After an 0-2 start, the Jaguars are entering a desperate time.
If they are going to make anything of this season, they are going to have to find a way to bridge the gap until Brad Meester and Jerry Porter can get back into the lineup. Meester is expected back in October as he returns from a torn biceps.
Porter still hasn’t stepped on the field in a Jaguars uniform after signing a $30 million contract this off-season.
So how do they do it?
For starters, they have to run the football. When you start Milford Brown at right guard after just five days in town, you are going to have some issues. Keep it simple! Run the ball. After all, the Jaguars two best offensive weapons are Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew.
Through the first two games, the Jaguars have run 107 offensive plays. Taylor and Jones-Drew have touched the ball in 44 of those plays. That works out to just over 41%. While that may be a fairly high number as a rule (as an example, the Vikings Adrian Peterson has touched the ball in about 38.5% of his teams plays in the first two games and he’s just one guy), for a Jaguars team that has scored just two touchdowns so far this year.
The Jaguars must utilize Taylor and Jones-Drew more often.
For example, in the fourth quarter against the Bills, in the drive after the Bills had taken a 17-16 lead, the Jaguars took over with 4:10 remaining. Plenty of time for a four minute drill. Control the ball. Run some clock. Move the chains. Did I mention run the ball?
Instead, the Jaguars opted for three pass plays from the shotgun. An incompletion to Matt Jones, and incompletion to Dennis Northcutt then a sack of David Garrard.
Are you serious? When you needed plays, needed to move the ball, Taylor and Jones-Drew didn’t see the ball.
Yes, the Jaguars are dealing with injuries on the offensive line. And I know that Jones-Drew left the game with an ankle at one point. But he returned.
The last time that Taylor touched the ball was the 9:22 mark of the 4th quarter when the Jaguars had a six point lead. Instead, they treated the rest of the fourth quarter like they were trailing by 20 points.
If Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew aren’t a bigger part of the offense, the Jaguars won’t go anywhere.