The Jacksonville Jaguars had every opportunity to win Sunday’s game at MetLife Stadium. Unfortunately, a couple late turnovers sent the Jaguars to their sixth loss of the season, as they dropped a 28-23 decision to the NY Jets.
Jacksonville definitely had their chances late and looked to be set up to pull off an upset on the road. Unfortunately, the chance at prosperity was something the visitors couldn’t handle. A holding penalty on tackle Jermey Parnell led to a fumble by quarterback Blake Bortles wiping away a scoring opportunity, and Nick Marshall fumble on a would-be punt return, resulted in a Jets touchdown.“Offensively we had four turnovers, defensively we didn’t get any. When you do that, it’s tough to win,” said Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley, after the game. “We just didn’t finish it, the turnovers, and penalties at inopportune times, we did it to ourselves.”
Jacksonville led early 3-0, but the Jets and quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick kept the tempo up for much of the first half. The Jaguars seemed to steal the momentum, putting together a great drive just before halftime. Jacksonville got the ball at the 50 with 26 seconds left. Bortles hit Allen Hurns for 20 yards and then found him again, for a 30-yard touchdown that made it 14-10 with 14 seconds remaining in the second quarter. For Hurns, it was his sixth straight game with a touchdown. Jason Myers made it a one-point game at 14-13 late in the third quarter with a 39-yard field goal.
The Jaguars blew a golden opportunity in the fourth quarter. Bortles threw a 27-yard strike to Marcedes Lewis and rookie T.J. Yeldon broke off a 45-yard run bringing the ball to the Jets 10. But after a holding call on Jacksonville, Calvin Pace had a strip-sack of Bortles and recovered the fumble. “I was just trying to buy time,” said Bortles of the play. “I had a quick protection call so I gotta get rid of the ball or take off and run, or do something.” Jacksonville proceeded to stop the Jets on their next possession, but Nick Marshall took his eyes off the Jets punt and Kellen Davis was Johnny-on-the spot for the Jets, jumping on the ball at the 25. Brandon Marshall put the game out of reach moments later, with a diving catch in the end zone, making it 28-16 with 2:41 left.
Jacksonville (2-6) went down fighting, as Bortles led a three-play drive that culminated in a 20-yard touchdown pass to Bryan Walters, to get the Jaguars within five. Jacksonville would get the ball back one more time, but Bortles would have no magic bullets left, as he was picked off by Marcus Williams for the second time, essentially ending the game. “We put up a ton of yards and did a lot of good stuff, but it’s the plays you missed out on that you think about at night,” said Bortles. “Personally, it’s hard for me to feel like letting those guys down in the locker room, cause it’s an unbelievable group of guys. I just can’t wait for another opportunity to go make that up.”
Bortles was 24 of 40 for 381 yards and two touchdowns. He was outdueled by Fitzpatrick, who finished 21-of-34 for 272 yards. The Jaguars run defense was stout all day and they deserve a lot of credit. They held Jets running back Chris Ivory to 26 yards on 23 carries. Unfortunately, Ivory did score twice, stinging the Jaguars when it counted.With the loss, Jacksonville has now lost 13 straight away from EverBank Field. They will try to break that streak next Sunday, when they travel to Baltimore to take on the Ravens. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m.