An AFC Championship Rematch To Remember…

Regardless of it being recorded as one of the hottest games played in Jaguars history, 68,527 fans were adamite about being present for the AFC Championship rematch, Sunday! The initial AFC Championship was a nail bitter, a game the Jaguars controlled until early in the 4th quarter, before the Patriots defense wore down Bortles and maximized on the Jaguars defense being on the field too much. After the Jaguars suffered a tough loss versus the Patriots, January 21st, 24-20, eyebrows were raised at the potential Jacksonville had to win that game and move forward.
Sunday, Jacksonville reassured fans that their hope was in the right place. From the beginning of the game Jaguars controlled the pace as well as the Patriots. The game opened with the Jaguars on defense and showing us early in the 1st quarter that they still got. Holding the Patriots to an early 54-yard field goal attempt that Gostkowski missed.
As the Jaguars offense jogged out to the field, I’m sure many were wondering what was the protection for Blake Bortles going to look like and how efficient was the offense going to be without weapons Marqise Lee and Leonard Fournette? Bortles and the offense answered that question as they took over, roughly 4 minutes into the 1st quarter and nine plays later, Jacksonville found the end zone for a touchdown. Right out the gate you were seeing a different quarterback in Blake Bortles and his connection with two new weapons, Grant and Cole.
Aside from Bortles connecting with new offensive weapons, we got a flashback of UCF quarterback, Blake Bortles, as he used his feet a lot more this game. The first half the Jaguars held the Patriots offense to 1 field goal before heading into halftime 21-3. The Patriots are known for rallying in the second half, so fans were anxious to see what was in store for the second half…
Jacksonville’s defense had a field day containing Brady and the Patriots offense. Linebacker, Telvin Smith had very keen vision out there, contributing to New England’s inability to get to mid-field. Jalen Ramsey backed up his words of “fearing no man”, as he continued to make his presence known of the field… It was not until the end of the 3rd quarter and some of the 4th quarter that the Patriots started to finally get closer or past mid-field. The best they were able to accomplish was more field goals, until 3:48 left in the 4th quarter, New England finally saw the end zone.
Unfortunately, the Patriots one and only touchdown came too late, as the Jaguars took their 31-20 victory once the 4th quarter wrapped. All in all, what a game, and home opener for the Jacksonville Jaguars! Stay tuned with us at Florida National News as the Jaguars will be back home, hoping to continue the season with this momentum, versus the Tennessee Titans, this coming Sunday at 1pm!

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