Sam's Commentary

October 19, 2014 Commentary Archive

Jaguars Browns Preview: Winnable?

by Sam Kouvaris
Posted October 19, 2014 ===========================================================================

"Run the football, stop the run." That's the mantra of almost every NFL coach but for the Jaguars this year, half of that equation has been non-existent. Trying to change things on the offensive line, the scheme and the backs running the ball, the Jaguars have gone nowhere on the ground, currently 32nd in rushing in the league.

"Running the ball changes so many things, makes so many things easier," head coach Gus Bradley said this week. "It forces the 8 in the box to respect the run, and the play action opens up the passing game. It changes things."

Bradley's right, but the Jaguars have been so ineffective with the run that other teams don't even respect it. With a very young offensive line and backs that are still learning the position and the professional game, it's been tough sledding for the Jaguars. Even the addition of Toby Gerhart in the offseason is still a work in progress. Gerhart hasn't been completely healthy since week one and won't play again this week against the Browns.

Statistically, quarterback Blake Bortles has been somewhat average, but he's giving the Jaguars fans hope and a glimpse into a brighter future. Athletic and smart, Bortles moves in the pocket, looks downfield and makes some beautiful throws. Conversely, he's thrown the ball to the other team too often, gets fooled by disguised coverages and occasionally has missed wide-open receivers. In other words, he's a rookie learning the game. But he's learning along with the other rookies on offense. The Jaguars are playing with six rookies on offense (Bortles, Johnson, Robinson, Lee, Bowanko, Linder) and rookies Alan Hurns and Nic Jacobs will also play. Add Luke Joeckel, technically still a rookie (he only played 5 games last year) and you have an unprecedented number of young players in the game at the same time. That's not generally a recipe for success in the NFL. Even some of the greatest players in the game struggled their first year in the league. Troy Aikman won one game his rookie year. Peyton Manning won three.

So the focus is still on getting better, but at least Gus Bradley has admitted that so far it hasn't been good enough. "If we've been striving for victory," he said this week, "maybe we need to strain for victory. So far, we haven't earned it."

And that's what it comes down to again for the Jaguars franchise. For all the moves, talk and histrionics about who's playing where and when things will start to turn around, the key is just playing better. Sometimes that takes more time than most people would like to give. For the rest of 2014 the Jaguars will be an underdog in every game, including today against Cleveland. Realistically there are only a handful of games left you'd think the Jaguars have enough firepower and talent on the roster to win, and today is one of them. Perhaps next week against Miami, the home game against Tennessee and the two matchups remaining against Houston.

Today would be nice though.


Commentary by Sam Kouvaris

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ARCHIVE of The College Weekly Report

