The Jacksonville Jaguars offense has shown progress this season but it also has fallen short at times. They have certainly made strides but it feels like they’ve underachieved. Not surprisingly, fans continue to be angered by the continuous three-and-outs.
The front office pumped a lot of money into contracts for playmakers in free agency but their return on their investment hasn’t fully paid off, so why haven’t the Jags made use of the offensive weapons they acquired earlier this year? Here are three thoughts I have about their offense seven weeks into the 2022 season.
3. Where, oh where, have the Jaguars’ tight ends gone?
Doug Pederson has been known for involving the tight ends heavily on offense. But it seems like they have completely fallen off the map this season. Why invest money into a position like the safety valve of a tight end? Evan Engram has made some plays for the offense when they needed it and he’s one of the biggest targets on the Jaguar’s offense. Knowing the Jaguars have struggled in the red zone, they should consider motioning him out to create mismatches.
On the other hand, Dan Arnold has been a no-show for the offense so far this season. He could sit down in some of the zones and get the yards the offense needs to have shorter distances to gain. There are times you have to take shots to keep the defense honest. Trevor Lawrence has shown many times this season that he will overthrow some receivers. Take what is given to you when it matters.
2. The Jaguars must pick a wide receiver already
The offense is struggling to move the ball when it matters. There has been some growth in this area. Having said that, Pederson must decide on who the offense will run through. You can line up Christian Kirk all over the field. Get the ball into his hands and let him do what you brought him in to do.
When Trevor Lawrence and the offense are effective, they know what they are trying to do. It appears that they stumble when they try to throw some of the wrinkles into the offense. Rhythm is going to make or break this offense.
For example, the Rams’ offense runs through Cooper Kupp. The offense is designed to make opportunities for players that make important catches. The Jaguars’ offense is not able to overcome so many things this year. It was presented to fans early this offseason that this isn’t a one-year fix.
1. The Jaguars must have a balanced offense
The Jaguars are finding success in running the football over the last couple of weeks. The problem with this is that you have to be able to punch the ball into the end zone. Criticisms of the team have been the number of times you go for the conversion on fourth down overtaking the points. Take chances when they have a substantial lead.
Lawrence has been protecting the ball when he knows what he wants to do with it. Some quarterbacks can adlib plays on the fly. He’s not there yet. Pederson has found a formula that works for putting him into a position to succeed.
Pederson has been abandoning the run game when he should be leaning on it the most. By narrowing the focus to specific playmakers on the offense they can find some sustainable success on the field.