JACKSONVILLE – Senior writer John Oehser's five takeaways from the day after the Jaguars' loss to the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis, Indiana, Sunday …
1.Cann to start.We begin Day After Takeaways with the Jaguars' latest injury news, this being the announcement Monday that the team has placed right guard Brandon Linder on injured reserve. Though Linder may be the team's best offensive lineman, the Jaguars feel good about both rookie A.J. Cann and second-year veteran Tyler Shatley at the position. Cann started against the Colts Sunday, playing well in Linder's place, and he is expected to remain the starter. "He (Linder) obviously is a big part of that offensive line, the mentality he brings and the leadership," Bradley said. "I thought A.J. did a nice job. There were a few mistakes that are going to happen, but overall, the strength and toughness that we thought he would bring … it showed." The Colts' only sack Sunday came from a free-rushing Kendall Langford through Cann's area. On the play, Cann moved inside to block a blitzing defensive back. "There was a mistake there, and on occasion you saw those, but he played fast throughout the game and he played aggressively," Bradley said, adding that the offensive line as a whole played well with the exception of a few communication errors. "It was more because of communication than ability," Bradley said. "It comes back to discipline and focus. The penalties, the communication – those things are our issues right now."
2.Help when needed.Count veteran center Stefen Wisniewski among those who believe Cann will adequately replace Linder. "It was a good first start for him," Wisniewski said of Cann's performance Sunday. "He handled the noise and all pretty well, I thought. I think he has the attitude that, 'It's a good start, but I have to get better from there.'" Cann, who played mostly on the left side while competing with Zane Beadles during training camp, began working extensively on the right side last week. "There's not really a difference at all," Cann said Monday of the two sides, adding of Linder, "It's unfortunate that Brandon's out. He's important to this offense, but it gives me an opportunity to step up, showcase my ability and do whatever I can do to help this team. … There are some things I have to get better at, but then again, there were some things that I guess caught the coaches' eyes. I've always got to continue to get better." Said Wisniewski, "I certainly am going to help him out as much as I can with technique stuff, assignment stuff and all that. He's a smart kid, and he's working hard. He's willing to learn."
3)Faith in the rookie.Don't look for the Jaguars to make a move at kicker this week. Despite two missed field goals by Jason Myers late Sunday, Bradley was emphatic Monday that the team plans to stay with the rookie. Myers missed from 53 yards with :01 remaining in regulation and from 48 yards with 8:13 remaining in overtime. "He had an unfortunate day yesterday," Bradley said. "He started of 1-for-1, 2-for-2, but in that heightened environment (at game's end), it didn't work out for us." Bradley was asked about Myers multiple times Monday, and although Bradley said you evaluate such a situation "week-to-week," he repeatedly spoke highly of Myers. "The confidence comes from his demeanor and mentality," Bradley said. "We know with a younger kicker like this he's going to go through some of these situations. … We have great faith in him. There were mistakes made out there by multiple players. They took their turns. His was more visible. Everybody saw it. We just have faith in his demeanor and what he's all about and in practice and in some of the games."
4)Work in progress.As expected, the offense remained a huge topic a day after Indianapolis. The Jaguars moved efficiently much of the game, producing 421 yards, but managed just 13 points – none after halftime. "It's a work in progress," Bradley said. "To say it's like a well-oiled machine, where we've been together seven or eight years ... no, it's not that. I'm seeing good signs, but to be real, I'm seeing some signs that are disappointing. It has the capabilities; we're just not seeing it consistently." Quarterback Blake Bortles completed 14 of 18 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown in the first half before completing 14 of 32 passes for 119 yards and no touchdowns in the second half. "We're still looking for consistency from him," Bradley said of Bortles. "We're looking to string them (good plays) together more often than not and I think that's just his poise, decision-making and becoming more consistent."
5)Discipline and focus.One theme of Bradley's next-day press conference was "self-inflicted." He also talked about discipline and focus when discussing the penalties that plagued the Jaguars throughout the game. The Jaguars were penalized 13 times for 92 yards, with five for 42 yards coming on the Colts' lone touchdown drive of the game. Davon House committed a pass-interference penalty on the drive, as did safety James Sample. Sample also was called for too many men on the field. Cornerback Aaron Colvin committed a face-mask penalty and defensive end Chris Clemons was called for unsportsmanlike conduct for contacting Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck's helmet on a sack. "With the aggressiveness that we're going to play on the perimeter, you're going to see some defensive holds during a game with our corners," Bradley said. "I think it's the number that's shocking. That they came all in a row on one series – that's what you can't have."