Skip to main content

Jaguars News | Jacksonville Jaguars -

Quick thoughts: Jets 26, Jaguars 21


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Senior writer John Oehser, senior correspondent Brian Sexton and team reporter Ashlyn Sullivan offer quick thoughts on the Jaguars' 26-21 loss to the New York Jets in a 2021 Week 16 game at MetLife Stadium Sunday …

Oehser …

  1. Oh, no. The Jaguars got news early Sunday they absolutely didn't want – and the news could alter how they approach the offseason. Jaguars running back James Robinson, perhaps the team's best player and certainly their most productive offensive player, sustained an Achilles injury in the first quarter and did not return. Interim Head Coach Darrell Bevell confirmed afterward the injury was a tear. Robinson, a 1,000-yard rusher as a rookie last season, is eligible to renegotiate his rookie contract this offseason because he entered the NFL as an undrafted rookie in the 2020 offseason. How the injury will affect that remains to be seen. Still, an Achilles injury is by any measure a significant one for any player – particularly a running back. Couple that with the season-ending Lis Franc injury sustained by rookie running back/wide receiver Travis Etienne Jr. and the Jaguars' running back room – while talented – will entered the 2022 offseason with serious unknowns. "It's unfortunate that we lose a player of Jones' caliber," Bevell said. "He's such a rock for us. When one of your bell-cow players goes down, it's a tough blow."
  2. This one had everything. This just felt like a late-season game between two struggling teams – and in that sense, it was … well, entertaining. Two of the game's touchdowns were scored by offensive linemen. Another came on a 103-yard kickoff return. Weirdness? Yeah, there was weirdness – and a lot of mistakes. There were no turnovers, but the Jaguars could have had at least two interceptions – and the Jaguars stayed close despite their season long struggles with dropped passes on offense continuing in a big way. Was there much to analyze Sunday? Perhaps not – except that rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence overall had some good moments, and was impressive on a late drive that brought the Jaguars to within two yards of a game-winning touchdown in the final seconds. And you can definitely question the decision to spike the ball on 3rd-and-1 late. For the Jaguars, the long-term analysis will begin once a head coach is hired and once the team knows the direction and decision-makers moving forward. But everything doesn't have to be about long-term analysis. Sunday was wacky at times and weird at others. But it was competitive – and not enough Jaguars games have been that this season. It was kind of fun, too. Merry belated Christmas. Perhaps. Sort of.


  1. Big Miss. Lawrence put together a magnificent game-winning kind of drive, showing us the quarterback we expect to watch make those kinds of plays for many years. But the way it ended felt like an outfielder reaching over the fence to steal a home run. We could talk about the illegal shift, or the inability of wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. to get into the end zone – or spiking the ball and not trying to get a play off on third down. All are worthy of discussion. The real mistake, in my opinion, was the decision to go for two points up three in the first half. What was the difference between four and five points in the first half? If they kick the extra point, they can kick the extra point after running back Dare Ogunbowale's fourth-quarter touchdown, then kick the chip-shot field goal and play for overtime. Instead, the Jaguars felt the need to chase the points and it put them in a bad spot with the game on the line. The Jaguars have been fighting an uphill battle all season long. On Sunday, they made the climb steeper on themselves.
  2. Different week, different opponent, same big mistakes. Jets running back Michael Carter's 38-yard fourth-quarter run was the equivalent of Houston Texans wide receiver Brandin Cook's 43-yard fourth-quarter touchdown last Sunday. With a chance to get a stop, the Jaguars' defense instead gave up a big play that gave the opponent breathing room for a second consecutive week. This allowed a field goal to grow the New York lead to five instead of setting the table for a field goal to win it. The same could be said of special teams – which last week gave up a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and allowed a 103-yard return for a touchdown on Sunday. The Jags on Sunday settled for field goals in the red zone, dropped passes, missed tackles and couldn't get home on the blitz. I know they were down a number of key players, but the Jets were missing more. It all adds up to the No. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft and they desperately need the help.

Sullivan …

  1. A chance. Sunday was the chance we've been waiting for Lawrence – a chance to have the ball in his hands late and win. The Jaguars on the final drive had efficient play-calling all the way to third down in the red zone; they spiked the ball and went for it on 4th-and-1 and it did not go their way. This was Lawrence's best game since the win over Miami in London – even with that rough fumble in the third quarter. He was obviously more comfortable in his progressions and thanked his offensive line for that, saying he had ample time to get to his third and fourth reads. "It was an emphasis I wanted to make this week, was trust those guys and stay in the pocket instead of trying to scramble," he said. You can expect this Jaguars offense to continue to be aggressive in the final two games and Lawrence believes it was why the offense looked more in sync Sunday. "Taking those shots is something you have to do in this league," he said. "Situationally we played well today, and it's about finding that balance of playing smart and aggressive." Lawrence is starting to find that balance, reason for optimism in a season that has been anything but positive.
  2. The run. The Jaguars' defense some weeks has no problem stopping the run, but has lacked consistency this season. This Jets team rushed for 273 yards Sunday … yikes. The Jaguars' pass defense played incredibly well; besides Jets quarterback Zach Wilson scrambling there were not really any big plays downfield. Cornerback Shaquill Griffin said Sunday this Jaguars defense needs to get back to stopping the run being the number one priority. "We can be that defense all the time," Griffin said alluding to a huge stop linebacker Shaq Quarterman made to keep the Jets out of the end zone. Griffin stressed the need to get off the field earlier in the game and allow those big plays on defense to happen earlier. The Jaguars really need momentum behind them to make something happen, and when a team rushes for over 200 yards against you … momentum is real tough to come by.

Check out these top game photos of the Jacksonville Jaguars as they take on the New York Jets for Week 16 of the NFL Regular Season at MetLife Stadium.

Related Content