It is broken. All of it. The offense cannot score. The coaches have no answers. Players losing their composure. It was a mess of epic proportions yesterday, only rivaled by the San Diego game this year, except this time it was displayed right in front of the home fans.
Blakes Bortles went 5/14 in the first half with an interception before finishing 23/43, a touchdown (that Julius Thomas took away from a defender) and two interceptions. There is something clearly off with Blake. That being said, he has not received much help. The running game mustered just 105 yards, 33 of those coming from Bortles himself, and there were a handful of drops as well. There is no fluidity to the offense as a whole.
The defense gamed, keeping the game close despite facing short fields and being out there for the majority of the game. Oakland has a good offense, and could have scored more points. But, frustration boiled over towards the end, with Malik Jackson and Jalen Ramsey both being ejected for personal fouls in the fourth quarter.
A short week means the team cannot dwell on this loss too long before having to get back on the horse in Nashville Thursday night. There will be plenty of calls for Chad Henne to start in place of Bortles this week, and those should be shut down immediately. Yes, Bortles has been bad the last few weeks, and yes, there is no one on the team more popular than the backup quarterback, but this is Henne we are talking about and let us see how Blake handles a division opponent he has had great success against in his career.
With the short week, the coaching staff needs to focus less on scheming, since the opponent is a division rival whom the Jaguars are more than familiar with, and work on getting the team right mentally. The frustration boiling over on the field yesterday was the first time multiple players have publicly displayed their displeasure with the team’s struggles. If the team cannot get in to it mentally, the slow starts and bad losses are going to keep piling up. And when a team cannot get out of its own head, that usually reflects on the coaching staff.
”Fans don’t want to see that, you guys don’t want to see that and we don’t want to be a part of it.” Paul Posluszny hits the nail on the head in the midst of arguably his best, and perhaps final, season in Jacksonville ending in a frustrating manner yet again.
The rest of the country gets the golden opportunity to watch the Jaguars battle the Tennessee Titans on Thursday night. Embrace the Color Rush. Kickoff at 8:25 p.m. Thursday night on NFL Network.