Takeaways from the Jagaurs Preseason Opener

P1 SenDerrick Marks Rush
photo by Bobby King

Click here for a photo gallery from the game

by Cole Pepper
August 9, 2013

The Jaguars lost their preseason opener to the Dolphins 27-3, failing to score a touchdown. Here are the key takaways from Friday night’s game:

Gabbert vs. Henne: Gabbert played the first quarter, completing 5 of 10 passes for 19 yards and an interception. The interception was on a hard throw off the hands of fullback Will Ta’ufo’ou. Henne played the second quarter and finished 8/11 for 87 yards but had two passes knocked down in a row, stalling a drive. In short, neither quarterback did anything to win the job much less anyone’s confidence.

“We had one good drive and we were a little inconsistent early,” Gabbert admitted. “We got some different looks from them and that’s good for all the guys. You can go back tomorrow and really evaluate what we’re doing and what works.”

Protection-Luke Joeckel got beat once by Cameron Wake, but all in all, pretty good protection for the first team line that was working without Brad Meester, who sat and Mike Brewster started at center.

Pass Rush-Sen’Derrick Marks flashed. He recorded one sack and hurried the quarterback to other times. The Jaguars first and second teams did pressure the Miami quarterbacks, but only recorded the one sack. The eye test tells me that the pass pressure that was better in the scrimmage, continues to improve. “That was big for me,” Marks said of the sack. “I know I am one of the new additions to the defense and I want to be a leader…I think I did that tonight.”

Did wide receivers step up? Mike Brown and Ace Sanders both dropped passes from Gabbert. To be honest, the guy who made more plays in the passing game was Marcedes Lewis, who had two catches for first downs. Its clear that this team is going to be better when Cecil Shorts and Justin Blackmon are in there. “It’s the preseason so we are still trying to sharpen things up,” Lewis said.

Deep coverage-This is an area of concern for three reasons. First, the Jaguars are young in the defensive backfield, second, they’re playing more press coverage. And finally, because Chris Prosinski is playing deep safety. He is filling in for Johnathan Cyprien as the rookie heals from a hamstring pull. Prosinski never turned around on Miami’s first touchdown.

Play of the Game: For the Jaguars, it was rookie Dwayne Gratz’s interception of Matt Moore’s pass in the second quarter. Gratz had close tight coverage, and Moore made a mad throw right to him.

Star of the Game:Marks. He was the most active player on the defensive front for either team in the first three quarters. Things got a little ragged after that, as is usually the case in the 4th quarter of preseason games.