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Jaguars vs. Falcons: Winners and losers from Week 4

Defense continues to shine as Jaguars’ top unit.

Atlanta Falcons v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images

Now that is how you get right.

With a pretty convincing 23-7 victory over the Atlanta Falcons, the Jags are 2-2 and back on track.

There is still plenty to work towards, but here are your winners and losers from the team’s first of two games in London.


Defense, yet again

Through four weeks, the Jacksonville Jaguars’ defense looks to be one of the better units in the league.

On Sunday, the Jags recorded four sacks, two interceptions with one being returned for a score and forced the game-sealing fumble all while only allowing one touchdown drive.

Josh Allen led the way with three sacks, pushing his season total to six on the year. Allen also stripped Falcons’ quarterback Desmond Ridder on the Falcons’ final drive.

The defense is, at this point, the strong suit on the team.

While the sack numbers are a bit weird, and potentially a bit too low for this point in the year, the secondary is making up for it with takeaways.

The team now has four picks this season, while also recovering five fumbles. Darious Williams, who scored the team’s defensive touchdown, even dropped a pick that hit him in the hands.

Sure, Bijan Robinson had his way for most of the game, but that was to be expected.

The only real negative is that Tre Herndon got beat for a touchdown, but recovered late to stop a score.

So far this season, the Jags are only allowing 20.5 points per game on defense. That is how to win football games.

Trevor Lawrence

Trevor Lawrence looked the part against the Falcons.

Say what you will about the offense as a whole — more on that later — but Lawrence was great on Sunday.

The third-year quarterback finished his day 23-30 for 207 yards and one touchdown. Lawrence also used his legs, rushing for 42 total yards, highlighted by a 22-yard scamper.

The play of the day was the lone Jaguars’ offensive touchdown, where Lawrence found Calvin Ridley deep in the end zone.

For what it is worth, the Jaguars are 2-0 when Ridley scores the team’s first touchdown.

The ground game was decent against the Falcons, accounting for 105 yards, but when the time came for it Lawrence was able to use his arms and legs to extend drives and make plays.

This type of Lawrence is the one that needs to be around every weekend.

Evan Engram and Christian Kirk

These two guys were going to have to be the centerpieces on offense if the Jaguars were going to win.

Ridley was going to be blanketed by A.J. Terrell all game, so it was up to Evan Engram and Christian Kirk to get the yards. That was especially true when both Zay Jones and Jamal Agnew were not playing, and Kirk had to return punts for almost the entire game after Parker Washington got banged up.

Kirk led the team in receiving with 84 yards on eight catches. Engram was second with 59 yards.

No, neither of those numbers are eye popping, but it was what the team needed and what the defense gave them.

On the drive that set up team’s second to last field goal, Lawrence completed five combined passes to Engram and Kirk.

It was always going to be on these two guy’s shoulders, and they delivered.

Big props to Kirk for taking the mantle on punt returns, and not causing any negative damage there.


Lack of offensive explosion

While the score and win may mask it, the Jaguars were pretty bland on offense against the Falcons.

Believe it or not, the team’s longest offensive play was a 40-yard pass interference call on Terrell against Ridley.

Travis Etienne only had 55 yards on the ground, on 20 carries. On almost all of his carries, Etienne was getting clipped in the backfield.

The team also only put up one touchdown, and turned the ball over on downs at the Atlanta 12-yard-line. They also didn’t muster any points on the final drive of the first half.

The sky is not falling again, but it was not necessarily a pretty day on offense. There is something to be said, however, for getting a win when you are not at your best.

Luke Farrell probably shouldn’t ever have the same amount of catches as Ridley moving forward.

Third downs

For whatever reason, the Jaguars are simply bad all around on third down.

Much has been said about how the team has had the shortest yards to gain on third downs, while converting at a bottom-tier clip. Sunday was much of the same.

The Jags converted just five of 14 third downs, while allowing Atlanta to convert 6-12. The team also continues to be bland on fourth down, converting on 1-2.

This season, the Jaguars are 16-51 on third down, or converting on just 31.3% of their tries.

That is simply not good enough, and certainly will not work against a stout Buffalo Bills defense next week.

The Toy Story stream

Do we ever need that again? Did we ever need it at all?

It did produce some decent memes, but man that was strange to see.