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Jags Keep the St. Louis Ewes Winless in Overtime

miller-article1In what was a thrilling game to the final kick, the Jacksonville Jaguars (3-3) kept the St. Louis Rams (0-6) winless with a 23-20 overtime victory. Not only are the Rams still winless this season, but the club hasn’t won a regular season game in a full year.

Offensively, Jacksonville dominated every statistical category. The Jaguars converted 33 first downs, produced 492 yards of offense and kept the ball for 42:12 of the game.

In a not-so-surprising showing, Maurice Jones-Drew ran for 133 yards and scored three touchdowns. That performance shows that Jones-Drew – after his mid-week rant about the Jaguars – is the clear-cut leader of this team.

For Jacksonville, a loss and a 2-4 record heading into its bye week would have brought much criticism and scrutiny. But, a win and a .500 record gives Jacksonville hope heading into the off-week.

The Jags travel to Tennessee to play the Titans on November 1 at LP Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 4:05 p.m.

The Jacksonville Jaguars Weekly Performance Review will not run during the Jaguars’ bye week.

Now, on to the Awards…

Best Play of the Game: Kicker Josh Scobee’s game-winning 36-yard field goal in overtime – It was an easy choice for the game winner. With eight minutes remaining in overtime, Scobee nailed the kick. Prior to halftime, he had missed a 58-yarder wide left; although it didn’t help that Scobee was kicking into a stiff northwest wind. Through six games, he is 8/12 on field goals.

Best Director (goes to Jaguar coach or coordinator): Mel Tucker, Defensive Coordinator – As a whole, the Jaguars’ defense played quite well. With Steven Jackson, one of the best backs in the league, St. Louis was contained to 55 yards on the ground. But, for most of the game, Jacksonville allowed quarterback Marc Bulger to look like an All-World player, which he is not. Jacksonville’s defensive line, in my opinion, played its best game yet. I expect more games like this for that unit.

Best Jaguar in a Leading Role: Maurice Jones-Drew, starting running back – He carried the ball 33 times for 133 yards and three rushing touchdowns. In addition to his stellar ground game, he added five receptions for 45 yards. Jones-Drew was the leader of the Jacksonville Jaguars on a day in which a loss would have crushed this franchise. His yards after contact might have been his most impressive characteristic against the Rams. Jones-Drew fought for every extra inch. He wanted it to be his day, and he made that very clear.

Best Jaguar in a Supporting Role: Mike Sims-Walker, starting wide receiver – Coming off a week he’d like to forget, he caught nine balls for 120 yards. After missing last week’s game against the Seattle Seahawks, it seemed that Sims-Walker was making up for lost time. He has proven that he is Jacksonville’s No. 1 wide receiver. It’s incredible what having threats at the wide receiver position can do for a football team. Sims-Walker is on pace to have well over a 1,000-yard receiving season.

Best Ram in a Leading Role: Steven Jackson, starting running back – Without Jackson doing everything he can do, St. Louis never would have been in this game. He is the heart and soul of the Rams, which is sad because the team may never overcome its deficiencies while he plays in St. Louis. His 22 touches for 128 yards were hard-earned. One could argue he puts more into every single run than any other back in the league.

Best Ram in a Supporting Role: Leonard Little, starting defensive end – On a very poor pass by David Garrard, Little intercepted it and returned it for a 36-yard touchdown. That score put the Rams ahead 17-13 with less than five minutes left in the fourth quarter. Little also deflected three passes and recorded a sack. At 34-years-old, Little is still a force to be reckoned with in today’s game. Jacksonville was moving the ball nicely before Little changed that with a major play. He is the Rams’ defensive leader.

Worst Ram: Donnie Jones, starting punter – I guess you could say at times Jones looked like the best Jaguar. He punted six times for a 41.2 average. However, Jones’ performance stood out to me as being rather weak. Nearly all of his punts were wobbly and well to the right. Whether he meant to or not, four of his punts went out of bounds. Jaguar wide receiver Mike Thomas only returned two of the punts for eight total yards.

Best Sound Editing: “It was an ugly type of game.” – Quarterback David Garrard summing up the 23-20 overtime win over St. Louis.

Best Animated Short (goes to the player with the most passion on the field): Derek Cox, starting cornerback – For the most part, anyone on defense could have received this Award. But, I decided upon the rookie. Cox was like glue all day. It did seem that it was his fault that Ram receiver Donnie Avery scored the first Rams’ touchdown. However, Cox is improving every game. He and Rashean Mathis could be a top cornerback tandem in the NFL in a few years.

Tweet of the Week (Twitter post): “What up jag nation. I want to apologize for my lapse in judgment last week. It won’t happen again! Stick wit me and stick with us!” – Wide receiver Mike Sims-Walker on Wednesday, October 14, apologizing for his deactivation last Sunday.

Eight Jaguar inactives:

Offensive tackle Jordan Black

Safety Sean Considine (groin)

Linebacker Justin Durant (hip)

Defensive tackle Greg Peterson (knee)

Linebacker Adam Seward (groin)

Cornerback Scott Starks (hip)

Wide receiver Tiquan Underwood

Offensive lineman Maurice Williams (knee)

Other Jaguar notes:

Quarterback David Garrard was 30/43 for 335 yards and two interceptions. He added four scrambles for 31 yards.

After a fourth-quarter pass, Garrard joined Mark Brunell as the only other Jaguar quarterback to pass for 11,000 career yards.

Former St. Louis Ram Torry Holt looked younger than ever in catching five balls for 101 yards. It was his 47th career 100-yard receiving game.

Rookie Mike Thomas had seven receptions for 52 yards.

The Jaguars’ defense only recorded one sack on Sunday: defensive tackle Atiyyah Ellison sacked Marc Bulger. This season, Jacksonville has five sacks.

42,088 tickets were distributed for the game.

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Richard Miller is a national broadcaster for Jacksonville Jaguars’ home games on Sporting News Radio. Additionally, he can be heard on ABC 1320 WBOB in Jacksonville at 5:45 p.m. on Wednesdays with The Jacksonville Observer Radio Show.

Richard contributes to Inside the Game with Robin Valetutto every Saturday from 12-2 p.m.

Currently, Richard is writing David Lamm’s biography entitled Lamm at Large: The David Lamm Story, which will be available in 2010.

You can e-mail Richard at richard.miller@jaxobserver.com.

4 Responses »

  1. Oh do wins feel good! Celebrate and then get ready for next week. We love you unconditionally like our children. But, you do misbehave and need a whoopin once in a while. Go Jaguars!

    Pretty soon, I'll be able to see what you look like on the television. It sounded good on the radio though.

  2. Holy cow!! That was a real nail biter. But, a great game in the end. You are right. Would have been a real embarrassment if they had not pulled through in overtime. Josh Scobee is Jacksonville's hero. Way to go, Scobee.

  3. Great game, but a little too close for comfort. I agree that Scobee deserves the award.

  4. Would have been a lot of fun to watch that one on television. But I was stuck with WOKV...