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Jaguars latest loss fuels rumors of a Tom Coughlin encore

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It is hard to imagine one team holding another to 206 yards of total offense, yet still lose the game. Somehow the Jacksonville Jaguars were able to pull off that improbability, losing to the Denver Broncos 20-10 on Sunday at EverBank Field.

Denver could manage only 102 passing yards and 104 yards rushing, but found ways to score enough to take the victory. Jaguars’ Quarterback Blake Bortles tossed two interceptions, one of which was a 51-yard return for a “pick-six” by Bradley Roby.

Rookie Paxton Lynch made his first NFL start for the Broncos after regular quarterback Trevor Siemian suffered an ankle injury in last week’s overtime loss to Kansas City. The game plan was obviously made simple for the rookie as his longest completion of the day was for only 10 yards.

The Jaguars’ rushing game was actually effective on Sunday, totaling 154 yards on the ground, one of their best days of the season. Unfortunately, Bortles had a dreadful game, completing only 19 of 42 passes for 181 yards and no touchdowns.

Sunday’s loss was the seventh straight for the Jaguars. Their 2-10 record now puts them behind only 0-12 Cleveland and 1-11 San Francisco for the NFL’s worst record.

Coach Gus Bradley must wonder what he can do to make his team more competitive. Most of the problems lie with a painfully struggling offense.

Sunday’s defensive effort was noteworthy, but still nowhere near enough to get a win. With Minnesota, Houston, Tennessee and Indianapolis remaining on the schedule, a 2-14 finish is a very real possibility.

Owner Shahid Khan is not going to tolerate another season like this. Reports are circulating that Tom Coughlin, who won two Super Bowls with the Giants, could return to the Jaguars after serving as their first coach.

He still owns a home in Jacksonville and is reportedly open to the thought of an encore performance.

In the meantime, the Jaguars will play out the string.


Bob Sparks is President of Ramos and Sparks Group, a Tallahassee-based business and political consulting firm. During his career, he has directed media relations and managed events for professional baseball, served as chief spokesperson for the Republican Party of Florida as well as the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the Attorney General of Florida. After serving as Executive Deputy Chief of Staff for Governor Charlie Crist, he returned to the private sector working with clients including the Republican National Committee and political candidates in Japan. He lives in Tallahassee with his wife, Sue and can be reached at

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