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Jacksonville Jaguars Game Preview vs. Indianapolis Colts

The Jaguars have a first-place battle with the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday and we're going to see what it will take for the Jaguars to come away with a victory.

Jacksonville Jaguars (1-2) vs. Indianapolis Colts (1-2)

Sunday, October 4th, 1:00 P.M. EST

Kickoff temperature: Dome

Line: Colts by 9.5/ 4.5

The Jaguars are looking to put the debacle of what happened in New England behind them as the face a Colts team that is currently underperforming.  Since it's unclear whether Colts quarterback Andrew Luck will play, we're going to look at the keys to victory with and without Luck.  

Keys to a Jaguars victory (with Andrew Luck playing):

1.  Get physical with the receivers.  Even if the Jaguars have to endure some early penalties, it's important to take away the quick looks that the Colts will be trying to find.  If Luck has to hold the football longer, he's going to take more hits and that plays right into what the Jaguars are looking to do. 

2.  Play keep away on offense.  The Jaguars need to run the football to control the clock and try to get into some third-and-manageable situations.  The more time Luck is on the bench, the more he's going to be under pressure when the Colts offense takes over to try and do too much.  

3.  Catch the football.  This is a weekly key for whoever plays quarterback.  On offense, the Jaguars receivers need to make more plays for Blake Bortles and on defense they need to take advantage of the one of two errant tosses that they might get from Luck.  

Keys to a Jaguars victory (without Andrew Luck playing):

1.  Stop Frank Gore.  The Colts will lean on the running game with Frank Gore and the Jaguars must do whatever they can to Matt Hasselbeck to beat them with his arm.  

2.  Press the underneath routes.  Test Hasselbeck's arm strength and make him go over the top of the defense.  He hasn't played in a while and if he can beat the Jaguars defense with pinpoint deep ball accuracy then more power to him. 

3. Open up the offense.  Without Luck, the Jaguars defense won't be under quite as much pressure, and neither will the Jacksonville offense.  Take some deep shots to Allen Robinson and let him try to make plays.  Even if the shots result in a turnover, it won't be the end of the world. 

What to look for: 

1.  Look for the Jaguars defense to play well against the run.  The Jaguars know that the Colts would like to establish the run regardless of who plays quarterback.  Even without Sen'Derrick Marks, Jacksonville has the horses up front to neutralize a pretty mediocre Indianapolis offensive line. 

2.  Look for the Jaguars offense to struggle running the ball.  With the injuries to the Jags wide receiving corps, they are more limited than ever in the passing game.  Opposing teams know that their best chance of beating Jacksonville is making them a one-dimensional passing team and the Colts will dedicate as many men as possible to stopping the run. 

3.  Look for a tough game for Allen Robinson.  Robinson will likely be lined up against Vontae Davis, who is one of the best cover guys in the league. The Colts know that Robinson is the only real threat the Jaguars have outside and they should dedicate their resources to neutralizing him. 

4.  Look for a T.Y. TD.  Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton is one of the best in the game and he should find some open spaces against the Jags defense. 

5.  The Jags pull off the upset....unless Luck suits up.  If Andrew Luck plays the Jaguars will play the Colts tough, but will ultimately lose.  If Matt Hasselbeck starts the Jaguars will shut down the Colts offense and do just enough to get a win.  


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