1. The Jaguars want to play ball control offense. That means running the football and limiting potential for mistakes. How will the Jaguars rushing attack perform against the Patriots? The Patriots were one of the stingiest teams against the run in 2016 giving up less than 4 yards per carry and less than 90 yards on the ground per game. Leonard Fournette has been a revelation to this point in camp, but can he do it under the bright lights? Can Chris Ivory and TJ Yeldon establish themselves as quality backups? Can Corey Grant continue to display his explosive speed? If the answer is yes to some or most of these questions then the Jaguars will be on their way establishing a nice ground attack in 2017.
2. In 2017 we know the Jaguars interior defensive line is going to get push up the middle with Malik Jackson and Abry Jones. The real question is can the Jaguars edge rushers get pressure? So far in camp the play from the Jaguars edge rushers has been up and down. Yannick Ngakoue has been consistent, but beyond #91 there are a lot of questions. Can Dante Fowler make an impact as a pass rusher? Will Dawuane Smoot earn a role as a rotational strong side end that has pass rush ability? Will veteran free agent Lerentee McCray, who is heralded for his special teams work, make an impact as a pass rusher? Is 2016 draft pick Jonathan Woodard ready to make his mark in the NFL? If these guys flash tonight it'll be a good start for the group.
3. Blake Bortles' body language will be key. Bortles is going to make mistakes through out the season, and he'll probably have a couple tonight, but how he responds will be key. Will he walk off the field sulking, throwing a pseudo temper tantrum? Or will he go back to the sideline, figure out what went wrong, and move on? Bortles needs to be the leader in year four that he wasn't in year three.
4. Can the Jaguars CBs compete? The Jaguars have been without starters Jalen Ramsey and Aaron Colvin (yes, the team's best nickel corner should be considered a starter). AJ Bouye is healthy, but may or may not play in this one. If the Jaguars don't have any starting CBs on the field it could be a rough go for the team's secondary even against Patriots backups.
5. Check out some of the new starters. Leonard Fournette and Cam Robinson will both be starters come opening day, keep an eye on the rookies in their first even NFL game. The Jaguars also have Patrick Omameh starting at left guard, Barry Church starting at strong safety, and Myles Jack starting at middle linebacker. How do these players look in their new roles with the team?
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