It is a regular-season game, but it does have added significance, even for week 2 as the Patriots are traveling to Jacksonville Sunday.
And you know it must be important to Legendary coach Bill Belichick, because everything that he said on Wednesday was nothing but glowing about the Jaguars.
Belichick often makes his opposition out to be greater than an armored tank division, if you allow him to.
“He runs well. He’s a big, strong kid. He’s hard to bring down. He can extend plays, so just similar to the quarterbacks we’ve seen, really, the past three weeks, not counting the Giants game, but we’ve seen this three weeks in a row with players that have that type of skill and, yeah, he’s definitely in that category,” Belichick said.
Bortles did have a 41-yard run in last week’s game with the Giants and is much more fleet-of-foot than the average quarterbacks but the Patriots see week in and week out. However it is a little much to put him in a category with someone like Cam Newton or a fully healthy DeShaun Watson.
Then a question turn to Jaguars young defensive end Yannick Ngakoue and Belichick, who was in a better mood than that photo above from Sunday, raved about him:
“He’s a really good speed rusher that has more than speed, but he wins with speed and he makes you defend the speed and then he sets up other things off of that,” Belichick said. “That’s definitely his go-to move, is his get-off and his edge rush and his speed. But when you overplay that, he’s quick enough to come underneath. He can turn speed into power and he can counter, so he’s certainly got enough to be a problem in a lot of ways.
And, you got the feeling that was only begrudgingly mentioning DB Jalen Ramsey, because unlike the previous answers, he kept it “short and sweet” about Jacksonville’s lockdown corner:
Belichick gets an open-ended question about Ngakoue and raves about him for 5 minutes. He gets a question about Jalen Ramsey and gives a one line answer about how he's on a good team. pic.twitter.com/VoKPYa1sy4
— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) September 12, 2018
The Jags know they came very close to upsetting the Patriots and making the Super Bowl. However, close doesn’t cut it, and New England with hall-of-famer Tom Brady found a way in January.
And the last thing New England, and their top general are going to do is, give extra motivation to the young an up-and-coming Jaguars this week.
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