Tuesday, August 20, 2013

NFL 2013 Preview - Jacksonville Jaguars

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS                                                      

Head Coach: Gus Bradley

2012 Record: 2-14-0 (4th in AFC South)

New Players: CB Alan Ball; LB Geno Hayes; DL Sen'Derrick Marks; RB Justin Forsett; WR Mohamed Massaquoi; DL Roy Miller.

Gone Elsewhere: S Dawan Landry; OL Eben Britton; CB Derek Cox; RB Greg Jones; RB Rashard Jennings; WR Laurent Robinson; LB Daryl Smith; CB Rashean Mathis; DL Terrance Knighton.

Offense: The quarterback position has Blaine Gabbert (1,662 passing yards with nine touchdowns and six interceptions) and Chad Henne (2,084 passing yards, 11 TD, 11 INT) who split time last year after Gabbert was benched in favor of Henne. Gabbert has the inside track this season to win back the starter's job, but must show more entering his third season.
The running game will have (hopefully) a healthy Maurice Jones-Drew back in 2013. MJD, who led the
Maurice Jones-Drew
NFL in rushing in 2011, gained 414 yards in the first five plus games before a foot injury ended his season. Justin Forsett (374 yards, 5.9 ypc average) comes over from Houston to provide some depth.
Justin Blackmon (64 receptions for 865 yards and five touchdowns) had a good rookie season and will start along with Cecil Shorts, who had 55 catches for 979 yards and seven touchdowns. Jordan Shipley and Mohamed Massaquoi, along with rookies Ace Sanders (South Carolina) and Denard Robinson (Michigan)  are the backups. The tight end is Mercedes Lewis, who grabbed 52 passes for 540 yards and four touchdowns.
The O-Line has center Brad Meester, guards Will Rackley and Uche Nwaneri. The tackles will be rookie Luke Joeckel (Texas A & M) and Eugene Monroe.
In 2012, the Jaguars offense ranked 29th overall (299 yards per game), which included 30th in rushing and 21st in passing. The Jags were also 30th in the NFL in scoring, getting just 255 points.

Defense: Playing the 4-3 defense, Jacksonville will likely start Roy Miller and Sen'Derrick Marks at tackles while Jason Babin (seven QB sacks with Philadelphia and Jacksonville in 2012) and Tyson Alualu (3 1/2 sacks) will be the ends.
Jags sack leader Jason Babin
The linebackers are led by middle linebacker Paul Posluszny, who had three interceptions last season. The outside backers are Russell Allen and Geno Hayes.
In the secondary, two rookies could start along with veterans Alan Ball (cornerback) and safety Dwight Lowery. Dwayne Gratz (Connecticut) will be at cornerback while Jonathan Cyprien (Florida International) will play safety. Veteran Marcus Trufant, along with Mike Harris and Chris Prosinski are also available.

OUTLOOK: After winning only two games last year, the Jaguars have a new Head Coach in Gus Bradley, a defensive minded coach who led the defense in Seattle.
And the Jags' defense, like the offense, needs a lot of help.
Jacksonville must improve the pass rush as they had only 20 QB sacks last season. In addition, the defense finished 30th in the league, allowing 381 yards per game, including 240 yards passing. The Jags also allowed just under 28 points per game (444 allowed) as only Tennessee and New Orleans allowed more points.
On offense, getting back Maurice Jones-Drew will help immensely, as he is the spark plug who makes the offense go. Blaine Gabbert must show more this season or else ... he has a decent array of wide receivers and a talented tight end as well. If he can get it together this season and MJD shows his old form, the offense will definitely be better than last year's version.
It will be all about adjusting to a new system in this rebuilding season in Jacksonville, so don't expect much better than a 5-11 (possibly worse) record. The Jags are building a new foundation for a better future.


Sept. 8- vs. Kansas City
Sept. 15- at Oakland
Sept. 22- at Seattle
Sept. 29- vs. Indianapolis
Oct. 6- at St. Louis
Oct. 13- at Denver
Oct. 20- vs. San Diego
Oct. 27- vs. San Francisco
Nov. 3- BYE WEEK
Nov. 10- at Tennessee
Nov. 17- vs. Arizona
Nov. 24- at Houston
Dec. 1- at Cleveland
Dec. 5- vs. Houston
Dec. 15- vs. Buffalo
Dec. 22- vs. Tennessee
Dec. 29- at Indianapolis

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