In January 2021, the Jacksonville Jaguars hired the three-time NCAA National Champion head coach, Urban Myer. Myer’s hiring exemplified a fresh start for the Jaguars organization. Then, in April 2021, the Jaguars landed themselves the first pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. In the process, securing one of the greatest colligate talents ever, Trevor Lawrence. With these moves came a lot of pressure in Jacksonville. Big-name coach. Big-name quarterback. A lot of potential. After an up-and-down preseason, the Jaguars finished strong with a 34-14 win on the road over the Dallas Cowboys.
Big day in the air
Trevor Lawrence had some big question marks coming into his first NFL training camp. Could his elite talent transfer to the NFL? Would he be the starting quarterback in Week 1? Despite being the number one overall pick, Trevor Lawrence still had something to prove. In the preseason finale against Dallas, he proved he could work an NFL defense.
Playing only the first half, Lawrence had nearly a perfect day running the Jaguars offense. Lawrence through 11 completions on 12 attempts for 139 yards and two touchdowns, both coming in the red zone. After being replaced in the second half by Jake Luton, the air attack continued with Luton going 16-for-18 on passes for 137 yards and one touchdown. C.J. Beathard closed the game with five completions on ten attempts for 86 yards and an interception. The nearly perfect passing attack seemingly led the way for this Jaguars’ win.
Looking up after down
Having taken Trevor Lawrence with the first overall pick, Jacksonville wanted some more firepower. So what did they do? Land Lawrence’s college teammate, Travis Etienne, at the end of the first round. The dynamic running back looked like he had the chance to be a force to be reckoned with in the NFL. However, Etienne suffered a mid-foot sprain that requires surgery, costing him his rookie campaign.
With this big loss to an unproven offense, even more, questions arose in Jacksonville. But, the Jaguars seemed to have the answer against Dallas on Sunday. On top of a nearly perfect passing performance, Jacksonville’s rushing attack was just as fierce. Devine Ozigbo led the Jaguars’ ground game with 68 yards on 11 carries, also adding a touchdown. After a big blow to the gut with Etienne being placed on the injured reserve, Jacksonville seemed to be doing okay on the ground against Dallas.
What a difference a week makes
As the first couple weeks of training camp and preseason were rocky for the Jaguars, their preseason finale seemed to show some promise in Jacksonville. With Lawrence and the offensive line truly clicking, the entire Jaguars roster appeared to be playing with a chip on their shoulder. Behind their firing offense and consistent defensive play, the Jaguars presented themselves as a dominant force in Sunday’s matchup with Dallas. But with certain question marks still looming regarding Lawrence’s play and Myer’s ability to coach professional football, a lot of eyes will be on Jacksonville this season.