Outside linebacker Josh Allen had been close to tying Calais Campbell's franchise record for sacks in a season. At last, he tied the record and later broke it against the Carolina Panthers in Week 17. Moreover, he had a huge role in helping the Jacksonville Jaguars get their ninth win of the season.
Allen tied Campbell's record early in the game. He later notched two more sacks, giving him 15.5 for the season, one more than Campbell posted in 2017. The former Wildcat met with the local media after the win and credited his teammates for setting a new team record for sacks in a season.
"I'm blessed and highly favored by the man above first and foremost," Allen told the media following the win. "I got incredible teammates who backed me up this whole season, witnessed me really high, really low. Stayed with me, continue to be with me and I continue to be with those guys as well."
"I couldn't have done it by myself. Shoutout to Travon, got nine sacks of the year, so far, and almost getting double-digits. That's a testament of let's just keep working and battling with each other and we still got one more left to go. I'm gonna keep going," Allen said.
But as Allen noted, Travon Walker was pretty productive himself against the Panthers, registering two sacks. He now has nine for the season, 5.5 more than he had as a rookie.
Walker, the first overall pick in the 2022 draft, had a relatively quiet rookie season, registering just 3.5 sacks. However, he was making the transition to outside linebacker full-time after hardly ever rushing the passer from a standup position in college. With enough time to get acclimated to lining up in a two-point stance, he's been able to showcase his talent, or as the Jaguars called it, his superpowers.
Josh Allen credits the team for putting in the work to beat the Panthers
Following the loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Trevor Lawrence told the media that the Jaguars were playing like a team that doesn't practice. He later revisited his comments, clarifying that he was talking about his own performance. However, he's not wrong. It all starts in practice, a sentiment Josh Allen echoed in the days preceding the Panthers game.
After the win over the Panthers, Allend told the media that this was the best week of preparation the team has had this season.
"We can't win a game if you're one step short. Everybody has to be on one core. Everybody has to be in the same mindset. This week of preparation, this was the best week that we've had all year, and to see how we responded to that just gave us, we know what it takes," Allen said.
Allen continued, "We played good football before, we practiced good, we practiced up, we still won a game. We practiced down, still won the game, and vice versa. But this was by far the best week of preparation that we've had no matter who we're playing against. And we can follow up with that and also pick it up just a little bit more. The challenge. Everybody in our locker room, man we're going to hit a straw man, I'm excited for it."
The Jaguars are now 9-8 after beating Carolina 26-0. This is the first time the Jaguars have had consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 1999, and Allen is a big reason why. But as he noted, they still have more to go, so they will need to pick it up a little bit more if they want to win the AFC South for the second straight year and qualify for the postseason.