Third-down failures a constant in Jaguars' losses

Discussion in 'Tennessee Titans and NFL Talk' started by NewsGrabber, Oct 6, 2008.

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  1. NewsGrabber

    NewsGrabber Guest

    Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky Jack Del Rio's mentioned it often this season. The Jaguars failures running the ball are directly connected to their inability to convert third downs.
    In its two wins, Jacksonville has converted third downs more than twice as frequently (53.8 percent of the time) than in their three losses (26.3).
    In the context of Sunday's loss to Pittsburgh, Del Rio said the Steelers' sure tackling and the play of safety Troy Polamalu combined with the inability to convert third downs killed the Jaguars run game.
    "If you don't convert third downs, you don't possess the ball," he said. "If you don't possess the ball, you don't get exposure and opportunities. And so as a result we had 15 carries by our running backs in the game. That's not enough. So that's the difference. That's the difference in why the running game didn't go the way we wanted it to go, the way we need it to go."
    Early on the Jaguars got big third-down conversions with a 15-yard David Garrard pass to Matt Jones and an 18-yard pass to Mike Walker. After that it was a combined two-for-13 on third and fourth down.
    And it wasn't all third-and-long either.
    The run game itself contributed to the lack of opportunities for the run game -- Maurice Jones-Drew came up a yard short on a third-and-two and had a no gain on a third-and-one.


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