Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JAGS STILL NOT THE 1; Colts Headed to South Title Again after Narrow Win

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JAGS STILL NOT THE 1; Colts Headed to South Title Again after Narrow Win

Article excerpt


INDIANAPOLIS -The most famous quotation of Jack Del Rio's former coach Dennis Green might apply to this team and especially this game.

Green once said, "They are who we thought they were."

And in the case of the Jaguars, it's a wild-card team with what seems an ingrained inability to win the big game. At least that's what Jacksonville showed the country Sunday in falling to the Colts 28-25 while validating its national standing as a team unable to carve out wins when the stakes are highest.

"In a perfect world, we'll get an opportunity to see them again," Jaguars running back Fred Taylor said.

That's really about all the Jaguars (8-4) can hope for.

With Sunday's loss, the Jags fall two games behind Indianapolis (10-2) in the AFC South, virtually assuring themselves the distinction once again of being an also-ran in the Colts' drive to a fifth consecutive division title.

The Jaguars almost played well enough to win Sunday.

Taylor averaged 7.4 yards per carry in posting his second consecutive 100-yard rushing game. The Jaguars outgained the Colts (411 yards to 342), led in time of possession (35:45 to 24:15) and overcame a two-touchdown deficit to pull within three points with three minutes left on David Garrard's touchdown toss to Dennis Northcutt.

But it wasn't enough when paired with the Jaguars' mistakes

"We had it right there in our grip," Garrard said. "We were tasting it."

Entering the game, the Jags averaged about four penalties for 36 yards per game. They nearly doubled that output Sunday, while the Colts were penalized just twice for 15 yards.

Perhaps the most damaging penalties occurred during a fourth-quarter drive that, at one point, saw the Jags in a third-and-1 situation at the Indianapolis 8. Wide receiver Reggie Williams was penalized 15 yards for unnecessary roughness (he also dropped what would have been a touchdown pass in the third quarter). Right tackle Khalif Barnes was flagged for a false start on the next play.

Josh Scobee kicked a 47-yard field goal four plays later to make the score 21-17 with a little more than 11 minutes left to play. If not for the penalties, the Jaguars may have been able to tie the score .

"You can't have the mistakes," Jaguars defensive end Paul Spicer said. "Good teams such as the Colts will capitalize on mistakes. They didn't make the mental errors. They didn't have as many as we did."

Many of those errors came in the first half, helping Indianapolis build a 21-7 lead.

Colts tight end Dallas Clark beat Clint Ingram for a 5-yard touchdown reception, the first of his two first-half TDs. Reggie Wayne tacked on another Colts score by torching Brian Williams for a 48-yard TD with 1:31 left in the first quarter.

"You can't have blown coverages. …

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