Jacksonville Jaguars: Wes Welker

DENVER -- Linebacker Paul Posluszny spent a lot of time after the Jacksonville Jaguars' 35-19 loss to the Denver Broncos playing good cop-bad cop.

He lauded the defense for forcing three turnovers (including his interception return for a touchdown) and holding the Broncos to season lows in total yards (407) and points.

But he also was critical of several costly defensive mistakes that ruined the Jaguars' chances of winning, mainly stupid penalties and failing to get off the field on third down.

While there were a lot of positives, the mistakes bother him more because they helped keep the Jaguars winless.

"We've got to take a really hard look at the type of mistakes we made," Posluszny said. "Early in the game we had them third-and-forever and they hit a checkdown, kind of a running back screen to get a first down. We're off the field on third down and all of a sudden we get a penalty.

[+] EnlargeJacksonville's Paul Posluszny
Chris Humphreys/USA TODAY SportsPaul Posluszny had seven tackles and also returned an interception 59 yards for a TD against Denver, but admitted the defense made too many mistakes.
"This is Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos. You can't do things like that and expect to be successful."

There aren't moral victories in football, but what the Jaguars did defensively against the NFL's top team should qualify. The Broncos hadn't scored fewer than 37 points and had scored 52 and 51 points the past two weeks. But in the first half, the Jaguars held them to 14 points and 165 yards and frustrated Peyton Manning.

They forced two turnovers as well. Posluszny had the biggest play, picking off a Manning pass intended for Wes Welker and returning it 59 yards for a touchdown that cut the Broncos' lead to 14-12 with 36 seconds remaining.

"They ran a simple play-action and I had a guy running up the seam," Posluszny said. "I was able to read the quarterback's eyes, make a break on it, and get my hands on the ball.

"I just wanted to catch the ball and secure it first and then it opened up. Andre Branch makes a great block, make a cut off that, and we get to go. So that was great for us."

Posluszny described the play without a smile, strange because it was his first career touchdown. But he was so bothered by the mistakes the Jaguars made on what seemed to be every Broncos scoring drive that he couldn't enjoy it.

Manning converted a third-and-20 with a dump-down pass that running Knowshon Moreno took 28 yards to the Jaguars' 9-yard line. Moreno simply turned around and went straight up the middle of the field and got a couple blocks from receivers before cornerback Will Blackmon was able to drag him down. Two plays later they led 7-0.

The Jaguars stopped the Broncos on their next possession when Moreno caught a pass and gained just 4 yards on third-and-14. But Branch was penalized for unnecessary roughness.

The Broncos scored five plays later for a 14-0 lead.

The Jaguars held the Broncos scoreless on their next four possessions, ending one by recovering a Manning fumble and another with Posluszny's interception.

There were more mistakes in the third quarter. Safety Josh Evans was penalized for pass interference and unsportsmanlike conduct and safety Johnathan Cyprien was penalized for pass interference in the end zone -- all on Denver's first drive.

In Posluszny's mind, all those things ruined the things the defense did well, and coach Gus Bradley agrees.

"We celebrate the victories within the game," he said. "We celebrate the good things that took place. We're going to celebrate that we got a pick-six because we talk about that. Get the ball and score. That defines you as a defense. That's a good thing. We'll celebrate that. But the overall, the outcome that we're looking for, it's not where we want to be."

Jaguars fantasy breakdown: Week 6

October, 11, 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 might be a decent play this week. The Jaguars are going to have to throw a lot to keep up with Peyton Manning so it wouldn't be a surprise if Henne throws for 270-plus yards and a touchdown or two. Verdict: Play him if you're in a league that allows you to play two quarterbacks.

RB Maurice Jones-Drew: He got a season-high 17 carries last week and offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said he'd like Jones-Drew to have even more. The Jaguars are going to try and run the ball to keep Manning off the field, but the team is still only averaging 2.7 yards per rush. Once the Jaguars fall behind by more than a couple touchdowns, Jones-Drew won't have much of an impact. Verdict: Sit him.

WR Justin Blackmon: Pretty good debut for him last week: five catches, 136 yards, one touchdown. There's no doubt he's the Jaguars' top receiver and he is in the best shape of his career. The Jaguars are going to have to make plays in the passing game to keep up. Verdict: Start him.

WR Cecil Shorts: He played through a groin injury last Sunday and has battled it all week but will play. He will benefit from Blackmon's presence because it'll open things up for him. Again, the Jaguars will have to throw a lot to keep up. Verdict: He's a solid No. 3 receiver option.

TE Marcedes Lewis: He's not playing. He probably shouldn't be on your roster by now, either.

