The Jaguars have been able to put together an impressive 1-5 record through the first six weeks of the 2011 season. Okay, there may have been a little bit of sarcasm in that last statement. The Jaguars have been a huge disappointment to
most of us all of us so far this year. Frankly, I expected them to be able to win the AFC South this season, especially once it became apparent that He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named wouldn't be able to play for the Colts this season (although that guy remains hopeful he'll play at the end of the year).
Despite all the negativity, I've been able to find some positive aspects from the Jaguars 2011 campaign. Most of those positives focus on the future, but at this point, who amongst us isn't focused on the future?
First and foremost, the future in Jacksonville arrived when Blaine Gabbert was declared the Jaguars' starting quarterback. I had been hoping since he was drafted that he would have an entire year to develop behind Garrard. In hindsight, that was expecting a lot out of Garrard. How could I really expect a guy to improve his performance, knowing the whole time that it wouldn't matter a year from that time? Yeah, expecting Garrard to hold down the starting job was probably pretty stupid on my part. The positive thing here is that we have a starting quarterback that we're all behind. There's no more quarterback controversy in Jacksonville, and I like it.
By far the biggest positive surprise has been the Jaguars' defense. While there are many, many new faces in that unit, they've played surprisingly well. I thought I was being optimistic when I said that I thought the Jaguars would have an average defense in 2011. It turns out that their defensive unit is above average, and I'm as surprised as anyone. Let's give credit where it's due here. Gene Smith brought these guys in, and Mel Tucker has done a great job getting them on the same page. Oh yeah, I bet Jack Del Rio had a hand in their success too.
There's been a lot of negative aspects to the Jaguars' season, but I'm not going into those right now. The season isn't lost just yet. The Jaguars are only 2 wins behind the Titans, and the Jaguars still have 10 to play. Stranger things have happened, and I'm still holding on to the last threads of hope. Until that thread is cut, I'll continue to do so. Until then, I'll focus on the positives, regardless of how few of them there are.