Jacksonville Jaguars (2-10, 4-8 ATS) at Tennessee Titans (8-4, 7-5), 1 p.m.
Brolley’s Jaguars Stats and Trends
The Jaguars have dropped three straight games ATS.
Jacksonville has played under the total in 10 of its last 11 games.
First overall pick Trevor Lawrence has been downright putrid over the last six games, averaging 5.0 YPA with just two touchdowns. The Jaguars are averaging just 10.7 points per game in that stretch. Lawrence completed 16/28 passes for 145 scoreless yards (5.2 YPA) and he had 4/10 rushing to finish with 6.8 FP in a 30-point loss to the Rams. He had his best fantasy output of the season against the Titans in Week 5 with 22.7 FP back when he was playing at a decent level and the Titans’ defense was a mess.
The Jaguars’ passing game is in such disarray that Laquon Treadwell has led them in receiving in each of the last two weeks. He has a combined 8/115 receiving on 13 targets in Weeks 12-13 while Laviska Shenault (8/63) and Marvin Jones (6/54) are well behind him. Jakobi Meyers (5/98 receiving) and Kendrick Bourne (5/61/2) did eat in this matchup the last time the Titans played if you’re bold enough to play anyone in this passing attack.
James O’Shaughnessy led the Jaguars with six targets (21% share) in Week 13, but he turned those looks into just 2/13 receiving. He’s seen 11 targets since Dan Arnold went down with his knee injury in Week 12, but he’s managed just 5/42 receiving on those looks. Arnold had 6/64 receiving in this matchup earlier this season.
James Robinson is struggling through heel and knee injuries, and he got benched for Carlos Hyde for an early fumble in Week 13 — Hyde out-snapped Robinson 29 to 26. J-Rob’s snap share has fallen three straight weeks (63%>52%>44%) and he bottomed out for the season at 44% last week. Hyde led the backfield with nine carries in their 30-point loss to the Rams, which he turned into 24 rushing yards and a touchdown, while Robinson managed just 8/24 rushing. Robinson ripped the Titans for 18/149/1 rushing in this matchup in early October, but his role has recently diminished and this offense is in shambles compared to earlier in the season.
Brolley’s Titans Stats and Trends
The Titans beat the Jaguars 37-19 in early October as four-point road favorites in a game totaled at 49 points.
The Titans are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games as a favorite.
The Titans split the work in this backfield essentially right down the middle between Dontrell Hilliard and D’Onta Foreman in Week 12. Hilliard posted 12/131/1 rushing with a two-yard catch on two targets on a 51% snap share against the Patriots while Foreman finished with 19/109 rushing while catching his only target for three yards on a 49% snap share. The one problem is Jeremy McNichols could re-enter the picture to make this an ugly three-man rotation after sitting out the last three weeks with a concussion. Hilliard has been the most impressive of these three backs, but he could be pinched the most by McNichols return as the passing back since Foreman fits the Derrick Henry mold the most as a lead runner. Jacksonville is giving up a respectable 3.9 YPC but they’re facing the sixth-most attempts per game (23.8) from RBs after Sony Michel posted 24/121/1 rushing against them last week.
The Titans designated Julio Jones (hamstring) to return from injured reserve, which opened a 21-day window for him to return. He hasn’t appeared in a game since Week 9, and he’s scored double-digit FP and reached 6-+ yards just once in his six games this season, which came all the way back in Week 2.
Ryan Tannehill is working with next to nothing at his skill positions right now, but he could at least get Julio back this week. He’s fallen below 19+ FP with just one TD pass in each of his last four games, and he’s thrown for multiple TDs in a game just twice this season. Tannehill managed just 197/1 passing and 3/21 rushing in this matchup back in Week 5 when Henry ran for three scores.
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine should continue to have a prominent role in Tennessee's low-volume passing game with or without Julio this week. He posted 2/25/1 receiving on five targets (24% share) to pace the Titans against the Patriots in their last game in Week 12. The Jaguars are giving up the seventh-most receiving yards per game (172.2) to WRs.
Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies
Pace (seconds in between plays): 25.6 (2nd)
Plays per game: 60.7 (24th)
Pass: 63.9% (11th) | Run: 36.1% (22nd)
Pace: 28.7 (22nd)
Plays per game: 62.6 (18th)
Pass: 55.1% (27th) | Run: 44.9% (6th)
All pace / play data is from the last eight weeks.
