Sully, Beaux, and the return of Justis (@JuMosq) run through every game (besides Monday Night Football of course), talk how big week 7 was for the playoff picture, and debate who the best team in the AFC West is.
On this week’s episode of Keep Choppin’ Wood from SB Nation’s Big Cat Country, we talk about just the Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts game in London at Wembley Stadium, Blake Bortles’ continued regression, Yannick Ngakoue’s surprising start, Jalen Ramsey vs. Rashean Mathis, Gus Bradley, and more from around the NFL.
Ronnie: Do you think the Panthers struggle to protect Cam this year could be combatted with a more quick-hitting predicated gameplan? Maybe they don’t feel that they have anyone that can get open quickly. Just feels like these slow-developing pass plays isn’t how you beat man-blitzes with a bad OL.
Sure, an offense with more predication on the quick pass game would help in theory, but you already described the rub – the Panthers’ personnel isn’t really suited for it at all. Mastering the quick pass game requires an incredible time and resource commitment, and they’re probably better off mastering the things that their personnel is built to do. Fleshing out their runningback and tight end screen game would probably be a better way to complement their deep drop pass game.
Teams like Denver and Minnesota are obviously bad matchups for their offense. But remember that the Denver defense also beat Tom Brady twice last year, and the New England pass game is as predicated on the quick game as you can possibly be.
Brent: Does a healthy Marqise Lee make the offense worse? It almost seems like Jags are obligated to feed him.
It’s not that they’re obligated to feed him, it’s that defenses are finding ways to funnel the ball to the Jaguars’ worst skill position players. It’s not unlike the problem Green Bay has with the ball being funneled to Davante Adams.
The crutch is that good quarterbacks make bad players look better than they are. The last throw I wrote about in this week’s Bortles piece is a perfect example of a quarterback playing poorly and making his wide receiver look worse. Lee’s bad enough as is, he doesn’t need help looking worse.
I made a statement on the latest Keep Choppin’ Wood episode that Blaine Gabbert was playing better than Blake Bortles right now. The notion stemmed from a discussion Michael Lombardi and Bill Simmons recently had on the two on Simmons’ podcast.
The fact that we can even have a comparison between the two is highly disappointing. However, it’s not completely unfounded. Here’s a video from 2012 with current Jaguars Offensive Coordinator Greg Olsen. Olsen served as the Quarterback coach under the previous regime (Mike Mularkey’s sole season in Jacksonville). After the entire staff was fired, he went to Oakland and ran the offense in Derek Carr’s rookie year, then returned to Jacksonville as Jedd Fisch’s replacement on Gus Bradley’s staff. That’s a really convoluted way of saying that he’s worked directly with both Blaine Gabbert and Blake Bortles.
On this week’s episode of Keep Choppin’ Wood, we talk about just how bad the game against the Baltimore Ravens was, just how bad Blake Bortles was, why Gus Bradley needs to get fired immediately after London, and more about the future of this NFL franchise.