Jags’ Lawrence: ‘We decided earlier this week, we’re going to win this game’

The Jacksonville Jaguars(1-5) have done it! Jacksonville snapped their 20-game losing streak and won for the first time since Week 1 of the 2020 season as they came from behind to defeat the Dolphins(1-5) 23-20 in London on Sunday after a 53-yard field by kicker Matthew Wright with no time left on the clock.

In addition, both Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer and number one pick Trevor Lawrence get their first victory in the NFL. 

“It’s special,” Lawrence said postgame about his first NFL victory. “Obviously, we’ve had a rough My first win, out here, like it’s just hard, hard to even imagine.

“It’s awesome. I’m just really proud of this group. We decided earlier this week, we’re going to win this game, and we talked about it on the sideline, there’s going to be so many ups and downs throughout every game you’ve just got to keep playing, and we did that and found a way to win.”

Meyer added: “Well, we needed a win. Someone asked me last week if we were desperate for a win, and we are desperate for a win.”

Lawrence became the first rookie quarterback in NFL history to win a game in London. He completed 25-of-41 passes for 319 yards and one touchdown, marking the most passing yards by a Jaguars quarterback in their eight international games. With less than 2 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, Lawrence completed all three of his passing attempts for 20 yards to set up the game-winning field goal attempt.

Meyer was impressed by what he saw out of Lawrence and Wright.

“There was a lot of things to fix,” Meyer said. “But you saw a young quarterback make a big-time play at the biggest time of the game, and then a young kicker that we just signed a couple weeks ago pop two 50-plus yarders, so it was a great win.”

Initially, with the game tied at 20 with five seconds left, Meyer and the Jaguars were going to throw a hail mary, but Meyer and OC Darrell Bevell changed their minds and Lawrence connected with Laviska Shenault on a nine-yard pass with one second left, which gave Wright a better shot to make the game-winning field goal.

After the game, Meyer explained why he changed his mind.

“We were going to do a Hail Mary, or one of the Big Ben plays just a jump ball in the end zone, and I kept staring at the clock, and we practice this every week, and it’s called slider,” he said. “It’s where you get the ball, and we usually say six seconds, five seconds, and we told our quarterback and Laviska, and I had the official right there, and I said, as soon as he catches and goes down, time-out. He caught it, time-out, and there was still that one second left. We practice that quite a bit.”

It turned out to be a great call by the Jaguars to go with the short pass, and now Jacksonville gets their first win of the season. Hopefully, for them, they can build off this victory as they head into their bye week.

Jags’ Lawrence: ‘We’re going to turn it around’

The last time the Jacksonville Jaguars(0-5) won a game was September 20, 2020, when they defeated the Colts 27-20 in Jacksonville. That was almost 13 months ago, and losing continued on Sunday when they fell to the Titans(3-2) 37-19 at TIAA Bank Field.

With the loss, the Jaguars have lost 20 straight games, and they join the 1976-77 Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the only teams in NFL history to lose 20 consecutive games.

Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer has been apart of five of those 20 straight losses, and at this point, Jacksonville is desperate for a win.

“Desperate for a win, desperate for the way they go to work each day, each week,” Meyer said. “Desperate for a win. But we can’t worry about the past, worry about the future, and a trip to London and try to get a win. Some guys are playing their tails off. But, yeah, we’re desperate for a win.”

Jaguars RB James Robinson, who had 18 carries for 149 yards and one touchdown, has been around for all 20 games.

“You can’t wrap your head around that,” Robinson said about losing 20 straight. “We’ve got to find a way to win. We’re a really good team. Obviously, our record doesn’t show it, but we’ve got a lot of great guys in the locker room, and we’ve just got to find something that’s going to work for us.”

Even as the losses pile up, Meyer believes the team is getting close. Early in the fourth quarter, Jacksonville had an opportunity to get within one score of the Titans. However, Jacksonville was stopped on 4th and goal from the one. According to Meyer, the team has to find a way to close out games.