After getting their first win of the year in London back in Week 6, the Jaguars have managed an absolutely pitiful 10.7 points per game over their last six outings since their bye. Their average point differential on the scoreboard is 11.1 points which is by far the worst in this stretch. Hopefully you’re not relying on any of these guys to punch your playoff tickets.
The Titans have predictably regressed with Derrick Henry out, but obviously have a nice bounceback spot here coming out of their bye at home against a completely inferior team. Even in a 36-13 blowout loss against the Patriots, the Titans completely abandoned their passing attack – electing to run it 39 times compared to 23 passes. As massive favorites, the Titans should be able to take a very run-heavy approach here again if they so choose.
Huber’s Key Matchup Notes
Calling the ‘21 season a success from a statistical standpoint for Ryan Tannehill would be a bit of a stretch. He’s fallen short of value in three of the four games since Derrick Henry was injured, only averaging 14.7 FPG. That said, we have some intriguing data points pointing toward a revival. Entering the season, Tannehill was set to work with an elite WR duo consisting of A.J. Brown and Julio Jones. But the pair have only played together on at least 50% of team passing snaps in five-of-11 games. With Brown, Jones, and Henry on the field, the Titans defeated the Colts, Chiefs, and Rams en route to a 4-1 record – their sole defeat at the hands of the Cardinals in Week 1. The amount of space provided to the passing offense from King Henry on play action is truly a tremendous advantage.
Without all three — not to mention Marcus Johnson — the last two weeks, all of the arm talent in the world and the very highest of football IQs aren’t enough without horses in the stable able to defeat coverage, and collect the ball. Perfect case in point, look to Tom Brady’s last season in New England (2019). Yes, he tossed 24 TDs vs. eight INTs, but The GOAT also failed to cover floor value in 11-of-16 games (69%). Even with AJB and Henry on IR, a glimmer of hope emerges. Quintorris Jones Jr. is ready to make his return. Consider that, in the five games where Tannehill only had the services of either Brown or Jones on at least 50% of team passing plays, he covered his floor in four (80%). Getting Julio back on the field will provide a boost to every offensive group for Tennessee.
Dolan’s Vantage Points
The Jags are a disaster. And the one guy who has given his everything to this joke of a franchise the last two years, RB James Robinson, was essentially benched last week, or at least he feels that way.
Jags RB James Robinson reacts to being benched after a second straight week with a fumble during his weekly appearance on @ActionSportsJax Jags Report Live. Watch the full video here (https://t.co/zje4Od0Ovy) for more thoughts on if he's getting the ball enough... #ASJax pic.twitter.com/pGiB6iu6AV— BrentDanStuartMarcelAlivia (@ActionSportsJax) December 7, 2021
Robinson of course is playing hurt for this dumpster fire — heel, knee — and just hit rock bottom in Week 13. In a loss to the Rams, Robinson managed just 8/24 rushing and 1/11 receiving on 4 targets, while playing just 44% of the offensive snaps. An early lost fumble came into play with Urban Meyer choosing to work in Carlos Hyde (who also ended up losing a fumble), but it’s clear Robinson just isn’t 100%. His 44% snap share in Week 13 was the lowest share of his career in a single game in which he didn’t leave early with an injury, and the 52% share he had in Week 12 was the fourth-lowest share. Meanwhile, the Jags can’t do anything offensively. Robinson is just a FLEX option given his injury and the status of this team as a whole. Hyde is even a less trustworthy FLEX.
Here’s what Meyer said this week, owing Robinson’s smaller role to his injuries (Robinson doesn’t have an injury designation for this game) … while also washing his hands of blame, like a true leader does.
Jaguars coach Urban Meyer said RB James Robinson has become an excellent second-level runner this year. Just so banged up lately (heel/knee) and hasn't practiced Wednesdays or Thursdays in several weeks. "We've got to get him back to that level."— Michael DiRocco (@ESPNdirocco) December 7, 2021
Jaguars coach Urban Meyer, speaking on his radio show, reiterates that he doesn't micromanage the RB rotation and when a RB goes back into the game after a fumble is up to the coaches.— Michael DiRocco (@ESPNdirocco) December 7, 2021
The Jaguars’ passing game is even more of a disaster than the run game. QB Trevor Lawrence hasn’t thrown more than 1 TD in a single game since throwing 3 in Week 1, and he has just a single TD pass over his last five games. His target leader in Week 13 was TE James O’Shaughnessy, a legitimate streaming option at such a weak position. But the Jags are down so bad that we actually have our guy Jake Tribbey writing up Laquon Treadwell. Don’t say Jake doesn’t dig deep! From DFS Early Look:
“Treadwell obviously isn’t a player I want to target in a given week, but with his current role and salary, he does appear to be a value headed into Week 14. Over the last three games, Treadwell ranks 2nd on the team in targets per game (5.3), routes per game (29.0), FPG (7.2), and 1st in receiving yards per game (42.0).
