Jaguars beat Jets with full sport, appear to be AFC South’s greatest workforce

There was a time this season when the Jaguars could not be trusted. After they may’ve been chalked up as the identical previous Jags. 

Have a look at the primary eight weeks of the season. 

Offensively, there have been all of the turnovers, together with Trevor Lawrence’s 5 giveaways towards the Eagles in October. His red-zone interceptions. The inconsistencies ending drives. 

Defensively, the Jaguars’ dominance in Weeks 2 and three gave method to a porous unit that gave up numerous yards and could not get takeaways. Giving up 34 factors to a dreadful Colts offense in Week 6 was a low level. 

However since Week 9, Jacksonville has ascended — on either side of the ball. And it handed one other large check in primetime. 

After a Lawrence sack and fumble on the opening possession, the Jaguars (7-8) performed mistake-free soccer en path to a 19-3 victory over the New York Jets on Thursday Evening Soccer. It marked Jacksonville’s third straight win, which utilized extra strain on the reeling and hobbled Tennessee Titans (7-7) within the AFC South race. 

The Jaguars are presently only a half a sport behind the division-leading Titans, pending the latter’s Christmas Eve showdown towards the Texans. 

Jacksonville had 365 yards towards a Jets protection that hadn’t given up greater than 360 since Week 2.  Getting into the sport, New York additionally ranked fourth in factors allowed and sixth in defensive DVOA. It is a unit that has Professional Bowlers at each degree (defensive lineman Quinnen Williams, inside linebacker C.J. Mosley and cornerback Sauce Gardner). 

Regardless of a really common level complete, the Jaguars had moments of dominance towards a stout protection. Like within the second quarter, once they had a powerful 16-play, 96-yard landing drive. Jacksonville had no accepted penalties within the collection, confronted one third down, posted eight first downs and dominated the road of scrimmage, capped by Lawrence’s rating. On the objective line, the 2021 No. 1 total choose leaped over the pile and used his size to cross the airplane. 

The Jaguars protection, which tied a league-high six takeaways within the earlier two weeks, added two extra on Thursday — first selecting off Zach Wilson on the finish of the primary half after which recovering a misplaced fumble by Jets receiver Garrett Wilson within the fourth quarter. 

Tackling Garrett Wilson, linebacker Foyesade Oluokuon karate-kicked the ball out of Wilson’s grasp, cornerback Tre Herndon scooped it up after it popped into the air and returned it 14 yards to the Jets 24. 

The Jaguars protection held the Jets to simply 66 speeding yards (together with 4 on the half), 2-of-13 on third down and 227 internet yards of offense total, New York’s second-lowest complete of the season. 

And Jacksonville could have ushered in the long run of the Zach Wilson period with the Jets. The 2021 No. 2 total choose seemed misplaced, resulting in his benching late within the third quarter. His day completed finishing simply 9-of-18 passes for 92 yards and an interception with a 41.9 passer ranking.

It was an entire, (principally) error-free efficiency for the Jaguars on the street in December in primetime towards a fellow AFC playoff hopeful in crummy climate. 

Jacksonville has three wins within the final 12 days, after posting three wins within the entirety of the 2021 season. 

These are usually not the identical previous Jags.

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Ben Arthur is the AFC South reporter for FOX Sports activities. He beforehand labored for The Tennessean/USA TODAY Community, the place he was the Titans beat author for a yr and a half. He coated the Seattle Seahawks for for 3 seasons (2018-20) previous to shifting to Tennessee. You may comply with Ben on Twitter at @benyarthur

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