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During yesterday's game as the Jaguars drove for the winning score, I turned to Terry and said, "Well they need a touchdown to stay at their season average", and that is exactly what the Jaguars did. Entering Sunday's game against Buffalo, the Jaguars had 28 red zone possessions, with 14 touchdowns, seven field goals, and seven negatives drives to show for it. On Sunday, the Jaguars had four red zone possessions, and did as expected, with 2 touchdowns, one field goal, and one negative possession. This brings their season total to 32 possessions, 16 touchdowns, 8 field goals, and 8 negative possessions.
Let's look at it another way, if the Jaguars scored touchdowns on every red zone possession, it would amount to 224 points. The Jaguars have only scored 136 points in the red zone this season, or 60.7% of the maximum they could've scored.
At the request of Conservative, here are the stats for the AFC's other playoff contenders
Indianapolis: 17TD,11FG,4 negative
152 points out of possible 224=67.8%
New England: 21 TD, 19 FG, 4 negative
204 points out of possible 308=66.2%
San Diego: 19 TD, 17FG,4 negative
184 points out of possible 280=65.7%
Cincinnati:13 TD, 9 FG, 4 negative
118 points out of a possible 182=64.8%
Pittsburgh: 19 TD, 13FG, 4 negative
172 out of a possible 252=68.2%
If the playoffs started today, the Jaguars would have the worst red zone offense of the AFC's playoff teams. However, that is thanks to this team's penchant for red zone turnovers.
The Jaguars are scoring touchdowns on 50% of their red zone possessions, which is in the middle of the AFC's playoff contenders.
Let's take a look at each of the red zone possessions and see if we can figure out where the problem is.
First possession: The Jaguars start off with great field position after a Sean Considine interception. The first three plays are runs to Jones-Drew that brings the ball to around the Bills 10. Then we throw a wide receiver screen that loses three yards, and had the CB been a step quicker would've been a pick six. After that it forced the Jaguars to throw on every down and Scobee is brought on to give the Jaguars a 3-0 lead.
Second possession: Classic Jaguars pound the ball with MJD. Besides the cheap play by Bills LB Paul Posluszny nothing to see here.
Third possession: David Garrard tried to make a play scrambling when instead he should've just thrown the ball away. At this point we're thinking the good guys have their goose cooked.
Fourth possession: Garrard throws a pass to Sims-Walker against broken coverage.
It seems clear to me that the more Jones-Drew in the red zone the better. Getting away from that leads to bad things more often than not. Besides Jones-Drew's fumble against the Jets, all of the negative possessions can be pointed at a lack of commitment to the running game.