The Jaguars picked up a much-needed win on Thursday night. Their first win of the young season was a dominant performance over their arch-rival, the Tennessee Titans. Quite frankly, the team put on a show. The Titans didn't have an answer.
Here are five things to remember from this one.
The Jaguars got off the snide against the Titans. The Jaguars desperately needed to achieve victory. After an 0-2 start to the season, it didn't matter who the Jaguars were playing — they had to win the game to keep their season alive. But the fact that this game was against the Titans, a divisional rival that had beaten the Jaguars four times in a row, made it mean so much more — the first victory of the season and the first win over the Titans since 2016.
It was a team win. The Jaguars owned the Titans in all three phases of the game. The performance was far from perfect, but the Jags didn't need to be perfect to knock off the Titans. They executed well on the offensive side of the ball, even without a strong effort in the rushing department. Their defense played disciplined football and — for the most part — did a much better job of tackling than they had in the two weeks prior. Special teams led to the Jaguars' first touchdown of the night. Josh Lambo was perfect (when isn't he).
Gardner Minshew is putting up incredible numbers. Yeah, Gardner Minshew is the hero no one knew they needed. But he's now an American icon. Minshew completed 20/30 passes for 204 yards with 2 TDs and no INTs. Following the gutsy effort, Minshew appeared on NFL Network, Sports Center, and Even Pardon My Take. You deserve this kid, Jacksonville.
DJ Chark was a worth a second-round pick. After a devastatingly poor rookie season, Chark has been on fire in 2019. After drafting Chark in 2018, the Jaguars said they had a first-round grade on the receiver from LSU. Yeah, I'd say they were on to something. He's scored in three straight games for the Jaguars and is currently leading the NFL in receiving yards. His combination of size, speed, leaping ability, and sheer determination has led him to a heck of a start to the season. He and Gardner Minshew appear to have a real connection — a link that should serve the Jaguars well for years to come.
Taven Bryan is making plays? That's right. The much-maligned 2018 first-round pick is starting to look like he belongs. His overall stat line wasn't all that impressive, but his presence was undeniable throughout the game on Thursday. Bryan picked up his first sack of the season and regularly found his way into the backfield as a disrupting force. He's trending in the right direction. Perhaps both Bryan and Chark will prove the doubters wrong after all.
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