Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports
I know. Let’s focus on the positive. That’s what Gus Bradley would say. That is what I did on the previous article of what I liked. Unfortunately there are some things that happened in the 2013 season that all the happy faces in the world are not going to make us forget. Here are my top…err, I mean bottom 10. In no particular order. Just remember…Haters goin hate!!!
- Justin Blackmon and his issues. From his second suspension for substance abuse, to his preseason outburst on the field that made the press, to the damn wasted talent…Justin, as my dad would say, needs to get his collected crap together! We have all seen how the Browns have been rewarded by being patient with Josh Gordon, who came in the league with the same issues as Justin. I just need to see him TRULY admit he has a problem and for him to become a better man before he becomes a better WR.
- Luke Joeckel’s season ending injury. Multiple reasons. First of all, you hate to see your number one pick not finish his season. You hope it’s not a precursor to future injury concerns. I don’t think it is. What really sucked was that when he broke his ankle, he was also playing some of the best football he had played all season. I appeared that the game was “slowing down” as they say and he was building towards becoming the elite tackle we envisioned. I just hope he can start right up in 2014 and not have to repeat the “growing pains” stage.
- The money wasted on Justin Forsett. This was the player who fit the age, playing time, and affordability that was going to be the RB that would be the compliment to MJD. Possibly his replacement. He was sore all preseason. Missed the beginning of the season. Eventually found his way on the field and either unimpressed or got hurt again. He never got it going and was a waste of time. I hope he won’t be back because I want Jordan Todman to get all the action possible.
- How HORRIBLE we looked in the first eight games of the season. My God!! It was painful to watch. Couldn’t stop the run. Couldn’t stop the pass. The most inept offense I have ever seen. Our offense…was offensive!!! If it was just Gabbert stinking up the joint, it would have been understandable sadly. But it was everyone. The offense eventually came along and actually played slightly decent in the second half of the season. So did the running defense. The pass defense had inspired moments but still was our weakest entity. The one good thing you can say is, aside from the Jags picking up and moving in the middle of the night Baltimore Colts-like, is that it will never EVER be as bad again as it was for the first half of this season.
- The inability to find a defining role for Denard Robinson. “Offensive Weapon”…That’s what they called him. That was his role & position…Until the league told the Jags “Find him a position that exists”. Try as they might, the Jags never really figured it out. He really wasn’t great at kickoff returns. Never showed punt return prowess. Couldn’t catch well enough to be a WR. He seemed most equipped to be a RB but didn’t get any play until late in the season. Even then, he had some fumble issues. I hope this off season offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch finds some plays that particularly showcases his talent.
There was more to dislike (disillusioned Tebow fans come to mind!) Unlike the hatred I spewed at R Jay Soward and Andre Rison, I like to consider myself more of a lover than a fighter. Staying mad at the 2013 Jaguars would be like not forgiving a puppy that messed on the carpet. Growing pains are not just hard on the youngster, it’s hard on the parents too. The Jags are our baby. They should be unconditionally loved, protected, and forgiven for their current shortcomings. That’s how the youth become adults. I feel really good about our direction and I am counting the minutes until next season!
This “Hater-aid” commercial was directed by Michael McDonald.