NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The familiar word no longer worked Saturday afternoon.
The Jaguars lost to the Tennessee Titans, 23-17, in front of an announced 69,143 at LP Field in downtown Nashville, Tenn., on Saturday afternoon, and when the Jaguars’ second consecutive loss was over, Pro Bowl running back
That time ended a while back, Jones-Drew said.
“It’s past frustrating,” Jones-Drew said. “It hurts.”
That was the mood around the Jaguars’ locker room afterward.
The Jaguars, who now have lost three of four games under interim coach Mel Tucker, talked of missed opportunities and unsatisfactory execution.
Mostly, they talked about disappointment over another game lost that could have been different.
“It was very disappointing,” Tucker said. “The guys fought hard. The effort was there all the way to the end, but we didn’t execute well enough on our side of the ball. We didn’t make enough plays.
“They made more plays than we did throughout the game. We came up short.”
The Jaguars (4-11) need a victory over the Indianapolis Colts in the regular-season finale Sunday to avoid finishing 4-12 for the second time in franchise history. The last time was the 1995 expansion season.
Asked the focus moving forward, Jaguars defensive end
“It’s time to play the Colts,” Mincey said. “We have to get ready for the Colts.”
Between now and then, Tucker said the focus will be on continuing to improve after a game in which the Jaguars and multiple opportunities to overcome a difficult start.
Tennessee (8-7) took a 10-0 lead on a 51-yard field goal by Rob Bironas and a 55-yard touchdown from Matt Hasselbeck to tight end Jared Cook, but an impressive drive by rookie quarterback
The first-half touchdown drive was one of the best of the season for Gabbert and the offense. He completed 5 of 5 passes for 68 yards, and Jones-Drew’s 10-yard run bade it 10-7, Titans, with :19 remaining in the quarter.
A 1-yard run by running back Jamie Harper with 12:03 remaining in the second quarter made it 17-7, but
Hasselbeck completed 24 of 40 passes for 350 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions playing against a Jaguars defense that started just one of the four players in the secondary who started opening day.
“No excuses, no explanations,” Tucker said. “This is a production-based business. We have to get the job done and we didn’t as a team.”
Two more field goals by Bironas, one from 51 yards in the third quarter and another from 35 yards in the fourth, made it 23-10 before the Jaguars forced two turnovers to give themselves a chance in the fourth quarter.
The first fourth-quarter Titans turnover – an interception by
Safety Michael Griffin intercepted in the end zone to end the threat.
“I support that call,” Tucker said. “We just didn’t execute it. Give them credit.”
That left the Titans with a 23-10 lead, but after safety
A 1-yard run by Jones capped a 35-yard drive and made it 23-17, with 3:44 remaining. It was Jones’ first rushing touchdown since November 11, 2007, also at Tennessee.
The Jaguars still had a chance, but a 29-yard pass from Hasselbeck to Cook converted 3rd-and-2 from the Titans 22. Two plays later, Chris Johnson ran around right end for a 13-yard gain and a first down just before the two-minute warning.
Hasselbeck kneeled to drain the clock after that.
“We have one more game guaranteed us,” Tucker said. “There’s no quit in any of these guys and these guys will prepare. These guys will play hard.”
*Rookie free agent
*The Titans’ first touchdown came on a 55-yard pass to Cook, who beat middle linebacker