After a 10-3 win against the Buffalo Bills in the NFL Wild Card round of the playoffs, the Jaguars proved that they are no longer the laughing stock of the NFL. The Jaguars that currently lace up their cleats every Sunday are vastly different then the Jaguars that could only win three games just four years ago. These Jaguars have a legitimate chance to win it all and people should start to take notice.
Defense Wins Championships
The defense that’s jokingly called “Sacsonville”, knows how to live up to its nickname. The jaguars defense contains several of today’s top players, including Marcell Dareus, Dante Fowler Jr., Malik Jackson, Barry Church, and all-pro’s Calais Campbell, Jalen Ramsey, and Aj Bouye. As the legendary Bear Bryant once said “offense sells tickets, but defense wins championships.” This quote relates very heavily to the Jaguars as the team is constantly being led by it’s defense that is ranked 1st in passing yards allowed and 2nd in total yards per game. Opponents should fear the Jaguars defense, as they are incredibly hard to play against.
Although the offense has been ravaged by injuries and suffered from inconsistent play by Blake Bortles, the run game has remained strong. This season, the Jaguars have rushed for the most yards in the NFL, relying heavily on rookie back Leonard Fournette, but also having both Chris Ivory and TJ Yeldon to back him up. As long as the Jaguars use the run game, opponents should fear what their offense is capable of.
The Improvement of Blake Bortles
Everyone likes to laugh at Blake Bortles, but he’s far from the worst quarterback in the league and the stats show it. Now, Blake Bortles will most likely not throw as many touchdowns as his did in 2014 (35) ever again, but that’s kinda hard to do when all his receivers are constantly getting hurt (or in Justin Blackmon’s case, suspended). This season he only threw 21 touchdowns, but he also only threw a career low 13 interceptions. Bortles has always shown he isn’t the greatest decision maker, but this year an improved offensive line and run game was able to take pressure off of Bortles which limited his picks. As Bortles continues to improve, NFL teams should be scared because when playing up to full potential, the Jaguars are deadly.