Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Jaguars power rankings around the nation

Just for kicks, let's take a look at where the Jaguars stand in the NFL according to sports writers and analysts around the nation. Parenthesis denote last week's ranking. 18th (28th)"Dan Skuta: You can't stop him, you can only hope to contain him. #Skutagear"

ESPN: 31st (30th)"The Jaguars have a .500 record for the first time since Week 2 of the 2011 season. They finished 5-11 that season."

This one makes no sense. The Jaguars won, and they dropped in the power rankings. The Dolphins lost and inexplicably went up. I understand that a lot of teams at the bottom of the power rankings won, but that just means the power rankings weren't very accurate in the first place.

USA Today: 24th (29th)
Sunday's win was their first in September since 2012. This team may not be an easy out anymore.

Fox Sports: 26th (31st)
Blake Bortles found a way to get the ball into Allen Robinson’s hands, and he responded with several big plays, including two touchdown catches. Jacksonville’s defense needs to deliver the same kind of pressure they did in Week 2, going forward, if they want to stay relevant. 23rd (30th)
"Huge victory at the ‘Bank Sunday; gotta keep earning it"

SBNation: 29th (31st)

Bleacher Report:
28th (29th)
"Here's to you, Mr. Robinson. Jaguars fans will love you more than you know."

Average Ranking25.5
The Jaguars are at least pointed in the right direction. Will they hold their own against the Patriots? I wouldn't count on it, but if they could keep the game within reason, I'd honestly be impressed.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

The Jaguars already face a do-or-die game

I hate hyperbole as much as the next guy, but the Jaguars really are facing a do-or-die game later this afternoon against the Miami Dolphins if Jacksonville is to have any hope of a postseason life. Yes, 0-2 isn't the end of the world for any team, but with consecutive weeks looming against the Patriots and Colts, it's sort of a big deal.

The Dolphins present the Jaguars with an opportunity to improve on a lackluster effort from a week ago. If the defense can keep the Dolphins pinned down reasonably well early on, maybe, just maybe, Jacksonville can actually establish a running game. If they can do that, their offense becomes much more dynamic because play action actually begins to open up bigger plays down the field.

On the special teams unit, let's just hope for any "should hit" field goals to go through as well as 100% extra point accuracy. If not, the Jaguars may suddenly be in the place kicker market after all.

And since I'm not an expert and have a completely biased, one-sided view of the game, I'll go ahead and drop my prediction for the game. Jaguars win, 20-17.

Go Jags!