Sam's Commentary

November 20, 2017 Commentary Archive

Jaguars Do Just Enough, Beat Browns 19-7

by Sam Kouvaris
Posted November 20, 2017 ===========================================================================

With a makeshift offensive line, cool weather and a little bit of snow in the forecast the Jaguars knew going into the game they’d have to just grind it out if they wanted to come home from Cleveland with a win. They did just that with 139 yards rushing, 111 from Leonard Fournette and beat the Browns 19-7.

“We want to be tough,” Head Coach Doug Marrone said after the game. “But I think it is how we finish. That will be the point where people look back and say that this is a tough team. We’ve done some things that have helped us along that line, but if you start playing in November and December, you have to have both mental and physical toughness to win games.”

More importantly, the Jaguars defense again rose to the occasion, creating turnovers, scoring points and keeping the Browns in check for most of the game. A mix-up between Telvin Smith and Tashaun Gipson allowed Cleveland their only TD, a 27 –yard pass in the second quarter. Outside of that, they were pretty flawless. The Browns had four yards of offense in the first quarter. DeShone Kizer was 15 of 32 passing for 179 yards but threw two interceptions. He was Cleveland’s leading rusher as well with 22 yards on five carries. They never really threatened as the Jaguars defense kept the score at 10-7, 13-7 and then scored on a sack/fumble for the final score at 19-7.

“We were able to just go down there and when we put it on our backs,” said Jaguars Safety Barry Church. “We’ve responded so far this season. We just need to keep doing that - put the team on our backs and when stuff gets sticky for the offense, like it did this game, we have got to be able to pull through on the defense side of the ball.”

It’s been a different player each week for the Jaguars defense and instead of the inside guys like Calais Campbell and Malik Jackson, it was the outside pressure of Yannick Ngakoue and Dante Fowler that kept the Browns offense off balance. Ngakoue had 2 ½ sacks and caused a fumble. Fowler was in the backfield and picked up a Kiser fumble that should have been ruled a touchdown. Instead, the Jaguars got the ball, punted it after a three and out, and the defense scored anyway.

“The defensive line is just so good, you never know ” Jaguars Safety Tashaun Gipson said after predicting that the Jaguars could shut out his former team this week. “t could be one of five different guys, (DT) Dareus (Marcell), (DL) Malik (Jackson), (DL) Calais (Campbell), (DE) Yannick (Ngakoue), or (DE Dante) Fowlers Jr., so the last play I did not get a chance to see. We have one of the better pass runners in the NFL (Ngakoue) and he took advantage and took his opportunities.“

It’s not the kind of game they’ll showcase on their resume but again they came away with a win. Their 7-3 record is the best after ten games in ten years. With a one game lead in the division, it’s the first time the Jaguars have led the division since 1999. And that’s when they were in the AFC Central.

We keep saying they’ll have to play better but they’re doing just enough to win. Last week against the Chargers at home and this week on the road in Cleveland they looked sloppy, out of sync on offense, had very little passing game but figured out a way to win. Neither LA nor the Browns are world-beaters but the rest of the Jaguars schedule isn’t full of winning teams either.

With the best defense in the league, they still look like playoff contenders. A little offense would get them plenty of attention as a legitimate post-season team.

“The season is still rolling,” said Quarterback Blake Bortles. “We’re in first place right now, but we have a while to go and our goal is to win the AFC South. We’re in a good position and we control our own destiny, but we need to keep rolling, getting things fixed and finding ways to win.”

Next week they’ll travel to Arizona to take on the Blaine Gabbert-led Cardinals before three straight home games in December against the Colts, Seahawks and Texans. With seven wins, it’s possible the Jaguars could wrap up a playoff spot before their final two road games at San Francisco and Tennessee. They’re hoping their trip to Nashville on New Year’s Even doesn’t mean much.

Hard to believe in just one year, that’s a real possibility.


