From Prime Time to Puke Time

Posted: December 7, 2011 in Jacksonville Jaguars
Tags: , , , , , ,

The house was packed. The atmosphere was electric. “Khan Do” signs were everywhere. You could feel the love for owner Wayne Weaver.

It was prime time on national TV and Jacksonville and the Jaguars had their best faces on.

At least until late in the second quarter. That’s when the San Diego Chargers and quarterback Phillip Rivers performed a magic trick. They made the Jaguars’ highly regarded defense disappear.

Chargers 38, Jaguars 14. It looked more like an Alabama-Vanderbilt game than an NFL game.

Yes, the Jaguars’ defense is banged up. Five starters are out; the top three cornerbacks are on the injured reserve. But in the NFL the creed is next man up. For the Jaguars it was more like next boy is up. For the record, the Chargers’ offensive line is a make shift unit because of injuries, but it had little trouble blocking the Jaguars.

There were some bright spots. As usual, Maurice Jones-Drew was outstanding. And rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert had his moments, leading the team on back-to-back touchdown drives in the second quarter. It was the first time this season the Jaguars had scored two first-half touchdowns.

But Gabbert disappeared in the second half and become the punch line for the ESPN crew broadcasting the game. Analysts Jon Gruden was especially critical. Ditto for studio analyst Steve Young, who even suggested the Jaguars look for another QB in next year’s draft.

In case you’re wondering, there’s every reason to believe there’ll be a highly touted quarterback available – Southern Cal’s Matt Barkley, Baylor’s Robert Griffin III, Oklahoma’s Landry Jones – when the 3-9 Jaguars are “on the clock”. Still, this team is in desperate need of help at wide receiver.

The heat is now on General Manager Gene Smith, who last week was given a three-year contract. While Smith hasn’t drafted any Pro Bowlers, he has been credited with improving the team’s overall roster, acquiring quality depth. You couldn’t tell that by Monday night’s performance.

The next major decision Smith must make is hiring a new coach. Any glimmer of hope that interim coach Mel Tucker would light a fire under the team was extinguished by the Chargers. Not only did River throw TD strikes over the Jaguars defense, Ryan Matthews and Mike Tolbert ran it down the Jaguars’ throat.

What started out so beautifully ended as a nightmare. Jaguars’ fans couldn’t even blame this one on Jack Del Rio.


  1. Terri says:

    The best thing Khan can do is buy out Gene Smith’s new contract and make whacko wayne weaver pay it…

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