“We’re not closing it out,” Meyer said. “From the Cardinals on, Cardinals, Bengals, and this one. We go down to score. I’m waiting to see Trevor(Lawrence) get the ball in his hand with a chance to go win the game. We thought we were going to have that at Cincinnati, and then that penalty, and we couldn’t get off the field. Then a similar situation today. If we score on that, we score there, our defense really stiffened up near the end of the game and played high energy, got pressure on the quarterback, stuffed the run, and we didn’t slam it in from the one-inch line, two-inch line.”

Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence completed 23-of-33 passes for 273 yards and one touchdown. The number one pick also rushed for a 4-yard TD, which was his second consecutive week with a rushing TD.

Meyer iss happy with what he’s seeing out of Lawrence.

“He’s awesome,” Meyer said about Lawrence. “We all are, the 904; we all are waiting for that. Our teammates are waiting. Just to give him the ball with a chance to go win the game because I think he’ll win it. His practice habits, his toughness, his leadership, it’s getting better each week, like you said.”

No team likes to lose, and no team wants to lose 20 in a row, but Lawrence believes there are brighter days ahead.

“We’re going to win some games,” Lawrence said. “We’re going to turn it around. We all thought today was the day we were going to get that first win, and it wasn’t. We didn’t execute enough down the stretch, but we’re going to figure it out, and we’re going to turn this thing around. It’s going to be a lot of fun when we do.”

 

 

Jags’ Lawrence on loss to Bengals: ‘This one hurts to be up 14-0 and somehow come up on the wrong side of it’

Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars(0-4) were close to getting their first win on Thursday night in Cincinnati against the Bengals(3-1). Jacksonville led 14-0 in the second quarter and was one yard away from making it 21-0. However, the Bengals stopped Trevor Lawrence on fourth and goal from the one, and the Jaguars had to settle for a 14-0 halftime lead.

However, they were outscored 24-7 in the second half and would fall to the Bengals 24-21 after Evan McPherson’s 35-yard field goal with no time left on the clock.

“When you can control the game like we did in the first half, that’s the key,” Lawrence said after the game. “It should have been 21-0 (at halftime), but we got stuffed at the goal line. Second half, we didn’t do a great job of eating clock and moving it.”

The Jaguars fall to 0-4, but they made progress. However, this loss still hurts.

“We’ll have to regroup a little,” Lawrence said. “This one hurts to be up 14-0 and somehow come up on the wrong side of it. We’ll bounce back; I know what we’re made of. Seeing how we’ve handled the first three weeks, I know nothing will change. I really want to get a win with these guys. We’ve been working so hard and put ourselves in positions the last two weeks to win. We just have to finish. It’s collectively. It’s not one side of the ball. We’re right there. This hurts for sure. It’s a primetime, Thursday night game. But it happens. We’ll keep working.”

Lawrence was solid against Cincinnati. He was 17/24 for 204 yards and added 36 yards on the ground and one touchdown, and most importantly, no turnovers after having nine turnovers in his first three games.

“We played better on offense, as far as cleaning up turnovers,” he said. “I did a good job of not putting the ball in harm’s way and used my legs well. The guys up front killed it. The run game, especially in the first half, was really good. The pass protection was awesome with no sacks. We’re getting better every week. It’s a heartbreaking loss, but we’re getting better.”

There’s no such thing as a good loss and moral victories on the NFL level, but this one is pretty close for the Jaguars, especially when you consider they lost WR D.J. Chark to an ankle injury. Now, they regroup and get ready for a home game against the Titans.

Jags’ Lawrence on loss to Cardinals: ‘I feel like we should have won that game’

Most rookie quarterbacks have their ups and downs, and for number one overall pick, Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence, that has been the case after three games.

On Sunday against the Cardinals, Lawrence was 22/39 for 219 yards and one touchdown, but that was overshadowed by his two interceptions, one that was returned for a touchdown and two fumbles as the Jaguars fall to 0-3 after losing to the Cardinals 31-19 at TIAA Bank Field.

Jacksonville had a 19-17 lead in the third quarter, but Byron Murphy’s pick-6 put the Cardinals up for good in the third quarter. The Jaguars would turn the ball over on two of their final three possessions.

