Jacksonville Jaguars hold off Buffalo Bills 10-3 to advance to divisional round: Quick Notes

JACKSONVILLE, FL - JANUARY 07: Cornerback Jalen Ramsey
JACKSONVILLE, FL - JANUARY 07: Cornerback Jalen Ramsey /

It wasn’t pretty, but Blake Bortles and the Jacksonville Jaguars put up just enough offense to defeat the Buffalo Bills 10-3.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have their first playoff win since 2007 under their belts, and they can thank their historically great defense.

Heading into this matchup as huge favorites, the Jacksonville Jaguars were putrid on offense. Blake Bortles looked lost from the get go, throwing some near interceptions and missing wide open guys on check downs.

Thankfully, Bortles put the offense on his legs and the Jaguars manufactured the bare minimum on offense en route to a 10-3 win.

Here are some more quick notes from Jacksonville’s first playoff win at home since 2000.

  • The Jaguars escaped today with a win but it was a hold-your-breath type of game, entirely because the Jaguars couldn’t get the passing game going. Blake Bortles was off from the get go, missing two easy completions in the first quarter. His early misfires must have rattled Nathaniel Hackett, because the young offensive coordinators play-calling was questionable for the rest of the half. Hackett went way too many times to the well on screen plays, once even calling screens on consecutive 2nd and 3rd and longs. In the opening half, this looked like the type of the game the 2017 Jaguars lost because of inept offensive play.
  • Thankfully, Hackett opened up the playbook from the Arizona Cardinals game – he gave Bortles more freedom with his legs and the Jacksonville offense finally found success. Bortles broke a few runs on scrambles, but the designed option plays really paved the way for the Jaguars only touchdown drive.
  • We started with the offense, but the Jacksonville defense won this game. They held the Bills to 3 points, and a clutch offensive pass interference drawn by Jalen Ramsey at the goal line probably kept the Bills out of the endzone. Ramsey then sealed the game with an incredible interception when Nathan Peterman came into the game for an injured Tyrod Taylor.
  • The defense overall was outstanding – they reacted well when Taylor broke contain and really didn’t allow many busts in coverage. The defensive line got pressure all day and got back to what made them successful most of the season.
  • While Blake was bad, some of the blame can be laid at the coaches. They really didn’t respond correctly to the early struggles on offense and it’s more than just the signal-caller if you can only muster 10 points.

Despite the complaints, a win is a win and the Jaguars are on to Pittsburgh.