Despite a loss two weeks and ago followed by the bye week, the Jaguars remain in the middle of the pack in the FanSided.com NFL Power Poll.
The drop wasn’t that far. After stumbling last week to 18th overall, the week off from football did not hurt the Jaguars that much as they are one spot lower at 19th. After watching this past weekend of football, which may have been some of the best played so far this season, at least the Jaguars did not continue a trend they have followed this season.
Jacksonville started the season 0-2, then reeled off two wins, followed by two losses, followed by two wins and the loss in London to Houston before the bye week. At least the time off did not continue the volley this team has experienced, and hopefully, the team will break this cycle over the weekend in Indianapolis, a team coming off a loss to the Miami Dolphins.
Baxter is spot in with his assessment of the team coming back to this week with Nick Foles back in charge of the offense and the growing development of Leonard Fournette as the bell cow back and sudden pass catcher this team has wanted him to be in this offense.
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Despite the record of this Jaguars team, there have been some impressive numbers to consider.
"“Quarterback Gardner Minshew took his lumps in the team’s recent 26-3 loss to the Texans in London as the rookie signal-caller turned over the ball four times in the second half. And last Tuesday, the Jaguars announced that veteran Nick Foles would be back in the starting lineup when the team faced the Colts at Indianapolis in Week 11,” Baxter writes.“In any case, this is a Jacksonville offense that has gotten a big year from running back Leonard Fournette, who has already rolled up 831 yards on the ground and another 295 yards on 40 receptions. Second-year wide receiver D.J. Chark leads the club with six touchdowns. The Jaguars have rolled up 30 sacks, seven by rookie Josh Allen.”"
For the season, Fournette is now sixth in the NFL in rushing and third in the AFC. Chark is 12th in the league in receiving yards, but third in the AFC. Look for offensive coordinator John DeFilippo to get both players involved in the game early on Sunday.
Allen has been as good, if not better than advertised when he was drafted out of Kentucky with the seventh pick in the Draft. He could be even better in the second half of the season because he is able to use his size, strength, and speed to his advantage. The Jaguars need him and the pass rush to cause issues for the Colts passing game.
Looking at the AFC South matchup, both teams need a win to try to keep pace with division-leading Houston. All four teams in the division are separated by just two games. While this hasn’t been an even matchup for the Jaguars who play on the road this week and next in Tennessee, there are some positives to take from the chance to get a victory away from home for head coach Doug Marrone and his coaching staff.
"“Marrone’s team heads to Lucas Oil Stadium – a place where the club hasn’t had a great deal of success as of late – and take on the Colts for the first time this season. The Jaguars are just 1-5 in their last six trips to Indianapolis. However, it’s worth that Jacksonville owns a 5-2 record in the last seven meetings in this series."