“Gosh, I’m sick,” Lawrence said after the game. “I feel like we should have won that game. But yeah, nothing changes. I thought we got a lot better today, and you could tell there were some sparks. We made some plays. Collectively, the defense, gosh, they played great, especially against the weapons over there that the Cardinals have. You can’t ask for any more out of that. Same thing, just got to be more consistent. That pick-six killed us, obviously. That’s all on me.”

Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer was happy with the team’s efforts despite the loss.

“I just want to win so damn bad for our players and for Jacksonville, the crowd was — I appreciate them coming out and the noise,” Meyer said. “We’re going to get this thing going, and I know I said that last week, but damn, they played hard. Our players played their asses off today. “

Lawrence has nine turnovers after three games and became the fifth quarterback in NFL history with multiple interceptions in his first three career games, but even with the turnovers, Lawrence is not going to be timid.

“I had one today that turned into a pick-six. Just can’t do that,” Lawrence said. “The other ones, ball security in the pocket on the last play of the game that they ended up stripping, that’s one I can learn from. You learn from all of them, but you can’t let it change the way you play. As far as making better decisions, that does need to change for sure, but I’ve got to be the same guy.  I still have to go play. I can’t play timid, and not take any shots or chances.”

Despite the turnovers, Meyer is not concerned about Lawrence.

“I worry about everything,” Meyer said. “But Trevor is a unique individual, and he competes like –competed his tail off. We’ve just got to — when something is not there, throw it away, and one of them was not his fault. One of them was a dropped pass. You can’t do that with a young quarterback… He’s the most consistent — one of the most consistent players I’ve been around.”

Lawrence is just like any other rookie quarterback at this point. He’ll get better, and ultimately, things will get better for Jacksonville. However, this season will be a struggle, which should not be surprising to anyone.

Notes:

-Jaguars WR Jamal Agnew returned a missed field goal 109 yards for a TD on the final play of the second quarter, tied for the longest TD in NFL history. Agnew, who also returned a kickoff 102 yards for a TD in Week 2, becomes the ninth player in NFL history with multiple 100-plus yard special teams returns in the same season.

Agnew discussed what happened on that touchdown:

“I mean, that’s probably one of my favorite ones,” he said. “I mean, I’ve never done it before, but I mean, it’s all offensive linemen and probably a couple tight ends and then the kicker. My thing was obviously I know [Matt] Prater from playing in Detroit. I know he’s capable of that, but he was going into the wind, it was a 68-yarder. I was like, ‘If he doesn’t get this, I’m probably going to score.’ And everybody—they made the wall for me on the left side of the field and it was just that spark we needed before halftime. We just couldn’t get the job done.”

-Jaguars RB James Robinson recorded a season-high 134 scrimmage yards (88 rushing and 46 receiving yards), marking his 17th consecutive game with at least 50 scrimmage yards. Robinson, who has tallied 50-plus scrimmage yards in every game of his NFL career, has 1,562 career scrimmage yards and joins RBs Fred Taylor and Leonard Fournette as the only players in franchise history with at least 1,500 scrimmage yards through 17 career games.

 

 

 

Jags’ Lawrence: ‘Everyone is frustrated; everybody is disappointed’

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence has not lost a lot of football games in the last few years, but after playing his first two games in the NFL, Lawrence and the Jaguars are 0-2 as they fell to the Broncos(2-0) 23-13 in their home-opener at TIAA Bank Field on Sunday.

It started out well for Lawrence as he connected with Marvin Jones on a 25-yard touchdown pass as the team drove 83 yards on their opening drive to take an early 7-0 lead. However, Jacksonville’s offense would not score again and would accumulate only 106 yards the rest of the way following that opening drive.

“Yeah, I think it’s a combination of a few things, just some ill-timed errors on everyone really,” Lawrence(14-33, 118 yards, touchdown, two interceptions) said after the game. “It was different people each time; we had a turnover and another one at the end, so that’s on me, and some penalties, whatever it may be—just bad timing for those things to happen. And then Denver played off that momentum and put a few scoring drives together. I think we were in the game the whole game. Really first half should have had the lead. Then after that, I didn’t think we kept playing like we did in that first quarter.”

