Jaguars answer 4 biggest questions in 20-17 overtime win over Chargers

Jaguars come back to win third straight game

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Marqise Lee (11) is stopped by Los Angeles Chargers cornerback Trevor Williams after a reception
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Marqise Lee (11) is stopped by Los Angeles Chargers cornerback Trevor Williams after a reception (Associated Press)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jaguars couldn't get the running game going, didn't sack Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers and Blake Bortles threw a pair of fourth quarter interceptions, but somehow, they got the game to overtime and beat the Chargers 20-17 on a Josh Lambo field goal. Here's how they answered the four biggest questions I had heading into the game.

1. Will this year’s defense be tougher on Philip Rivers?

The Jaguars came into the game leading the league in sacks. They never got the pressure on Rivers they are used to. Some of that was due to Rivers' propensity to get rid of the ball, some of it was about the Chargers offensive line winning in the trenches most of the game. Rivers was patient and completed 21 of 37 passes for 235 yards, with two touchdowns and one very big interception.

2. Can the Jaguars handle success?

It's tough to say that the Jaguars didn't handle their first winning streak of the season well, other than the fact that they trailed most of the game, but when the Jaguars couldn't get the running game going, they turned the ball over to Bortles who threw two fourth quarter interceptions. The Jaguars got the game to overtime, and when they did, the defense won the game for the Jaguars when A.J. Bouye intercepted Rivers and returned it to the Jaguars 1-yard line. After a penalty and three runs, the Jaguars brought Lambo on to kick the 30-yard game winner against his former team.

3. Will Leonard Fournette return with something extra to prove?

The Jaguars first winning streak of the year came with Fournette out of the lineup. He returned to the lineup, but didn't look like his old self, gaining 24 yards on 12 carries. In fact, at one point in the second half, the Jaguars were struggling to move the ball on the ground so mightily, that they called 14 straight pass plays. They decided to put the game in Bortles' hands. Remarkable.

4. Can Blake Bortles continue to be a reliable game manager?

Bortles did more than just manage the game, he put the team on his shoulders in the second half. After a first half that saw Bortles go 11 of 12 passing failed to produce an offensive touchdown (the only score before halftime came when Corey Grant ran a fake punt in for a touchdown), Bortles led an 11-play drive that included nothing but pass plays, including a touchdown pass to Marqise Lee-and a subsequent two-point conversion to Lee to tie it up. While the touchdown to Lee was a positive sign, the interceptions in the fourth quarter nearly killed the Jaguars chances to win.

About the Author: