The Jacksonville Jaguars look to improve on a (5-11) 2018 season, way below expectation after reaching the AFC Championship game the previous season. The offense was the biggest reason for this decline as the Jaguars ranked 27th in total offense and 31st in points per game at 15.3, mostly due to former QB Blake Bortles 30th ranked QBR. The Jaguars have looked to overcome this by bringing in the Super Bowl MVP Championship quarterback Nick Foles, which brings promise. The defense has lost a few key pieces in leading tackler Telvin Smith, Malik Jackson, and Tashaun Gipson, but added possible defensive rookie of the year candidate in linebacker Josh Allen. Week 1 is where Tom Coughlin’s offseason transactions will be tested as the Jaguars face the defending AFC Champions at home.
Week 1 vs Kansas City Chiefs
This will be a tough task for the Jaguars as they will be facing the reigning MVP in Patrick Mahomes and the #1 total yards and points per game offense in Kansas City. Although Jacksonville has improved on the offensive side of the ball, they will not be able to keep pace with the high flying Chiefs.
Week 2 at Houston Texans
The Texans had the Jaguars number during last season and I see the offseason additions unable to overcome this. QB Deshaun Watson returns off of a pro bowl season notching 24TD to 9 Int. Also, with the acquisition of FS Tashaun Gipson from the Jaguars, the Texans should have insight on the Jags offense. Take the Texans at home.
Week 3 vs Tennessee Titans
Although the Titans had a very improved defense in Head Coach Mike Vrabel’s first season, the offense was suspect. Questions are surrounding the QB position as Marcus Mariota has struggled, regressing each year and being injury prone. I feel like the Ryan Tannehill acquisition will make this situation worse, adding additional pressure to Mariota. This Jags defense will take care of this offense for a win at home.
Week 4 at Denver Broncos
The Broncos are very good at home and improved their offense with the drafting of TE Noah Fant. The problem is that the QB under center is an average QB at best that I have no faith in. QB Joe Flacco will be pressured on every drop back and be unable to get any offense going as this Jags defense steals one on the road.
Week 5 at Carolina Panthers
The Carolina Panthers have an above average defense led by Luke Kuechly that ranked 15th in total yards allowed. Christian McCaffrey looks like he is in pristine shape and he is going to turn more heads than he did last year. If Cam Newton stays healthy, the Panthers could be dangerous this year. I like the Panthers to outscore the Jags in a tight one at home.
Week 6 vs New Orleans Saints
The New Orleans Saints will have a ton to prove this season as a Super Bowl berth was stolen away on a missed pass interference call. Drew Brees and the Saints offense had the 3rd highest points per game offense in 2018 and will be hard to stop. The Saints outscore the Jags in this one as they are unable to keep up.
Week 7 at Cincinnati Bengals
The Cincinnati Bengals have a ton of questions to answer for this upcoming season. They had one of the worst defenses in the league in 2018 and did nothing to improve it. Andy Dalton is turnover prone and his leading target in AJ Green is injury prone. I see the Jags able to manhandle this middling Bengals team.
Week 8 vs New York Jets
Although the Jaguars will be at home and face off against the new look New York Jets led by Sam Darnold and Leveon Bell, they will be caught off guard. Adam Gase will allow Leveon Bell to get open in space and chew clock. Jamal Adams and the Jets defense will force a key turnover towards the end of the game for a win on the road.
Week 9 vs Houston Texans
If this game was in the states I would take the Texans easily, but it’s in England. The Texans have never played in London and the Jaguars play there every year. I see the Jags getting a win in the UK.
Week 10 Bye
Week 11 at Indianapolis Colts
The Colts played a couple close games in 2018 splitting the season series. The problem is that the Colts ended the season red hot and their offense is going to be scary. Andrew Luck is coming off of a season where he ranked 5th in total QBR and the emergence of Pro Bowl TE Eric Ebron has the Colts in position for a promising season. I see the Colts outscoring the Jags and winning at home.
Week 12 at Tennessee Titans
After a week 3 loss on the road, the Titans will have seen this new look offense led by Nick Foles before. I see Head Coach Mike Vrabel able to put together a scheme to neutralize this Jags offense and the Titans riding their Nashville fan base to a win at home.
Week 13 vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are hoping that new Head Coach Bruce Arians will turn turnover prone QB Jameis Winston into the quarterback he was expected to be when drafted #1 in 2015. I don’t see this happening against this Jags defense as the Jags will force several turnovers in a home win.
Week 14 vs Los Angeles Chargers
The Los Angeles Chargers are coming into this season after a stellar season on the road in 2018. Quarterback Phillip Rivers had a great season finishing with the 7th highest QBR in the league but there is one problem. The Chargers offense is predicated on the run, and I think the Jags will be able to stop Melvin Gordon. Give me the Jags at home.
Week 15 at Oakland Raiders
The Raiders are coming off a horrendous first season under Jon Gruden. The Raiders offense ranked 27th in points per game and QB Derek Carr finished 27th in total QBR. Adding WR Antonio Brown will help these numbers, but this offense is still average with Carr under center. The last ranked Raiders points per game defense will get shredded in this one. Jags win in a route.
Week 16 at Atlanta Falcons
The Atlanta Falcons are returning from a disappointing season where they finished 7-9. But I like this Falcons team and I see them being able to return to the postseason from their drafting off offensive lineman Chris Lindstrom and Kaleb McGary in the draft. Matt Ryan will be able to sit in the pocket and find his plethora of weapons in route to a home win.
Week 17 vs Indianapolis Colts
This will be a repeat of the week 11 matchup as the Colts win with playoff positioning on the line.
This line is right on the money as some games could go either way, but win you play the Chiefs, Panthers, Saints, Chargers, and the Texans and Colts twice, 8 games will be hard to get.