Jones, who had six catches for 55 yards and one touchdown, added on the offensive struggles after the first drive: “We just had a lull. We just had lulls. I think it was a common theme after that drive in the second and third quarters. It’s just something that we need to figure out, and we have to find that energy and that spark and keep it. So yeah, I think that’s what it was.”

Even with the losing, Lawrence feels Jacksonville is improving.

“Yeah, I hate losing, like I said last week, so it’s not fun, obviously,” Lawrence said. “But at the same time, you’ve got to — you’ve just got to realize we’re getting better, and each week we’ve got to keep getting better, and it’s a long season. We’ve still got 15 more games, kind of like I said last week. That’s the mindset in the locker room, too. Everyone is frustrated; everybody is disappointed. Obviously, we worked our tails off to win this game, and we felt like we were prepared. Just got to keep getting better, though.”

At 0-2, Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer will do everything he can to keep things positive in Jacksonville and keep the “nonsense” out of the locker room.

“I’ve seen nonsense seep into organizations when you’re 2-0, and I’ve seen it when you’re 0-2,” Meyer said. “Well, I guess I haven’t seen it when you’re 0-2, but I’ve seen it when you lose a game. We can’t allow that. The good thing is I don’t see that happening. If I do, I told the players and staff that’s the one thing that will not be tolerated with the Jags is nonsense.”

Jacksonville did play better in Week 2, but again, they fell short. As they go forward, they have to limit the turnovers(two) and take advantage of scoring opportunities(two missed field goals). Growing pains are not easy, but it may be what the Jaguars have to go through in 2021.

Jags’ Lawrence on performance against Texans: ‘I played really bad tonight’

There’s a giant leap going from college to the NFL, and we saw an example of that on Sunday.

In his last full season at Clemson, Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence, the number one overall pick in this year’s draft, threw only five interceptions. However, in his first NFL game against the Texans, Lawrence almost equaled that mark.

Lawrence finished the game 28/51 for 332 yards with three touchdowns and three interceptions as the Jags(0-1) were routed by the Texans(1-0) 37-21 at NRG Stadium.

While Lawrence was sacked once, he was under pressure by the Texans’ defense. Despite the interceptions, Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer, who was also making his NFL debut, still has a lot of faith in Lawrence.

“I love Trevor,” Meyer said after the game. “We all do. Trevor is just going to get better and better and better. (He) had a great week of work. Offensive football is about 11 guys doing their job, and the great offenses we’ve all witnessed, and we’ve all been a part of, are when 11 guys are doing their job and executing, and that didn’t happen. So Trevor is going to be great.”

Lawrence completed only 54% of his passes on Sunday and was inaccurate at times against Houston, which surprised Meyer.

“He’s a very accurate passer, and today at times, he wasn’t,” Meyer said. “So we’ve got to find out why.”

According to Lawrence, he didn’t get the job done on Sunday.

“Yeah, obviously sucks,” Lawrence said. “Losing is always hard, especially when you feel like you are prepared and had a great week. Really think we were ready and obviously didn’t play well. It starts with me. I didn’t play well for sure. I played really bad tonight.”

While disappointed in the loss, Lawrence, who is the only rookie in franchise history to throw for 300-plus yards and at least three touchdowns in a single game and is one of nine players in NFL history to throw for 300-plus yards and three touchdowns in their first career start. still has confidence in his team.

“I still believe in this team,” he said. “I still know what we are capable of. We did some good things. We started off with some penalties, three and out. But after that, we had a couple good drives. Hitting some big plays. There’s a lot of good things there, and we have to keep doing those and learn from the bad. We have to watch it and learn from it for sure but then flip the page. It’s a long season; we can’t let this snowball. We have to move on and go win next week. That’s where we are going to start at, but it’s definitely disappointing for sure.”

This game was not all on Lawrence, especially when considering Jacksonville’s defense, which gave up 37 points, including 449 yards of total offense on Sunday. Tough loss for Jacksonville, and a rough start for Lawrence, but the future is still bright for him and this team.

Jags’ Lawrence on first game against Houston: ‘It’s going to be fun’

On Sunday, the Jacksonville Jaguars will be able to show off their new toy when number one overall pick Trevor Lawrence makes his regular-season debut on the road against the Texans.

