The Jacksonville Jaguars kept it close, but they are bad at football so they unsurprisingly lost to the Detroit Lions.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are masters at finding ways to lose. Whether it’s a pathetic punt return touchdown allowed, or giving the opposing team a free first down when they are trying to run the clock down, the Jaguars aren’t lacking in new and innovative ways to avoid winning.
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Head coach Gus Bradley knows at this point that he will be fired at the end of the year. I have no idea what goes through his head when he’s standing on the sideline during these last few weeks, but if anything he should get credit for trotting himself out there despite the embarrassing outings that seem to be inevitable every week.
Here are some quick notes from Jacksonville’s 8th loss of the year:
- The Jaguars continued to frustrate their fans today with a mix of sometimes genuinely good play and downright awful execution. Overall the team is inconsistent in almost comical ways. The Jaguars were counting on Julius Thomas to be an offensive focal point, but he’s been essentially a joke. He looks heavy and has absolutely no business being the first read on some of these short screen passes. On the flip side, Marqise Lee has become the MVP on offense despite being an afterthought during his first two seasons. The Jaguars just don’t make sense.
- I’ll discuss some positives here – the Jacksonville defense is good when they effectively execute the overly simplistic scheme they run. The pass rush still leaves a lot to be desired, but Yannick Ngakoue flashed a few good rushes and Dante Fowler Jr. looked a little more disruptive. The secondary did a very good job through most of the three quarters before Matthew Stafford turned it on in the fourth quarter. In all, the defense played well enough in this game to win – the offense just couldn’t capitalize.
- Special teams continues to be a problem for the Jaguars. Don’t be shocked if special teams coordinator Mike Mallory is fired after his unit gave up a punt return to Andre Roberts.
- Blake Bortles wasn’t unbelievably awful, but being juxtaposed next to Matthew Stafford highlights just how much the third year quarterback is struggling. Bortles threw a pick six that showed just how off he is with ball placement and decision making. He bounced back nicely and made some tough throws while getting pummeled in the pocket, but he is effectively broken right now and needs a full offseason to try and fix his mechanics and regain his confidence.
- To put a pin on it – it’s downright amazing that this team has 2 wins. Every week, they find a new way to take incompetence to unprecedented heights. This week, after stopping the Lions on 3rd down late in the 4th quarter, the Jaguars defense looked like they were going to give the ball back to Blake Bortles with a chance to win. The Lions lined up for what was clearly going to be an attempt to draw the Jaguars offsides… and it worked! Sen’Derrick Marks made an idiotic play one week after complaining about playing time. It’s almost useless to complain about individual plays with the Jaguars, because they’ll find a way to lose regardless.