The Jacksonville Jaguars improbably find themselves with 4 wins after defeating the Houston Texans at home this Thursday night thanks to solid defensive play and a little creativity on offense. Head Coach Gus Bradley has imprinted his personality on this team and it shows on every play. Going into the bye week 0-8 with no potential wins in sight, the team could have quit on Bradley and called it a season, but they didn’t. Instead the Jaguars have won 4 of the last 5 and look like the most well rounded team in the AFC South.
Here are couple notes from Thursday Night’s game:
- Let’s start off with Jedd Fisch and the outstanding job he did calling the game. Pro Football Focus did a quick analysis of Ace Sanders’ touchdown pass on the trick play and it really was an ingenious call. Fisch had some hiccups early in the year, partly due to Blaine Gabbert, but he’s done a great job in recent weeks given the limitations imposed by the quarterback.
- Henne made a few really good throws and was effective in the red zone, but he too often misses on his ball placement. Multiple first downs could have been had if Henne had given receivers the chance to catch and run. 12/27 for 117 yards is nothing to write home about, but Henne didn’t kill the team with a terrible mistake.
- Maurice Jones-Drew had by far his most effective day running the ball and he looked like his old self for a few plays. He’s clearly lost a step or two but he can churn out the tough yards and could still contribute for another year or two.
- The offensive line played well and only allowed 1 sack after allowing 3 two weeks ago. The interior still has some trouble run blocking and they need to improve in that area.
- The Jacksonville defense continued to dominate the opposing team’s running game and really made it tough on Case Keenum and the Texans’ offense. Keenum struggled most of the game and got benched for Matt Schaub in the second half.
- Matt Schaub’s ability to move the ball in the fourth quarter was a little bit concerning, but the defense got enough pressure in the end to cause a turnover. The defensive line isn’t always getting to the quarterback, but they do a good job of creating a “messy” pocket and making it difficult for the quarterback to get off a clean throw.
We’ll have a more thorough analysis with Pro Football Focus grades later in the week.
– Daniel Lago
Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89