The Jacksonville Jaguars are 2-11. That’s a cold hard fact. With such a catastrophic season, it’s hard not to start looking towards the draft, free agency…offseason in general.
I’ve never been that kind of fan. I’m more of an “in the moment” type of guy which can be difficult in the midst of a season such as this one. As far as I’m concerned, there are three more weeks of football. Of course I’m keeping an eye on the next crop of free agents and college prospects, but I’d like to see how the Jaguars finish out the season.
I’ve never been much of a “let’s lose out to get a high draft pick” type of guy either. NFL teams take the field to win, and the Jacksonville Jaguars should be no different.
So how exactly does one enjoy the last three weeks of such a disaster? It’s really quite easy.
1. Accept the losing season.
Don’t fill yourself with “what ifs”. Don’t rewind to the Jaguars overtime games and wonder how the season would be if we would have won those close games. The Jaguars didn’t win. If they did, it would mean that the Jaguars are better than 2-11, and since they are 2-11 that means they did not win those games. So don’t even try convincing yourself otherwise. Yes, the Jaguars are THAT BAD.
2. Accept the fact that NFL teams make quick turnarounds.
My favorite turnaround of the last few years has to be that of the 1-15 Miami Dolphins. They were every bit as bad as the Jaguars (if not worse) and the following season they became one of the hottest teams in the league. They were knocked out of the playoffs fairly quickly by Ed Reed and the Baltimore Ravens, but it just goes to show you how quick teams can make a change. Just because we’re bad this year, doesn’t necessarily seal our fate for next year.
3. Go to the games.
I’m planning on attending the Jags/Pats game. Why? Why do this you ask? Because I’m grateful, that’s why. I’m grateful I have an NFL team in my backyard. I can drive 25 minutes, and enjoy an NFL football game. Unlike some people, I recognize how great this is. Football games are fun.
4. Evaluate the current talent.
OK. Most of these guys should be gone next season. We should hold onto some, however. Which ones?
What to do with Derek Cox? He sure does get hurt a lot.
Will Jason Babin prove himself to be the contributor to the pass rush we so desperately need?
Chad Henne has fallen back down to Earth. Will he pick it up these last three games and prove he deserves a shot to start?
Eugene Monroe is terribly underrated.
What about Justin Blackmon and his stop-and-go progress? Will he fade out these last three games, or will he give the Bank something to cheer for?
What about the offensive and defensive lines? Boy, do they need to be addressed this offseason. Is there anyone worth keeping?
5. Get it all out of your system.
If there’s something you don’t like, vocalize it. I’m not saying that everyone should just silence themselves and say nothing about just how awful the 2012 Jaguars have been. I’ve never been about sugar-coating the truth. I’ve always been about acceptance of the truth.
It’s been difficult to watch. The future of the franchise looks as uncertain as its ever been. Here’s to the last 3 games of this putrid season.
-David R. Johns