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Jags’ Resurgent Defense Ready For Thursday’s Clash With Titans

by Daniel Gerbick on Thursday, December 6th, 2018

campbell calais jacksonville jagsThursday Night Football features an AFC South matchup between the Jacksonville Jaguars (4-8) and the Tennessee Titans (6-6) in Nashville as Marcus Mariota goes head-to-head with the defense that shut out Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts a week ago.

The Titans are coming off a great win against the New York Jets last week led by a Mariota that completed 7 of 9 passes on play-action passes for 167 yards. Mariota finished the game with 282 yards and two touchdowns as he completed 20 of 35 passes.

The problem for the Titans when facing a defense such as Jacksonville is that they were 1 of 11 on third down against the Jets and that is not going to get it done this week as the Jaguars rank sixth in the NFL in third-down defense.

Even though the Titans may rely on the play-action game to move the ball once again, this time they must be more successful in clutch situations to be able to keep moving those chains, control the time of possession, and sustain long drives.

Although the Jaguars have had their good shares of struggles and a very disappointing season there are not a lot of teams looking forward to playing them right now as their defense is getting hot once again.

The Jaguars defense last week had three sacks, was physical up front and that’s bad news for Mariota and the Titans offensive line that has allowed 13 sacks in the last three games.

For the Jaguars quarterback, Cody Kessler will make his second straight start after they decided to bench Blake Bortles, who had made 72 straight starts. Kessler completed 18 of 24 passes for 150 yards but had no touchdowns in the 6-0 win against Indianapolis.

The Jaguars will also benefit from having running back Leonard Fournette back from his one-game suspension for fighting with Bills defensive end Shaq Lawson in their Week 12 loss in Buffalo.

The Jaguars have lost their last three meetings against the Titans and tend to struggle against Mariota in Nashville, where the Titans quarterback is 3-0 while passing for six touchdowns and getting picked just once.

Prediction: Jaguars 14 – 27 Titans

 

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