The Jaguars got pushed around by the Titans. Again. And the Jaguars lost to the Titans. Again. For the sixth time in seven games, Tennessee was too much, beating Jacksonville 30-9 in Nashville. Here are my four takeaways from the game:
Tennessee is still too physical for the Jaguars
It's the story every time the Jaguars face the Titans recently. Tennessee wins an ugly game with one or two plays where the Jaguars look like they are overpowered by the Tennessee offensive or defensive line. No sequence highlights this trend more than the one that occurred in the second quarter. With the Jaguars facing 3rd-and-1 from the Tennessee 5-yard line, the Jaguars needed two Cody Kessler quarterback sneaks to gain a first down. Then, three plays and 2 yards later, the Jaguars gave it to Leonard Fournette who was stopped for no gain on 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line. The Titans took over and on the first play, Derrick Henry raced 99 yards for a touchdown, stiff-arming at least three Jaguars defenders as he matched an NFL record for longest run. That's all you needed to see.
Ronnie Harrison is showing promise at safety
Harrison was inserted into the starting lineup Sunday against the Colts and made some key plays in the Jaguars win. Even though the Jaguars defense didn't look anywhere near as effective Thursday, Harrison picked off Marcus Mariota in the first half. Barry Church was a healthy inactive, which seems to indicate that the Jaguars will move on from Church in the offseason.
Kessler made a couple of good throws, but he isn't the answer
On Sunday, Kessler made one play downfield beyond 20 yards. On Thursday, Kessler was able to make more throws down field, connecting with Dede Westbrook on passes of 21 and 23 yards and Keelan Cole for 35 yards. It's baby steps with the offense. With three games left to play, the Jaguars are looking more and more like a team that needs to scrub the decks clean in the quarterback room and start over at the position.
The Jaguars are officially, mathematically, out of the playoff chase
To nobody's surprise, the Jaguars won't make the playoffs. That's been generally expected since the loss to the Eagles in London on Oct. 28 gave the Jaguars a 3-5 record. But now, it's official. The Jaguars cannot make the playoffs.