Are they really better than last year?: Game Preview against the Raiders

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X-factor which favors the Jaguars:

The Jaguars have suffered in recent years when they must travel to the West Coast. Hopefully, that will swing the other way for this game. Oakland has their own travel woes this season, when they’ve left California. They have had 4 road games outside their home state, compiling a 1-3 record, with the only victory coming against a familiar foe and divisional rival, Denver. Both of their 1 o’clock games were losses.

X-factor which favors the Raiders:

John Henderson. This week he made comments about how the Jaguars treated him unprofessionally and to be honest, I too didn’t like the way the front office cut him after openly shopping him for the entire draft. Sadly, he is not the first great ex-Jaguar to have made negative comments towards the franchise in recent years. I’m sure he will be fired up and will come to exact some revenge on Sunday. He knows this offensive line, he knows Maurice Drew, so the Jaguars won’t be surprising him and I think he can play a major role in this game. I’m also really interested to see how Kirk Morrison plays against his former team. I hope he will be as great an impact as Big John will be for Oakland.

Now let’s return to the opening points of the article. The Jaguars are still in the driver’s seat and even if they lose this weekend, they control their fate in the division. But it will be a huge difference to go into Indianapolis with a one game lead, rather than just tied for the first place. How huge? If the Jaguars beat the Raiders and the Ravens beat the Texans on Monday Night Football, the Jaguars can clinch the division with a win in Lucas Oil Stadium. 3 games must fall in the Jaguars’ favor if they are to fulfill the wildest dreams of the fan base – winning the division for the first time since 1999, with their first sweep of the Colts as a delicious little cherry on top.

At this time last year, the Jaguars were also 7-5 and played a team very similar to the Oakland Raiders at home on Week 14 – the Miami Dolphins. We all know how well that game turned out. The Jaguars couldn’t move those chains on offense and the Dolphins out-rushed the Jaguars all day long (ironically, John Henderson did not play in that game). Lately, we hear how this 7-5 team is different and stronger then last year’s 7-5 team. For me, this game will be the ultimate test if this theory is right or wrong. I expect a very close dogfight once again and a 1-3 point win at best for the Jaguars. But if the Jaguars win with a bigger difference and dominate this game – then they are for real and I think they will win the AFC South!

Prediction: Jaguars 24- Raiders 23

Zoltan Paksa

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Tags: Jacksonville Jaguars; Oakland Raiders

  • Brian Fullford

    Zoltan, this is a solid article. Good insight.

    • zoltanfrombudapest

      Thank you very much Brian.

  • jagsoldier

    I said it earlier this week that this game makes me nervous. The Raiders are a hard hitting team and there may be some injuries coming out of this game. Hopefully just from the Raiders team.

    • zoltanfrombudapest

      I’m not 100% calm about this game either. I hope they have some kind of a jet leg or something; becase if not- this will be veeeeeeeeeeery close.

  • keithg

    Zoltan, good article, as always.

    • zoltanfrombudapest

      Thank you very much!

  • Raiderfan

    I’m a Raider fan, and this is a very fair article. Nice write up. Should be a close, very physical game. Jags should win due to Raiders long-distance travel; but turnovers or a key ST play could decide it.

    • zoltanfrombudapest

      Thank – it means so much coming from the opponent team fanbase – I appreciate it greatly!

  • Raider Kev

    Great non-biased article (extremely rare these days).

    Should be a very physical game with high stakes on the line. Looking forward to it.

    @Raiderfan – “Jags should win”? Maybe you should drop the Raider from fan buddy. They belive they are gonna win. Real Raider fans believe we will win…. Period

    • zoltanfrombudapest

      Once again- thanks for the kind remarks!