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Defense, Injuries Sink Jaguars to 1-3

At the beginning of the season the Jacksonville Jaguars looked promising. After an impressive win against the Colts in week one, and a close loss to the Titans in week two, it seemed like Minshew and Marrone might have some magic. In the two weeks since, all optimism regarding the Jags has vanished. They’ve delivered another rotten performance in week four, falling to the Bengals in Cincinnati 33-25, and the outlook on the season has gotten bleak.

The return of DJ Chark Jr to the lineup reignited the offense, which had a much more impressive showing than in week three. Chark caught both of Gardner Minshew’s touchdowns, hauling in 95 yards on 8 catches. Minshew posted 251 yards on 27/40 passing with the 2 touchdowns and one interception. James Robinson was kept out of the endzone but led the Jags with 75 yards rushing on 17 carries.

However, the 25 points that was put up by the offense was not enough, as the defense surrendered 30 points for the third game in a row and allowed a blistering 505 yards of offense.

Yet again, the Jags defense failed to pressure the opposing quarterback, allowing Joe Burrow ample time to torch the injury depleted secondary. Burrow threw for 300 yards on 25/36 passing with one touchdown on his way to his first career NFL victory. It was his third game in a row with 300+ passing yards, and he looked significantly more comfortable against the Jags than any of his previous opponents. He distributed the ball well and made some impressive throws, including a 16-yard touchdown toss to Tyler Boyd which came back after a holding call.

Burrow ultimately wasn’t the star of the Bengals offense today, as that role fell to Joe Mixon, who had his first big game of the year. The former Oklahoma runner put up a whopping 181 yards of offense and found paydirt 3 times. He gained 151 yards on the ground on 25 carries, and had 6 catches for 30 yards. He caught Burrow’s lone touchdown on a 20-yard wheel route and added two more scores on the ground, including a 34-yard dash up the sidelines.

The Jags saw two of their cornerbacks go down with injury during this game, CJ Henderson left in the first half with a shoulder injury and D.J. Hayden exited in the second half with a hamstring injury. Myles Jack made a stunning interception on Burrow in the endzone in the second quarter but ultimately left the game with an injury as well. Jacksonville hopes to bounce back in week five, heading to Houston to face an 0-4 Texans team.

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