The 1-6 Jaguars return home to Jacksonville to host the 5-2 Bills in a week nine matchup between two teams in vastly different places.
I'm the Juggernaut, B****
The Bills boast the number one scoring offense in football at over 32 points per game. They also own the number one scoring defense in the NFL, having allowed less than 16 points per game. And turnover margin? Yeah, they lead the NFL in that too at +13. If there's a more lopsided mismatch in week nine, I missed it. These youthful Jaguars are going to have their hands full against an offense led by Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs and a disciplined defense that has talent at all three levels.
The Bills' Passing Offense
As I mentioned, the Bills are scoring some points in 2021. MVP Candidate Josh Allen is throwing for 320 yards per game with 20 total touchdowns and three interceptions. He's completing over 65% of his passes and has talented wideouts Stefon Diggs, Emmanuel Sanders, Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis at his disposal. And his tight end, Dawson Knox, is a fantastic athlete who is finally coming into this own with 21 catches and five touchdowns in 2021. The Jaguars have the worst pass defense in football. Outside of Shaq Griffin, they don't have a cornerback playing at a passable level. How in the world can they slow down Josh Allen's rocket arm and his arsenal of pass-catchers? I really don't know. But even if they do happen to frustrate Josh Allen, the passer, he'll take over the game with his legs. The Big Cats are in between a rock and a hard place with this matchup.
The Bills' Defense
Trevor Lawrence and his pass-catchers are looking to rebound from a dismal performance against the Seahawks in the Emerald City. And they'll likely have to do it without the offensive engine that is James Robinson. The Jaguars' second-year running back hasn't practiced this week with a heel injury. The Bills' passing defense has surrendered just 182 yards per game through the air, with five touchdowns passes and 11 interceptions. There are, however, a couple of straws for Jaguars' fans to grasp. The Bills run a 4-3 defense, a scheme that Trevor Lawrence is more accustomed to seeing from his college days at Clemson. And they don't do a lot to try to trick opposing offenses. They just line up, play disciplined football, and get the job done. Is it possible that Trevor might find more success against a defense like this? Perhaps, but he'll need his receivers to come to play as well. The Jaguars could attempt to establish the run early, but if they're without James Robinson, it'll be tough sledding.
Whew. The Jaguars are 14.5 home dogs with an over-under of 48.5, which gives us an implied score of 31.5 to 17. Considering the Jaguars have lost by double digits in five of seven contests and the Bills' point differential in 2021, that line might be generous for the Jags. The Bills' have smashed this year against the teams they should beat, and I expect that to continue in Jacksonville. The Jaguars simply don't have the pass defense to slow down Josh Allen and company. And without their best offensive player, I'm not sure how they'll find any sustained success moving the ball. Still, I have Trevor throwing for over 200 yards with two total touchdowns and two turnovers. On the other side of the ball, in the Josh Allen bowl, I have Josh Allen — who is coming off of a two-sack performance in Seattle — sacking Josh Allen. This is the content you show up for.
Oh yeah, Bills 37, Jaguars 17
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