The New England Patriots have been the model of consistency since the early 2000s. On the other hand, the Jacksonville Jaguars have only had one winning season in the last ten years. Both teams have a young quarterback right now but the Pats didn’t do much to help theirs this offseason. This has led Nick Wright of Fox Sports 1 to believe that Jacksonville will finish with a better record in 2022.
Wright was part of a roundtable on First Thing First and said that he will take the Jags’ season win totals versus New England’s. He believes hiring Doug Pederson was big and he thinks Trevor Lawrence is in a better position to succeed than Mac Jones currently is.
"Massive year 2 from him. He has a real head coach. They have the softest schedule in the NFL. They are an actual Kevin Wright copyright notwithstanding. Frisky team. Have you seen the training camp reports from Travis Etienne? Oh, and while they’ve overpaid for their wide receivers, at least they have a legitimate trio of wide receivers, all of that. Plus unlike another second-year quarterback who will remain nameless who played their worst football of their lives to end the season, Trevor Lawrence played his best game of the year to end the season to end the Colts’ playoff hopes to end Carson Wentz’s brief tenure in Indy."
Wright goes on to say the Jaguars will be hovering around .500 in 2022 but doesn’t see the Jaguars sneaking into the playoffs this year. However, he believes they will still be in contention towards the end of the season. Here’s the whole clip in case you want to give it a look.
Nick Wright’s projection for the Jaguars in 2022 is reasonable
All things considered, Nick Wright’s comments seem to be on point. Trevor Lawrence is set to make a big leap in Year 2. Doug Pederson will help him untap his potential and develop him into the franchise quarterback the Jags thought he was when they drafted him first overall. Moreover, their front office made upgrades to most position groups, including their wide receiver corps, in the offseason.
The Jaguars are coming off a 3-14 season and they’ve got a long way to go before they become a legitimate playoff contender. Having said that, they’ve taken several steps in the right direction and should be able to win six to eight games this year. Meanwhile, the Patriots have had a rough offseason. Although Mac Jones showed up to training camp in better shape, their offense has struggled.
This isn’t to say the Patriots are a bad team now but this could be the most vulnerable they’ve been in years. Having said that, too early to dismiss Bill Belichick though. He isn’t the best at identifying talent in the draft but he’s one of the best head coaches in football history, so even if he’s losing his fastball, he’s still better than most of his peers. Taking him lightly would be a mistake. Heck, New England put a 50-burger on the Jags just last season.
The Jaguars are certainly trending in the right direction and they will probably be better than the Patriots in 2022. However, their main goal should be to avoid any more blowouts and leave the AFC South cellar. Trevor Lawrence and Doug Pederson can make it happen.