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The Jaguars were arguably the biggest disappointment in the league a short season ago. After coming up just short of representing the AFC in the Super Bowl, Jacksonville went on to win just five games to bring up the rear of the AFC South standings. Upper management decided to give Doug Marrone and his staff a mulligan, but you can bet your bottom dollar at offshore sportsbooks that a slow start will ultimately see changes made right quick. Linemakers are expecting a .500 campaign to be put forth by the franchise in 2019-20 with their season win total odds lined at 8. A quick glance at the schedule makes it look rough to attain that; especially if it can’t find a way to succeed within the division after managing ugly 1-5 straight up and 1-4-1 against the spread records against the Colts, Texans and Titans last season.
Blake Bortles was a joke last season. So much so that he’s now a backup for the Los Angeles Rams with the Jaguars moving on. After succeeding in a number of spot duty roles the last few seasons in Philadelphia, Jacksonville inked Nick Foles to a lucrative deal to be the ringleader of the offense for the foreseeable future. Whether that translates into the offense’s complete turnaround remains to be seen. What NFL bettors do know however is that it won’t matter who they put under center as long as the offensive line continues to struggle. Jacksonville’s front wall allowed their shot callers to get sacked a whopping 53 times last season; only the Packers, Cowboys and Texans conceded more! A bevy of offseason moves were made to shore up the unit’s deficiencies along the line both in free agency and the draft in hopes of giving Foles more protection and opening holes for a hopefully injury-free Leonard Fournette to run through.
Defensively, #Sacksonville was just as dominant as previous versions. Unfortunately, the offense’s inability to hold possession of the pigskin or put points on the board saw it wear down late in a number of games. Still, the entire unit returns almost completely intact coming off a campaign in which it ranked No. 5 overall in both total and scoring defense. Yannick Ngakoue and Calais Campbell are back to wreak havoc on opposing quarterbacks looking to improve upon their 20 combined sacks from a year ago, while Jalen Ramsey and company also return looking to lock things down in the secondary. The addition of Kentucky’s Josh Allen should only make this unit tougher to pick apart. That said, it’ll still all come down to the offense taking care of its end of the bargain for the defense to improve across the board.
A home date against the Kansas City Chiefs and two games against division rivals kick off the 2019-20 season for the Jags at online sportsbooks. With that, NFL bettors are going to get a good idea of where this team stands only three weeks into the regular season. Hold serve against Patrick Mahomes and company and follow it up with at least a split against the Texans and Titans, and the arrow will no doubt be pointing up for the franchise. If the team struggles however, one can only wonder just how much leash upper management will elect to give the coaching staff before making drastic changes. If the offense comes around, Jacksonville will be a much improved team over the course of the regular season. If not, the defense will once again falter late in games due to being forced to take so many reps. We already saw how that played out last season.