Pro Football Focus just released its ranking of every receiving corps (including tight ends) in the NFL. Originally, Pro Football Focus ranked the Jacksonville Jaguars fourth in the NFL. Currently, they are ranked as the sixth best receiving corps. A positive side note from this is the are 21st in the league in points scored and are 15th in passing yards. How is this positive? THERE IS PLENTY OF ROOM FOR GROWTH. They can still play better. They are graded as the sixth best receiving corps in the NFL and they have yet to scratch the surface of their potential. Remember, Pro Football Focus' preseason ranking at number four? I've thought for many months now they are a top 5 receiving corps in the NFL, but what is keeping them from producing?
Pro Football Focus thinks there is a lot to do with the lack of a long ball so far this season (see above link). According to them, Allen Hurns and Allen Robinson hauled in 32 of 70 balls (45%) for 1,131 yards (16 yards per catch) last season. So far in 2016? They have only caught 4 of 17 (26%) targets for 118 yards (7 yards per catch). These statistics show that they are having a down year. Robinson has 26 receptions to go with two drops, while Hurns has 20 receptions and two drops. So the problem clearly isn't talent - the offense so far hasn't been as explosive as it was last season. Some of the reasons for the lack of explosiveness could be play call/design, quarterback performance, or an inefficiency in running the football. The Jacksonville Jaguars are dead last in the league averaging 71 rushing yards per game. In my opinion, it seems to be a combination of all three things.
The Oakland Raiders are playing in Jacksonville this Sunday. The Raiders defense is allowing 386 yards per game (7 average yards per play); however, only 67 of that is rushing yards. To do quick math...(carry the one)...this means teams throw for an average of 319 passing yards per game against this defense. If the Jacksonville Jaguars run the football with more efficiency and attack the top of the defense more this weekend, they should have success. Jacksonville will need to exploit Oakland's lack of big play stoppage and that is by throw the long ball more consistently. It helped them have an explosive offense last year, why not go back to what lead your offense to success?
It may not have gone exactly as planned, but the Jacksonville Jaguars were able to find a way to win on Sunday over the NFC North's Chicago Bears. Winning in Soldier Field isn't easy; winning anywhere in this league isn't easy. The Jags seem to be headed in the right direction now with a win at Wembley Stadium last week and now at Soldier Field. Tally another W for the Jags post London play. Maybe it really does help them win ball games...
The Houston Texans sit alone atop the AFC South after this weekends play. But things could get shaken up after this weekend as the Indianapolis Colts travel to Nashville to take on the 3-3 Tennessee Titans. The Houston Texans look to take on Brock Osweiler's former team in the Denver Broncos. Do you think he will receive a warm "Welcome home" - I don't think so either. The Jacksonville Jaguars are headed home to play the famous "OAKLAND RAIDAAAAS". A team that has started off hotter than anticipated but fell this past weekend to the Kansas City Chiefs. The matchup against the Oakland Raiders is extremely interesting to me- both teams are eerily similar. Both teams have formidable, young, and talented quarterbacks. Both teams had big name free agent's sign on defense this past offseason. Both have dynamic offenses especially at the QB and WR positions. Both teams selected highly talented, athletic defensive backs with their first picks in the 2016 draft (Jalen Ramsey & Karl Joseph).
As we look to Sunday to see more shifts in the AFC South division race, one cannot be certain as to which team it will favor. I picked the Jacksonville Jaguars to win this division at 9-7 so you know it's going to be a tight one. Let's hope they can pull one out this weekend, and get a W.
After a bumpy start to the season, Gus Bradley and company look to set a trend moving upward. Their remaining schedule looks favorable for them. After the Broncos loss to the Chargers on Thursday night, it is hard for me to consider them legitimate contenders. Therefore, the only remaining teams that look to really stretch the Jaguars are the Chiefs, Raiders, and Vikings. The other tests come in division where anything can happen. Jaguars fans and coaches aren't the only ones who think things will begin to go up from here. ESPN's Monday Night Football play-by-play announcer Jon Gruden was quoted saying, "I know what he inherited, I know the job that he had to take on and it's going to take a little bit of time. I really believe their time is coming soon, like this week." This was reported by FCN's Mike Kaye.
The challenge ahead of the Jacksonville Jaguars this week is the Chicago Bears. Playing in Soldier Field against the lack-luster Bears defense plagued with injuries, the Jags will turn to Blake Bortles to lead them to a W. Myles Jack and Jalen Ramsey have looked very promising for the future of this organization. But the defense has had trouble stopping teams all year. Bortles and the Jaguars need to take advantage of the inexperience of the Bear's secondary. With clear advantages at the wide receiver and running back positions, the Jaguars look poised to score 25+ points. The experts are split on this pick, but I give the slight edge to the Jags. I agree with Coach Gruden on this one. I picked the Jaguars to have their first winning season since 2007 when they posted an 11-5 record. My pick: Jaguars win 31-24. Hoyer and that offense doesn't do enough to stop Bortles and high octane offense. Thoughts?