Jacksonville Jaguars Season Review (4-12)
Over the last 3 years, the Jacksonville Jaguars have been 1 of the examples of the epitome of failure in the NFL. Over that time span they have gone 11-37, and even going back another 3 years beyond that, 31-65. Specifically the biggest issue they have had is developing an identity and that start with the QB. Blaine Gabbert has been 1 of, if not the worst starting QB since he was drafted 3 years ago. The Jaguars seem to be finally ready to move on as he was benched this year for Chad Henne. The 1 true warrior for Jacksonville has been star RB Maurice Jones Drew. The diminutive RB has been in Jacksonville for 8 years and had a great 3 year stretch between 2009 and 2011, but over the last 2 years, the toll of a heavy workload, and being the center of attention for opposing defense, seems to have slowed him down. This year Jones Drew is a free agent and the current GM Dave Caldwell has already said he doesn’t see him re-signing before free agency on March 11th. They will have a chance to probably match offers, but it doesn’t look like he will be back next year.
The Jacksonville Jaguars were putrid on offense, ranking 32nd in the league in points scored at 15.4 points per game and 31st in the league in total yards with only 293.8 yards per game. They weren’t much better on the other side of the ball, coming in 28th in points allowed at 28.1 points per game and 27th in yards allowed at 379.4 yards. They are 1 of the few teams that seem lost on both sides of the ball and they not only need 1-2 playmakers on each side of the ball, they also need solid players that are true professionals on the field that can help turn the mentality and change the losing environment of the Jaguars. This year was their worst point differential in franchise history with -202. For them to not be the laughing stock of the league, they must not only hit on a couple draft picks, but they also have to have an aggressive approach towards free agents because coming to a team like this will not be an easy sell. By letting Jones Drew go, they are completely bottoming out, if they haven’t already. Fans have to seriously question if they have a trust or belief in the front office to turn it around. On the good side, at least they didn’t sign Tim Tebow.
Like all teams in today’s NFL, everyone is 2 good drafts and 2 good free agency periods away from being in the playoffs and shocking a couple people. They have the 3rd overall pick in the draft and unless someone trades up with the Rams to get ahead of them, they should have their choice of 1 of the top 2 QBs, either Teddy Bridgewater from Louisville or Blake Bortles from Central Florida. Both should be a big help to leading the franchise in a positive direction. While selecting either 1 of those guys to go with Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts will help, they still need a lot of other parts, and they must re-sign RT Eugene Monroe. On the defensive side of the ball, they need help at all levels. They need some big run stoppers at DT, a big time pass rusher at DE, along with at least 2 new members in their secondary, so they can go numerous ways in both their 1st and 2nd round picks in the draft. The Golden Rule is if you see someone that you see as a franchise QB, you take him, but if you don’t, taking an offensive or defensive lineman is always a safe way to go.
Last year the Jags got Luke Joeckel, who looks to be a keeper and RB is never a position you want to select early in today’s NFL, so other than the 2 QBs mentioned before, the only other person they may decide to take is Jadeveon Clowney. No matter which of the 3 ways they go, they hope he will be the starting block that helps this franchise turn the corner, back to the early years and good old days.
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