The Jaguars look for their second consecutive win and first on the road as they battle the Buffalo Bills on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Kickoff is set for 1:00 p.m. EDT. The Jaguars are facing road trips in three of the next four weeks before their bye in week nine.
The Bills lead the regular season series with the Jaguars, 5-4. The teams are meeting for the fifth consecutive season with the Jaguars winning two of the last three. The Jaguars own a 7-9 mark against the AFC East under head coach Jack Del Rio including a 2-2 record in 2009, and have won seven of the last 12 games against AFC East opponents.
Edwards returns to Buffalo
Quarterback Trent Edwards knows his way around Ralph Wilson Stadium but one place he is not familiar with is the opposing sideline and that's where he will find himself Sunday. Edwards will serve as the Jaguars' backup quarterback, less than two weeks after being released by the Bills and claimed off waivers by the Jaguars.
"It's going to be weird, so it might not be the easiest situation to go through," Edwards said. "I have a lot of great friends, a lot of great relationships up there so it will be good to see all of those people, but the bottom line is we need to get a win."
Edwards started 32 games for the Bills after being selected in the third round of the 2007 draft. He opened the 2010 season as the Bills' starter before he was waived on Sept. 27.
There has been talk this week about how much information Edwards could pass on to his new teammates, but the fourth-year pro insists his primary responsibility is to help quarterback David Garrard.
"First things first, I need to help Dave in whatever he can do," Edwards said. "That's my job here, that's my responsibility. Whatever Dave needs out of me I'm going to be there for him. I need to do my job on a day-to-day basis here from start to finish."
Edwards served as the club's third quarterback last Sunday against Indianapolis and moved up the depth chart after veteran Todd Bouman was released earlier this week. With only two quarterbacks on the Jaguars roster, the release of Bouman was a sign things were beginning to slow down for Edwards.
"It's not spinning as much, but there is still some spinning going on. There's just formations, motions and shifts that I haven't grown accustomed to, that I haven't run anywhere before. I just need to see it happen and see it play out," Edwards said. "It helped being at the game Sunday, just watching Dave operate and seeing how he goes about his business. Once you're around these guys and around the playbook, it starts to slow down a little bit."
Bills have three former Jaguars
The Bills have three former Jaguars on their roster. Defensive tackle Marcus Stroud spent seven seasons (2001-07) with the Jaguars after being selected with the 13th overall pick in the 2001 draft. Stroud, who played at Georgia, played in 100 games for the Jaguars with 84 starts. He started 68 consecutive games from 2002-06, tied for the third-longest streak in team history. He had 22 sacks, 27 tackles for loss, seven forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. His 22 sacks are tied for seventh in franchise history.
Linebacker Akin Ayodele played four seasons (2002-05) with the Jaguars after being selected in the third round of the 2002 draft. Ayodele started 46 of 64 games and recorded 8.5 sacks and three interceptions. Cornerback Drayton Florence played in 15 games with eight starts for the Jaguars in 2008 after signing as an unrestricted free agent.
Garrard has had success against AFC East
Quarterback David Garrard has a 91.6 passer rating in nine previous starts against teams from the AFC East with a 4-5 record as a starter. Garrard has thrown for eight touchdowns and four interceptions and recorded a 65.3 completion percentage. He has a 60-plus completion percentage in eight of the nine starts and a 70-plus percentage in five of the starts.
Garrard is 2-2 against the Bills in four career starts. He has posted a 90-plus rating in two of the four games and has a 65.8 completion percentage.
Did you know?
The Jaguars' first-ever playoff game was a victory at Buffalo on December 28, 1996.
Finding the end zone
Sunday will be Maurice Jones-Drew's 11th career game against an AFC East foe. In the 10 previous meetings, Jones-Drew has scored 11 rushing touchdowns including at least one in each game except one.
Jones-Drew has played in four games against the Bills with career totals of 171 yards on 50 carries with four touchdowns along with 14 receptions for 106 yards. He has a touchdown in all four games against the Bills.
- Jaguars punter Adam Podlesh grew up in nearby Pittsford, NY and attended Pittsford Sutherland High School.
- Bills head coach Chan Gailey, Bills offensive line coach Joe D'Alessandris and Bills offensive coordinator Curtis Modkins were on the staff at Georgia Tech from 2002-03 while Jaguars linebacker Daryl Smith played there.
- Jaguars cornerback David Jones and Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick were teammates with the Cincinnati Bengals.
- Jaguars defensive coordinator Mel Tucker was on the staff at Ohio State from 2003-04 while Bills safety Donte Whitner and Bills cornerback Ashton Youboty played there.
- Bills co-head strength and conditioning coach Eric Ciano was on the staff at Louisiana Tech from 2000-02 while Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee played there.
- Bills outside linebackers coach Bob Sanders coached at East Carolina from 1980-82 while Jaguars running backs coach Earnest Byner played there.
Florida connections on Bills roster
The Bills have nine players with ties to Florida: Linebacker Andra Davis (Live Oak, Suwannee, Univ. of Florida), cornerback Drayton Florence (Ocala, Vanguard High), offensive lineman Cornell Green (St. Petersburg, Lakewood High, Central Florida), fullback Corey McIntyre (Indiantown, South Fork High), wide receiver Roscoe Parrish (Miami, Miami Senior High, Univ. of Miami), running back C.J. Spiller (Lake Butler, Union County High), nose tackle Torell Troup (Central Florida), wide receiver David Nelson (Univ. of Florida) and long snapper Garrison Sanborn (Tampa, Prattville, Florida State).
Defensive line coach Bob Sanders spent time as an assistant at Florida from 1990-2000 while defensive coordinator George Edwards was on the Florida coaching staff from 1990-91. Defensive quality control coach Adrian White is a native of Orange Park.
The game will be broadcast regionally on CBS, locally on WTEV CBS47 (Ch. 6 cable). Gus Johnson will handle play-by-play duties with Steve Tasker providing analysis.
The last word
"They have a great defense. They do a great job of stopping the run. Last year they loaded the box against us. Their safeties are making a lot of tackles. It's going to be a tough game, regardless of what their record is. We know in the NFL anybody can win any Sunday, so we've got to keep working hard and play at our best."
Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew on facing the Bills on Sunday