Jaguars dominate in victory over Ravens in London

After a powerful pregame display of unity from both teams in the face of comments made by President Trump on Friday, the Jaguars obliterated the Ravens, 44-7, in what was one of the most lopsided victories in franchise history. Here's what we learned...

  1. On a day in the NFL that was far more about fortifying free speech rights and respecting the experiences and tribulations of our fellow Americans than football, Jaguars owner Shad Khan linked arms with tight end Marcedes Lewis and linebacker Telvin Smith during the national anthem in London on one sideline Sunday. The Ravens also linked arms in a display of solidarity on their sideline, with a few of their highest-profile players like Terrell Suggs, Mike Wallace and Lardarius Webb taking a knee, according to The Baltimore Sun. Some Jaguars players also took a knee during the anthem. For complete coverage of what has been a somber but unifying day in league history, please follow links here and here.
  1. All you need to know about the Jaguars' defense: Joe Flacco did not complete a pass until the 4:13 mark in the second quarter. Cornerback A.J. Bouye made one of the more athletic interceptions we'll see all year on a midfield fade throw that Flacco has made so many times to his top receiver over the years that it's become nearly mechanical. Calais Campbell, according to Pro Football Focus, logged pressures on a majority of his pass rush snaps in the first half, freed the backfield for another Dante Fowler sack and forced Terrance West's first fumble in 126 carries. The Ravens punted five times in their first 30 minutes. Baltimore's 15 net yards were the fewest in one half in team history and they didn't get to 100 until the 11:04 mark in the fourth quarter. We'll get into the Ravens' struggles momentarily, but this was a second punishing performance in three games from a very good unit. If the Jaguars' offense can play complementary football at the level we saw Sunday, we're in for a stunning season of AFC South football.
  1. Has the offense reached a crisis point in Baltimore? Despite the team being 2-1, the Ravens entered Sunday morning's game against the Jaguars as unbalanced as they were a year ago. Before their International Series tilt, Joe Flacco and Co. were 32nd in pass attempts and second in rushing attempts -- the reverse of a team that finished almost dead last in rushing attempts and first in passing attempts in 2016. There were plenty of mitigating factors on a surreal Sunday for the Ravens and the rest of the NFL, of course, as many players took the field with heavy hearts. The Ravens could also blame their first trip across the pond, which has the potential to sap a team's energy quickly. Should those factors not end up being what the Ravens point to internally, will it be difficult facing inevitable questions about Flacco's health (he missed the preseason with a back issue and finished Sunday's game on the bench after an 8-of-18 performance for 28 yards and two picks) and the effectiveness of Marty Mornhinweg as offensive coordinator?
  1. Good for Lewis, the oldest player on the Jaguars' roster. He has slogged through some long seasons after getting taken in the first round of the 2006 draft by Jack Del Rio. Over the next 10 seasons, Lewis saw just one end in a winning record. On Sunday, he caught three touchdown passes, which matches his total from 2014-16.
  1. Jaguars coach Doug Marrone faked a punt while up 37-0, a move which had support in the broadcasting booth despite not being popular via the immediate reaction squad on Twitter. The broadcast team on Yahoo! mentioned that this was not a divisional opponent and that Jacksonville would not have to worry about facing Baltimore again this season. To that same point, they also noted that if the look is available, one has to take it in the NFL. I find it hard to believe that John Harbaugh, a special teams coordinator at one time, will forget this.
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