Jacksonville Jaguars: Delanie Walker

Five things to watch: Jaguars-Titans

December, 21, 2013
Here are five things to watch in Sunday's Jacksonville Jaguars-Tennessee Titans game at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.:

Stopping the run: The Jaguars’ improved rush defense in the second half of the season started against the Titans, who managed just 83 yards on the ground. Chris Johnson had 30 yards on 12 carries and fumbled early in the game. The Jaguars slipped a bit last week and gave up 198 yards on the ground to the Bills. Can they rebound against the Titans and corral Johnson, who is a big-play threat every time he touches the ball?

Fitzpatrick Part II: Titans QB Ryan Fitzpatrick was forced into action in the last meeting when Jake Locker went down with a foot injury and he carved up the Jaguars’ secondary and nearly led the Titans to a comeback victory. He’s coming off a 400-yard, four-TD performance against Arizona and the Jaguars have given up an average of 301.8 yards passing in the last five games. It looks like safety Johnathan Cyprien will be able to play, so that should help some, but the Jaguars are going to have to get pressure to slow down Fitzpatrick.

MoJo’s health: Maurice Jones-Drew is questionable with a hamstring injury and is going to test it on Sunday morning to see if he can go. Even if he does play, it’s likely he won’t have a full load, which means we’ll see more Jordan Todman. He filled in pretty well for Jones-Drew last week (109 yards rushing).

TE play: From the Jaguars’ perspective, it’d be best to see more of Marcedes Lewis and less of Delanie Walker. Lewis has caught a touchdown pass in the last three games and offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said he wants to see Lewis more involved in the passing game now that Cecil Shorts is done for the season. Tight ends have hurt the Jaguars all season and Walker caught four passes for 62 yards and a touchdown in the last meeting. Can they limit his damage in this game?

Goodbye Brad: This will be the last home game for center Brad Meester, who announced earlier in the week that this would be his final season. The 36-year-old Meester, who is in his 14th season, owns franchise records for games played (207) and game started (207) as well as the two longest steaks of consecutive starts (92 and 88). The Jaguars selected him in the second round of the 2000 draft out of Northern Iowa and started at left guard the first three seasons before moving to center to begin the 2003 season. The team is going to have a post-game ceremony to honor him.

Jaguars fantasy breakdown: Week 15

December, 20, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Looking for some help with your fantasy football lineup? Every Friday I'll give you my opinions on which Jacksonville Jaguars players to play and sit, as well as which of the opposing players might be a good play against the Jags. For more fantasy football advice, check out ESPN.com's fantasy football page.


[+] EnlargeJosh Scobee
Andrew Weber/USA TODAY SportsJacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee has connected on 21 of 23 field goal attempts through 14 games this season.
QB Chad Henne: He completed only 14 passes for 180 yards and threw two interceptions in the last meeting with the Titans. Now he doesn’t have top target Cecil Shorts. Verdict: Sit him.

RB Maurice Jones-Drew: He’ll be a game-day decision because of his injured hamstring, but even if he does play, he likely won’t get a full workload. Verdict: Sit him.

RB Jordan Todman: He filled in nicely for Jones-Drew last week with 109 yards rushing. He should get the majority of the work against the Titans even if Jones-Drew plays. Verdict: He’s a good option for a flex spot in deeper leagues.

TE Marcedes Lewis: He has caught a touchdown in three consecutive games and with Shorts out, he should be more involved in the passing game. He caught a season-high four passes last week against Buffalo. Verdict: Roll the dice with him extending his TD streak to four games in a row.

K Josh Scobee: Hard not to go with a guy who has missed only two field goals all season -- and one was a 60-yarder. Verdict: Start him.

Defense/special teams: The Jaguars’ defensive turnaround started against the Titans, and the unit set the tone early with a forced fumble on the Titans’ first series. The Jaguars have recorded at least two sacks in the past five games and has at least three in four of those five. Still not scoring points in the return game, though. Verdict: Sit them.


