The Jaguars lost their seventh straight game, falling 24-14 in Buffalo to the Bills on Sunday. Here are my four biggest takeaways from the game:
The Jaguars passing game is broken and it’s not likely to be fixed this year
There are many reasons the Jaguars cannot move the ball consistently in the passing game: injuries, poor play, a quarterback who has regressed, drops by the receivers and a well-earned lack of faith by the offensive coaches. They have all contributed to the struggles. The offensive line took another hit Sunday when Andrew Norwell left the game with an ankle injury. The only help that unit may get is the potential return from injured reserve of tackle Josh Wells or tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins in December. The Jaguars aren’t likely to make a change at quarterback, and the receivers aren’t likely to suddenly do a better job of getting open and holding onto the ball. The Jaguars have five games left. They’re likely to be very difficult games because every future opponent will know how much the Jaguars are struggling with the passing game.
Leonard Fournette has to be smarter
Late in the third quarter, Fournette, who wears the “C” patch as an offensive captain, decided it was a good idea for him to run off of the Jaguars sideline, go all the way across the field and get involved in a scuffle that led to him getting ejected. Fournette had been the engine of the Jaguars offense to that point, with 18 carries for 95 yards and two touchdowns. The Jaguars had to play the rest of the game without him. Backing up your teammates is fine, but Fournette has to understand his importance to the team. There was no call for him to throw punches. Nothing was gained and he was lost, as was the game.
The Jaguars didn’t give up
After falling down by 14 in the first quarter, it would have been easy for the Jaguars to pack up and go home, as it were. Instead, they fought back to tie the game at halftime. In the second half, after Fournette was ejected, the Jaguars saw the Bills build a 10-point lead. Jacksonville didn’t fold. They came back to within a field goal on a touchdown pass from Bortles to Dede Westbrook with just over a minute to play. The Jaguars, however, couldn't recover an onside kick, and Buffalo was able to kill the clock and secure the win.
The Jaguars can no longer have a winning record, and it isn’t December
As high as the expectations were for the Jaguars coming into the season, to have no chance at the playoffs and now, no chance at a winning record, is just the latest blow. The Jaguars are also mired in a seven-game losing streak. When they take the field Sunday at home against the Indianapolis Colts, it will have been 64 days since they last tasted victory.