In the preseason, Lawrence had some decent moments, including completing 11/12 passes for 139 yards and two touchdowns against the Cowboys in the preseason finale.

On Friday, Lawrence and the team went through the final practice before they play the Texans, and according to Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer, Lawrence looked sharp.

“He’s been good,” Meyer said. “Today’s a big day. Today’s ‘Fast Fridays,’ and we try to keep it no balls on the ground and no call backs, we call it, which means a perfect Friday practice. We’ll see, but he’s been excellent.”

Earlier in the week, Lawrence discussed the importance of setting the tone and getting a victory in Week 1 against Houston.

“Just to get that first win under your belt especially [against] a division opponent, it’s huge, on the road, just [to get] a lot of confidence going into the season,” Lawrence said this week. “Like you said, it’s a long season, and you need all that confidence and get it rolling. That’s all our focus is on right now and just taking it one game at a time. Yeah, it’s a long season, but you just have to take it one week at a time.”

If the Jaguars win on Sunday, Lawrence would become the fifth quarterback drafted first overall to win his first career start.

According to Lawrence, before every first game for him on any level, he’s a little nervous, which he discussed on Wednesday.

“I’m always a little nervous before almost every game, but especially like the first game,” Lawrence said. “We played some preseason, and I was nervous before those, but first official game, starting a division game on the road, all those things, I’m going to have a little bit of butterflies. That’s just part of it, but we’ll be ready. I’m excited. It’s going to be fun. Get a good first play under your belt, get rolling, sometimes take a little hit, kind of get you into the game. I’m excited. It’s going to be fun.”

Meyer believes Lawrence will be ready.

“It’s all about preparation,” Meyer said. “He’s a very aware guy, so no, that hasn’t even come up, just getting him ready to play. He’s very well aware of what this means.”

This is a winnable game for Jacksonville, especially with Deshaun Watson not playing and Tyrod Taylor getting the start. It should be interesting to see what Lawrence and the Jaguars look like in Week 1 and how Meyer handles his first game as an NFL coach.

Jags’ Chark: ‘I feel like I’m a talented player still getting better every year’

Jaguars wide receiver D.J. Chark will be the team’s number one wideout this season. In 2020, he led the Jaguars in receiving yards(706) and was tied with two others for the most touchdown receptions(5) on the team.

Chark, who was a 1,000-yard receiver in 2019, feels he’s getting better as he enters the 2021 season.

“I feel like I’m a talented player still getting better every year,” Chark said on Thursday. “I just go out there, when I’m on the field, try to be the best that I can. That’s kind of the mindset I’ve had for a few years now, just keep proving to myself that I can get better at these routes.”

The fourth-year receiver feels his job will be easier this year with WR Laviska Shenault Jr. and new additions in rookie QB Trevor Lawerence and wideout Marvin Jones Jr. 

“I have some great teammates, great offense,” Chark said. “Trevor [Lawrence] can really throw it, so he’s going to make my job even easier than before. I have Marvin [Jones Jr.] on one side, Laviska [Shenault Jr.] in the slot, make my job easier, make me want to compete, make me want to go harder than they are.”

This summer, Chark missed the whole preseason because of a hand injury, but he expects to be ready by the season-opener. According to Chark, he’s playing faster due to coaching from head coach Urban Meyer and wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal.

‘One of the things that they saw that they wanted me to get better at was releases and driving, playing fast really,” Chark said. “Those things help me play faster, and when I play faster, I feel unstoppable. When I’m not playing as fast, I feel like I’m not to my top ability. I’m not making the plays that I could be making, and I don’t like that myself. The main thing is playing with speed, vertical speed, getting down the field, which I’m pretty good at. I just have to continue to be consistent.”

Chark, 24, can be a free agent at season’s end, so this is a big year for him. However, his effectiveness could be based on the play of Lawrence. If Lawrence comes out blazing, Chark could put up some decent numbers. If not, his numbers could be affected, which could impact his ability to get a big contract with Jacksonville or elsewhere.

