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Just keep sawing wood


It's just one game. What's with the panic?

Jaguars fans have reacted to Sunday's loss to the Tennessee Titans with disbelief. So when did this team become unbeatable? When did it become so much better than the rest of the league that it's immune to losing a game it thought it would win?

File Sunday's loss under, "It happens." Teams lose. Good teams lose. Everybody loses.

And that's why no one loss is a killer in this league. You know all about parity. It's the great equalizer. It's everybody's lament and, at the same time, it's every team's great hope. Nobody in this league is going to run away from its competition. Something will always bring you back to the pack.

So, let's examine the Jaguars' situation. They're 3-2 and only a game behind AFC South leader Indianapolis, who plays in Pittsburgh next Monday night. With a win in Baltimore Sunday it would be reasonable to think the Jaguars could move back into a tie for the division lead.

But even if that doesn't happen, it won't be the end of the world. Five games into the season, there's every indication this season is going to be the marathon about which Tom Coughlin always speaks, and there's every reason to believe the Jaguars are going to be in this division title race right to the end.

The key is for the Jaguars to be in contention when they make the midseason turn, and they can accomplish that by beating Houston and Washington at Alltel Stadium. The disposition of this season will be decided in December, as always, and the Jaguars have a very favorable final-month schedule, including a re-match with the Titans at Alltel Stadium and a trip to Indianapolis on the final weekend of the year.

It's time for a little perspective, again. So, here it is:

This is a young team in a state of repair. It is making gains, but there are enough unsettled areas on this team to make all but a couple of wins on this schedule a surprisingly joyous occasion. We must not lose contact with reality. These are not the '84 49ers. This is a team attempting to over-achieve and, to that end, they have.

So, let's all calm down. There's no need to affix blame. Nothing radical has to be changed. The plan is fine. Just keep sawing wood.

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