A tremendous AFC Championship Game is in the books and again, the New England Patriots demonstrated that short of a nuke or silver bullet to the heart, you can’t kill them.
Tom Brady engineered yet another fourth quarter comeback hitting Danny Amendola on a laser in the back of the end zone with just under three minutes to play for a 24-20 win.
The upstart Jaguars played very well, led for the entire game after their first TD in the first quarter made it 7-3. And, they have a tremendously bright future.
It’s also a record eighth time and counting, that Brady and coach Bill Belichick will play for a Super Bowl win in two weeks.
A bunch of great story lines.
So why, is everyone on the internet and social media, obsessed with the officiating, when it wasn’t really a factor, at all, much less, in a dramatic second half?
In fact, the only penalty called on either team was a pass interference on Jalen Ramsey of Jacksonville with 6:21 remaining against Brandin Cooks of the Patriots. And, the replays clearly showed it was the right call on Ramsey hitting and grabbing Cooks before the ball got there.
Oh, and the Jags defense, still leading 20-17 at that point, stuffed New England on the next three plays and forced a punt.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good narrative about the refs being in Robert Kraft’s pocket!
In fact, there was a properly officiated and replay reviewed strip fumble that went the Jaguars way. That was LB Myles Jack getting the ball out on Dion Lewis after he had made a catch.
They got it right and it was in the Jaguars favor.
Another point: there were only seven total penalties in the game.
Not 10, 12, much less more.
It was a mostly clean game. Period.
And while some are pointing to the second quarter, where A.J. Bouye was also flagged for P.I. on Cooks setting up the Pats first TD, that looked fairly obvious and correct, too.
Cooks is the Patriots best deep threat and Bouye was clearly using his body to impede him from getting to a ball that landed in bounds at the five yard line.
Earlier in the half, the Jags had two obvious false starts and Blake Bortles clearly did not get the snap off on a key third down before the play clock read 0 and deserved a delay of game.
What’s the beef there?
Now, if your argument is that the Patriots should have been called for more flags, then we need specifics.
It is worth noting and in the favor of the conspiracy crew, that New England became the first playoff team since, …. New England in 2011, to have a playoff game with only one penalty.
Still you have to have proof.
We come down on the side that you have to make your own breaks and luck.
The Patriots did that. The officials did not do it for them.
That’s why they are back in the Super Bowl, again.
Report- Jaguars to hire former Giants coach McAdoo as QB coach
The Jaguars are trying to fix things offensively and especially, at the quarterback position. And, to that end, they have apparently settled on another hire, involving another former NFL head coach to lead their QB room.
ESPN Giants reporter Jordan Raanan reported Tuesday night the Jacksonville is hiring former New York Giants head coach, Ben McAdoo, to be their quarterback coach:
Ben McAdoo is being hired as the Jaguars quarterbacks coach, per source. The former Giants coach is back in after two years out of the NFL. McAdoo has worked well with Aaron Rodgers and Eli Manning in his previous stints.
— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) February 12, 2020
McAdoo had been under consideration by head coach, Doug Marrone, for the offensive coordinator vacancy that occurred when the team dismissed John DeFilippo after just one season.
Eventually, Marrone decided upon another former NFC East coach, Jay Gruden, from the Redskins, as the offensive coordinator hire. Gruden, the younger brother of Jon Gruden, is known as an innovator in the passing game.
However, the Jags, including GM Dave Caldwell, were obviously impressed with Macado’s previous work with the Giants and Eli Manning. McAdoo began as an offensive coordinator in New York in 2014 – 15. He was then given the head coaching job, basically at the uriging of the two-time Super Bowl champion QB Manning to take over in 2016.
The Giants finished 11 – 5 McAdoo’s first year as the head coach and made the playoffs. However, the relationship with Eli Manning quickly soured and the team fell apart going 2 – 10 in its first 12 games with McAdoo actually benching Manning late in the 2017 season. McAdoo was fired the week after that benching and has been out of the NFL the last two seasons.
McAdoo will replace QB coach Scott Milanovich, who took over as head coach of the CFL Edmonton Eskimos for later this summer.
The Jaguars still have to resolve their quarterback situation, as they have high price free agent signing Nick Foles, who did not perform well in his first season in Jacksonville. And then, they have fan favorite rookie 6th round pick Gardner Minshew, who did play well at times in relief of the injured Foles and when Marrone benched Foles for the final four games of the year.
Jaguars president Lamping continued to defend two London games
With a fan base that is unsure whether or not Jaguars owner Shad Khan really wants to move half his team’s schedule, if not the team entirely to London, team president Mark Lamping took to the national radio airwaves Thursday morning trying to defend this week’s announcement that they will be playing a second home game in the U.K. this fall.
Lamping was a guest on “Sirius XM NFL Radio” morning show with co-host Bob Papa and Charlie Weis and tried to make clear that playing a second home game in London starting this year, is in the best interest of keeping pro football in North Florida:
— SiriusXM NFL Radio (@SiriusXMNFL) February 6, 2020
Lamping told the hosts that Khan is “taking all the actions he believes are necessary to ensure the future of the NFL in Northeast Florida,” during the conversation. He went on to discuss Khan’s commitment to land development around TIAA Bank Field and how playing this second home game in London will be able to help with revenue.
Still, it’s totally understandable that Jaguars fans who hear those comments and say, “your words are empty and your actions of moving a second game to London’s Wembley Stadium mean everything.”
And, they would not be wrong to say or think that.
A franchise wanting to stay committed and strong in the market/region where they are, isn’t looking to take 1/4 of the regular season home schedule and play games five time zones away.
The point Lamping was trying to make is the same that Khan did earlier in the week: that the Jaguars make easily $500,00 and maybe north of $1 million more money by selling their home games to the NFL to put on abroad vs. playing in a half empty stadium in Jacksonville,.
The real bottom line with respect to attendance/revenue is: the Jaguars have only had one winning season in eight years under Khan’s ownership. In fact, they’ve lost at least 10 games (including the last two years) in those 7 other seasons, and the losing has caused fan apathy, which therefore results in a lack of revenue.
And, most Jaguar fans were unhappy, or just met with that apathy, Khan’s decision last December to not go ahead and wipe the slate clean from coach Doug Marrone and GM Dave Caldwell, who were part of those last two years. This especially, after firing VP of football,, Tom Coughlin, late in the 2019 season.
The belief from many fans, who post online or call Jacksonville sports radio, etc., is that there’s going to be more of the same of losing in 2020. And then, the owner threatening to move more games every year to London, while still being based in Jacksonville.
For now, the NFL is willing to allow Khan to play more games in the U.K., while being based in Jacksonville.
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