Jags’ Lawrence: ‘If we are prepared and we execute, we can play with anybody’

Urban Meyer and Trevor Lawrence got their first win together on Sunday against the Cowboys, and while the game doesn’t count, a win is a win. Behind great play from Lawrence, Jacksonville defeated Dallas 34-14 at At&T Stadium in their preseason finale.

 “A good feeling. A lot better feeling coming into the locker room today as opposed to this time last week,” Lawrence said. “So, just one step in the right direction. Gotta keep getting better. Now they are going to count for real. So, just putting everything we have, getting ready for Houston. It builds a lot of confidence going into the season. It’s nice to finish the preseason with a game like that.”

Although Jacksonville played against the Cowboys’ second-string defense, Lawrence was dealing. The number one overall pick was 11/12 for 139 yards and two touchdowns in a little over one quarter of action. 

“It felt good just to be clean, execute, stay ahead of the chains, really had I think three drives,” Lawrence said. “The guys that came in after played great too. But we were two for three with touchdowns on those drives, and even the second drive, where we punted, we drove the ball pretty well. Third down, I probably could have made a better decision and got the first down, but we pinned them inside the 5. It was all about field position too.”

As a whole, Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer was happy with how Lawrence performed in the preseason. Lawrence was 31/44 for 323 yards in two touchdowns in the exhibition season.

“I’d be a half-empty guy, but I was kind of fearful that he might, “what if we go again?” One thing about Trevor is that he’s played decent all three games,”  Meyer said. “Preseason’s fairly new to me, and I’ve learned along the way, so I would judge our preseason as a success right now. A lot of energy in the locker room.”

The Jaguars travel to Houston to battle the Texans in Week 1, and according to Lawrence, if the Jaguars can execute, they can compete with anybody.

“People game-planning for what you do well, what you don’t do well, and scheming you up,” Lawrence said. “Just gotta be ready for that. And then every week, too, their #1’s are going to be out there. At the end of the day, it is the same game. You gotta execute. Like I said, I feel confident that if we are prepared and we execute, we can play with anybody.”

Meyer added: “We’ve got two weeks to get the strongest version of ourselves. They’re going to have four days off this week. That’s also new, so we’ve got to be great. If you do those four days right, and I’m not talking laying on your butt, but get strong, and we can come back stronger than we were before training camp. My expectations are that.”

It was a good day for Jacksonville, and hopefully, for them, they can build off this performance.

 

 

Eagles acquire Minshew from Jacksonville

The Jacksonville Jaguars have traded QB Gardner Minshew II to the Philadelphia Eagles, the club announced today.

According to the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Jacksonville gets a conditional sixth round draft pick, which can become a fifth rounder for the Jaguars if Minshew plays 50% in three games.

Minshew, who battled rookie Trevor Lawrence for the starting quarterback position in Jacksonville, started eight games for the Jaguars last season and now has an opportunity to be the backup quarterback to Jalen Hurts in Philadelphia.

It’s no surprise that the 25-year-old Minshew was dealt. It seemed like it was just a matter of time. Additionally, it’s no surprise that Philadelphia was in the market for another quarterback.

Nick Mullens, who the Eagles released after the Minshew trade, was not very good in the preseason, and Joe Flacco has been just okay, so it should be interesting to see what the Eagles do next with Flacco.

At this point, outside of Lawrence, the Jaguars have two other quarterbacks in Jake Luton and C.J. Beathard, who will battle it out for the backup job. 

In other moves, the Jaguars signed WR Devin Smith and OL Jermaine Eluemunor.

Smith was originally drafted by the New York Jets in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft. He has appeared in 18 games – 14 with the Jets and four with the Cowboys. His career totals include 15 receptions for 248 yards and two touchdowns. The fourth-year receiver has also had stops with the Texans and, most recently, with the Patriots. The Akron, Ohio native attended Ohio State and played with Head Coach Urban Meyer from 2012-2014. Smith registered 121 receptions for 2,503 yards and 30 touchdowns in 53 games played with the Buckeyes.

Eluemunor was originally drafted in the fifth round of the 2017 NFL Draft by Baltimore after playing collegiately at Texas A&M. The Chalk Farm, England native has played in 39 career games during his four-year career, including a career-high 12 contests last season with the Patriots.