If I were to put a check list together before kickoff at Qualcomm Stadium, of the worst things that could happen for the Jaguars today every box but one would be marked by the end of the 4th Quarter. The lone positive takeaway is Blake Bortles finished the game healthy. Let’s depressingly try and sift through the dumpster fire for some solutions.
• RBs total 35 rushing yards: T.J. Yeldon carried the rock 7 times for 28 yards, while Denard Robinson added 1 touch for 7 yards. 8 total carries is disgusting but when you're playing from behind it's hard to implement the run. The solution is simple: pray. Chris Ivory was brought in to make the Jags stable competitive on the field and I still believe he'll just do that in his return to the gridiron. Unfortunately, there's no time table to his return and Greg Olson's offense is desperate for him. It's too late to bring in another body, at least one that'll improve the ground game. I don't care who you pray to, or if you're religious... right now the only answer is getting Ivory healthy sooner rather that later. By the way, the answer is yes, I purposely left out Bortles' rushing yards because those runs were scrambles that weren't designed to happen.
• Kelvin Beachum is hurt: When Dave Caldwell lured the the big offensive lineman from Pittsburgh, it was an upgrade to a unit that consistently couldn't hold their own in the trenches. The only knock on Beachum was his health, and even the most optimistic fan had to assume he wouldn't make it through 16 games with the Teal & Black.. but Week 2?! The severity of his injury isn't clear at this time but considering he left the game in an ambulance, the outlook is grim. If there is a move to be made in trade talks for Jacksonville it's on the offensive line. We all expect the Jags to focus heavily on the O-line in next year's draft but I don't think they can afford to wait that long after an 0-2 start and the injury bug biting Bortles protective personnel already.
• Jason Myers missing a FG: The solution is to breathe. It was a 54 yard long boot, and one of the least noticeable problems during the destruction in San Diego Sunday. Myers has still been noticeably better in two games this season, more importantly he's been perfect on extra points. Hind sight is 20/20 but in the grand scheme of what happened at the hands of Philip Rivers... 3 Jags points left on the table is irrelevant.
• Inability to tackle: PLAY Myles Jack! I'm not even sure how much this would help when collectively everyone but Telvin Smith had butter fingers. On one hand, who knows if Jack will be able to bring down ball carriers any better than Dan Skuta and co. On the other hand, he literally can't be worse. You spend a 2nd round pick on a guy with first round talent and seemingly a ton of potential, he better be play. I understand why he's been riding the bench through two weeks, as he tries to get up to speed after missing half of the offseason in California at school. The broken record keeps spinning, as time isn't a luxury for Jacksonville and Jack anymore.
• Davon House can't cover: I would be willing to bet there's a burnt toast meme with House's name on it somewhere after Aaron Rodgers & Rivers focused on attacking him in the secondary. If Prince Amukamara is back against Baltimore next weekend in the Bank, it's worth trying him opposite Ramsey and leaning heavily on that combination. House isn't bad, but his best seems to be slightly behind that of an average cornerback. I hate jumping on a guy with such great work ethic and a willingness to learn but when Joe Flacco sits down and looks at the tape, I guarantee his note pad will have Davon's name circled. If Caldwell is picking up the phone and ringing the 31 other teams in the league, after offensive line, he should be shopping for another defensive back to add in the mix.
• Blake Bortles 2 interceptions: Blake is already averaging over an interception a game; which isn't good for a guy who is supposed to take the next step this season. If we break down the film from today, his first pick was a deflected ball that the Chargers secondary snatched up... I'll give him partial blame. The second turnover however is 100% on Bortles as he threw it in to triple coverage and the hands of San Diego's defense. I still believe in Blake because it's hard not to force some bad throws when you feel like the weight of the whole offense and game is solely on your shoulders. This problem will fix itself if Gus Bradley can mend the issues around Bortles. You add an effective running game, a line that can block, and a defense that doesn't put you in a 3 touchdown hole out of he gates and your third year quarterback can go from trying to be the hero to simply doing his job.
• 14 Flags/93 Yards: The blame for penalties typically falls on the shoulders of the coaching staff and I'll never be the guy that calls for a coaches job but Gus Bradley you got some 'splaining to do. It's safe to say the Gus bus is now on the hot seat if he wasn't already moving forward this year. In consecutive weeks you've had players lose their cool on the field that proved costly for the Jaguars; last week it was Malik Jackson and today it was Jared Odrick. As the head coach you must control your players better and corral them in during the heat of battle. We all know what the solution here is, but again I won't be that writer. Also, maybe the defensive line should worry less about the refs and more about getting some sacks. Kudos to the young guns, as Yannick Ngakoue & Dante Fowler combined for 3 sacks and a forced fumble. #Brightside
*The bottom line is Santa Clause isn't real, and the Jaguars still suck.*
On the bright side, rip off two wins in a row in Week 3 & 4 and all of a sudden it's Christmas in Jacksonville. Cheers to staying optimistic.