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Ain’t No Sunshine? The NFL in FLA

Yahoo Contributor Network

One of the many beauties of the NFL is that the game and its followers are far from regionalized.

For instance, there are Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Pittsburgh Steelers, and San Francisco 49ers fans all over the country as well as the world. The other 28 franchises have their national and worldwide fan bases as well.

But here's a different kind of look at three teams all residing in the Sunshine State. And with few exceptions, the forecast has been overcast for far too long.

There are currently three winless teams in the league this season and two of them reside in the state of Florida in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-5) and Jacksonville Jaguars (0-6). The former is a combined 1-10 in its last 11 outings, dating back to 2012, while the latter has lost 11 straight games dating back to last season.

Even the Miami Dolphins and the enthusiasm regarding their 3-2 start is tempered a bit by two straight losses following the team's first 3-0 start since 2002.

Add it all up and the NFL's three Florida teams have combined to lose 18 straight games dating back to 2012.

Is this a recent trend? Unfortunately for those fans of the three franchises, it has been awhile since any of them have enjoyed any success. In fact, the last of the trio to enjoy a winning season was the Bucs, who finished 10-6 in 2010 but missed the playoffs.

Speaking of the postseason, the Dolphins haven't been there since winning the AFC East in 2008. That was followed by four straight losing seasons, although Joe Philbin's club is off to the aforementioned 3-2 start in 2013.

Meanwhile, neither the Bucs nor Jaguars have been to the playoffs since 2007.

Obviously, Jacksonville has had the hardest fall in recent seasons. Back in 2010, the team was off to an 8-5 start and looked like it may be headed toward the postseason. But the Jaguars are a dismal 7-34 since. A year ago, the team's 2-14 finish was the worst in the brief history of the franchise.

So what should we read into this? Is it merely coincidence or is there something more to what's going on with the three franchises in the Sunshine State?

And who will be the first to win in 2013; the Jaguars or Buccaneers?

Russell S. Baxter has been covering the NFL for 30-plus years on all platforms. He is the founder of, writes for numerous websites and publications across the country and is blessed with an encyclopedic memory. Ready to talk NFL? Follow him on Twitter at @BaxFootballGuru.

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