It was déjà vu for the Jacksonville Jaguars (4-7) in Nashville this week in their matchup against the Tennessee Titans (6-5). A nightmarish season, turned into a night terror as the Jaguars failed to hold up to their standards set by the coaches, and players losing 20-42 in a must-win situation.
The Jaguars accomplished plenty today. For the second time in franchise history, the team lost three straight divisional matchups. The first came in 2000 when the Jaguars were defeated by the Pittsburgh Steelers, Baltimore Ravens, and the Tennessee Titans. For the first time in franchise history the Jaguars lost three consecutive games by 20 or more points.
For the third-straight game, the Jaguars allowed over 200 yards rushing, despite making adjustments in their practice schedule to stop the ground-attack during practice last week to stifle the ground-game. In total, the team has allowed 699 yards on the ground, the highest total three-game stretch in team history. In their game on Sunday, the Jaguars allowed 9.1 yards per play — a total that is unfathomable.
Easily the worst three-game stretch in team-history, the Jaguars have been thoroughly embarrassed, and Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone echoed those sentiments in his post-game press conference.
“Am I pissed? Yes. Am I embarrassed? Yes,” Marrone said following the Jaguars loss on Sunday. “I’m not speaking for anyone else, you’re gonna have to tell them, but I promised them that I am going to do a better job and I’m gonna work my butt off to get this thing right.”
Down 7-3 at halftime, the Jaguars held Titans running back Derrick Henry to rush for only nine carries for 26 yards, which was markedly better than last week’s affair. Then, the unimaginable would happen, the Titans went on to score four touchdowns in only nine plays following the opening second-half kick off including a two touchdowns in succession by Henry thanks in part due to a fumbled kickoff return by rookie receiver Michael Walker.
For the second year in a row, the Jaguars allowed Henry to thoroughly embarrass their defense. During the second half, the Jaguars allowed running back Henry to rush 133 yards on just 10 carries including his aforementioned two touchdowns. Henry’s two touchdowns took just 16 seconds of game time — the quickest a running back has scored in succession since LaDainian Tomilson in 2006.
Offensively, the Jaguars couldn’t get it done through the air with Nick Foles completing 32 out of 48 of his passes for 272 yards on Sunday. A yards-per-attempt of 5.6. The Jaguars ran the football 13 times in the first half — 12 by running back Leonard Fournette — for only 44 yards (3.4 yards-per-attempt). There were no explosive plays, and ultimately, that’s what hurt the team the most.
Fournette, however, was the only bright spot of the day for the Jaguars as he rushed the football 24 times for 97 yards and two touchdowns, but the majority of the yardage was all for naught as the team was trailing by multiple scores throughout the second half of the football game.
Very quickly, the Jaguars prospect of victory evaporated into thin air — just as their season has over the past three weeks. Marrone understands the sentiments, and knows the questions regarding job security and other potential changes hang in the balance.
“I told the players -- it’s gonna be the same questions -- about jobs, switching quarterbacks, changes, players and all that stuff. I still believe -- I don’t know what happens in this league -- but we’re gonna work out ass off to get this team right, somehow, some way.”
No life, no substance, and no victory for the Jaguars as they limp through the final five games of the season with an abundance of questions that will remain to be answered.
Marrone — for a second-straight week — refused to suggest a quarterback change is on the way, and when posed with the question of a change at defensive coordinator, he held firm by responding with a simple “no.”
The Jaguars have tried multiple times to get the ball rolling in Jacksonville this season and have not gotten it done. Their next stop will be against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at TIAA Bank Field next Sunday. A game which will likely have little meaning to the outcome of the entirety of the season, but will show just how the Jaguars can respond after going through the worst stretch of football in team history.