QB Ryan Fitzpatrick: He’s coming off a 402-yard, four-TD performance against Arizona and is facing a Jaguars secondary that is giving up an average of 301.6 yards per game in the past five games. Verdict: Start him as your No. 2 QB.

RB Chris Johnson: He fumbled against the Jaguars early in the previous matchup and was no factor. He hasn’t rushed for more than 86 yards in the five games since. Until last week, the Jaguars had done a good job shutting down the run. Verdict: Sit him.

WR Kendall Wright: Wright has had a breakout season in just his second year in the NFL. His 85 catches rank seventh in the NFL and his 29 third-down catches are tied for the league lead. He only has two TD catches, though. Verdict: Start him.

WR: Nate Washington: Washington is averaging 15.3 yards on 50 catches, but like Wright he doesn’t find the end zone much (two TDs). Verdict: He’s an option for a flex spot in deeper leagues. Otherwise, sit him.

TE Delanie Walker: He has caught a career-high 53 passes for 507 yards. More importantly, he has six TD catches. Verdict: Start him.

K Rob Bironas: He has made 20 of 24 field goal attempts, but half of his field goals have been inside 29 yards and he has just one attempt of 50 or more yards (he missed). Verdict: Sit him.

Defense/special teams: The Jaguars' offense won't have its best receiver and may not have its top running back, either. Henne tried to force a few passes last week and got picked off twice, so the Titans will have chances for turnovers. Verdict: Start them.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Now that they’ve won three of the last four games, the Jacksonville Jaguars aren’t a joke any longer.

Unless you listen to the some of the comments from players on the teams they’ve beaten. Losing to the Jaguars is apparently the worst thing they’ve experienced in their careers.

That has some Jaguars players amused -- and a little miffed, too.

"It’s not annoying," guard Uche Nwaneri said. "It’s ridiculous. Really? Are we a high school team playing ya’ll? You have to apologize to your city because you lost to us?

"It’s the NFL. Every win is a hard-earned win. There’s rarely just easy sailing for any team throughout the course of the season so when you’re able to pull out a win you celebrate it. When you lose you try to be as gracious as you can in defeat but don’t trivialize our win because we came in here with a record that wasn’t as good as yours."

The Jaguars were 0-8 when they beat the Titans 29-27 on Nov. 10 in Nashville, Tenn. The Jaguars forced four turnovers and got a safety because of a holding penalty in the end zone, a play that turned out to provide the final margin.

After the game, tight Delanie Walker was almost in disbelief that the Titans -- who were 4-4 with a game against the Jaguars before one against the division-leading Colts -- somehow lost the game.

"It’s disgusting," he told Nashville media. "I’m disappointed. I’m embarrassed. A team that’s 0-8 comes in here and beats us? Beats us on our home field, that’s 0-8, the Jaguars? Come on. ... Talking about first place? We just got whooped by the Jaguars."

It got worse two weeks later when the 1-9 Jaguars went into Houston and upset the 2-8 Texans 13-6. Running back Ben Tate said he was embarrassed for the city, cornerback Johnathan Joseph said there was no way they should have lost the game, and offensive tackle Duane Brown apologized to the city.

Receiver Andre Johnson called it the lowest point of his Texans career.

Cleveland’s players were much nicer after last Sunday’s 32-28 loss in which the Jaguars drove 80 yards to score the game-winning touchdown with 40 seconds remaining. But cornerback Joe Haden, who was beaten for the winning TD, went on an emotional, expletive-filled rant about being tired of losing -- the implication being the Jaguars were a team the Browns (4-7 entering the game) should have easily beaten.

"I don’t care what the opposing team thinks," said Jaguars receiver Cecil Shorts, a Cleveland native who beat Haden for the touchdown. "It’s the NFL. You’re going to win or lose each week. You’ve got to bring your best that week. For us, we’re getting better.

"We’ve been 3-1 since the bye week so if they’ve got a problem with it come see us. That’s how I feel about it."

Not every Jaguars player was bothered by the comments made by the Titans, Texans and Browns. Linebacker Paul Posluszny just shrugged his shoulders.

