Each week during this year's season, Jaguar Report will take Jacksonville Jaguars-related questions from our readers across social media and answer them in a question-and-answer format, giving readers a chance to have their voices heard.
This week we take questions on the Jaguars' tough defensive test in Week 4 vs. Jalen Hurts and the Eagles, how the Jaguars may defend a mobile quarterback, and more.
Q: Our front seven has proved they are vastly improved, but how good is the secondary actually? Do you think that this might be an area Philly exploits?
A: I think this will be what the Eagles try to accomplish considering this is the one issue the Jaguars have had on defense this season. The Jaguars have allowed 10 completions of 20 yards or more (24, 25, 26, 27, and 49 in Week 1, 23, 39 in Week 2, and 45 and 54 in Week 3), including two long touchdowns vs. the Commanders in Week 1. The Eagles, on the other hand, have been able to consistently create vertical shots with DeVonta Smith and A.J. Brown.
It is a tough question for the Jaguars and a tough task entering Sunday. They absolutely have the talent in the secondary, but the way to beat this defensive scheme is to spread the ball around vertically and horizontally. With the Jaguars' ability to get pressure a question mark against the Eagles' offensive line and Jalen Hurts' legs, this is the X-Factor of the game. Tyson Campbell, Shaquill Griffin, Darious Williams, Andre Cisco and Rayshawn Jenkins can get the job done, but it will take a lot of things going right due to the level of the challenge.
Q: After 3 games what do you think is the biggest weakness moving forward?
A: I think we just talked about it: giving up the big play in the passing game. The Jaguars haven't had this hurt them much outside of Week 1 due to their ability to create takeaways and score points off of them on offense, but there will be weeks where they can't survive allowing big gains through the air at key moments. Other than this, I think the red-zone offense has to take a step forward. They too often have had to settle for field goals earl on this season, and eventually that can come back and bite you.
Q: This season has been surprising to say the least but which player has surprised you the most? (positive or negative)
A: Zay Jones and Christian Kirk have both been arguably better than even their staunchest supporters this offseason predicted, while James Robinson's recovery and Devin Lloyd's hot start each deserve the benefit of being mentioned. With that said, I am going to go with right tackle Jawaan Taylor. Taylor has arguably been right up there with Brandon Scherff as the team's best offensive lineman through three games, allowing just one pressure in 121 dropbacks. Scherff has played like the best right guard in football, too, so this says something about how good Taylor has been. Taylor has had strong flashes in the past but his three-game stretch to start the year has arguably been his best as a Jaguar.
Q: Is this the week the Jaguars finally get Dan Arnold involved? He was so good last year
A: I don't know, but it could be since this week points to tight ends as a potential safety valve due to the Eagles' strengths outside. James Bradberry and Darius Slay are top-notch cornerbacks who will make it hard for any team to pass outside the numbers, so middle of the field options could be huge this week. That obviously speaks to Evan Engram before Dan Arnold, but Arnold could be a potential mismatch Doug Pederson turns to as a tendency breaker.
Q: Will Zay Jones play?
A: I am not sure, but I would imagine the fact that he wasn't ruled out with K'Lavon Chaisson and Cole Van Lanen on Saturday is a good sign. He seems to be more of a game-time decision.
Q: This Jaguars coaching staff seems to tailor it’s defensive and offensive approaches based on the opponent whereas in the past we seemed to have had coaches who strictly adhered to a specific scheme regardless of personnel or opponent. Is this a novel concept and, if so, why do you believe some NFL staffs remain stringently adherent to specificities?
A: I think the Jaguars' staff has been a breathe of fresh air considering what the team has shown on offense and defense the last several years, but I do not think it is a novel concept. The Jaguars are still doing a lot of the things they are best at and that are their bread and butter each week, but they make sure to adapt with each opponent. Some coaches believe in doing the same thing over and over again to eliminate the margin of error and dictate that you can only be beaten in certain ways. The Jaguars are not one of those teams this year, but that was at least the thinking with past issues of that area in Jacksonville.
Q: In this game the defense is gonna see a lot of passes. In this DB/WR matchup, who wins?
A: This is the question of the game. I think all Tyson Campbell can hold his own vs. either A.J. Brown or DeVonta Smith, while Shaquill Griffin should be trusted in his own right. And in the slot, I actually think the Jaguars have the potential edge with Darious Williams vs. Quez Watkins. The Eagles have arguably the best receiver duo in the NFL, though, so it is hard to imagine they don't win their fair share of matchups even on a bad day.
Q: Who has been the better pick so far: Travon Walker or Devin Lloyd? #BaalkeMasterClass
A: Lol, I will opt to eat crow and include the hashtag in here. I think the early returns on both No. 1 pick Travon Walker and No. 27 overall pick Devin Lloyd have been exactly what a franchise would want. Lloyd may have had a slow start after Week 1 and an injured training camp, but he has been arguably the biggest playmaker on the defense the last two weeks. As for Walker, I truly think his ability as a run-defender is one of the most important elements of the entire defense. The way he sets the edge, beats tight end blocks and flies to the ball creates a lot of plays for the safeties, cornerbacks and inside linebackers. I would probably lean Lloyd, but it is razor close.
Q: Philly has the best O-line the Jaguars have seen. Can they still do damage?
A: I think the Eagles have the best offensive line in football. They have the best right tackle in football, a top center and left tackle, and a heck of a promising young guard. There are other good lines in the NFL, but the Eagles are the biggest challenge the Jaguars' front will see. The fact that Jalen Hurts can beat a team with his legs makes the Eagles' line even more dangerous, too.
Ultimately I do think there are ways the Jaguars can still generate pressure, especially with stunts and pass-rush games up front as they get creative to avoid too many one-on-ones. I also think the Jaguars still have the edge in the running game, which is just as important as the pass-rush. The Eagles will offer up good protection, but the Jaguars have enough depth in the middle and two pass-rushers off the edge who can make plays.