The Jacksonville Jaguars take down the Seattle Seahawks 30-24 in a heated affair.
On their brightest stage, the Jacksonville Jaguars delivered the biggest performance in years.
In a chippy game throughout, the Jacksonville Jaguars showed their teeth against the Seattle Seahawks for an impactful victory.
The Jaguars struck first and built a ten point lead. After some mistakes and a critical fumble in the third quarter, the Seahawks quickly tied the game up. But when it appeared all the momentum had shifted Seattle’s way, Jacksonville made its loudest statement, and punched back. Regardless of whether they were leading or it was tied, when the Seahawks made a play, the Jaguars responded with a hay-maker of their own.
In a physical contest throughout, the Jaguars gave the Seahawks a taste of their own medicine. Some takeaways from the massive win:
Blake Bortles is playing his best football
If THIS Blake Bortles continues to show up the rest of the season, the Jaguars are going to be an extremely dangerous team in January. There is no other way to say it, Bortles is playing lights out.
Against the Seahawks, Bortles went 18-for-27 for 268 yards and two touchdowns. Considering the opponent, this may have been Bortles’ finest moment as a Jaguar. When Seattle quickly put up ten points in the third quarter to tie the game, Bortles answered with what has to be the best throw of his career, a 75-yard beauty to Keelan Cole for a touchdown.
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Bortles right now looks as poised and composed as ever, and is making all the necessary throws. For a guy who has taken a lot of heat for lackluster play, Bortles has stepped up in a major way for his team.
Blake Bortles was widely considered the anchor that would keep the Jaguars from truly taking off this season. If he mimics his performances from the last two weeks, Bortles may lift this team to unexpected heights.
Running game got back on track
The running game made its triumphant return, and not a moment too soon. The Jaguars churned out 156 yards on the ground, and used the ground attack to close out the game. The passing game benefited greatly, as the efficient running game kept the Seahawks defense honest.
Leonard Fournette had another 100 yard performance with a touchdown, and really seemed to get back to the form we saw him in earlier in the season. He slammed the door shut on Seattle with a 13-yard run with under two minutes to go to seal the victory.
The Jaguars really needed to get production again on the ground, and the team did just that on Sunday.
Defense was a mixed bag
The Jaguars defense all-in-all deserves credit in this game, especially early on. Jacksonville locked down the Seahawks in the first half, on their way to a shutout at halftime.
Russell Wilson decided to test corners Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye, which was not a smart decision. Ramsey pulled down an interception in the end zone in the second quarter, while Bouye snagged two picks from Wilson.
The second half did bring shaky results though, as the Jaguars had crucial lapses in coverage that allowed the Seahawks back into a game that should have been well in hand. The Jaguars secondary gave up 61 and 74 yard touchdowns respectively on back-to-back drives in the fourth quarter. The two quick and deep strikes shrunk what was a 17 point lead down to just six, and put unnecessary heat on Jacksonville’s offense to close the game out.
It was known that Russell Wilson was going to be a tough matchup with his escapability, but letting Wilson strike on not one, but two bombs in the final quarter was unexpected against the league’s best defense. With a secondary with as much pride as the Jaguars have, expect those mistakes to be cleaned up, and cleaned up quickly.
The Jacksonville Jaguars didn’t back down on Sunday, and made it known that this is not a team to overlook anymore. With the key win, and combined with a Titans loss to the Arizona Cardinals, the Jaguars have jumped back into first place in the AFC South with three games to go.