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Jacksonville, FL – Hoping to bounce back after the Week 1 loss to the Houston Texans, the Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2) were declawed by the Denver Broncos (2-0), 23-13.
Last Sunday, Trevor Lawrence was broken in with a trial by fire, throwing the ball 51 times in his NFL debut.
This game started no different for the former Clemson Tiger as he threw seven passes out the 11 plays of the opening drive alone. Marvin Jones hauled in a 25-yard dime at the corner of the endzone to cap it off, for what would be the Jaguars only touchdown on offense.
As the game went on, linebacker Von Miller and the Broncos defense were able to expose where Lawrence and his targets were out of sync. While the rookie quarterback missed some open targets downfield, there were also plenty of drops to go around in the receiving corps. Furthermore, none of the aforementioned players can be blamed for two missed field goals by Jags’ kicker Josh Lambo.
For the Broncos, quarterback Teddy Bridgewater managed a solid game with a very methodical approach on offense. He opened the game by completing his first eight passes. If it weren’t for linebacker Josh Allen and the Jags defense bringing pressure and disrupting the timing to force field goals on some drives, this game could have been decided much earlier.
Bridgewater’s first completion of more than 20 yards came late in the first half on a 33-yarder to Courtland Sutton. This set up a touchdown on a 12-yard flag route to wide receiver Tim Patrick that made it 10-7 at halftime in favor of Denver.
To open the second half, Bridgewater found Sutton again for a 55-yarder that set up another score to extend the Broncos’ lead to 17-7. That touchdown was completed to tight end Noah Fant from four yards out.
Bridgewater finished completing 26-of-31 for 332 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.
From that point on, both defenses played tough. The Broncos only managed six more points on field goals while the Jaguars’ Jamal Agnew sprinted back a kickoff for 102 yards for a touchdown. In the end, Denver’s 17:04 advantage in time of possession allowed them to suffocate Jacksonville’s offense to keep the momentum on their side to get the win.
Head coach Urban Meyer was very optimistic after the game despite starting the season 0-2.
“There’s a lot of fight in this team. There’s 15 games left. My goal, our goal is to have the strongest locker room that you can possibly have,” said Meyer. “I feel it’s extremely strong right now. Players are pissed. Players want to win. Players are sticking together and that’s good. That’s the best part of our team — the best part of our organization is that locker room.”
Next Sunday at 1:00 pm eastern in TIAA Bank Field, the Jaguars host the Arizona Cardinals as the first game against the NFC West. This represents Jacksonville’s first meeting against former Texans superstar J.J. Watt since he departed from Houston this past offseason. Meyer and the Jags will have plenty on their plate to prepare for in practice.