Jaguars face an easier schedule in the latter half of the season

HOUSTON - OCTOBER 30: Running back Maurice Drew-Jones #32 of the Jacksonville Jaguars breaks through a hole of the Houston Texans defense as linebacker DeMeco Ryans #59 and J.J. Watt #99 at Reliant Stadium on October 30, 2011 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

When a team is 2-6 it's difficult to be optimistic. Especially when that team has the league's worst offense, statistically. But when that team starts their season by playing seven of their eight games against teams with winning records it makes it a little easier to stomach the fact that the Jaguars have struggled in the beginning half of the season.

Their first eight games of the schedule rank as the 3rd toughest in the NFL so far, while their latter half ranks as the 29th most difficult. Granted, that's inflated by two games against the winless Indianapolis Colts, but it's still an indicator of the split in the schedule.

Football Outsiders' DVOA rankings give a good indicator as to how good a team actually is. In the first half of the season, the Jaguars only played two teams in the bottom 16 of the rankings (the 17th ranked Titans and 23rd ranked Panthers). They finish the season with games against just two teams in the top half of the league (the 5th ranked Texans and 10th ranked Falcons).

It's not inconceivable that the Jaguars could run the table in the month of November against the (0-8) Colts, (3-4) Browns and (5-3) Texans.

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