Is it worth it to even go to the west coast games? I'm honestly asking myself this question now.
It used to be that I'd get excited about the schedule allowing for the Jaguars to come within a time zone of me, but now I'm not sure if I even want to go through the trouble of buying a ticket, traveling, getting excited and taking the abuse from road fans after yet another west coast beat down.
Lucky for me, I don't have to make that decision because the furthest west the Jaguars will be from now on this season will be Kansas City. Please, please, please Jaguars let me see some real football when I'm in Jacksonville in two weeks for the matchup against the Colts. But before we look ahead, we need to take a look at what we saw in San Diego and what can be learned.
Before I list the bad things, I want to first say that San Diego's excuse that the Jaguars weren't a big draw is ridiculous. There was teal and a lot of it in San Diego. I don't know how many tickets the Chargers fans expect their opponents to draw in, but the Jaguars had well over a thousand fans in attendance by my guess. I sat one section over from the surfing group that Alfie wrote about earlier this weekend and eventually moved up and sat with them. They definitely wore their teal loud and proud, never sitting down the entire game. Even when the score was 38-6 they were firing up "We are Jaguars!" chants and "Move those chains" with every increasingly meaningless first down. They took plenty of abuse from Charger fans, but delivered some abuse of their own and were definitely a rowdy group.
And...begin rant. The game plan for the Chargers on offense was very clear to me. Find who the linebackers are covering and throw it to that player. Whether that was Sproles, Gates or even Tolbert, the linebackers were abused in the passing game time and again. Daryl Smith didn't do too terrible at covering running backs and tight ends, but Kirk Morrison was absolutely abused.
When not a single player on the starting defensive line has more tackles than your starting running back, you probably didn't have a good game. Enough said.
From my perspective David Garrard looked very comfortable in the pocket this week and did in week 1 as well. Unfortunately he looked so comfortable that he didn't want to leave. Pressure came and when the escape routes opened that Garrard would make plays with in the past, he stood like the statue he isn't instead and took the hit.
Finally, special teams was supposed to be the huge factor for the Jaguars and it never was on kickoffs. Tiquan Underwood saw only one seem all game and that return was taken back after a holding penalty. Mike Thomas was never given an opportunity to return a punt, although one of those was after a Rashad Jennings blocked punt.
Oh and one more thing. I had the pleasure of meeting Russell Allen's mom and uncle as they were setting up their big tailgate. They really seemed like nice, genuine people. End rant.