In this series, Michael DiRocco counts down the 10 plays that shaped the Jaguars’ season.
Play No. 5: Posluszny’ s early big play
Situation: First-and-10 from the Tennessee 15-yard line.
Time: 14:54 remaining in the first quarter.
DiRocco’s take: The Jaguars were beginning the second half of the season in Nashville, Tenn., and desperately needed something good to happen after a disastrous 0-8 start in which they lost every game by double digits. Linebacker Paul Posluszny delivered on the first offensive play, stopping Titans running back Chris Johnson after a 4-yard gain, knocking the ball loose and recovering it on the Tennessee 19-yard line. More importantly, the Jaguars were able to capitalize on the turnover and take a 7-0 lead three plays later on Maurice Jones-Drew’s 6-yard run.
Season impact: That play sparked the Jaguars to their first victory of the season, which took 0-16 and talk about being the worst team in NFL history off the table. It also was a validation of head coach Gus Bradley’s approach, which was to focus on improving and not worrying about the results. Get better and the victories will come, Bradley told the players over and over again. After eight games and no victories, however, it was probably getting hard for the players to hear, but things finally came together against the Titans. Posluszny’ s forced fumble is probably a play that most won’t remember but was one of the most important of the season.
Quote: "Finally validating the work we’ve put in and getting this win today, it did feel like a breath of fresh air. It was kind of like [giving the] middle finger to all the people who want talk about the Jaguars not winning the game or being the worst 0-8 team in history. It’s kind of, ‘Eat this.’ That’s kind of how it feels." -- Guard Uche Nwaneri