DALLAS—The Jaguars should certainly be rested and ready for the Seattle Seahawks on opening day. At Texas Stadium Thursday night, the Jaguars first units played a grand total of one minute and 38 seconds, and all of that by the offense, which ran a total of five plays.
Coach Jack Del Rio obviously chose to rest his players in the preseason finale against the Dallas Cowboys. As a result, the Cowboys held a 13-10 lead at halftime.
The Jaguars put their second-team defense on the field for the start of the game and the Cowboys first-team offense marched to two easy scores.
Quarterback Drew Bledsoe capped a nine-play, 87-yard drive on the first possession of the game with a 40-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Terry Glenn, who had beaten rookie cornerback Scott Starks on a corner route. It completed a drive in which the Cowboys moved the ball on the ground and through the air. Cornerback Kenny Wright was the only first-team player on the field for the Jaguars.
Dallas went 68 yards in 12 plays in its second possession, with the Cowboys running the ball at will against the left side of the Jaguars defense. Jose Cortez booted a 26-yard field goal with 2:01 to play in the quarter. At that point, Dallas had held the ball for 12 minutes and seven seconds, having gained eight first downs and 170 total yards.
The Jaguars first-team offense went three-and-out in its first possession and Jacksonville didn't experience its first high moment until rookie Derrick Wimbush returned a short kickoff to the Cowboys' 47-yard line late in the first quarter. Quarterback Byron Leftwich immediately followed that return with two big passes, the first of which was to Ernest Wilford for 33 yards at the Cowboys 14-yard line. Leftwich then completed a 14-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Williams with 1:15 to play in the first quarter.
That score marked the Jaguars first-team offense's second touchdown of the preseason and it completed Leftwich and company's participation for the preaseason.
Nick Novak booted a 49-yard field goal for the Cowboys with 4:42 to play in the first half. He missed a 40-yard try late in the second quarter.
Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee converted a 39-yard field goal attempt on the last play of the first half.
Leftwich completed three of five passes for 52 yards, one touchdown and a 135.0 passer rating. He was replaced at quarterback by David Garrard.
Bledsoe was seven of eight for 91 yards, one touchdown and a 153.6 passer rating. Julius Jones rushed for 75 yards on 11 carries.
Ironically, the Jaguars scored a 31-0 win in last year's preseason finale, in New England, when Patriots coach Bill Belichick rested all of his starters.