The Jacksonville Jaguars are now 0-5 after a 17-9 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday. For the first time this season, the Jaguars were in it to the very end. 8 points is one possession and it was nice to be in the game for that long and have the crowd be into the game.
With the Pittsburgh Steelers driving at the beginning of the 4th quarter, you began to see signs of some growth with this team. The score was 10-9 and Pittsburgh was marching down the field with ease. Then it happened. On 3rd and 3 from the Jacksonville 13 and with 12:32 left to go in the game, the Jaguars defense stepped up. Defensive end Abry Jones gets a sack/fumble and Everbank Field erupts. It was great. I sit in section 146 so the play happened right in front of us. So here we go, 10-9 and we just got a key defensive stop with a turnover. What can the Jaguars do?
What they can do is continue to grow. What they can do is set off on a 10 play drive that takes off 12 minutes and score to take the lead and win.
What did happen is on the second play of the Jacksonville drive, Dick LeBeau set up rookie Blake Bortles. With a bait scheme on defense, Bortles throws a pass to WR Allen Hurns on the right side of the field and CB Brice McCain of the Steelers jumps the route and returns the ball 22 yards for a touchdown. This made the game 17-9 and this was the last score of the day.
In a span of 3 plays, the Jags were at the highest of highs and then down to the lowest of lows for the day. That play really took a lot out of the crowd and I feel, mentally, it took a lot out of the team. For once in a long time, the game was relatively competitive and it showed in the players on the field. It was a great feeling to see the Jags close in a game but then it went away just like that with that interception….right in front of my section.
I am not on the bandwagon of “I am happy the loss was not double digits.” I think if you are on this bandwagon…your an idiot. Who wants their team to lose? I am all about being competitive but a loss is a loss. If they would have lost by one point, I would have felt the same as if it was another blowout.
- Storm Johnson got his first action of the year finishing with 4 carries for 27 yards. He had a long run of 20 yards and another 9 yard run that was called back due to penalty.
- Defense gave up 10 points — for the first time this year, they really looked liked the unit we expected them to be. The only issue was not getting on the field but to yield only one touchdown and to keep the Steeler rushing game somewhat in check was good to see.
- WR Antonio Brown had 5 catches (12 targets) for 84 yards and no touchdowns. One reception was 30 yards, take that away and that is a win for the defense as well.
- CB Demetrius McCray making the start for Jacksonville played well. Nice to see the “next man-up” not be an issue — he finished with 4 tackles and a pass breakup
- DE Abry Jones had, at the time, the key play of the game with the sack/fumble. He finished with 4 tackles and 2 sacks
- Attendance — although there was a large amount of black & yellow in the stands, the final tickets sold for the game was 66,198 — great job fans
- We play Tennessee this week
We are going to go high level here!
- Offense — C — The offense was able to sustain drives and put the team in position to score 9 points, but no touchdowns. Bortles did throw his usual 2 interceptions (growing pains) one of which was the pick six and deciding score in the game. WR Allen Hurns himself had 3 drops and costly holding penalty and the offensive line had their fair share of penalties to stop some drives. Fix the drops and penalties
- Defense — B — They allowed 10 points to a pretty decent offense. No huge plays but still weren’t able to get off of the field on third down in key situations. Defense had 4 sacks and the sack/fumble by Jones in a key moment of the game
- Special teams — A — K Josh Scobee connected on 3 field goals (43,35,36) for all the points for the Jaguars. P Bryan Anger had 5 punts for a 45 yard average but his hang time was the key. Steelers return man (and wide receiver) Antonio Brown had 4 returns for 20 yard.