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O-Zone Late Night: Eagles 24, Jaguars 10

JACKSONVILLE – The game went as might be expected.

The Jaguars lost to the Philadelphia Eagles, 24-10, in a 2019 Preseason Week 2 game at TIAA Bank Field Thursday night. The Jaguars started their backup quarterback. The Eagles started their third-team quarterback, then played their fourth-team quarterback for three-and-a-half quarters.

Those sorts of quarterback situations often mean offensive struggles, and that's sure what they meant early on Thursday.

It didn't get all that much prettier as the game continued. The good news for the Jaguars was they scored their first points of the 2019 preseason. The better news was that backup quarterback Gardner Minshew II played much better Thursday than he did last week in the preseason opener.

Maybe the best news is the Jaguars plan to play their starters in Preseason Week 3 at Miami next Thursday. They haven't done so in either of the first to preseason games, which has made the games difficult to watch at times and just as difficult to evaluate.

So, let's get to it …

Chris from Mandarin, FL

Early impression: Taven Bryan is not a good football player. Also, there appears to be no place to submit questions to the O-Zone through the new app version.

This was the much-anticipated, oft-ballyhooed, mega-hyped First Email of the Game. Perhaps not surprisingly, it involved Jaguars second-year defensive tackle Taven Bryan. He has come into focus of observers this preseason, and it has become vogue to criticize the 2018 first-round draft selection. The reality was he played OK – though not great – in the preseason opener in Baltimore last week; the coaching staff believes he has played OK during camp. As for Thursday, he looked bad on a 12-yard run on the Eagles' first play from scrimmage, then got really good penetration on a run for a loss later in the quarter. Bryan has been up and down, but he's not bad. As for submitting questions on the app … I'll look into it. Actually, I probably won't. That sounds like work.

Josiah from Jacksonville

Not lookin' good, Johnny boy. Is our depth this bad? Is this any indication of what our starters will do? The margin shouldn't be that wide between first, second or third team. They are professional athletes.

Why would what the second team does reflect on what the starters will do? I'm not being sarcastic or dim. I just honestly have no idea what one has to do with the other.

Ed from Jacksonville

How are The Roar looking this preseason? Did they sit all their starters this game?

I have no idea what you're talking about.

Jon from Jacksonville

Hashtag Picasso wasn't down? But really a much better showing against the Eagles. Minshew seems to have learned from his first experience well. Turns out the sky didn't actually fall. Who'd a thunked it?

Imagine that.

Brodie from Orlando, FL

Somewhere in the write-ups can we get information on how many starters played for Philly? Just so we can know what we are comparing to.

Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz didn't play, and a lot of the Philadelphia starters didn't play. This will cause hue and cry about the Jaguars' backups not being as good as the Eagles' backups, and I guess that's understandable angst. But the bottom line is the Jaguars played almost no starters or backups in either of the first two preseason games. Until such time – or at least until starting quarterback Nick Foles plays – any hue and cry is misguided at worst and premature at best.

John from Southampton, UK


You and me both, buddy.

Jaginator from (formerly of) Section 124)

You know who shamelessly hypes preseason football? The NFL. There is no option to purchase just the regular-season home games. And in your season-ticket package, the price of preseason games is equivalent to that of the REAL games. Everyone with eyes and a working brain realizes that these "games" stink and that they're not worth the price printed on the ticket. But if you want to buy a season-ticket package, you have no choice but to fork over for these stinkers.

There's no counterargument to this. NFL teams perhaps should change the prices within their season ticket packages to charge more for regular-season games and counter that by making preseason games cheaper or free. Beyond that, this issue isn't going away. But the reality is that this has been an issue for as long as there have been preseason games. It's perhaps a little more obvious now that more and more teams are playing starters and front-line players less during the preseason but charging for games that mean nothing has been the NFL's norm for years.

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