Last week I showed pictures of Eben Britton blocking for Maurice. Last year he wasn’t as effective. Last year he exhibited technique issues that caused David Garrard to get hit. He seems to have corrected those issues. In fact he has corrected them to a degree I didn’t think possible. He is becoming a top right tackle in the NFL.
Last year we worried about Brad Meester. That worry has disappeared as well. Brad is having a fantastic year. Uche Nwaneri is developing on a nice progression. It seems the right side of the line has really improved.
Personally, I am not sold on Justin Smiley but I am on Vince Manuwai. I thought he looked solid against Buffalo. Chan Gailey said the Jaguars manhandled the Bills. I think the offensive line did their job wonderfully. Manhandling is the kind of words you want to hear, especially about the lines.
So here are the early week 5 results. David Garrard is not the most hit quarterback in the NFL. He is the 16th most hit. David Garrard is not leading the NFL in being sacked, he is 10th.
David Garrard took a lot of punishment in 2008 and 2009. He is still taking punishment in 2010 but not as much. His QB ratings for the 5 games are either top of the league, over 120 or bottom of the league, under 70. When he feels comfortable and the Jaguars can run, he performs well.
Can the Jaguars run? They have the third highest rushing yards in the NFL. That is better than 2008 and 2009 performances. I don’t think it is all MJD doing it alone. In fact, MJD looks strong but not dominant. Others are getting yards as well.
Rebuilding an offensive line takes time. It will be another year before this is a top NFL line. Eugene Monroe has more to learn, but I trust him to do it. Now if you want to bring a new young QB into the NFL, would you do it behind the line Buffalo has or would you do it behind the line the Jets have? Mark Sanchez is getting a chance to learn because the Jets can run and can protect him. The new Jaguar quarterback will have that same luxury. The new Bills quarterback won’t.
Things are changing and getting better in some areas of the team. I think these areas are the most important. How do you see it?
- Terry O’Brien