The Jaguars annihilated the Buffalo Bills today, but it was a strange game to watch. It was like watching the Denver, San Diego and Indianapolis game all in one. Let me elaborate:
Just like in the Denver game, Jacksonville had perfect field position all game. If they didn’t start from the 50 yard line, something was wrong. They had a return game today that had to be the best of all time. Deji Kareem returned in a huge way but more on that later.
Just like in the San Diego game, the Jaguars turned the ball over so many times. First was a Mike Thomas fumble off the first punt. Then David had the pass tipped at the line for an interception. Then David took a bad snap on 4th and one and fumbled. It was the same comedy of errors that ran us into the abyss in San Diego.
Just like in the Indianapolis game, David was perfect after the interception. A QB rating of 123 or something close was near perfect football. David hit Marcedes for two touchdowns in beautiful throws. Just when you thought Mike Sims-Walker was going to be shut out again, Bam,,, David found him time and again and then for a touchdown. David was good today.
But that wasn’t what lifted my spirits. I was happy watching the Jaguars today for one reason, they were playing their best team today. Again, let me explain:
Just like in the Denver game when Derek Cox was pulled and David Jones saved the day, David Jones was horrible and Derek Cox came in and saved the day. The running game was superb today and I think it is because of one reason, the return of Vince Manuwai. Vince and Eugene had a great chemistry going and the Jaguars ran at will today. David had almost perfect protection. I never bought into the Justin Smiley idea and it was great to see Vince in the line-up.
I thought we would see CJ Spiller versus Maurice Jones Drew today. Instead we saw Fred Jackson verses Deji Karim. If I didn’t know anything about past history or draft order, I would swear Deji Karim was a higher draft choice than CJ Spiller. I wold have also assumed Fred Jackson was a star running back and MJD was a journeyman. I saw great running today but not from the stars, from the back-ups. Deji Karim has fresh legs and was a more effective runner than Maurice. He had some ungodly 148 yards in returns alone. WOW.
Aaron Kampman was a one man wrecking crew today. In the first series, he sacked Ryan Fitzpatrick. Then he tipped a screen pass away as he came charging in. Then he dropped Ryan Fitzpatrick on the one yard line for a 9 yard sack. He even played coverage today. He was fantastic.
Derek Cox was excellent. Let me repeat that, Derek Cox was excellent. What kind of stupid game was Jack playing that kept him off the field? He played his butt off today and almost shut down Lee Evans on long patterns. I was glad he and Vince Manuwai were in the game.
What else was fantastic? Josh Scobee was fantastic. There is no hotter kicker in football right now. When he got to kick a simple 40 yard field goal it was almost laughable. One time I saw he didn’t put it down the middle. One time the ball was not perfect between the uprights. The field goal was still good, but it leaned left. That was his only fault, a field goal was a little left. WOW!
What else did we see today? I guess David Garrard’s wife Mary is now calling the plays. Apparently she cornered Dirk Koetter and reamed him out for not letting David run. Now David runs when no one is open. He doesn’t take a sack, he runs his butt off. About time. I think Dirk Koetter needs an assistant anyway and if Mary Garrard is it, so be it.
What else? The Jaguars were lucky as well today. Three times the Bills committed red zone penalties and took themselves out of scoring opportunities. They had to settle for field goals instead of touchdowns. If they had scored touchdowns when they were within five yards, this would have been a nail bitter. The Jaguars may have played well sometimes, but they also got lucky it was Buffalo. This game teetered on another San Diego game.
What else? The Mike Thomas reverse was the weapon of choice today. They ran it three times and I think the least they got was 5 yards.
Overall, David had great protection from his line. Meanwhile Ryan Fitzpatrick was under pressure constantly. I will give Ryan credit for picking up and beating blitzes. I think it is clear why he is the choice over Trent Edwards, that bad decision Gene made. Ryan did throw one pass that skipped off the ground to Roscoe Parrish but because it was a backward pass, he picked it up and ran with it.
Overall, the Jaguar defense had its moments, but was a bunch of holes for people to run through. Up the middle running concerned me the most. As for the offense, I still insist Maurice Jones Drew is not right. He didn’t look like he has the same spark we saw in his rookie through year four years. The Bi-Polar David Garrard was at his best today with good protection, and Mike Sims-Walker got some love.
The Jaguars have problems, but they took care of business. They played a strange but ultimately successful game.
And how did you see it?
- Terry O’Brien