August 23, 2012; Baltimore, MD, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Aaron Ross (20) prior to their preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-US PRESSWIRE
One of the big areas of struggle for the Jacksonville Jaguars defense in Sunday's 26-23 overtime loss to the Minnesota Vikings was in pass coverage. While the pressure on the quarterback was severely lacking for much of the game, the coverage in the secondary, particularly by Aaron Ross, wasn't much better.
Ross seemed to routinely blow coverages on Sunday and was really picked on by the Vikings offense, often going to his side of the field in the running game and passing game. Not only did Ross struggle in coverage, but he also seemed hesitant to get in on tackling on plays to his side, sometimes sidestepping away from the action if another defender already had the player wrapped up.
Pro Football Focus went over the game, and came away with the same thought about Ross looking lost on the defense:
The Jaguars made some additions to their secondary in the off-season but the unit was picked apart in this game despite the Vikings being without one of their top receivers in the form of Jerome Simpson. Aaron Ross (-2.4) in particular looked like he didn't know the defense at all, regularly appearing to pause and think about plays in coverage rather than reacting to where he knew he was supposed to be. That lag in reaction time caused Ross to give up six catches on seven targets for 79 yards to three different Vikings receivers, and he chipped in with a missed tackle on defense as well.
The Jaguars need Derek Cox and Rashean Mathis to get healthy sooner rather than later, else the defense is going to continue to be leaky in the passing game.