The Jacksonville Jaguars head North to face the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. Both teams are looking to change the direction of their seasons with a victory. The Bengals are winless with a record of 0-2-1 and Jacksonville sports a 1-2 record.
Last Sunday, Cincinnati tied Philadelphia 23-23 after a fruitless overtime period. Like the Jaguars, the Bengals have a young quarterback in Joe Burrow. Yes, he is the Heisman Trophy-winning, National Champion winning, former LSU quarterback.
Through three games, Burrow has completed 91 passes for 821 yards with Five touchdowns and one interception. By looking at his passing charts on it’s obvious that Cincinnati is using the short passing game to instill confidence in Burrow’s psyche.
According to NFLgenstats, week one, the majority of his passes were to the right side of the field within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. Next game, they were evenly mixed across the field within the 10 yards of the line of scrimmage. Last week, Burrow had more throws downfield but still, the majority were within his 10-yard security cushion. Most of all, two of his touchdown passes went for more than 15 yards.
The Jaguars’ defense must play more press coverage on the receivers. They can not give too much space for Burrow to get into a passing rhythm with his wideout. Expect the Jaguars to play tighter to disrupt the rookie quarterback.
Most of all, the Jaguars defensive line has to bury Burrow from beginning to end. There must be constant pressure to cloud his thought processes and force him into committing turnovers. All quarterbacks love to have a quiet mind to properly run the offense.
Jacksonville wins if Burrow can not get comfortable in the pocket or find the open receiver. The goal should be to confuse him each down. Joe Mixon is the Bengals running back that catches passes.
It is time for the Jaguars defensive unit to play in shut down mode. This would give Gardner Minshew and the offense a chance. How many times has the defense given up multiple first-quarter scores in just these three games – everyone, right?
Let’s hope that Jacksonville wins the opening coin toss and chooses to receive the kickoff. Until proven wrong, Cincinnati wins 24-21. For more Jaguars news and opinions, catch Andre Moultry on YouTube and the JJC podcast.
Follow: Larry Brake on Twitter @Jag_Sooner_fan
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