Jaguars send a message

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If it isn't a defining game, it'll do until a defining game gets here, and that'll be in about three weeks.

Yeah, the Jaguars are on the verge of clinching a playoff berth following one of the most uplifting victories in team history on Sunday at Heinz Field. The impact of the win was evidenced by quarterback David Garrard's postgame press conference.

"It's great being a Jaguar right now," Garrard said following a personal performance that was marred only by one errant pass that triggered a Steelers rally that threatened to turn the day into a disaster.

"This is a message to send to the rest of the league that we're for real. We've always said we can beat anybody. We don't want to get too bold but we want to have that swagger and confidence," Garrard said.

In the cold and snow and mud and wind in Pittsburgh, the Jaguars defined themselves as a cold-weather football team. Yeah, the guys from Florida can play the hard-knocks game with the best of them. That's the message.

It's a message that no doubt was delivered by Sunday's eye-opening dominance of the Steelers, and it's a message the Jaguars would take with them into the playoffs. If Garrard's chest had been any more puffed out, he would've broken the buttons on his high-fashion winter coat, replete with matching fedora.

"As a quarterback, you have to have that swagger," Garrard said when asked about his sartorial splendor. He said something about the way Tom Brady dresses. Whatever that is, we may find out in a few weeks.

When the Jaguars clinch a playoff berth, and they will clinch a playoff berth, they could find themselves heading back to Pittsburgh.

"It doesn't matter that we're a Florida team. We're built for the cold weather. If we have to come back up here, we'll be ready for it and hopefully there will be more snow," Garrard said.

The Jaguars could also find themselves having to go to San Diego in the wild-card round or to Cleveland, should the Browns win the AFC North and not the Steelers. When they go, they will go with confidence.

"That's definitely a possibility," center Brad Meester said about a return match in Pittsburgh. "This is a tough place to play but we look forward to challenges."

The important message in the Jaguars' win over the Steelers is that the Jaguars physically dominated one of the league's premier muscle teams, and they did it in Steelers weather. The Jaguars rushed for more than twice as much yardage as the Steelers and, even more impressively, stuck it down the Steelers' throats with the game on the line.

How about a 20-play touchdown drive? How about a 73-yard touchdown drive that answered a game-tying touchdown and two-point conversion by the Steelers?

"It just shows our heart. It was a workman's day today," Maurice Jones-Drew said.

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