Jaguars Must Avoid a Letdown
But after suffering a pair of 25 point losses to the Chargers and Eagles, the Jaguars rebounded to upset the Colts, 31-28.
That means Del Rio is safe for now, but he could be in trouble if the team doesn't make the playoffs.
The victory over the Colts was a milestone victory for the Jaguars.
Del Rio could sense what the Jaguars' dramatic victory over the Colts Sunday meant to the players.
"I do believe there was a spark yesterday and that our football team felt a jolt of energy. There was something special about that win yesterday for us. We're excited to get back to work. There's no question it was exhilarating to be a part of that. It was a lot of fun," he said.
Despite all that euphoria, Del Rio was quick to add a note of caution and point out that the Jaguars still aren't playing at the highest level.
"We really didn't play great," he said. "We were able to win a game against a division rival, a team that has been on the top of our division for a long time. But we're didn't play particularly sharp. We're going to play better football. We need to. We've got a lot of work yet to do and that's in all three phases."
Del Rio's caution is understandable. The Jaguars failed in their first goal of getting off to a fast start and are 2-2 for the third consecutive year. And a 2-2 start the last two years has translated into 5-11 and 7-9 finishes.
They're also back at .500, which has been typical of the Del Rio regime. The team tends to play long-term at the .500 level. The team is 60-59 under Del Rio, including playoffs.
And the Jaguars are continuing their roller coaster ride of playing up and down. They beat Denver in the opener, lost a pair of games by 25-point margins and then upset the Colts.
With a game coming up Sunday at winless Buffalo, the team can't afford a letdown so Del Rio doesn't want the Jaguars feeling too good about themselves after one of the best regular-season wins in franchise history.
Del Rio had the same message for the players in their team meeting that he had for the media.
"We won, but we could have played so much better," tight end Marcedes Lewis said. "The first thing Jack said when he walked in was, 'Great win. Enjoy this. But we could have played so much better.'
"You can't get too high or too low. You have to stay on even keel. You have to show your maturity so you're not on the roller coaster."
Del Rio used one word to describe what the Jaguars have to do to become a more consistent team -- execution.
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