"You know, it is what it is," said. "From their [the Titans’] perspective we were 0-8 so they think we’re the worst team in the league. What are you going to do? That’s not something we worry about.

"It’s an NFL team against an NFL team. Regardless of our record we still have Maurice Jones-Drew and Marcedes Lewis. We have Pro Bowl players. For them to say that to me it’s … just one of those things you blow off."

Not Nwaneri, though.

"There’s so many things that happen on the field, chitter-chatter in between players about so many different things, that it didn’t surprise me necessarily when they started talking," he said. "I was more like, this sounds like a child complaining because they can’t have their way."

Jaguars fantasy breakdown: Week 10

November, 8, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Looking for some help with your fantasy football lineup? Every Friday I'll give you my opinions on which Jacksonville Jaguars players to play and sit, as well as which of the opposing players might be a good play against the Jags. For more fantasy football advice, check out ESPN.com's fantasy football page.


QB Chad Henne: Henne has averaged 302.7 yards passing in three starts against the Titans, but he’s minus his best weapon in Justin Blackmon (suspension). Henne has thrown for 300 yards in two of his past three games. The Tennessee Titans are only giving up 217.8 yards per game passing. Verdict: A solid second option for leagues that play two QBs.

RB Maurice Jones-Drew: He finally got rolling against San Francisco and the plan is to continue to get him 20-plus touches per game. He has traditionally played well in Nashville, averaging 113 yards per game at LP Field. Verdict: He’s as healthy as he’s been all year. Play him as your No. 2 or 3 back.

WR Cecil Shorts: With Blackmon gone, Shorts has to step back into the No. 1 receiver role. He held that spot while Blackmon was suspended for the first four weeks and caught 26 passes. Verdict: He’s a viable option as a flex player.

TE Marcedes Lewis: He hasn’t had the kind of impact in the passing game that people expected since his return from a calf injury, catching just two passes for 37 yards. With Blackmon gone he’ll have to be more involved, but he’s still likely not going to be targeted more than five times per game. Verdict: Sit him.

K Josh Scobee: He has made all 10 of is field goal attempts this season. That’s certainly a good stat, but consider this: only four kickers have made fewer field goals this season. Verdict: Sit him.

Defense/special teams: The Jaguars are last in the NFL in rush defense (161.8 yards per game) and are going up against one of the league’s most dynamic backs. They’re also last in scoring and have forced just eight turnovers this season. Still waiting on a big return, too. Verdict: Sit them.


QB Jake Locker: He’s only averaging 205 yards per game passing and has thrown just eight touchdown passes. He’s playing solid football and not making mistakes, which is exactly what the Titans want him to do. However, those aren’t great fantasy numbers. Verdict: Sit him

RB Chris Johnson: A guy who has six TD runs of 80 or more yards -- the most in NFL history -- going against the NFL’s worst run defense? A defense that has also struggled to tackle and missed 12 in its last game? Verdict: Play. Him.

WR Kendall Wright: He leads the Titans with 43 catches for 502 yards. The problem? Only one touchdown catch. The Titans just don’t throw the ball enough to make him a top-flight fantasy option. That will be especially true against the Jaguars’ porous run defense. Verdict: He might be a solid play as a No. 3 receiver.

WR Nate Washington: Washington averages a team-high 16.9 yards per catch. However, he’s only averaging a little more than three catches per game. He has averaged 82 yards receiving at home this season, though. Verdict: Play him only if you’ve got guys on a bye.

TE Delanie Walker: He has caught 25 passes in eight games, which is four shy of his career high of 29 catches with San Francisco in 2010. He is also the Titans’ leader in TD receptions (three). Still, he’s not a reliable fantasy option. Verdict: Sit him.

K Rob Bironas: Like Scobee, Bironas just hasn’t made a lot of field goals this season (11). Verdict: Sit him.

Defense/special teams: The last time these teams hooked up, the Titans returned two interceptions and two punts for touchdowns. That obviously doesn’t mean it’ll happen again, but the Jaguars have thrown 12 interceptions and have been inconsistent on special teams. Verdict: Worth a gamble.