Benched and Suspended: Jaguars Edition

The Jacksonville Jaguars saw themselves in a rather upsetting state during Week 12 of the NFL regular season. The Jaguars were one of many teams including the Packers and Falcons who were likely to be postseason favorite. What happened?

After an impressive season in 2017-18 the Jaguars held 10-6 record, however, this season the Jaguars are currently 3-8.

Not only did the Jaguars lose 24-21 against the Josh Allen lead Buffalo Bills but after a fight ensued during the game the Jaguars were without feature back Leonard Fournette.

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Shortly after the game concluded the NFL announced that Leonard Fournette was suspended due to his role in the fight but would ultimately appeal that decision. However, this afternoon it was announced that Fournette lost the appeal and would not be able to play against the Indianapolis Colts this Sunday.

To pour even more salt on the wound for Jacksonville fans the team ultimately decided to fire offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett following the programs seventh straight loss.

The Jaguars ranked 22nd in the league in total offense with 346.5 yards per game but have been on a steady decline due to injuries. The numerous injuries include losing three tackles, two tight-ends, the leading receiver in 2017 signed with the Chicago Bears in free agency and the Jaguars were without Fournette for six games to start the season.

Why the offensive coordinator? Why wouldn’t Doug Marrone look at their defensive coordinator or special teams? The defense looks nothing like it did during the 2017 season and rumors quickly circled that all-pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey wants out of Jacksonville. Special teams have also been inconsistent all season.

However, with five games left the Jaguars still have an opportunity to snap the losing streak and get back on track before the season ends.

A lot of the Jaguars issues come offensively particularly from quarterback Blake Bortles. Bortles was benched following Sundays performance and the Jaguars gave Cody Kessler the nod against the Colts.

Bortles has thrown for 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions this season. Failing to lead the team offensively has been a big issue for Bortles throughout his career and making mistakes has become to be a regular thing.

Since entering the league in 2014, Bortles currently has thrown the most interceptions with 74. That number makes many wonder why Bortles is still at the helm of the Jaguars offense. The biggest reason that Bortles is still on the roster is because the fifth-year quarterback signed a $54M extension in Februray. Cutting Bortles means the Jaguars will lose $16.5M against the cap.

With everything going south in just a matter of 48 hours in Jacksonville what is next for this program? Is Blake Bortles done as the starting quarterback? Can the offense find its groove without a lot of key players? Who is on the hot seat next?

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