Like many Jaguars fans, I had a hard time watching the team sputter through another game last Sunday. The frustration gave in to sheer terror when I looked at the rest of the schedule and who the Jacksonville Jaguars play next week.
Let’s be blunt – the way the Jaguars are currently playing, there are no upcoming games that seem winnable. Fortunately, the NFL is a parity-driven league where teams who have no business winning any games sometimes beat Super Bowl contenders.
Here are some games the Jaguars played in last year where they were favored to lose by 10 or more points:
- 2012 Week 16: Patriots 23- Jaguars 16. Patriots favored by 14.5.
- 2012 Week 11: Texans 43- Jaguars 37. Texans favored by 15.
- 2012 Week 8: Packers 24- Jaguars 15. Packers favored by 14.5.
Hooray! The Jaguars can beat the spread… sometimes!
In all seriousness, the Jaguars threatened in all of those games and had a chance to win going into the fourth quarter. As they head into week 3, where they are being given as much as 17.5 points against the Seahawks, let’s take a look at some of the upcoming games on the Jaguars schedule.
Week 3-8: Pre-Bye Week
The Jaguars spend the next few weeks before the bye playing at Seattle, hosting the Colts, at the Rams and then the Broncos, and hosting the Chargers and then playing the 49ers in London.
The Jaguars play 4 playoff teams from a year ago in addition to an up-and-coming young Rams team and a Chargers team that has played well two weeks in a row. The Jaguars will undoubtedly be favored to lose by double digits in all of the road games and will be underdogs by at least 6-7 points in the rest of the games.
This is a really tough stretch for the Jaguars. Each of those teams has an established, legitimate quarterback (the jury might still be out on Sam Bradford) and the likelihood of the Jaguars going into the bye week 0-8 is really high. The best chances to win are probably at home against the Colts in week 4 and the Chargers in week 7.
Week 10-17: Post-Bye Week
The Jaguars get off the bye week and travel to the Titans, then host the Cardinals before going to the Texans and the Browns. The Jaguars then have three straight home games against the Texans, Bills, and Titans before finishing at the Colts.
The Jaguars have a few “winnable” games going into the second half of the season. Games against the Cardinals, Bills, and Titans at home are probably going to be some of the few during the season where the Jaguars aren’t underdogs by a touchdown or more. A game in Cleveland against the Browns also looks encouraging given Brandon Weeden’s struggles so far this year.
With 14 games left, I count 6 “winnable” games left on the schedule. By winnable I mean at home against a lower-echelon team or on the road against a team without an established quarterback.
Will the Jaguars win 6 games this season? Probably not. They are going to win at least one though. It’s really difficult for a team to go 0-16 in a season. In addition to being terrible, that team has to be very unlucky. The Jaguars are sure to find some luck during at least one game this season.
- Daniel Lago
Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89