On Sunday afternoon, the Jacksonville Jaguars couldn’t deliver a win to the fans in their first home game in TIAA Bank Field. The Denver Broncos defeated the Jaguars 23-13 to improve their record to 2-0. The Jaguars fell to 0-2 under head coach Urban Meyer.
Denver: Offense & Defense
Broncos quarterback Teddy Bridgewater led his team to their seventh 2-0 start in their last nine seasons. Bridgewater was 26 for 34, throwing for 328 yards and two touchdowns. He continued his excellent offensive play from last week’s win against the New York Giants.
Sutton had nine receptions on 12 targets for 159 yards while averaging 17.7 yards per reception. Bridgewater connected with Sutton on a 55-yard passing play on the second play in the second half. The big play led up to a Bridgewater 14-yard pass to Noah Fant, who found his way into the end zone.
“My mindset when the ball is in the air, Teddy is giving me an opportunity to make a play for the offense and for the team,” Sutton said.
“We don’t get too many plays in a game — this isn’t like college with 80-90 snaps — so you need make the most out of them.”
Denver was able to establish a balanced offense of running and passing the ball. The receivers found holes in the Jaguars defense, leading to several competitions. Bridgewater also found wide receiver Tim Patrick for a 12-yard touchdown in the second quarter, giving the Broncos the lead before halftime.
Denver rushed for a combined 96 yards between running backs Javonte Williams, Melvin Gordon III, and Bridgewater. Williams led the team in rushing as he ran for 64 yards on 13 carries. Gordon III ran for 31 yards on 13 carries.
Denvers defense bounces back
Denver’s defense had a shaky start as Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawerence marched down the field, scoring on the opening drive. The Broncos defense stepped up after the Jaguars first series.
“By no means did we play (perfectly) and we’re going to have to play better,” head coach Vic Fangio said.
They forced two interceptions and one sack in the game while switching from man-to-man coverage to more zone coverage. The zone coverage led to Lawerence making rookie mistakes and Jaguars receivers not finding gaps in the defense to complete catches.
The defense suffered two losses as linebacker Bradley Chubb, and linebacker Josey Jewell were pulled from the game due to injury. Chubb re-aggravated an ankle injury in his return back on Sunday, and Jewell left the game with a shoulder injury.
The Broncos will return home game to face the New York Jets next week.
Jaguars continue to struggle
Lawrence showed improvement in week two as he drove the offense down for a score in the opening drive, showing the rookie’s promise. He connected on a couple of big plays on the opening drive with wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. for a 25-yard pass to put the Jaguars first score on the board.
— Jacksonville Jaguars (@Jaguars) September 19, 2021
The Jaguars offense started to go downhill after the opening drive as Lawrence threw two interceptions, increasing his total to five interceptions in two games. Jacksonville also missed vital opportunities to put points on the board as kicker Josh Lambo missed two kicks in the game.
“One thing that sticks out about Trev is he has that same energy,” Jones said.
“It’s tough. Sometimes it’s unexplainable. We don’t want to be in those situations, but we just have to figure it out. He was even-keeled on that first drive and the same throughout the game. We just have to keep at it, we’re pretty close.”
This week, the run game was increased as James Robinson had a much more active role in the offense. Robinson ran for 47 yards on 11 carries averaging 4.3 yards per rush. The run game still needs improvement from now on if they plan on being a balanced offense. Jacksonville showed a bit of a spark in week two. Hopefully they will continue to build on that spark going into week three against a tough Arizona Cardinals defense.
Jacksonville was much more competitive defensively this week than the week prior. The defense forced the Broncos offense to be just 2-of-11 on third-down opportunities and just 2-of-4 in the red zone. They also sacked Bridgewater three times.
They may have given up 328 passing yards, but it only led to the offense scoring two touchdowns.When it came to stopping the run the defense stepped up by limiting the offense to only 96 yards on the ground.
The Jaguars defense looked better on the field, but there is still room for more improvement going into next week as they face quarterback Kyler Murray.
“Same mission still applies: We’ve got to stick with it,” cornerback Shaquill Griffin said.
Next week the Jaguars may be able to deliver a win to the fans as they are back in TIAA Bank Field against the Cardinals and turn their season around.