Want to beat the Jags? Run it.
I was playing around with stats while avoiding work, and I saw something startling; the Jaguars rush defense was really, really bad. I scratched my head and thought, this can’t be. They were good in the beginning of the year, bad at the end, but they weren’t that bad, were they?
Stat 1: Yards per Rush: Jacksonville, Denver, Green Bay (shock), and Tampa Bay finished tied for 28st by allowing 4.7 yards per carry. Only Buffalo was worse at 4.8 yards per carry.
Stat 2: Rushing TDs allowed: The Jags finished 30th by allowing 19 rushing touchdowns. Only Carolina (20) and Denver (26) were worse.
Stat 3: The Jags allowed 98 1st Downs by Rushing. They tied for 19th with Oakland and Detroit.
Stat 4: The Jags tied for 31st with Houston for fumbles recovered. They both recovered 5 fumbles.
Even more startling:
Rushing Yards Per Attempt in Jacksonville Win: 3.97 yards/attempt
Rushing Yards Per Attempt in Jacksonville Loss: 5.14 yards/attempt
100 yard games in Jacksonville Win: 2/8 (25%)
100 yard games in Jacksonville Loss: 7/8 (87.5%)
Rushing Yards allowed in Jacksonville Win: 85.75 Yards/Game
Rushing Yards allowed in Jacksonville Loss: 157.38 Yards/Game
Passing Yards allowed in Jacksonville Win: 289.25 Yards/Game
Passing Yards allowed in Jacksonville Loss: 234.88 Yards/Game
I know we’ve been focused on the pass defense, but the rush defense isn’t much better. Perhaps it was lack of depth, injuries, youth, etc… But if you can run on the Jags then you have a really good shot at a win.