I kept saying to myself on Sunday watching the Jaguars play the Washington Redskins, "This game is very similar to Miami last year." The Jaguars defense actually played well, the Redskins really only had a single scoring drive that wasn't a short field. Half of the Redskins points were on short fields. Rex Grossman was the first QB to face the Jaguars and not throw for at least 200 yards. But, without running back Maurice Jones-Drew... the Jaguars offense was stagnant.
David Garrard threw a bad interception early in the game that gave the Redskins the ball on the Jaguars 38, and they scored a touchdown. The drive prior to that, Josh Scobee was called for a facemask that start the Redskins on the Jaguars 44, and they scored a field goal. It wasn't until a 14-play drive that began in the 3rd quarter and continued into the 4th that the Redskins scored on an actual drive.
Overall, the Jaguars defense was just fine. It was the offense who couldn't deliver. The Jaguars offense had 9 drives of 4 plays or less. For a team who touts the "lowest number of 3-and-outs in the NFL", they looked like the team who led the league. Without their heart and soul, Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars played without heart. They came out flat and let the Colts beat them twice.
Against the worst rush defense in the NFL, the Jaguars rushed for just 78 rushing yards. The longest run of the game, by far, was a 20-yard touchdown run by David Garrard on a brilliantly timed draw play. Rashad Jennings, who many thought would do just fine carrying the load, was ineffective averaging just 2.1 yards per carry. The Jaguars offensive line who paved the way for a slew of 100-yard games for Jones-Drew, couldn't open a hole to run through all game. The Redskins knew how to beat the Jaguars, the Colts gave them the blueprint.
Make David Garrard throw the ball. Without Jones-Drew and without the ability to rush the football, Garrard had to put the team on his shoulders and show why the Jaguars gave him that $60 million contract extension after the 2007 season. Garrard was able to go down the field and score the game tying touchdown, but that was after a prior drive with about 5:00 left on the clock where he had three bad incompletions for a 3-and-out. Luckily, the Redskins offense was just as poor and gave him another chance. Garrard ended the day with 299 passing yards, a touchdown, and one interception heading into overtime.
In overtime, we all saw the second bad interception. "Can't throw a pick; can't do it," said Jack Del Rio.
Jack Del Rio summed it up in his post-game press conference, "We put too big of a load on David, he wasn't able to carry that load. It's just too big of a load."
As I mentioned yesterday, the Jaguars are 2-7 this year when the quarterback is asked to throw the ball more than 22 times.