November 18, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars middle linebacker Paul Posluszny (51) intercepts a pass during the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-US PRESSWIRE
The Jacksonville Jaguars shocked the entire league this past weekend when they nearly pulled off the upset against division rival Houston Texans. It was a game that no one saw coming and was a wake up call and forewarning to the Tennessee Titans, who otherwise might have come in overconfident against a Jaguars team that has struggled all season. The Jaguars don’t have playoff dreams left, but they’d certainly enjoy playing the spoiler role.
Here’s the three Jaguars I’m watching for this weekend:
QB Chad Henne
I still don’t believe in this guy as a starting QB. I don’t, but I tink the Jaguars are smart to leave him in as the starter for the time being. He was able to hook up with rookie WR Justin Blackmon for over 200 yards last week, something that was unthinkable, considering Blackmon struggled to get 40 yards a game for most of the season. He also chucked the ball for four touchdowns, all against one of the leagues best defenses. The Titans are hoping that was a fluke. Either way, they’re prepping as if he’s an all-star.
WR Justin Blackmon
As you can tell from the previous paragraph, Blackmon blew up last Sunday. He finally looked like the guy they hoped they’d be getting when they traded up to draft him back in April. The Titans safety play has been suspect at best this season and if I were the Jaguars, I’d be getting ready to test it early and often. Blackmon should be lining up against Titans CB Jason McCourty. It should be interesting to see how that match up plays out. If he gets a few attempts against Griffin, that’s when things will get scary, especially if he looks anything like he did against the Texans.
LB Paul Posluszny
Posluszny’s a great player, despite being in the middle of a mediocre season. Against Houston he showed a flash of the terror I know, collecting 15 tackles, along with a force fumble, interception, and a pass deflection. He plays with heart and is a good run-stopper, not to mention the fact that the guy’s neck is bigger than my thigh. The Jaguars have some decent defenders in the backfield, but this is the guy I worry about the most. That being said, a Titans O-line that has been playing lights out shouldn’t struggle too much against him.
The Titans need to go into this game without pulling any punches. The Jaguars are playing for pride right now, and there’s nothing better than having the opportunity to ruin a division rival’s chance at the playoffs. My mindset if I’m a Jaguar? “If we’re going down, we’re pulling you with us.” The Titans still have a shot at the wildcard, but if they lose this one, the Colts should be able to easily pull away in that race.
Please win, Titans. Please.
You can find me on Twitter @JustinLStewart