So, I'm a few Cocktails deep into my evening when I stumble upon Stampede Blue where one of their commenters was quoted by Bill Simmons. Maybe it was my whiskey thinking for me, but I decided to read Simmons and see what he had to say about week 14. You know, sometimes the guy isn't a total ass and remembers that there are a few more teams in the NFL than the Patriots.
Then, I stumble upon this gem:
Trap game for the Jags since they played Indy last week and have the Steelers looming in Week 15. (In fact, that's a great nickname for Vinny Testaverde at this stage of his career: "The Human Trap Game.")
Trap games, at least my my definition don't happen after a terrible and embarrassing loss. Losses that have insulted your intelligence:
After the game, Colts linebacker Gary Brackett was asked, "What's the difference between these two teams?''
"Well,'' he said, "they had more penalties, so definitely poise, a little bit of discipline. Guys in crucial situations, they had a personal foul call. That's the kind of team they are. They play that smashmouth football, take it to the edge every play, but you've got to be careful. At some point, you've got to stop talking and just play.''
I'd say that this week is in fact the exact opposite of a Trap Game. What we're going to see is the unrelenting punishment of the Carolina Panthers for what happened against the Colts. It's not fair to Vinnie T or Steve Smith, but the Jaguars are going to come out on such fire, with such rage, that we're going to see an absolute decimation on the field. Sure, I told Cat Scratch Reader that it would be a close game, but suddenly I'm confident again.
I don't ever underestimate the power of an embarrassed team. Jacksonville has all the potential to come out angry, and that's just how I like the team. I don't like the swagger of a team that's overconfident (cough, cough, New England), but I'm certainly looking forward to seeing a team that had greatness ripped out of their hands. Jacksonville is a healthy fully staffed team that's only a schematic shift or two away from domination.
Let's think about what we've seen the Jaguars do so far this season.
Remember the 2nd and 3rd quarter drives against the "improved" Colts defense? Remember the sheer domination on the ground and in the air?
Remember when we did that against Tampa Bay, and San Diego, and Houston, and Kansas City, and damn near everyone we've played?
Yeah, we've got some issues on Pass Defense, but we're still 7th in points allowed.
Trap Game? All you're gonna see is the Jaguars unmercifully beat a team for no reason other than to remind themselves of how great they are.
Nobody, and I mean NOBODY is going to want to see this team in the Playoffs. And that includes New England.