Commentary by Sam Kouvaris

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11-05-2017 - Back To Back And At Home, The Jaguars Look Legit
10-30-2017 - McElwain Departure "It's Never Pretty"
10-26-2017 - Telvin Smith New Deal: Worth Every Penny
10-18-2017 - NFL, Khan, Players and Protest
10-16-2017 - Inconsistent Again, Jaguars Lose To Rams
10-08-2017 - Jaguars Real Selves? Dominate Steelers 30-9
10-01-2017 - Jaguars Models Of Inconsistency, Fall To Jets In OT
09-24-2017 - Jaguars Kneel, Lock Arms With Khan In Show Of "Solidarity"
09-24-2017 - Jaguars Rout Ravens in London
09-24-2017 - Jaguars To Use "Home" Field Advantage vs. Ravens
09-22-2017 - Jaguars Say London Trip Is Pretty Routine
09-17-2017 - Jaguars 2017 Look Like Jaguars 2016 vs. Titans
09-13-2017 - Fournette Works In Relief Effort
09-13-2017 - Jaguars, Khan Help In Relief Effort
09-12-2017 - Jaguars Workout In Houston, Thinking Of Home
09-11-2017 - Jaguars Notes From Houston
09-10-2017 - Jaguars Don't Just Win, They Dominate Texans
09-01-2017 - Jaguars Decisions: Not Just "The 53"
08-23-2017 - Quarterback Decision Can Wait
08-18-2017 - Jaguars Step Backwards vs. Bucs
08-17-2017 - Jaguars Need A Big Step Forward vs. Bucs
08-10-2017 - Jaguars Better 1st Impression vs. Patriots
08-09-2017 - Bortles Better But Not Close To Brady
08-08-2017 - The PLAYERS In March Is The Right Fit
08-08-2017 - Jaguars/Patriots Practice: What It's Supposed To Look Like
08-07-2017 - Gipson Now Knows Tom Brady Is The Goat
08-05-2017 - Marrone's Jaguars Camp: Old Is New Again
07-28-2017 - Jaguars 2017: All About Blake
07-13-2017 - Kingfish Tournament Still Fishing
07-12-2017 - TPC Performance Center Will Make You Better
07-07-2017 - Players Is Big And Getting Bigger
06-29-2017 - Gators Baseball Win National Title
06-28-2017 - Gators Baseball National Champs
06-17-2017 - Bortles Knows This Is It
06-17-2017 - Marrone, Albert Lynchpins To Jaguars Success
06-10-2017 - Marrone Unimpressed In OTA's
05-24-2017 - Bortles On Being Bad, Better
05-15-2017 - Sunday Stroll For Si Woo Kim
05-12-2017 - Still Anybody's Tournament
05-11-2017 - Malik Jackson At The Players: "It's Pretty Dope"
05-10-2017 - Winning Score? TPC Stadium Is Firm And Fast
05-10-2017 - Sergio: Everybody's New Favorite
05-09b-2017 - THE PLAYERS In May Or March Is Still Huge
05-09-2017 - GJO To The Players Is A Long Trip
04-29-2017 - Jaguars Take "Bama OL In 2nd Round
04-28-2017 - Jaguars Take Fournette: "Physical"
04-27-2017 - Past Is Prologue For The Jaguars Draft
04-22-2017 - Jaguars Draft 2017: Take The Best Player
04-21-2017 - Nothing Good In The Jags 2017 Schedule
03-31-2017 - Mt. Acosta Classic Is Something Special
03-29-2017 - Marrone Looking For Competition, Consistency
03-28-2017 - Khan "Actions Speak Louder Than Words"
03-28-2017 - Coughlin "We Need A Culture Change"
03-26-2017 - NFL Owners Talk Player Safety, Shorter Games In Phoenix
03-19-2017 - Gators Swamp Virginia, Head To New York
03-19-2017 - FSU Can't Shoot, Loses To Xavier
03-14-2017 - DL3 In The HOF, Still Wants To Play
03-08-2017 - Jaguars Free-agency Preview: Plugging Holes
02-24-2017 - Shorter SpeedWeeks, Better Racing?
02-22-2017 - One Stop Sports Recovery (Now available to everybody)
02-07-2017 - The Case For Boselli In The Hall, And The Process It Entails
02-01-2017 - Coughlin Says Boselli "Should Be In The Hall Of Fame"
01-19-2017 - Hackett Stays As Jaguars OC
01-12-2017 - Coughlin, "Winning Is What It's All About"
01-11-2017 - Marrone Starts To Change The Staff
01-09-2017 - Marrone, Coughlin, Caldwell Try To "Fix" Jaguars
01-03-2017 - Boselli Makes Hall Of Fame Final 15
01-02-2017 - Jaguars To Compete For A Head Coach

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