K Josh Scobee: The lighter air is great for kickers and Scobee is allegedly going to try an 80-yard field goal in pregame warm-ups. How many field goals will he attempt in the game, though? If the Jaguars are down big he won't get many shots. Verdict: Sit him

Defense/special teams: Peyton Manning, Eric Decker, Wes Welker and Demaryius Thomas vs. two rookie safeties. Verdict: Put them on the bench.


QB Peyton Manning: He has thrown 20 touchdown passes and only one interception and hasn't thrown for less than 307 yards in any game this season. Verdict: Do I really have to tell you?

RB Knowshon Moreno: He has enjoyed a resurgence in Denver, rushing for 331 yards (third in the AFC) and four touchdowns. He does share time with Ronnie Hillman and Montee Ball, but he's the No. 1 back and should get a lot of work Sunday. Verdict: Start him.

WR Demaryius Thomas: He is sixth in the NFL with 450 receiving yards fifth in receptions (34). Remember the two rookie safeties? This is the guy who will burn them. Verdict: Start him.

WR Wes Welker: He has already caught seven touchdown passes. The most he ever caught in one season with New England was nine in 2011. He and Manning have quickly developed a bond, especially in the red zone. Verdict: If you have a Denver receive on your roster, start him.

WR Eric Decker: Nobody has benefitted more from Manning's arrival than Decker. He caught a career-high 85 passes last season and is on pace for 93 this season. Verdict: See above.

TE Julius Thomas: Thomas has already caught 27 passes, but the more interesting stat is he's averaging a touchdown catch every 4.5 receptions. Considering the trouble the Jaguars have had covering tight ends, Thomas should put up good numbers. Verdict: Start him.

K Matt Prater: Prater is 9-for-9 in field goal attempts this season and has made three field goals of 50-plus yards. He'll get a lot of work Sunday. Verdict: Start him.

Defense/special teams: The Broncos gave up 522 yards of total offense and 506 yards passing to Dallas last week, but the Cowboys' offense is a little more efficient than the Jaguars' offense. Plus, defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio was the Jaguars' head coach from 2003-2011, and don't think he doesn't want to dominate the team that fired him. The Jaguars have already thrown nine interceptions, allowed 20 sacks, and scored just five touchdowns this season. Verdict: A no-brainer start.

Get to know the Denver Broncos

October, 8, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Denver Broncos are on a roll so far that tops what the New England Patriots did in 2007. They are scoring points at a record pace, lead the NFL in total offense and passing yards and are favored over the visiting Jaguars on Sunday by 28 points -- which ties the largest point spread in NFL history.

Kickoff is set for 4:05 p.m. ET (CBS).

Here’s a look at the Broncos:

Record: 5-0.

Last week: beat Dallas 51-48.

Coach: John Fox, third season (26-11); 12th season overall (99-82).

Offensive coordinator: Adam Gase.

Defensive coordinator: Jack Del Rio.

Series record: Jaguars lead 5-3 (regular season).


QB Peyton Manning: He has already thrown for 1,884 yards and 20 touchdowns, with only one interception. He’s also completing 75.8 percent of his passes. Those are staggering numbers, even for Manning.

WR Demaryius Thomas: He is Manning’s favorite target and leads the team with 34 catches for 450 yards. He’s one of the league’s top young receivers and has already established himself as one of the game’s better big-play receivers. What makes him so hard for defensive backs to handle is his size (6-foot-3, 229 pounds).

LT Chris Clark: Why an offensive lineman on this list? Because he’s replacing Ryan Clady, who is out for the season with a Lisfranc injury. Clady was a rock at left tackle. Clark has filled in capably. The offensive line has allowed Manning to be sacked only five times.


NT Terrance Knighton: The former Jaguars defensive lineman has started every game and has seven tackles. He’s anchoring a defensive front that leads the NFL in rush defense (69.6 yards per game).

LB Wesley Woodyard: The Broncos’ leading tackler (35) left last Sunday’s game with a neck injury but said on Monday that he felt fine and would be ready to play against the Jaguars. He is coming off the best season of his career: 117 tackles, 5.5 sacks and three interceptions in 2012.

S Duke Ihenacho: He leads the Broncos with 28 solo tackles (32 overall). He has started every game this season after playing in only two in 2012 as a rookie.


The Broncos have scored 103 points in their last two games. … Denver has lost three in a row to the Jaguars. The last Denver victory came in 2005 in Jacksonville. … The Broncos have won 16 consecutive regular-season games dating back to a 31-21 loss at New England on Oct. 7, 2012. … Denver has scored more than 40 points four times this season, which is already a single-season franchise record. … Receiver Wes Welker is the first player since Washington’s Charlie Brown in 1982 to catch at least one touchdown pass in each of his first five games with a team.