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GameDay – Jaguars take on Colts in AFC South battle

Roy Cummings

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Photo by David Rosenblum/ Icon Sportswire

What: Jacksonville Jaguars (3-3) vs. Indianapolis Colts (2-4)

Where: Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana

When: 1 p.m. ET

Latest line/Over-under: Jaguars -3/43.5

Why you should watch

 OK, so this is hardly a marquee matchup. We get that. Even if Andrew Luck and Leonard Fournette were playing today this game still wouldn’t have drawn a lot of attention outside of Jacksonville or Indianapolis. Or would it? Perhaps it would and maybe it should because the Jaguars have proven they’re good enough to win the AFC South. They’ve done that by thoroughly beating the Texans (29-7), Ravens (44-7) and Steelers (30-9). Sure, they stumbled badly against the Titans, Jets and Rams, but the bottom line is this Jaguars team looks different than any we’ve seen in a long time. They do in some areas at least. The passing game still looks the same but if the Jaguars can handily beat the Colts today or just beat them period it will be a further indication this is a team worth watching no matter the matchup.

Key on: Jaguars WR Marqise Lee

 The Colts are not a great run-stopping team but any team that is allowed to consistently place eight or even nine defenders near the line of scrimmage is hard to run against. That’s where Lee comes in. The Jaguars have learned, much to their chagrin, that they’re not as deep at receiver as they might have intially thought. The loss of Allen Robinson and quarterback Blake Bortles’ inconsistency has really made it difficult for the Jaguars to create a downfield passing game. Lee can change that. He has the speed and run-after-catch ability to be a difference maker and he needs to be one today. The Colts give up a lot of big plays in the passing game and if Lee can create a few of those he’ll force the Colts to keep all their DBs back in coverage which will open more room for running backs Leonard Fournette and Chris Ivory to do the damage they’re capable of doing.

Statistically speaking

 Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey emerged from his team’s five-pick victory over the Steelers a few weeks ago demanding more respect for the Jacksonville secondary. Though his comments did force outsiders to take notice, the Jaguars still aren’t getting all the recognition they should for truly having one of the best secondaries in the league. They should though, because opposing quarterbacks are having fits throwing the ball against this unit, especially the cornerbacks. A.J. Bouye has allowed an opposing passer rating of 34.3 (the lowest among cornerbacks targeted 20 times or more) while Jalen Ramsey has allowed an opposing passer rating 35.2 (second best among corners targeted 20 times or more, according to Pro Football Focus. It’s hard not to respect that.

Roy Cummings is a native of Chicago, Illinois who grew up in the suburb of Lombard. He and his family later moved to Lakeland, Florida, where Roy attended high school at Kathleen High. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communications in 1983 and immediately went to work for the Tampa Tribune. After five years working in a Polk County bureau covering everything from high school sports to college football to the Orlando Magic of the NBA, Roy moved back to Tampa and became the Tribune's first beat writer for the Tampa Bay Lightning, covering the team from its inception through the first eight years on the ice. He was then moved to the Buccaneers beat, where he stayed until the paper was folded in May, 2016. A two-time Florida Sports Writer of the Year, Roy has extensive experience covering all Tampa professional sports teams, including the Tampa Bay Rays.

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