even better...scary thought.