Hays Carlyon's Jaguars Blog

HAYS BLOG: Jaguars offensive failures doom comeback bid at Colts

todayNovember 14, 2021

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By Hays Carlyon

 

INDIANAPOLIS – Jaguars rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence is going to get a ton of the blame for Sunday’s 23-17 loss at Lucas Oil Stadium.

That’s not fair.

Yes, Lawrence lost a fumble on the potential game-winning drive with at the Colts 46-yard line with 50 seconds and a timeout left.

He isn’t playing well. He completed just 16 of 35 passes for 162 yards with no touchdowns on Sunday.

But look at what’s around him.

The same issues that have plagued the offense all season continued in Indianapolis.

Dropped passes. There were five.

Penalties. There were several. Tight end Chris Manhertz was called for three. Right tackle Jawaan Taylor was flagged twice.

Receivers not looking for the ball when it is thrown. That happened on multiple occasions.

Quarterback pressures. Lawrence was sacked three times and hit on 10 dropbacks.

The Jaguars don’t have a quarterback problem. They have an offensive problem, which spoiled another quality defensive effort.

“It was awful,” Jaguars coach Urban Meyer said. “The first half was an accumulation of errors but the responded and came back. … Out of sync is probably not strong enough word or description of an offense but second half you came down with the ball in your hand and had a chance to go win it.”

They have an offense that rarely gets all 11 guys to play a snap without one of them committing a major mistake.

You have to grade Lawrence on a lenient curve this season. He has little help and no significant aid is coming over the final eight games.

We can all dream of next season when Trevor breaks the huddle with potential mega-free agent Davante Adams and potential first-round pick Chris Olave (33 career touchdown catches at Ohio State) but he has to survive these final eight games.

Physically and mentally.

It’s fair to be concerned that the lack of talent around Lawrence could shell shock him a bit in his development.

This is not a normal NFL supporting cast for a quarterback. This is substandard. That might be too kind.

Look at two of the more relied upon playmakers: tight end Dan Arnold and receiver Jamal Agnew. Each did some good things against the Colts.

Arnold caught five of seven targets for 67 yards and caught a two-point conversion from Lawrence on a nifty shovel pass. But he dropped a pass and committed a penalty.

Agnew broke a 66-yard touchdown run. He finished with 79 yards on the ground on three carries. However, he was a total zero in the passing game. Agnew did not catch a pass on five targets and had two drops.

Arnold owned it after the game when he met with reporters. He talked about sharing a story with Trevor about how he dropped a touchdown in the NFC Championship Game while playing for New Orleans in 2018. He didn’t let it define him, just like Lawrence won’t let Sunday’s performance define him.

“Trevor is a very grounded person and I think it’ll come naturally and easily for him,” Arnold said. “You know it sounds like we’re talking that it’s all Trevor’s fault, but it’s not even close to that. I think everybody played bad. There was dropped balls everywhere and penalties everywhere. And I think it’s one of those things as an offense we have to just kind of put on our shoulders and say hey we’ve got to get better for you and we will.”

Lawrence was collected in his press conference but appeared to have been emotional before in the locker room.

“I’m disappointed in myself,” Lawrence said. “Frustrated. But I know how far we’ve come. You look back compared to the first couple weeks of the season and it’s night and day of where we’re at. We’ve got a locker room full of guys, coaches and players, that believe and we’re on the right track, but this one hurts just because I’m frustrated in myself. Had a chance to go win the game and got to do that. I had no doubt we were going to win the game. The whole offense believed it. Just got to finish.”

Hang in there, Trevor.

Anyone with eyes believes in you.

Your coaches and teammates believe in you.

Just know that this isn’t normal. You are being put in a position that isn’t conducive to early success.

No one is suggesting that you can only succeed with stars around you. But right now, you don’t even have average NFL players around you at too many spots.

 

(You can email Hays at haysc@1010xl.com and follow him on Twitter @HaysCarlyon).

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