The Jacksonville Jaguars weren’t a good team in 2021 but they will enter the offseason holding their heads up high after beating the Indianapolis Colts 26-11 in Week 18. Moreover, the win didn’t come at the expense of the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft because the Detroit Lions beat the Green Bay Packers.
The Jaguars were off to a good start, scoring on their first drive. Throughout the game, they had no trouble moving the ball against a Colts’ defense that offered no resistance. As lopsided as the final score is, Jacksonville left some points off the board. Before halftime, they were on Indy’s two-yard line and Trevor Lawrence threw a pass wide receiver Laviska Shenault could have caught but ended up dropping. On the bright side, the drop didn’t come back to haunt the Jags.
Lawrence had arguably his best game of the season. This was just the second time he had a multi-touchdown pass. Back in Week 1, he threw three touchdowns but also three interceptions. This time though, he didn’t turn the ball over even once. He went 23-of-32 for 223 yards with two touchdowns.
Of course, Lawrence didn’t do it alone. Marvin Jones had seven touchdowns for 88 yards and a touchdown. Laquon Treadwell caught three receptions, including a two-yard touchdown, and Viska had five receptions for 62 yards. Another thing that helped the Jaguars beat the Colts was running the ball and having a balanced offense. Running back Dare Ogunbowale and Ryquan Armstead combined for 82 rushing yards.
The Jaguars’ defense also did their part in the Jaguars’ win over the Colts.
The Jaguars’ defense allowed a touchdown late in the fourth quarterback but by then, the game was already decided. The unit sacked quarterback Carson Wentz six times and limited running back Jonathan Taylor to 77 yards on the ground.
Moreover, Damian Wilson snagged an interception, Wentz’s first on the road in 2021, and DaVon Hamilton scooped a fumble Wilson forced. Defensive tackle Adam Gotsis also had a good game, stopping the Colts on a 4-and-1 situation in their first possession. He also registered a sack and finished the game with four total tackles.
After losing to the Jaguars, the Colts’ odds of making the playoffs have decreased considerably. They need the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens to tie and the Los Angeles Chargers to lose to the Las Vegas Raiders. Another alternative is a Steelers’ loss and a Bolts’ win. Also, Jacksonville has clinched the first overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft because the Detriot Lions beat the Green Bay Packers in Week 18.
After finishing the season on a strong note, the Jaguars will now be able to focus on their search for their next head coach. Another thing to keep an eye on will be whether they keep general manager Trent Baalke or not.