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What We Learned: Colts 16, Jaguars 13


JACKSONVILLE – Senior writer John Oehser examines what we learned from the Jaguars' 16-13 loss to the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana, Sunday

1.Yards don't mean points.The Jaguars' loss to the Colts wasn't because the offense didn't move. It was because it didn't score when it did move. The Jaguars outgained the Colts 431-326 but managed just 13 points. They also failed to score despite driving into Colts territory six times after halftime. You must score to win.

2.Second halves are an issue.Three times this season – Carolina, Miami and Indianapolis – the Jaguars have had good-to-very-good first halves, scoring a total of 42 first-half points in those games. They have scored three points in the second halves of those games. It is adjustments, or lack thereof? Is it players not making plays? Whatever, it's a trend.

3.Allen Hurns is developing into a very good receiver.This started last season and has continued. Hurns caught 11 passes for 116 yards and was by far the Jaguars' most reliable receiver Sunday. He thus far this season has reduced the drops that plagued him at times last season and in the preseason.

4.The Jaguars need Marqise Lee and Julius Thomas.Throw Denard Robinson in here, too, because we're talking about the need … the need for speed. The Jaguars don't have enough of it right now on offense and it shrinks the field when that's the case.

5.Blake Bortles is improving …We're not going to go rah-rah or do cartwheels over this, but considering he's the quarterback in his second season it's worth noting from time to time: On Sunday, he was good in the first half and so-so in the second. But he's better than he was last season. A lot better. And that's important.

6. … but he remains inconsistent.Bortles had perhaps the best half of his NFL career in the first half, completing 14 of 18 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown. He was 14 of 32 in the second half and overtime for 119 yards and no touchdowns. Consistency remains an issue.

7.Jason Myers is …well, he had a tough day Sunday. A 53-yarder to win with :01 remaining in the fourth quarter and a 48-yarder to win in overtime … those aren't chip shots or gimmes. But in the NFL, you have to stick one of those through. The game never should have come down to that, but you still have to make one of them.

8.The offensive line improves by the week.They're not a collection of All-Pros yet, but after a five-sack game in the opener this group has settled and is playing well. Credit offensive line coach Doug Marrone with working through some adversity, too. Left tackle Luke Joeckel missed two games and right guard Brandon Linder missed Sunday; through that, the group is showing cohesion.

9.T.J. Yeldon may be what he thought he was.It will be overlooked because of the loss, but the second-round rookie rushed for 105 yards on 22 carries Sunday. That was the first 100-yard rushing game of his career, and Yeldon appeared to get stronger as the game continued.

10.The Jaguars are struggling to get pressure.This has been the case all season and it showed up again on Sunday. The Jaguars couldn't get much pass rush when rushing four down linemen, but were able to generate pressure with blitzes. They sacked Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck three times, but there were many times when Hasselbeck had time. Too many.

Images leading up to the Jaguars' road battle against the Colts.

11.The secondary is still struggling to get interceptions.This group played better this week than last week, and it was far more aggressive. That's the difference between playing Tom Brady and Matt Hasselbeck. Still, the unit doesn't have an interception this season after intercepting three last season.

12.Penalties Kill I.OK, we 've known this a long, long time. But the Jaguars committed 13 penalties for 92 yards Sunday with five for 42 yards coming on the Colts' lone touchdown drive. Aside from that drive, the defense for the most part played well. But gift points? Those hurt.

13.Penalties Kill II.The offense wasn't immune to penalties, either. Offensive tackle Jermey Parnell's holding penalty on the first drive of the third quarter took the Jaguars out of field-goal range and led to a punt on what was a promising start to the third quarter.

14.Penalties Kill III.The Jaguars went three-for-three in this area. Nick Marshall's penalty for running out of bounds while covering a punt cost the Jaguars 18 yards of field position. That led directly to a field goal by Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri. In a game decided in overtime, penalties that lead to points loom very, very large.

15.The next two are must-win.Sunday's game wasn't must-win because beating Tampa Bay and Houston the next two weeks would put the Jaguars at 3-3 heading to London. That's acceptable. That also means the Tampa Bay and Houston games are … well … really, really important.

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