LONDON – Call this one a professional victory. An encouraging one.
The Jaguars' 23-7 victory over the Atlanta Falcons at Wembley Stadium Sunday wasn't all that pretty. It perhaps wasn't even as one-sided as the score. But it was a needed victory with the Jaguars in control at the end.
That's what contending teams do.
The offense looked a bit better than it had in recent weeks. The defense looked good after a difficult game in a 37-17 loss to the Houston Texans last Sunday, and linebacker Josh Allen had three sacks for the second time in four games this season.
The Jaguars are 2-2 through four games. It's not quite what the "first quarter" wanted, but they looked more relaxed and more confident Sunday than they had in a while. That's encouraging stuff as we look ahead to Week 5.
Let's get to it …
Wilfredo from Corpus Christi, TX
How many more red-zone opportunities do we have to waste? It's ridiculous at this point.
Wilfredo perchance didn't love Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson eschewing a field goal on 4th-and-1 from the Falcons 7 with the Jaguar leading late in the first half, a strategy that failed when quarterback Trevor Lawrence was sacked for a five-yard loss. I didn't love the decision in the moment. Pederson is going to be aggressive in those situations. It will be cool when it works. It will be uncool when it doesn't.
Ray from Denver by way of Jax
Why, when we're 20 points ahead against a lower-quality team do we not try to push the envelope? Go deep, try; long passes, why just run the ball? Take try things that would be necessary in more difficult games.
This is the NFL, not college football. A 20-point lead can disappear fast. The Jaguars were trying to win a game that got relatively tight in the second half and was a play or two from being really tight. You win and move on in professional football. You don't "push the envelope" to prepare for the next game.
Curtis from Shack Outside La Grange
A win is a win but thank God for the defense. Question: Did Travon Walker miss the team flight? Didn't hear his name called all day.
Jaguars outside linebacker Travon Walker had one of the team's four sacks Sunday.
Mike from Cartersville (AKA Trevortown), GA
That looked like the team a lot of us thought they were. Good in all three phases. Pass protection does seem to be a bit of an issue. Have any idea who is going to play left guard after Cam Robinson returns?
I'm guessing Walker Little. That's just a guess.
Jim from Middleburg
John. The sun will shine in mud Villegas today. It's great to see Tyler Shatley healthy and playing football. Every team needs a player like him.
Jaguars' offensive lineman Tyler Shatley has been active the first four games of the season after having an atrial fibrillation early in training camp and missing time after that. He started Sunday at left guard. It indeed is good to see Shatley playing. He's one of the good ones.
Bobby From Section 410 from Summerville, SC
Hi, John. I think Coach Pederson needs to get out of his own way. Absolutely no need to go for it on fourth down when you are up 17-0 in chip shot field goal range.
Pederson wanted the momentum and scoreboard advantage of a 24-0 lead. Sometimes you kill the bear. Sometimes the bear kills you.
Chuck from Ponte Vedra Beach
Can a team that ranks near last in third and fourth-down conversions consider itself a "ball control offense?" Maybe stop confusing quarterback Trevor Lawrence with Blake Bortles and get the ball downfield more often?
It's always play-calling in the NFL.
Cory from North Bay
Another bad day for play calling and third down. Do they know you can call plays to get first downs on first and second down? We don't need to be trying for third every time. Also: Poor run plays all looked the same.
The Jaguars won Sunday. It's always play-calling in the NFL.
Jeremy from Gilbert, AZ
I really hope I'm wrong, but the future doesn't look bright for the Jags. It looks like the offense has really been dumbed down/ "simplified" for Trevor. What happened to Lawrence? He's been slowly developing the last couple of years and now it looks like he's way in over his head in the NFL.
This was the much-ballyhooed, always-anticipated, usually-grammatically inspiring First Email of the Game. It was sent early in the first quarter after the Jaguars punted on their first series. The Jaguars won Sunday. Lawrence didn't throw an interception and he threw some big, clutch passes for first downs throughout the game. His 30-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Calvin Ridley was big, too. I agree that Lawrence hasn't looked quite as smooth as expected early. I can't agree at all that he has looked in over his head or that anything "has happened" to him.
Michael from Orange Park, FL
One fer Josh Allen?