The semi-unofficial start of a new era of Jacksonville Jaguars football can now be circled on the calendar.
The Jaguars have finalized times and dates for the first preseason of the Urban Meyer and Trevor Lawrence era, starting with the Cleveland Browns on Aug. 14.
- Week 1: vs. Cleveland Browns on Aug. 14. 7 p.m. kickoff.
- Week 2: @ New Orleans Saints on Aug. 23. 8 p.m. kickoff.
- Week 3: @ Dallas Cowboys on Aug. 29. 1 p.m. kickoff.
This is not only the first time that Meyer will lead the Jaguars onto the field and potentially the first snap Lawrence takes as a Jaguars quarterback, but it will be the first preseason in which the Jaguars only play three preseason games.
Earlier this year, the NFL approved a 17-game regular-season schedule and a three-game preseason schedule. In 2021, all AFC teams will serve as hosts to the additional ninth regular-season home game and one preseason game. The Jaguars' extra home game is a Week 12 tilt against the Falcons, though the Jaguars will play just eight home games in Jacksonville due to a Week 6 game in London in which the Jaguars will serve as the home team.
The Jaguars' entire 2021 schedule can be found below.
- Week 1 (September 12): Jaguars at Houston Texans
- Week 2 (Sept. 19): Denver Broncos vs. Jaguars
- Week 3 (Sept. 26): Arizona Cardinals vs. Jaguars
- Week 4 (Sept. 30): Jaguars at Cincinnati Bengals (TNF, 8:20 p.m.)
- Week 5 (October 10): Tennessee Titans vs. Jaguars
- Week 6 (Oct. 17): Miami vs. Jaguars (London, 9:30 a.m.)
- Week 7 (Oct. 24): BYE
- Week 8 (Oct. 31): Jaguars at Seattle Seahawks (4:05 p.m.)
- Week 9 (November 7): Buffalo Bills vs. Jaguars
- Week 10 (Nov. 14): Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts
- Week 11 (Nov. 21): San Francisco 49ers vs. Jaguars
- Week 12 (Nov. 28): Atlanta Falcons vs. Jaguars
- Week 13 (December 5): Jaguars at L.A. Rams (4:25 p.m.)
- Week 14 (Dec. 12): Jaguars at Titans
- Week 15 (Dec. 19): Texans vs. Jaguars
- Week 16 (Dec. 26): Jaguars at New York Jets
- Week 17 (January 2): Jaguars at New England Patriots
- Week 18 (Jan. 9): Colts vs Jaguars
It remains to be seen both how NFL teams will adjust to a four-game preseason schedule, along with how Urban Meyer will plan his first preseason as a head coach. While college football had spring games, they didn't have numerous exhibition games against other teams ahead of the regular season, making this an interesting learning moment for Meyer.
Whether the Jaguars let Lawrence, the No. 1 overall pick in April's NFL Draft, play in the preseason following an offseason surgery on his non-throwing shoulder remains to be seen. But if they do, then Jaguars fans could get their first chance to see Lawrence throw a spiral in a Jaguars' uniform against the Browns.
“No, I mean, they—all of the staff, management and everyone here brought me here to win and that’s the main goal. So, I’m keeping the same mindset and obviously, there’s different challenges as you move on to the next level, things change a little bit, you’ve got to adapt," Lawrence said after rookie minicamp on May 15.
"But never—that mindset never changes, you’re always expecting to win and you prepare to win. So, I think that’s why they brought me here. They didn’t bring me here to expect to lose. I know we’ve got a lot of guys here that are ready to win and want to win. So, we’re on the right track for sure.”