JACKSONVILLE – Doug Marrone described the Jaguars' situation aptly.
"I guess 'funk' would probably be a good word," he said.
That's how the Jaguars' head coach began his media availability Monday – a day after a 29-26 loss to the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. He went on to address multiple issues surrounding a team on a five-game losing streak. Foremost among them:
Where do the Jaguars go from here?
"The challenge for this team is, 'Hey, can we go out and play at our best level for four quarters and see where we are?''' Marrone said during his weekly next-day availability at TIAA Bank Field.
Marrone, a day after the Jaguars fell three games behind the Houston Texans in the AFC South, said he understands that fans and observers will ask questions about the team's effort and about possible personnel changes. He said such questions are expected when teams struggle.
"All of those questions get asked, and they are legit," he said.
But Marrone on Monday said his focus will remain on something he emphasized immediately following Sunday's loss – that at 3-6, the professionalism and pride will be key moving forward.
"A lot of times it's about being a pro – being a pro as a coach and being a pro as a player," Marrone said. "What I have seen is I saw a team that practiced very well last week and really had a good week of practice."
Marrone said while the Jaguars were "honed in" during practice leading to the Colts game, the team made too many mistakes.
"It's stuff we didn't make during the week that we made errors on during the game," he said. "They (the Colts) capitalized on them. We still had an opportunity at the end of the game to win, but my message to the team was, 'The last two weeks we had the ball at the end of the game with an opportunity to win, but the things that are done beforehand are really taking the game away from us.' It shouldn't come down to that."
The Jaguars on Sunday committed a slew of missed assignments defensively in what Marrone called "a poor first half," helping the Colts take a 29-16 lead. Colts quarterback Andrew Luck threw three first-half touchdown passes, completing five passes of 20 or more yards in the half.
"My goal for the team is to make sure, 'Hey, listen: other teams are going to make plays, but let them make them by winning,''' Marrone said. "You're going to get beat. We all know that in this game, but at the end of the day let's not our errors or our level of focus – or whatever you may call it … let's not put that in jeopardy where people are going to capitalize.
"If we can go out there and go out and play, I think we can live with those results. Right now, we have to get ourselves were we're focused during the week and where it's carrying over on the field. It's not doing it on every play."
Marrone throughout his comments Monday emphasized the need for consistent focus.
"I don't know if people realize how hard it is to win games each week," Marrone said. "It takes a level of focus from every single play to give yourself a chance to be successful. If you slip a little bit, or your mind's not right or if something throws you off a little bit, you're going to get exposed.
"There was a lot of effort out there, a lot of hustling. But there were obviously some errors. They took advantage of it, and I think that's why we're where we are today."
Also on Monday:
*Marrone was asked about a social-media post by Jalen Ramsey in which the third-year All-Pro cornerback said: "When I'm gone from here, y'all gone miss me. I ain't even trippin lol." Marrone: "People are going to come after you and rightfully so. I don't sit here and expect soft questions or, 'Woe is me.' … We're all going to be attacked, because we're all part of what the performance has been on Sunday. …. You've got to be able to handle it and put your focus on, 'What are we going to do as a team to change it?' The only way to change it is to win football games, and we're not doing that right now. … We're not playing to our ability. That's it at the end of the day. We're not coaching to our ability … all of that. We're part of it, too. … When you have success and everyone's telling you all these good things … it's easy; it's great. At the end of the day, when you don't live up to those expectations – I'm talking about as a team, not an individual – yeah, people are going to come … people are pissed. There are people who support this team that expected great things and we're not performing at that level. If you're not strong enough to understand that, that's not going to help the team get on the right track.'' Marrone added, "Jalen's obviously a good football player. He'll have some good plays and sometimes he'll have some bad plays. He's only in his third year. It all depends on how you take it. I expect Jalen to take it the right way, build on it, come back and get ready to play this week. That's the only thing you can do. If you don't see those things, then obviously that's a problem.''