After the Jacksonville Jaguars locked up the AFC South and the No. 3 seed in the 2017 NFL playoffs was locked in, it made many Jaguars fans ask if the team should rest some starters against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday in the regular season finale. The answer seemed pretty easy for Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone.
“I knew that it was going to be a question. No doubt about that. I knew that it would be asked,” Marrone said on a conference call Tuesday afternoon when asked about Sunday’s game and resting players. “When we go over the games and everything and I said, ‘We are going to bounce back and we are going to work our asses off this week and we are going to go out and win this game and win this quarter.’ That was pretty much the conversation and there wasn’t, ‘Are you sure?’ There wasn’t any wavering from anyone of what we want to do and what we want to accomplish this week. We are 100 percent all in on winning this football game.”
If the Jaguars had not laid an egg against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, I tend to think they might have a little bit of a different opinion on resting some players against the Titans. Then again, the Titans are “win and in” for the playoffs, so you have a chance of potentially knocking out a division rival and avoiding playing them for the third time this season.
“Make no mistake about it, just so there is not a lot of talk during the week, when the players come in tomorrow, we are talking about how we are going to play to win and do everything we possibly can to win this game. Period,” Marrone said about Sunday. “I am not even thinking about what happens beyond that and that is the way we are going to go about our business this week.”
Sunday’s humbling defeat may have been just what this young Jaguars team needed to re-align their focus and stop patting themselves on the back.