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Jaguars 2024 NFL schedule released for Trevor Lawrence and Mac Jones 1st year after trade

The Jacksonville Jaguars entered the 2023 season with an incredible amount of hope after a phenomenal 2022 campaign that saw the team bounce back from a 2-6 start to finish 7-2 (9-8 overall), win the AFC South and even reach the AFC. Divisional round. It was a remarkable year for a team that had gone just 3-14 the year before, largely under the leadership of Urban Meyer, whose controversial tenure had lasted only 13 games before his firing.

Jacksonville looked like it would make the playoffs after starting 8-3, but everything fell apart from there en route to a 1-5 result. A 9-8 record wasn’t enough this time around, with the Houston Texans rattling off 10 wins to win the division.

The Jags’ defense notably stumbled down the stretch and changes came after the season, with head coach Doug Pederson replacing defensive coordinator Mike Caldwell with Ryan Nielsen.

Jacksonville also retained some key talents (e.g. signing star edge rusher Josh Allen to a long-term contract) while letting others leave in free agency (e.g. wide receiver Calvin Ridley to the Tennessee Titans). Other additions included wide receiver Gabe Davis and offensive lineman Mitch Morse from the Buffalo Bills.

The most interesting addition, however, was quarterback Mac Jones, acquired via trade with the New England Patriots. Jones, who had fallen out of favor in New England, is now getting a fresh start in Jacksonville. He will be the backup to star signal-caller Trevor Lawrence, but is a great backup option if QB1 should miss at any time.

Speaking of Lawrence, he’s the one to watch out for here. Lawrence entered the NFL with a tremendous amount of hype and potential, and it came true at times during his three professional years. While he is clearly one of the best quarterbacks in the league, he has yet to reach the first tier (or second tier) of signal-callers in the league. There is of course still time for this to change, perhaps as early as 2024.

He and the rest of the Jags have a difficult schedule to manage, however. And with that, here’s a look at the roster, along with some analysis and notes on the crucial matchups.

Jaguars 2024 schedule

Analysis

Simply put, this is a very busy schedule on paper.

First, the Jaguars are sidelined this year, playing only seven games in Jacksonville, one in London (as host) and nine away.

The road games look tough on paper, with six of their nine games coming against teams that finished last year with winning records.

But one of those losing teams is the Chicago Bears, who by all accounts look like a much improved team after some excellent offseason additions (e.g. Caleb Williams, Keenan Allen).

And another is the Las Vegas Raiders, who went 8-9 but finished strong under interim (now full-time) head coach Antonio Pierce.

The home slate only has four winning teams, but let’s take a closer look. The 7-10 New York Jets will get Aaron Rodgers back after missing almost all of last season with a ruptured Achilles. The 7-10 Minnesota Vikings are bringing back superstar wide receiver Justin Jefferson, who missed seven games last year due to injury, full time.

Overall, the Jags schedule is filled with strong teams or teams that look like they could improve. And with the Jags playing two more games away from Jacksonville than this year, the 2024 campaign may not be so good for the team.

Crucial matches

Houston Texans (home and away)

Not only are the Houston Texans the clear favorites in the AFC South, but they are also Super Bowl contenders. The road to the division title appears to run through Houston, making the Jags’ games against the Texans more crucial than usual.

Houston and Jacksonville split games last year. If the Jags had swept the Texans, they would have made the playoffs. Alas, that didn’t happen and Houston achieved an incredible seven-win improvement from the previous year.

The Texans improved even from last year, notably adding wide receiver Stefon Diggs and defensive end Danielle Hunter to the team. And they have the reigning Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year in quarterback CJ Stroud and edge rusher Will Anderson. This is a tough team to beat on paper, but the Jags will likely have to find a way to do so to win the division again.

Detroit Lions

There’s arguably no bigger litmus test on the Jags’ 2024 schedule than the Detroit Lions, who were on the verge of winning the NFC before blowing a 24-7 halftime lead to the San Francisco 49ers en route to 34-31 loss.

Detroit returns some of its offensive talent and has reloaded its defense throughout the draft, so it seems likely that the team will once again be one to beat in the NFC. The Lions went 12-5 last year, and an even better record could await them in 2024. It simply wouldn’t be a surprise to see Detroit hoist the Lombardi Trophy at the end of the year.

So where does that leave the Jags? A road win against the Lions would significantly boost the team’s confidence. This game looks to be the toughest on the Jaguars’ slate (road games against the Philadelphia Eagles and Buffalo Bills also state their cases), and if Jacksonville wants to take a big step forward, then the team needs to show its interference in difficult matches. like his.

This is also a revenge game for Jacksonville, which lost 40-14 to the Lions in Detroit in 2022.