If there wasn’t any other news this week, it would be likely that the Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Houston Texans matchup would get very little attention outside of their respective fan bases.
Both teams stand 2-11 and play out of pride and to see where they will land in the NFL draft order for 2022.
There was other news, of course.
The Jaguars fired their coach Urban Meyer after just 13 games. Meyer was fired and replaced on an interim basis by Darrell Bevell. Occasionally, a change at the top can give a team a boost, and fans will see if that happens to Trevor Lawrence and the Jags offense.
Meyer is fired:Urban Meyer fired 13 games as Jaguars coach in the first NFL season amid controversy
Gene Frenette:Jaguars had to fire Urban Meyer because of his embarrassing NFL tenure
Who’s next ?:Doug Pederson and Byron Leftwich could emerge as potential candidates to replace Urban Meyer
Meanwhile, Houston has shown good performance from Texan QB Davis Mills, despite the Texans being in the middle of a three-game losing streak.
Here’s what NFL reporters and pundits think Sunday will go:
The Texans beat the Jaguars in Week 1 and will do a seasonal sweep on the road. Given the nature of anemic crime and often porous defenses, something has to give way here. Houston appears to be more inspired to play with Davis Mills and David Culley as the Jaguars go to work with Trevor Lawrence and the rest of his teammates after Urban Meyer’s rocky tenure ended on Thursday.
The Urban Meyer fiasco is a valid reason for the Jaguars to fade, but that goes beyond that. They were outperformed by 108-31 points in their last four games, and Trevor Lawrence has thrown a touchdown since October. Jacksonville just isn’t competing right now. While the Texans have their own list of problems, I think Davis Mills and Brandin Cooks can get just enough in this ugly duel.
The Texans refuel and Darrell Bevell calls in.
There’s not much intrigue here other than predicting how long it will be after the season for Texans to do to Dave Culley what the Jaguars (thankfully) did to Urban Meyer. It’s a shame that Josh Lambo Meyer didn’t miss the last kick on the way to the door.
After Urban Meyer was fired, I am far less confident in this choice. The relief of getting rid of a tyrannical boss might not make the Jaguars world champions, but it could give them a boost. Earlier this week, I trusted a David Culley-coached Davis Mills more than a Meyer-coached Trevor Lawrence. Still, the Texans’ defense has shown signs of life in the second half of the season (13th in DVOA) and the unit has 11 sentient beings each, which is all that is needed lately to stop this Jacksonville offensive.
The loser in this matchup of 2-11 teams will be in the mix for No. 1 in the 2022 NFL Draft. Houston won the first meeting of Week 1. Texas quarterback Davis Mills will kick off too late for the Jaguars fight to end.
This is a terrible game but someone has to win and I think the Jaguars are a little less terrible than the Texans.
This is the dog game of the week. Both teams play the string with changes that come after the season. This will match two rookie passers-by at Davis Mills and Trevor Lawrence. Mills played better last week. Lawrence will play better here. It will be a low score, but the Jaguars will find a way after Urban Meyer was fired early Thursday.