What’s Next: No Pain, No Gain
By Luke Sims
Unlike Jason, I’m still grieving. Hell, I don’t think I’ve even moved past denial. Obviously 1-5 is not the record we would all like from the Jags, but it’s what we’ve got for now. What we’re seeing (hopefully) are growing pains from the Jaguars. Two years ago, coming off a 5-11 season, we knew we had a team that was rebuilding. They followed that up with a 7-9 campaign. We were still rebuilding. However, the Jags did better than expected last year and put themselves in a position to win the division and secure a playoff spot. As we all know, we went 8-8 to finish the year. But really, we were probably a 6-10 team or maybe still a 5-11 team. What can we expect out of this season? Should we still be in denial?
When a franchise rebuilds, usually the team should begin to progress. The Lions have been rebuilding for years but haven’t been a threat until Matthew Stafford became healthy. Other teams, like the Chiefs and Rams, have been rebuilding for years; always a few pieces short of sustained success in the NFL. Will the Jaguars be perpetually rebuilding? Or will we consistently become a threat, like the modern Jets and Ravens?
I can’t believe that the Jaguars are sitting at 1-5 at this point in the season. Obviously we need to score more points than 11 a game (How can we not even get in field goal range for four Josh Scobee scores?????). The team is on the cusp of winning games. We could just as easily be 3-3 at this point, but we don’t finish drives. Every time we get near the end zone it’s like the offense hits an invisible barrier. And what about third down? Why is Deji Karim in on 3rd and 4? The offense is channeled through Maurice Jones-Drew, and yet we hand the ball to Karim for a four yard loss? It’s despicable. But why shouldn’t we have two more wins?
The defense has been playing tremendously! It’s the bright spot of the Jags’ season. We’ve halted the Roethlisberger defense, we’ve stopped boy wonder Cam Newton, and yet we lose. I can’t seem to get past the play calling. As I look down the roster for the Jags, it’s apparent we’ve got talent (that seems to keep getting shallower unfortunately), but we’ve struggled to score. We need some guidance, some vision, some concrete strategies that work. This is not coming from the coaching staff unfortunately.
As much as I love Jack Del Rio, I can’t see the growing pains stopping with young personnel for the Jags. Look for a new coach and offensive coordinator in 2012. I still think the Jags can win. I still think we should have won at least two other games. But we’re not there yet. I think we’re being held back by the coaches. Come on Jack, Win, Win, Win!
– Luke N. sims