Special teams and the defense kept the Jaguars in the game vs. the Chiefs
OK, the Jaguars had trouble moving the ball bout how about their defense? Actually, they, along with the special teams, kept things close in the first quarter. Overall, they limited the Chiefs to 151 yards and just seven points before halftime.
Similarly, they were able to contain tight end Travis Kelce, who made his 2023 season debut Sunday. They also got an interception from safety Andre Cisco, a forced fumble by cornerback Darious Williams, and linebacker Foyesade Oluoku's subsequent recovery. Also, long-snapper Ross Matiscik, who also plays on the coverage teams, boxed the Chiefs in a punt return early in the game.
Basically, the defense bailed the offense out for most of the game but when it was time to set up, they came crashing. The Chiefs' front four deserves lots of credit though. Entering the game, it looked like the only threat to create pressure up front was defensive tackle Chris Jones, who's back in the fold after missing the opener in his search for a pay bump.
However, players such as George Karlaftis and Nick Bolt consistently brought the heat and consistently rattled Lawrence. Also, props to the Kansas City secondary. They kept Lawrence guessing, which forced him to take more time than he would've liked to get rid of the ball.
Things did heat up in the third quarter. The Jaguars' offense managed to visit the Kansas City red zone. TA quarterback sneak didn't work and passes to Zay Jones and Calvin Ridley didn't result in the positive yardage. For the third time in the game, they had to settle on a field goal to make it 14-9.
The Jags had one last chance to tie the game in the fourth quarterback. Plays by Christian Kirk, Trevor Lawrence, and Evan Engram, who came up with a key third-down conversion got Jacksonville once again into the red zone but their effort once again fell short.
The rest went as expected. The Chiefs went on to eat time off the clock and scored to seal the win.