The Jacksonville Jaguars found themselves in position to put the game away against the Baltomore Ravens, twice, on Sunday but instead decided to opt to kill clock and kick field goals, which ultimately did them in. A lot went wrong on Sunday and there are a lot of things you can point to for why they lost, but a lack of killer instinct played a big role in the 19-17 loss.
‘No,’ Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley said on Sunday after the game when asked if he felt the team was so conservative after the late turnovers. ‘We were trying to run the ball. It comes back to that. We didn’t run the ball very well again today. They were very stout up front. We knew it was going to be a challenge to get a first down. That’s what your goal is in four-minute situations, and we had two four-minute situations after the takeaways. To get a first down is what we’re looking for. I know we threw an interception on one and didn’t get the other one.’
In football there are moments called ‘"sudden change’ which occur after things like turnovers that set you up in good field position, big kick returns or even long touchdowns. It puts a team on their heels and if managed correctly, you can snowball the effect and capitalize. The Jaguars squandered two sudden change situations on Sunday that gave them the ball in Raven territory.
‘No,’ Bradley said when asked if they considered taking a shot in the endzone after the turnovers. ‘We weren’t thinking about that. We were thinking about getting a first down.’
The Jaguars lacked killer instinct when the game was there to be put away. The Jaguars played their final few offensive drives like they were sitting on a 20 point lead and killing clock, but they were only up a single point. The team played not to lose, and as what happens more often than not when you do that, they lost.
Yes, Bortles had a rough game and cannot take that sack at the end up the game, but the team also set themselves up to fail by playing for field goals when they should be playing for touchdowns and to put the game away.