You know your training staff and the players are doing something right when you have no injuries to report a couple days before a game. That’s the situation the Jacksonville Jaguars find themselves into ahead of their Week 2 matchup against the Indianapolis Colts. Head coach Doug Pederson met with the local media Friday and talked about the team’s clean bill of health.
“It’s rare”, Pederson said. “There’s usually a couple of guys this early in the season typically that are limited during the week but it’s just a credit to the layers how well they’ve taken care of themselves through camp. Coming out of last week’s game healthy, there’s always going to be bumps and bruises each week but for the most part, everybody’s feeling good”.
Injuries hit the Jags hard last year. Travis Etienne missed his rookie campaign after suffering a Lisfranc injury in the preseason. Cornerback Tre Herndon also missed time with an MCL injury and all wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., right guard A.J. Cann running back James Robinson, return specialist Jamal Agnew and tight end Dan Arnold suffered season-ending injuries.
Similarly, center Brandon Linder dealt with several ailments throughout the year, which is one of the reasons he decided to call it quits this past offseason. Here’s Pederson’s exchange with the media. He talks about the Jags’ injuries or lack thereof near the beginning.
The Jaguars now have no excuses to beat the Colts in Week 2
There’s also a random element to injuries and they can happen at any time in a sport as violent as football, so you could say the Jaguars have been either fortunate or lucky. On the other hand, there’s no doubt their training staff and their players have done a superb job of avoiding serious injuries.
Having said that, they now have no excuses and they must beat a depleted Colts team with will be without All-Pro linebacker Shaquille Leonard and wide receiver Alec Pierce. Moreover, defensive tackle DeForest Buckner has not practiced all week and might not be available for the game. Similarly, Michael Pittman Jr. has been dealing with a stiff arm and it’s uncertain if he will suit up.
Trevor Lawrence must build off of the Commanders game and the offensive line must give him enough time to throw. Similarly, the unit needs to once again open big holes for Travis Etienne and James Robinson. Last but not least, Jacksonville must cut down on the number of penalties. Last week, they committed a concerning 13.
The Jaguars are a 4-point underdog ahead of their divison matchup against the Colts but they have several things going for them, so an upset wouldn’t be shocking. It’s up to them to seize the opportunity.