Last week, the Jacksonville Jaguars were embarrassed in NFL betting action. Today, we make our free NFL pick for Friday night’s duel at Ever Bank Field between the Jags and the Atlanta Falcons.
In spite of the fact that his team was beaten in Week 1 of the NFL preseason, Head Coach Mike Smith has to be considered a relatively happy guy. When his starters left the field, his team was up 17-0, and after Miami’s starters left, it was 17-7. From there, the second string defense struggled just a tad, but the kill shot came in the form of a punt return for a TD. Special teams shouldn’t hurt the Falcons as they did in last week’s 28-23 defeat, and we’d expect to see better out of the starting quarterbacks. We know that QB Matt Ryan will be fine, and he went 6-of-10 and led the team to three scores in the first quarter alone before getting the hook. The question is how the battle will heat up between QBs John Parker Wilson, Adam Froman, and Chris Redman, all three of which are fighting for likely just two spots on the team. WR Julio Jones made his debut for the Dirty Birds last week, catching two passes for 43 yards, and he has already shown that he is going to have the ability to stretch the field like WR Roddy White does, which could make this offense devastating to try to stop.
There wasn’t a team out there in NFLX Week 1 action that put up a worse effort than the Jaguars did. They were simply destroyed on both sides of the field in a 47-12 beat down. The defense for Head Coach Jack Del Rio was devastatingly bad, and it was that bad without QB Tom Brady ever stepping between the white lines. This was a team that allowed at least 31 points three times in its last four games last year to get knocked out of the playoff picture, and we have no doubt that this is a big issue for this year. The big problem for this game though, might be the fact that both QB Luke McCown and QB David Garrard are up in the air. Instead, QB Blaine Gabbert is probably going to take the mass majority of the snaps as he did last week. Gabbert’s first professional game was a respectable one, as he went 9-of-16 for 85 yards. He wasn’t picked off, and he did lead the team on three field goal drives, but he wasn’t able to reach the end zone. QB Todd Bouman, who is likely the odd quarterback out this year, went just 2-of-10 and threw a pick.
Atlanta Falcons @ Jacksonville Jaguars Pick: The Jags were just brutalized last week, and they were brutalized by half of a really good team. Now, they have to take on the whole of an also very good team. We won’t see them get blown away by 35 again, but seeing this one end with a road team ‘W’ is what we expect.
Football Pick: Atlanta Falcons +3 at Bookmaker Sportsbook.
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.