There is no silver lining in the Jacksonville Jaguars' 51-17 loss to the New England Patriots on Sunday. This isn't a game to find some positives, to look at Allen Robinson's flashes, to box score scout and see 242 yards and two touchdowns to just one interception to Blake Bortles.
This game was embarrassing. Hell, the scoreline looks like some sad bastard child of the Arena Football League and the NFL.
Let's start with the defense. Paul Posluszny is not a middle linebacker for any game after 1999. He was targeted at least a dozen times, leaving the middle of the field as a huge vulnerability and allowing Tom Brady to be as dominant as ever, completing 33-of-42 passes for 358 yards and two touchdowns. His top target, Julian Edelman caught eight of his 11 targets for 85 yards, none of which went for more than 19 yards. Rob Gronkowski was a run-after-the-catch machine, catching four passes for 104 yards.
Running back LaGarrette Blount ran for 78 yards on 18 carries, with three 1-yard touchdowns. Dion Lewis and James White cleaned up for 45 yards on 10 carries, with one touchdown that came on a play where Posluszny filled the same run gap assignment as Telvin Smith, allowing Lewis to easily escape for an 8-yard score.
Bortles showed flashes, but of 2014. He was nearly picked off in the first half by Devin McCourty and then overthrew Clay Harbor up the seam badly allowing McCourty to finish what he started.
And 2014 Blake Bortles make a 2015 appearance. https://t.co/Xra7X7B4hS— Big Cat Country (@BigCatCountry) September 27, 2015
Bortles was a decent fantasy play, but he was inconsistent and threw the ball poorly today.
The offensive line got beat today, which allowed the running backs to get beat. The secondary finished with James Sample as the only true safety and Nick Marshall in at cornerback. With 1:29 left in the first quarter, the Patriots covered a 13.5-point spread and never looked back.
Since head coach Gus Bradley took over in 2013, this team is 8-27. A game where you allow the most points in franchise history isn't something you expect in Year 3 of a rebuild, injuries and the best team in football be damned. Is firing Bradley the answer? What about general manager Dave Caldwell? Is he to blame for any of this?
I don't know. I don't have any answers. I hope the Jaguars do. They've got the Indianapolis Colts next week and first place in the AFC South on the line.