10-13-2014 - Jaguars Let One Slip Away
10-12-2014 - Jaguars vs. Titans Preview
10-11-2014 - Top 20 Jaguars Personalities
10-06-2014 - Steelers Beat Jaguars But More Respectable
10-03-2014 - Simple Jaguars Solution: Play Better
10-02-2014 - Jaguars Top 20 Rivalry Moments
09-29-2014 - Jaguars Lose To Chargers: Still Learning
09-27-2014 - Jaguars prep Chargers in San Diego
09-25-2014 - Bortles First Week as Starter
09-24-2014 - Jaguars Top 20 Impactful Rookies
09-20-2014 - Jaguars/Colts Preview: Race to Maturity Needs to be Fast
09-14-2014 - Jaguars Lose Game, Ground
09-09-2014 - Jaguars Top 20 'Moments
09-08-2014 - Jaguars Fall to Eagles, Learn Lessons
09-06-2014 - Jaguars/Eagles: It's What's Up Front That Counts
09-06-2014 - Hotel Domestique: (Almost) Cycling Paradise
08-16-2014 - Henne Takes Control, Jags Move Forward
08-15-2014 - Keep Improving and Jaguars Have A Chance
07-12-2014 - Chasing Greatness: The Right Way
07-01-2014 - Team USA Brings Us Together: Again
06-08-2014 - A Special Day in Town
06-06-2014 - Jaguars Week 2 OTA's: More Progress
05-28-2014 - Jaguars 1st OTA: Plenty of Questions
05-17-2014 - Jaguars Rookie Camp: A Look At The Future
05-15-2014 - Jaguars "Sustainability" Seems Upward
05-12-2014 - Kaymer Wins Players: Wins Fans Too
05-08-2014 - The Players: First Round Update
05-07-2014 - Players Preview 2014
05-07-2014 - Players 2014: Who Can Win?
05-07-2014 - Players 2014: Will The Greens Be Up To Par?
05-05-2014 - Players 2014: Some Greens Still Closed
05-05-2014 - The Players : Wide Open
05-03-2014 - The Players Field Almost Set
05-03-2014 - Pre Draft Jaguars Ramblings
04-11-2014 - Jaguars Buzz is Real
04-04-2014 - Final Four Bigger in Big 'D'
03-28-2014 - Gators in Elite Eight: Want More
03-27-2014 - Gators vs. UCLA: Toughest Test Yet
03-26-2014 - Bradley Looking To Upgrade Team, Self
03-23-2014 - Gators Change Mindset, Beat Pitt
03-21-2014 - Gators "Survive and Advance"
03-20-2014 - Gators Ranking Doesn't Matter
03-19-2014 - Gators in Orlando For NCAA's
03-14-2014 - Jaguars Free Agency: Impressed, Not Surprised
03-12-2014 - Gabbert Gone
03-08-2014 - Gators Still "Chasing Greatness"
02-27-2014 - "Personal Foul" on the Dutch
02-22-2014 - NASCAR: Looking To The Past To Find The Future
02-13-2014 - Jax: An Events Town"
02-05-2014 - National Signing Day: "Mark Your Calendar!"
01-07-2014 - As Good As It Gets: FSU Wins National Championship
01-06-2014 - FSU vs. Team of Destiny
01-05-2014 - Fisher/Malzahn, FSU/Auburn Contrast in Style
01-05-2014 - FSU A Close-Knit Group
01-02-2014 - Jaguars Talking Vs. Doing:
Does Bradley's "Conviction" Mean Jaguars Wins Are On The Way?
2013 COMMENTARY
12-29-2013 - Decisions to Make: Jaguars Need A Lot
12-23-2013 - Meester's Day
12-22-2013 - Jaguars Don't Have Enough
12-20-2013 - Jaguars: Who Wants To Be Here?
12-19-2013 - Meeter Retires: The REAL Pride of the Jaguars
12-15-2013 - Jaguars: Three Forward One Back
12-06-2013 - Jaguars Beat Texans Again: Learning How to Win
12-01-2013 - Florida/FSU: Different Directions?
11-18-2013 - Jaguars 2nd Half: "Better But Not Good"
11-14-2013 - Locker Room Culture: Off Limits?
11-10-2013 - Jaguars Victory: A Lot More Than Just One Win
11-03-2013 - Do We Worry About Blackmon?
11-02-2013 - Florida/Georgia: It's Never Easy
10-27-2013 - Jaguars in London: Fun & Frustration:Equal Parts of Both
10-26-2013 - Jacksonville's on a Global Stage
10-25-2013 - Shad Khan "Living The Dream"
10-03-2013 - Jaguars Building for the "Distant" Future
09-30-2013 - Jaguars: Not Getting Better Soon
09-23-2013 - Jaguars Results Not Unexpected
09-17-2013 - Jaguars Ups and Downs
09-10-2013 - Not What They Were Expecting
09-07-2013 - Jaguars Give Reason For Hope
08-25-2013 - "Better and Improved": The Jaguars Buzzwords
08-21-2013 - Jaguars 2013: It's Not About Winning
08-12-2013 - Jaguars Assessment: Is "Not Terrible" Fair?
08-01-2013 - Jaguars Camp: No Surprises But Not Routine
07-26-2013 - Gus Bradley's First Camp: "Slow Down!"
07-20-2013 - Big Thinking Khan Style
06-20-2013 - Its Summer, It's Hot, No Kidding!
05-31-2013 - The Ever Expanding "Season"
05-15-2013 - The Players: One Of A Kind
05-01-2013 - Tiger At The Players
05-08-2013 - Jaguars Needs: Everything
04-03-2013 - Golf in North Florida: It is & isn't all about The Players
01-30-2013 - Players Win Games

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