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📧 O-Zone Late Night: Texans 13, Jaguars 6

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JACKSONVILLE – This one hurt. A lot.

The Jaguars lost to the Houston Texans, 13-6, at TIAA Bank Field Sunday, but it wasn't the score that hurt so much. Or even that the loss was the Jaguars' ninth to the Texans in as many meetings.

What hurt was the Jaguars just didn't play well in a game that meant so much – and that understandably left many fans disheartened and disappointed on a day that began with a lot of energy and excitement around this team.

This game doesn't signal the end of anything. It doesn't mean the good feelings of September won't return. And just because quarterback Trevor Lawrence struggled for a second consecutive week doesn't mean he's bad and it doesn't mean he won't eventually be really good.

It means there are more questions to answer about this team than maybe many observers realized. And that the Jaguars have some winning to do to earn back the feeling that was so good not so long ago.

Sigh. Let's get to it …

David from Eau Claire

And the false hope is officially gone. Back to the reality of a Bottom 5 team.

The hope wasn't false. It's the NFL. Games such as Sunday happen. Good teams lose to winless ones. The Texans had been competitive in all four games this season despite their 0-3-1 record. I don't see the Jaguars as a bottom-five team. They're not terrible. Their victories over the Los Angeles Chargers and the Indianapolis Colts were real and impressive. There were always going to be ups and downs with this team. But I'll admit: While I was less confident in the Jaguars than many observers were entering Sunday, I expected them to win a close game. I didn't expect them to lose in quite so frustrating a fashion.

Ryan from Detroit

Ugg!!! This team has to lead the league in 20-yard field goals!!

This was the much-ballyhooed, oft-hyped, sometimes-insightful First Email of the Game. Yes, the Jaguars have kicked a lot of point-blank field goals this season. Lawrence is a young quarterback in his first season in Head Coach Doug Pederson's offense. They have stalled in the red zone too much this season. Red-zone offense is the toughest part of offensive football, and it really bit the Jaguars Sunday. It's often the last area in which offenses develop. It will happen. In time.

Brian from Round Rock, TX

I've been cursing and yelling at Lawrence a lot. I don't remember yelling at him during the first four games. I did it a lot of last season. What's his issue?

A debate could be had over who has the issue.

Scott from Atlantic Beach, FL

The two first overalls lost the game. Youth, I guess. Doug P is not different than Gus B.

I confess to not grasping the part about "Doug P is not different than Gus B," though perhaps I'll have clarity in time. As far as the last two No. 1 overall selections costing the Jaguars Sunday … yes, no doubt. Lawrence, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, threw a third-quarter interception you can't throw. Outside linebacker Travon Walker, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, had an unnecessary roughness penalty in the fourth quarter that absolutely can't happen. Lawrence's was surprising because it was a bad decision that even an inexperienced quarterback can't make. Walker's was just, plain surprising. I don't think the plays will define the players' careers, but they sure cost the Jaguars big-time Sunday.

Tom from Nocatee

Nice of the Jaguars to honor the teams of the past on Legends Day by playing like crap.

This email was sent in the first half. I had a couple of zippy little responses ready. I think I'll leave those zippy little responses for another day.

Bobby from Summerville, SC

Hi John, In the late 90s us Jags fans use to say, "Oh no the Titans." Nowadays we say, "Oh no the Texans."

Sunday didn't feel as much like a Can't-Beat-the-Texans thing than as a Jaguars-just-played-weirdly bad thing. But that's nitpicking. The Jaguars have lost nine consecutive games to a division rival. Why split hairs? It's all frustrating

Gerald from HILLIARD

Will the Jags ever get a good QB or defense?

The Jaguars' defense allowed 13 points and 248 yards Sunday.

Daniel from Jersey City

O-man, when do you think Trevor will start closing out games when he has the chance? This in particular is what concerns me most given what we've seen.

It's a fair concern. It hasn't happened yet. I expect it will happen with experience. Until it does, it will be something that needs to happen.

Greg from St Johns

Heard this chuckle worthy statement on the way out of the stadium today: "Lawrence still looks like Trevor, but he's playing like Vicki. "

Which undoubtedly got quite a laugh at the Blue-Plate Special down at Ethel's Diner.

Dan from Munich

Hi Zone, say whatever you have to say but TL has a huge learning curve ahead of him to become the franchise quarterback we have been looking for decades.

Well, yes.

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