Talking Points: Jaguars vs. Colts

This evening, the Jaguars host the Colts in the final home game of 2008 for Jacksonville. Here are the topics we’ll be discussing before the game, following during the game and analyzing after the game:

The last dance-
This is the last home game that this collection of Jaguars will ever play. For some, it’s the last game they’ll play as Jaguars in Jacksonville. Mike Peterson, Khalif Barnes and Reggie Williams are among those who are almost certainly playing their last home games as Jaguars. Will that mean anything to them and, more to the point, will it make a difference on the field?

Mojo carries the load-Last week, Maurice Jones-Drew carried the load for the Jaguars running game. Without Fred Taylor, though, the Jaguars threw the ball more than they passed it by a near 2:1 ratio. The Colts do not defend the run well. Will the Jaguars continue to look downfield, or will they pound the ball, like they did in the first meeting with Indy, when both Taylor and Jones-Drew ran for over 100 yards and the Jaguars won.

Deep passing game-Speaking of that passing game, last week the offensive line gave the Jaguars time to work downfield and Dennis Northcut got open for three passes of over 20 yards. It’s the first time all year that the Jaguars have done that. Was it an aberration? Can they do it again?

Collier impact-Richard Collier visited the team en mass for the first time since being shot in September. Collier may be a part of the pre-game ceremonies. Will that energize the team? There is no way to know for sure how a team will respond to seeing Collier, but its certain to have some kind of an impact on, at least, some of the players.

Who finishes strong? I don’t believe that teams can bottle momentum and carry it through the off-season, but that doesn’t mean that individual players can’t benefit from playing well in December. For the young players, especially, finishing with a flourish can increase confidence, which usually pays dividends in better play next year.

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