The Jaguars can’t have both a franchise QB and a losing season in 2022
That’s why it is such a head-scratcher that so many observers believe that:
a.) Trevor Lawrence will take a big step forward, proving to be the generational talent everyone thought he was, and
b.) the Jags will win six or seven games next year, and be happy doing so. Both takes are valid, individually. But, when put together, it makes less sense.
It’s not that it never happens
On rare occasions, you will find seasons featuring very good quarterback play coupled with a losing record. Did you know that Jacksonville’s own Blake Bortles had the sixth-most passing yards by a second-season quarterback in NFL history in 2015? The Jags were 5-11 that year in spite of over 4,400 passing yards from Bortles. But, if you think back, you may recall a lot… A LOT of those yards were in “garbage time.”
Still, you may point to a situation like Matthew Stafford in Detroit, where everyone knew he was an excellent quarterback stuck on a bad team. That certainly looks to have been the case with the Rams having just won the Super Bowl.
But, it’s rare. If you want to do a deep dive into statistics, you can read a rather lengthy analysis here. But the crux of it is:
"In layman’s terms, a better performing QB will win more than a worse performing QB, even if the worse QB has a more talented team around him."
Sure, it’s possible the Jaguars could lose a bunch of shoot-outs next season, particularly if the defense woefully underperforms. But, that seems unlikely with all the upgrades the front office made to the defensive roster this offseason. On the contrary, if the offense plays well next year allowing the team to play with a lead in many instances, expect the defense to be much more formidable.
While it’s not impossible for the Jags to have a losing record and Trevor Lawrence to have a good-to-great season, it’s not at all likely.