Doug Marrone Explains Where Two Jaguars' Offensive Plays Went Wrong in Week 3

John Shipley

A lot of things went wrong for the Jacksonville Jaguars vs. the Miami Dolphins in Week 3. When you lose 31-13 to an 0-2 team, this is of course going to be the case.

The defense was shredded by Ryan Fitzpatrick from the first play of the game, the special teams unit badly missed Josh Lambo and the highly-touted offense was mostly grounded. 

But if there were any specific set of plays that were a perfect representation for the Jaguars' (1-2) struggles on Thursday Night Football it is the final two plays of Jacksonville's offensive possession at the 2:00 mark of the second quarter. 

With the Jaguars trailing 21-7 and facing a critical third-and-5 at Miami's 35-yard line, the Jaguars made an extremely curious call. Despite James Robinson being the offense's best player in the first half, the Jaguars subbed him out for Chris Thompson on one of the game's biggest plays. This would come back to bite the Jaguars, with Jay Gruden calling a toss to Thompson to the short side of the field, which resulted in a one-yard loss.

On Friday, Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone made his case for why the Jaguars called the surprising run play and why the Dolphins were able to stop it as well as they did.

“[On] the first one was, we knew we were going to have two downs to go for it. We really felt like we had a good play," Marrone said. 

"We had everything sealed off on the inside and then I believe it was #55, the linebacker, jumped outside of Chris [Thompson] so we actually had two players outside of him. That’s something that we haven’t [been] shown so when we tossed the football, we had a player free in the alley. Normally on alignment, one guy’s going to be inside and one guy’s on the outside, but we had the tackle for the outside guy, Jawaan [Taylor], but the [line]backer wound up playing outside so we left a guy outside. [It was] a good play by them."

This will happen. Even if calling a toss in that scenario, and with that player, was a strange decision, it failing could mostly be chalked up to the Dolphins just winning one over the Jaguars. 

"We didn’t see that defense coming up. He just jumped outside for whatever reason or else we would’ve had a good gain, so we got out-executed on that one," Marrone continued. 

But the one-yard loss on the ill-advised toss didn't stop the Jaguars from attempting to pick up the first down in Miami territory. The Jaguars would call a pass play on fourth-and-6, asking Gardner Minshew to deliver a pass to keep the drive going. 

Unfortunately for Minshew, any chance he had at converting a first down was completely negated by a free blitzer sacking him for a huge loss. Jacksonville's three interior offensive linemen all blocked the same person on this play, so it is likely there was some miscommunication at some point.

"The next one was the right tackle has to come down and take the guy over where Andrew [Norwell] was," Marrone said. 

"Andrew’s coming down on the mug on the inside and then a right tackle comes down and we have to throw it hot off the defensive end.”

A lot of plays ended up with negative results for the Jaguars on Thursday, but a back-to-back pair of plays in which you lose a yard on third down and then take a sack on fourth down is going to be a low point no matter how you look at it. 

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