After 8 agonizing games, the Jacksonville Jaguars got their first win of the season against the Tennessee Titans last Sunday. The offense was still less than stellar in Nashville, but the defense played well front to back and some of the young players showed improvement. Coming back home this Sunday they host the Arizona Cardinals, who are surprisingly in the NFC playoff picture. Carson Palmer has not been as effective as they would have hoped since arriving in Arizona, but some terrific defensive play led by defensive end Calais Campbell and cornerback Patrick Peterson have pushed the Cardinals to a 5-4 record.
With the hope that the Jaguars can continue improving and finally play well at home, here are some predictions for this Sunday’s game:
Sen’Derrick Marks will have a sack: FACT
The Jaguars have been lacking a consistent pass rush on the edge this season and for several years now, but Marks has been a force in the interior and single-handedly caused a safety last week. Outside of Daryn Colledge, the Cardinals’ offensive line has been suspect and should be pressured often.
Carson Palmer will throw at least one interception: FACT
This is a “gimme” since Carson Palmer has thrown an interception in every game this season and 15 total for the year. Jacksonville’s secondary is starting to gel and rookie Dwayne Gratz has been outstanding since returning from injury. If the defensive front can get any pressure Palmer should throw a couple ducks for the secondary to pick off.
Chad Henne will throw a touchdown: FICTION
The offense is not nearly the dumpster fire it was with Blaine Gabbert at the helm, but it still isn’t good and certainly not fun to watch. Chad Henne fluctuates from conservative and not throwing the ball downfield to making disturbingly awful throws every game. The Jaguars have 4 touchdown passes on the SEASON to go along with 14 interceptions. Teddy can’t come soon enough.
The Jaguars proved they can win a game last week, but they need a lot of help from the opposition in terms of unforced errors and silly turnovers. Carson Palmer has a penchant for interceptions, so a win is not out of the question, but the Jaguars have been horrific at home. It’ll be close, but the Cardinals squeak this one out.
Prediction: Cardinals 27 – Jaguars 24
– Daniel Lago
Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89