Is that an incredibly valuable role? No, not at all. But, as punt plays at WR go, Treadwell is one of the few who offer a guaranteed full-time role and a decent target floor (5 or more targets in each of the last 2 weeks), thus securing his value in a price range that’s devoid of consistency.
Jacksonville is a 9.0-point underdog this week — the 2nd-largest spread of the main slate — meaning the Jaguars will almost certainly need to air the ball out to have a chance. And the matchup is certainly favorable, with Tennessee allowing the 2nd-most schedule-adjusted FPG (+6.7) to opposing WRs this season.
It’s understandable to have trepidation with plays like this, but if you are looking to punt WR, Treadwell is arguably your best bet.”
Yeah, that’s more of a DFS play, but it just shows where we’re at with the Jags that Treadwell deserves a mention.
Here’s Lawrence on Robinson, by the way:
Trevor Lawrence was really good today on multiple topics. On James Robinson, he said say how much he wants him out there and that he feels the team is on the same page about it -- notes he even voiced it. pic.twitter.com/O2yFaTKtFv— John Shipley (@_John_Shipley) December 8, 2021
As for the Titans… whew, did that team need a bye. The Titans just ran for 270 yards in Week 12 against the Patriots, but their passing game was so inept they still lost. In fact, the Titans’ 270 rushing yards in a loss was the 16th-most in the Super Bowl era, the 10th-most since the turn of the 21st century, and the most since 2018. It’s also the second-biggest rushing total of any team in the Super Bowl era that lost the game by 20 or more points.
But the question now is if we can trust any of the backs.
Titans RB snaps Sunday. Out of 63:— John Daigle (@notJDaigle) November 29, 2021
Dontrell Hilliard 32
D’Onta Foreman 31
Foreman notably out-touched Hilliard 20-13. Jeremy McNichols expected back in Week 14.
I think it’s worth pointing out that Dontrell Hilliard and D’Onta Foreman have been more impressive than anything Jeremy McNichols has ever done in his career, so maybe they roll with them, though it also earns a mention that both backs lost a fumble in the game. I wouldn’t trust anyone here as more than a low-end RB2, but perhaps Foreman — who has been the “early-down” guy — is the best play with the Titans such heavy favorites.
The Titans could have some semblance of a passing game this week if they get WR Julio Jones (hamstring) back this week. He’s been cleared to practice as he returns from IR. Julio has been a huge bummer this year, but man, does Ryan Tannehill need him with AJ Brown on IR himself.
How hopeful are you that Julio Jones is healthy and will have that hammy stay healthy? #Titans coach Mike Vrabel: "We're just focused on today and seeing how he responds."— Mike Giardi (@MikeGiardi) December 6, 2021
Julio practiced in full on Friday, so it sure seems like he’ll play this weekend, but he hasn’t yet been activated off IR.
As for Tannehill, you just can’t start him. Here’s Graham from Start/Sit:
“Tannehill and the Titans have been a totally different offense with Derrick Henry sidelined. It’s almost like good RBs matter. Since Henry went down, Tannehill has averaged just 6.1 YPA, 193 YPG, and has a 4:6 TD-to-INT ratio. That seems bad! Taking it a step further, SIS has an EPA (expected points added) approximation that measures just how valuable players are when they are and are not on the field. With Henry, the Titans were at 0.08 EPA/play (which would rank seventh-best) but have since slipped and averaged just -0.13 EPA/play without Henry (31st). Yikes.
As a result, Tannehill’s weekly finishes (QB16 > QB6 > QB20 > QB28) have been predictably sub-par with Henry off the field. So, even though this seems like a good matchup, I’m not optimistic that Tannehill will turn in a strong box score – especially with AJ Brown and Julio Jones still sidelined. We have Tannehill plugged in at QB21, making him a 2-QB / SuperFlex play only.”