15 Observations Week 17 Jacksonville Jaguars versus NE Patriots
The Patriots were able to secure a playoff spot with their win and the Dolphins’ loss. This is what I expected from the Patriots in a 50-10 rout of the Jaguars. It was a perfect storm, as the Patriots were embarrassed last week by the Bills and they came out on fire right from the start. They won the coin toss and deferred to the 2nd half. The Jags were held to three and out, then Mac Jones led the team right down the field on an 11 play 70-yard drive to put the Pats on the board and they never looked back. Bill Belichick stated it was good to play from ahead.
- The Offense was very efficient. Yes, the Jaguars were missing some key players, especially on Offense, but they got 3 linebackers and DT Malcolm Brown, back in time for the game. They were missing three in the secondary. The Offense scored 7 TDs, had 471 yards of total offense, and 31 first downs. They scored TDs on their 1st 5 drives. Patriots dominated the Time of Possession 36:46 to Jags 23:14. Jags were 3- 9 on third down while the Pats were 8-10.
- On the 1st drive, Josh McDaniels finally let Mac Jones throw on 1st down. They completed the pass for 7 yards and gave the team 2nd and short. McDaniels also got Jonnu Smith involved with a run and a 20-yard screen play.
- Rhamondre Stevenson had a monster day rushing 19 times for 109 yards, and 2 TDs. None of these were the big explosive runs, just consistent pounding the rock. He took over for Harris when he tweaked his hamstring. I will say that Harris looked none the worse for wear in the post-game press conference.
- Damien Harris was 9 runs for 35 yards and 2 TDs. Harris ran hard but there was little room, while still managing to get the rock into the end-zone. He is tied for 2nd in the league with 14 TDs. He is tied with Curtis Martin for the single-season Patriots record. LaGarrette Blount leads with his 18 in a single season.
- If you read my Observation article last week I said I was through with N’Keal Harry. So weren’t the Patriots coaches, as they finally made him a healthy inactive. Kristian Wilkerson played a good not great game with 4 catches for 42 yards and 2 TDs. He was targeted 8 times and has a history of drops. His 20 yard TD was a thing of beauty, and he made it look like he was going to block for a receiver screen. His CB bit hard on the fake as Wilkerson trotted downfield for a wide-open TD. One game and two TDs and he has had more production than Harry has had his whole career.
- Jakobi Meyers had a great day with 8 catches on 8 targets for 73 yards, and a TD. The TD pass was a fade pass by Jones and dropped right in bucket. He also made some tough catches and took the hits.
- Need to mention the contributions of Kendrick Bourne with his 5 catches on 6 targets for 76 yards. He too took a vicious hit to the head but snapped right back up. Bourne also had 2 rushes for 17 yards.
- Mac Jones was a very efficient 22 of 30 for 227 yards, no INTs, and 3 TDs. He missed a few long passes, or should I say that Kristian Wilkerson dropped two long passes. He only had one pressure and he turned that into a 10-yard scramble. The Offensive line played great in both pass and run blocking. I noticed that Michael Owenu subbed in for Ted Karras at LG, Yasir Durant was in for Shaq Mason and Justin Herron came in for Isaiah Wynn.
- The Defense chipped in with three INTs. Each turnover resulted in points. JC Jackson’s INT was an athletic marvel. Kyle Dugger’s INT should have been a pick-six, with a little more effort by Dugger. I am glad for Myles Bryant because he had such a bad game against the Bills. Nice bounce back.
- The Special Team had a so-so game. Folk had an Extra Point blocked and lost another Extra Point with a bad snap/hold. Folk did hit on his 54th FG inside 50 yards for the season. Can’t believe he was not chosen for the Pro Bowl.
- I feel very bad for Trevor Lawrence. His O-Line is in shambles due to COVID, and he has no run game. The Defense held Lawrence to 190 yards on 17 completions on 27 attempts. He has another three Interceptions. His TD was on a screen pass and was poorly defended by the Patriots. That was his 1st TD pass since week 12. He is playing for an interim coach that has no chance of getting the head coaching job. This has been a lost year for Lawrence in his development as an NFL Quarterback. Next year it will be a new offense and coordinators. All Lawrence has to show for this year is a large bank account and welts all over his body!
- Jacksonville tried to run and had 80 yards on 17 carries for a 4.7 average. But every time the Jags’ offense got back on the field they were falling further and further behind and had to abandon the run game.
- How balanced was the Patriots’ defense? Noone had more than 4 tackles! However, the pass rush only had 2 sacks. Winovich was close but couldn’t finish.
- That 2019 draft is looking pretty bad. Harry is a 1st round bust and they traded up for DB Joejuan Williams who was inactive for a third straight game. DeAngelo Ross was elevated from the Practice Squad and played ahead of Williams for he 2nd straight week. Let’s throw third round pick Chase Winowich in this group too! At least he made a special teams tackle today. Damien Harris and Jake Bailey are the saving grace from this draft and remember that Jakobi Meyers was an Un Drfated Free Agent signed after the draft.
- This was Belichick’s 20th season with 10 wins tying him with Don Shula. Jones is the 1st rookie QB since Dak Prescott to take his team to the Playoffs.
How far this team has come in one year! They are in the playoffs. This has been one of Bill Belichicks greatest coaching jobs. He will not get the credit that he deserves and will not be selected as the coach of the year because of his attitude towards the media. Pulling this team together, with a rookie QB, and a team full of Free Agents has been a terrific job.
We have one more regular-season game in Miami. I hate the games in Miami as it is a house of horrors for the Patriots. Miami has won 3 of the last 4 games in Miami. I think it’s a huge advantage of having the Patriots play there at the end of the season. The weather will be hot with high humidity. The Pats are a cold-weather team and melt in the 4th quarter. Thank goodness this game doesn’t have playoff implications for the Patriots.
Posted Under: 2021 Patriots Season