The Jacksonville Jaguars lost their Week 1 season opener to the Kansas City Chiefs in one of the most bizarre games I’ve seen in a while for this team. Nick Foles throws a beauty of a touchdown and then goes down with an injury. The defense was undisciplined and out of position. The receivers — heck, the entire offense was good!
And it all ended up in a 40-26 loss at the end of the day.
With all that said, there were some good performances and some not so good performances on Sunday afternoon. Here’s who stood out the most:
1. Gardner Minshew II
We’re gonna have to get this one out of the way because it was obvious even to the casual observer that Minshew was doing something special on Sunday. Minshew set an NFL record with his completion percentage (88.0), which is the highest of any player in NFL history who makes at least 15 pass attempts in their professional debut. It’s also a Jaguars franchise single-game record among players with at least 25 pass attempts. He took zero reps with the starters in practice leading up to the game and he went out and performed better than anyone could have hoped for.
When you’re the best No. 15 in Florida football history. pic.twitter.com/cx1SnLtRE0— Big Minshew Country (@BigCatCountry) September 8, 2019
2. Will Richardson, Jr.
Jacksonville was in a tough spot. Their starting left tackle Cam Robinson is out indefinitely with a hyperextended knee. Backup left tackle Cedric Ogbuehi is injured as well. So, the team turned to second year offensive lineman Will Richardson, a guy who had played literally one snap of left tackle in his career — in a victory formation on a quarterback kneel. Richardson went out and, like Minshew, performed better than anyone could have hoped. I didn’t really notice him and forgot we had an emergency left tackle in the game until after the dust had settled. That’s good!
3. DJ Chark, Jr.
There were a lot of good performances on the offense, especially the receivers, but Chark’s play all game — whether it was with Foles or Minshew in at quarterback — was consistently the best. He was a deep threat. He could get yards after the catch. He was physical. He caught all four targets thrown his way for a team high 146 yards.
Here’s that 35 yard bomb from Nick Foles ➡️ @DJChark82.#Jaguars down 10-7 to #Chiefs. pic.twitter.com/jH6FZASoL8— Big Minshew Country (@BigCatCountry) September 8, 2019
This 69-yard pass from @GardnerMinshew5 ➡️ @DJChark82 is so, so #nice. pic.twitter.com/onQLevwB6e— Big Minshew Country (@BigCatCountry) September 8, 2019
4. Yannick Ngakoue
The defense gave up 40 points — and for the first time in a long time it wasn’t the fault of the offense for throwing pick six’s or putting them in bad field position — so there’s not much to celebrate. But Ngakoue is a treasure, folks. It won’t show up on the stat sheet, but he was the only one getting pressure often and was collapsing the pocket to allow other guys to (potentially) get the sack or a hit on Patrick Mahomes.
5. A.J. Bouye
Bouye regressed last year. He had an elite 2017 NFL season and his performance worsened the year after. It happens. Go upgrade your pass rush and maybe you can take advantage of what little time you have left with the former All-Pro cornerback. If Week 1 is any indication of how Bouye is going to play this season, it’s going to be a long year. Bouye looked out of position several times, allowed a lot of catches to his receiver or his zone, and overall played very poorly. Granted, this could be said of a lot of guys on the defense, so let’s hope they got everything out of their system.
6. Myles Jack
He got kicked out, yes, but that’s not what was so damning about Jack on the field. He could not keep up with Travis Kelce and the Chiefs tight ends. He, like Bouye and other defenders, was out of position several times on key plays. Again, let’s hope it’s all out of their system and they’re ready for Week 2.
Who stood out to you the most from our Week 1 loss to the Chiefs? Let us know in the comments below!