WALTHAM, United Kingdom – Each week during the 2022 season, Jaguars "experts" – Tony Boselli, Bucky Brooks, Frank Frangie, Jeff Lageman, Brent Martineau, John Oehser, Brian Sexton, J.P. Shadrick and Ashlyn Sullivan – will analyze the following day's Jaguars matchup.
Up this week:
The Denver Broncos at Wembley Stadium in London.
Frank Frangie, Radio Voice of the Jaguars
- The Jaguars will win if: They make a few more plays late – game-winning plays they haven't made late. They also must find a better pass rush. That seems to be the early concern with the defense. Can it affect the passer?
- The Broncos will win if: They manage the trip to London well. This is the first time to London for many of their guys, which is the main reason they traveled Monday and spent the week there. It was an effort to get acclimated. The Broncos also must make more plays on offense. They have been good defensively but haven't been able to score.
- As Frangie sees it: The Jaguars are the better team and I think they should win. But the more you lose close games, the harder it is to win them. They must make plays late to gain confidence in close games. That is the key to the game.
Jeff Lageman, Jaguars analyst and former Jaguars defensive end
- The Jaguars will win if: They can eliminate some of the mistakes plaguing them over the last several weeks. The mistakes are not just residing in one area, but across the team at different times. That keeps the team from playing complementary football.
- The Broncos will win if: Their defense dominates as they have shown they are more than capable of doing. Denver's defense is at or near the top in nearly every statistical category and has some excellent players at all three levels.
- As Lageman sees it: Lawrence must be efficient, but he cannot do it alone. He must have a running game that is explosive at times to keep the Broncos on their heels and unable to focus on getting after the passer. The Jaguars' defense must keep a struggling Denver offense from finding some life. This game is huge for two teams trying to end four-game skids and could change the direction of the season for the winner.
Brent Martineau, Action Sports Jax Sports Director
- The Jaguars will win if: They score 20 or more points. Unless the Broncos find magic in London, their offense has trouble putting up points. The last time I said this, Indy put up 34 points on the Jaguars, but we still must trust the numbers and our eyes. The Jaguars will have their hands full with Denver's defense, so anything over 20 points would be a good performance and likely land a win.
- The Broncos will win if: Wilson attacks the middle of the field with success. Wilson is more of a boundary passer, but the Jags have been weakest in the middle of the field. Is Denver willing to try the Colts' game plan and put pressure on the Jaguars' linebackers? If the Broncos do it with success, it will be a long afternoon for the Jaguars.
- As Martineau sees it: This game concerns me more than it should. Sooner or later the Broncos will erupt on offense. Their pieces are too good to be this bad. The way this season is going for the Jaguars, this will be that game. I also have concerns about the Jags handling the front of the Broncos. I've picked the Jags every game this year, but not Sunday: 23-19, Denver.
John Oehser, jaguars.com senior writer
- The Jaguars will win if: They score in the mid-twenties and force a points-producing turnover. The Jaguars are improved offensively, but the Broncos may be the best defense they have faced all season. Takeaways have become one of the major issues for this team. After leading the NFL with nine through four games, they haven't forced a turnover in 11 quarters. They haven't won in that span, either.
- The Broncos will win if: They find themselves offensively and the defense plays true to form. As reliable as the Jaguars have been offensively this season, the Broncos' front and secondary are more than good enough to turn the game in their favor. The Broncos' offensive struggles have been one of the NFL's major early-season surprises. The Jaguars have struggled enough defensively to worry about a breakout game for Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson.
- As Oehser sees it: This is tricky for the Jaguars because their defensive struggles and offensive inconsistencies make all games tricky. But the Broncos' offense is struggling enough that the Jaguars could get the game-turning play defensively they haven't had in a month. This feels like the week the Jaguars break their streak.
Brian Sexton, jaguars.com senior correspondent
- The Jaguars will win if: They correct their mistakes. The Jaguars' offense must figure out how to convert in the red zone. Penalties and turnovers still plague this team with the game is on the line. The defense must avoid the senseless late hits on quarterbacks that have plagued them three consecutive weeks, two of which kept the Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts on the field for scoring drives. The Jaguars are talented but playing poorly in crucial situations. That has cost them in close games.
- The Broncos will win if: They can take advantage of a secondary that has struggled with top receivers. Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy has elite speed and Courtland Sutton scorched the Jaguars for nine catches for 159 yards and a touchdown at TIAA Bank Field last September. Jaguars cornerback Tre Herndon gave up a big touchdown last week against the New York Giants before settling in and he can expect to see Sutton all day. How he holds up could go a long way toward deciding the winner.
- As Sexton sees it: The Jaguars will finally get a win Sunday. They've been close and getting closer. I expect the team that has played in London more than any other to take advantage of a beat-up Broncos roster and come home with their third win of the season.
J.P. Shadrick, jaguars.com senior reporter
- The Jaguars will win if: They can avoid predictable passing situations against one of the best pass-rushing groups in the NFL. Also, get pressure on Wilson and you'll find out quickly if his hamstring is in good shape. Either way, as Jaguars outside linebacker Josh Allen told me in the locker room about the lack of consistent pass rush, "Just win." Simple, but complicated all at the same time. This Jaguars defense could use a good day at the office, as the last few outings have been far from ideal.
- The Broncos will win if: They get any semblance of a consistent running game going with a stable of veteran running backs. If Wilson can connect off play-action from that, that could jumpstart one of the NFL's worst-performing offenses. If the Broncos' defense forces Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence into third-and-7 or longer consistently, they could add to their AFC-leading sack total of 22.
- As Shadrick sees it: Both these teams are backed into a corner with four-game losing skids and identical 2-5 records. The heat is getting hotter in Denver for first-year Head Coach Nathaniel Hackett and the highly-paid Wilson has not paid dividends expected upon his arrival. The Jaguars have a stable coaching situation and a second-year quarterback who is learning by the week. These teams have a combined 2-9 record in one-possession games. The season is far from over, and there is time to turn things around, certainly for the Jaguars. As the former UK Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill, said to the House of Commons in 1941: "We are still masters of our fate. We still are captains of our souls."
Ashlyn Sullivan, Jaguars team reporter
- The Jaguars will win if: The defense can make a play. I truly think it will only take one big play at a key moment to get this defense playing like it was a couple of weeks ago. The Jaguars' defense runs on momentum; it is clear on the sidelines they feed off each other. If you open up the gate with one play, expect many more to follow. The defense must have takeaways, sacks … something extra to beat a Broncos team that could limit the Jaguars offense.
- The Broncos will win if: The defense we have heard so much about all week plays great. The Jaguars' offense has been efficient and productive the past two weeks. But the Broncos have an intimidating front, and cornerback Patrick Surtain II and the secondary can take Jaguars wide receiver Christian Kirk and Co. out of the game. This will be a great challenge for the Jaguars' offense to scheme past the Broncos' superstars.
- As Sullivan sees it: This game is winnable if the Jaguars play clean football. These teams are pretty evenly matched, so whoever plays the cleanest game will win. Both teams are on a four-game losing streak and need this win. I think the Jaguars get it done in London, with the advantage being they know how to play overseas.
From practice and fan meet and greets to spending time with JagTag Xtra Time athletes, see top photos from the Jaguars first day in London.
(October 28, 2022)