Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars weren't ready for the moment in Week 4.
Sure, the moment came with heavy wind and rain. It also came on the road against the NFC favorite and the team's only undefeated team.
But moments don't care. They are there for players and teams to be either be ready for or to fizzle out.
The Jaguars and Lawrence will likely get more moments in the near future. But for now, they weren't ready for the one presented to them. Not in a game where Lawrence turns it over five times, including a staggering four fumbles lost and a red-zone interception that was a 6-to-10 point swing.
“I would start by saying I have to play better. Our defense gave us a chance to win it at the end of the game. I’m just pissed I let those guys down and just had too many turnovers," Lawrence said after the game.
"Obviously it starts with me. All of them were me today so no one else to blame there. To let those guys down it’s disappointing, it felt like we had a chance to win that game and we did and the same thing at the end there. That’s really frustrating, we really felt like we started to click and get some drives going."
Lawrence's turnovers all came at awful times. His first two fumbles were on fourth and third downs. His interception came on what was looking like a potential drive to take a 21-20 lead, or at least make it 20-17 with a lot of ball-game left. He wasn't just one of the reasons the Jaguars lost on Sunday, he was the primary reason.
"Down there in the redzone early in the second half and had the interception which was obviously a big shift in momentum," Lawrence said.
"At the end we were able to score in a minute there, the second to last drive and get us back in the game. Defense had a huge stop on fourth down and then same thing. First play in the pocket guy gets his hand on it. I’ve just got to take better care of the ball, got to tuck it. There’s going to be things to learn from and obviously just really disappointed right now.”
“I think short-term memory, number one. We have to fix those mistakes with him," Pederson said after the game.
"Correct him, show it, keep teaching him. He’s going to be better for it. We’ll be better for it obviously down the road. He’s great about fixing things and being a pro about it. That’s what we expect and he will do that.”
The loss comes on the heels of Lawrence playing the best ball of his career over the last two weeks. In two wins, Lawrence had five touchdowns and zero turnovers, giving him just one turnover on the season entering Sunday. But 17 teams entered Week 4 with fewer than five turnovers this season, and Lawrence blew those numbers out of the water in just 60 minutes of regulation.
That doesn't erase how good Lawrence was over the last two weeks. Nor does it indicate this is the quarterback he will be moving forward, especially considering the conditions the Jaguars played in. But the rain did contribute to Lawrence and the Jaguars looking back on Sunday as a missed opportunity, which is all that really matters.
“Not really. It rains a ton obviously in Florida. Today it was the wind and everything, it was pretty brutal," Lawrence said after the game when asked if he has played in similar types of games.
"At the end of the day no excuses we’re both playing in it. Like I said just really frustrated right now. Excited to watch the tape and it’s going to be brutal just to watch it and all the missed opportunities and things that we had. I mean with four turnovers and to still have a chance to go with the game at the end it doesn’t usually happen. It shows we played well in other areas. We’ve got to clean that up and we will and I’m confident in that. It definitely sucks right now.”
“We talk about it all the time. We just have to focus on us. Anytime you make the mistakes we did, turn the ball over like we did, and where we turned the ball over, you’re not going to keep good teams out of the end zone," Pederson said. "That’s really the difference in the football game. I’m proud of our guys. They fought there until the end to give us a chance to at least see what was going to happen there at the end of the game. It’s just the turnovers and mental errors that really cost us today.”
The Jaguars had plenty of chances to snatch the game away from the Eagles on Sunday. They got off to a 14-0 lead and, frankly, should have been sitting at 21-0 were it not for a missed touchdown from Lawrence to Agnew.
But missed opportunities were the story of the day for the Jaguars on Sunday. With a chance to take a step forward, Lawrence and the Jaguars fumbled it away, even on plays as simple as a quarterback sneak.
"I have to secure it. Obviously it’s pouring at that point, I’m going under center, and everyone is pushing and trying to get that one yard. Those are the situations where you really have to secure it," Lawrence said about his third-and-1 fumble on a sneak.
"That’s the main thing, but you get a little bit ahead of yourself and you’re straining to get that one yard, and that’s when you see some mishaps with catching the snap. The communication was good, it was just on me. I can’t go back to that moment and think about where my hands were, because I’m not thinking about that in that moment. At the end of the day, Luke [Fortner] does a great job. He’s consistent, we’ve never had issues, I’ve never had issues there, and that’s just one that we missed. That’s on me and we have to learn from it and get better.”
Jacksonville will get a chance to be better in Week 5 against the Houston Texans, which is arguably a more important game since it is in the AFC South. But Sunday was a chance for the Jaguars to go into a hostile environment and show that they are up next.
They weren't ready to do that on Sunday, especially Lawrence.