The Jaguars 101 staff has put together their predictions for the Jacksonville Jaguars 2011 season. Take a look at our win-loss forecasts and explanations below.
Michael: Win - The Jaguars will start off with a win. Tennessee hasn’t looked good and with a new coach and new quarterback, they will be overmatched. The loss of Jason Babin over the offseason means less pass rush and with the Jaguars’ improved front seven. Chris Johnson (who just came back last week after a contract dispute) will not rush for more than 75 yards.
Brendan: Win - Jacksonville has had some bizarre early-season losses against Titans but the Jaguars should squeak out a win with the home field advantage. Tennessee’s front four is weak and that could be enough for the Jaguars’ running game to get going.
Week 2: Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets
Michael: Win - There is no denying that the Jets are a tough matchup, but what I see are two teams that are run centric and while we don’t know if the Jaguars will have a defense in the top half of the league this year, I do know that the Jets, namely Mark Sanchez, will not tear you up against the pass, even with the weapons they had last year. This will be a close game, but I think the Jags will pull it out with a game-clinching, back-breaking run by Maurice Jones-Drew.
Brendan: Loss - The Jaguars will likely be one-dimensional on offense this season, at least early on. That’s not an ingredient for success against a dominating defense like New York’s. The Jets’ passing game should continue to grow as Sanchez does and the Jaguars’ secondary will be tested early in the year. Still needing time to gel, their secondary will fail.
Week 3: Jacksonville Jaguars at Carolina Panthers
Michael: Win - The Carolina Panthers will be a better team than we think. They have a lot of young talent to develop, but with that said, Cam Newton is not winning this game.
Brendan: Win - This will be a close one. The Panthers have the ability to be a .500 team and both teams will be settling in news quarterbacks still. In that case, you’re taking a rookie in Newton versus a veteran in Luke McCown. Josh Scobee might be called on to be the hero here.
Week 4: New Orleans Saints v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Loss - Former Jacksonville Jaguars defensive coordinator Gregg Williams will be dialing up the blitzes when he returns to Jacksonville. I don’t think the Jags will be able to keep up with Drew Brees either. This will probably be the first game where you’ll see Blaine Gabbert due to injury or blowout.
Brendan: Loss - Too much of a passing attack here for the Jaguars to stop. This game could get ugly.
Week 5: Cincinnati Bengals v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Win - The Bengals are easily among the worst teams in the league. However, this is a typical trap game, especially with the next two opponents, but I don’t think it will be too much of an issue.
Brendan: Win - Cincinnati has a lot of major holes and the Jaguars need to dominate them in the trenches. If Jacksonville can’t find a way to win here then you’re looking at a long season. That being said, Jacksonville’s defensive tackles should put them in a position to get the ‘W’.
Week 6: Jacksonville Jaguars at Pittsburgh Steelers
Michael: Loss - The Jags always play the Steelers tough, but I don’t think they’ll win this time.
Brendan: Loss - Big Ben and the Steeler’s balanced offense will destroy the Jaguars and I feel bad for whichever quarterback takes snaps for Jacksonville.
Week 7: Baltimore Ravens v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Loss - The game will be close, but I think that the Ravens defense will hold firm.
Brendan: Loss - Just like the Pittsburgh game, the Ravens’ balanced offense and ferocious defense will embarrass a Jacksonville squad that is still putting things together.
Week 8: Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans
Michael: Loss - Despite the weapons on the Texan offense, the defense is a long way from being fixed, especially when you change defensive schemes. With that said, I don’t think the Jags will win this game.
Brendan: Loss - Will Jacksonville’s offensive line be able to keep Mario Williams off of McCown or Gabbert? Houston’s secondary should be improved and they have the makings of a playoff time this year (again.)
Week 10: Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts
Michael: Win - Without Peyton Manning, the Colts are as not as tough an opponent. Kerry Collins isn’t exactly a powerhouse QB either. That doesn’t mean that the Jags should see this as an easy game, however, with this being a post bye week game, I don’t think the Jaguars will overlook them.
Brendan: Win - Indy on turf? No problem for the Jaguars who will desperate for a win at this point.
Week 11: Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns
Michael: Win - This is a winnable game, but Colt McCoy has been looking good and no team can ever discount Peyton Hillis. As long as the Jags don’t keep shooting themselves in the foot like the Browns’ game last year, this should count as a win for the Jags.
Brendan: Loss - Cleveland will be a much improved team in 2011 and will give the Jaguars’ defense a tough time.
Week 12: Houston Texans v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Win - The Jaguars wail on the Texans defense as Zach Miller tears them apart at home for the third straight year in a row.
Brendan: Win - This will be a tough matchup but the Jaguars will even the season series with the team’s offense starting to liven up.
Week 13: San Diego Chargers v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Loss - I don’t think the Jags will be able to stop Phillip Rivers and Antonio Gates.
Brendan: Loss - Starting notice a pattern here? Jacksonville might have upgraded their secondary but talented quarterbacks will have all kinds of time to do damage with the Jaguars’ anemic pass rush.
Week 14: Tampa Bay Buccaneers v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Loss - Josh Freeman is a very good QB and has a big target in Mike Williams, but this is a winnable game. However, since I probably set
everything out of balance with a win over the Jets, I’ll pick a loss for this game.
Brendan: Win - My gut feeling is that the Bucs will take a step back and the Jaguars will be able to take advantage of a team trying to get back on track.
Week 15: Jacksonville Jaguars at Atlanta Falcons
Michael: Loss - Although the Jaguars seemed to match up well against the Falcons in the preseason, I don’t think that the Jags can pull this one out, especially in the Georgia Dome. Plus, Atlanta has a lot of weapons to go around on both sides of the ball.
Brendan: Loss - Expect the Falcons’ offensive line to come out with a chip on their shoulder after they were embarrassed by the Jaguars during the preseason.
Michael: Win - Tennessee still doesn’t have a chance.
Brendan: Loss - Rookie quarterbacks Gabbert and Jake Locker might be facing off by this time. The Titans will be finishing the year strong and avenge an early-season loss.
Week 17: Indianapolis Colts v. Jacksonville Jaguars
Michael: Win - The Jags will clinch a winning record and a division crown with his win in front of a home crowd.
Brendan: Win – Scobee will come through with some late-game magic again.
Michael: That gives Jacksonville a 9-7 record and a trip to the playoffs.
Brendan: Jacksonville takes a step back because of a tough schedule and goes 7-9.
Tags: Jacksonville, Jacksonville Jaguars, Josh Scobee, Luke McCown, Maurice-Jones Drew, Tennessee Titans