Jacksonville Jaguars Jawaan Taylor overcomes personal tragedy to have standout season

Jaguars offensive tackle and former Cocoa High School star, Jawaan Taylor is having the best season of his professional career.

It’s helped the Jags advance to the divisional round of the playoffs against the Kansas City Chiefs on Saturday.

"Just happy to be here and just want to go out there and give it everything we can," Taylor told FOX 35.

On the field, Taylor’s had a lot of success, helping the Jags make a post-season run.

"He's been great for us all year. That's just who he is. I've seen him work throughout training camp. Its just finally paying off," Jags running back, Travis Etienne said.

This breakout year was catapulted by personal tragedy off the field. Taylor’s father, Robert, unexpectedly died last January.

 "Most definitely. it gave me a little extra push," Taylor said.

This hits even harder for Jawaan since his father was the driving force that helped launch his football career.

If you take a look at his locker inside TIAA Bank Stadium, there’s pictures and newspaper clippings of Taylor and his father – a constant reminder of who he’s playing for.

"I try to go out there everyday and make him proud and keep his legacy going on. I take a lot of pride in that," Taylor said.

Taylor fans pride in making his family proud, and the Cocoa community.

No matter the outcome against Kansas City, Jacksonville wants to leave everything on the field."We just got to go out there and have a great day overall, in all three phases of the ball, and go out there and play our hearts out," Taylor said.