Indianapolis Colts vs. Jacksonville Jaguars NFL Week 3 Preview and Predictions

By Eric Smith
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Indianapolis Colts (2-1) travel to Florida this weekend to take on the winless Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3). The Colts are off to a good start to the season despite that upset 24-20 loss to the Miami Dolphins in Week 2. They rebounded last week to beat the defending Super Bowl runner-up San Francisco 49ers 27-7 on the road in Candlestick Park.

The Jaguars, on the other hand, are just plain bad. They’ve yet to win and have been historically awful in all three contests. They rank in the bottom five in every offensive category as they’ve only scored an average of 9.3 points per game, which is last in the NFL. Their passing attack is weak as the 230.3 yards per game through the air ranks last as well, and the 52 rushing yards per game ranks 30th out of 32 teams. That’s just bad.

On defense, it’s not much better. The Jaguars rank last in stopping the rush, giving up 167.7 yards per game, and rank 29th in giving up 30.7 points per game. Without being able to get a ground game going and not being able to stop the run, they constantly find themselves in bad situations. Jacksonville is also -2 in the turnover ratio as they’ve only intercepted one pass and sacked the opposition six times.

Compare that to the Colts, who rank fourth on the ground and have done a decent job in stopping the run themselves, and you get a lopsided game. The Colts are a physical football team and just out-muscled a very physical 49ers team on the road last week. The Jags just got a 45-17 beatdown themselves last week against another physical team, the Seattle Seahawks.

Indianapolis also doesn’t turn the ball over and created turnovers on their own. They have a +4 turnover ratio, control the line of scrimmage and have committed only seven penalties all year. That doesn’t bode well for the Jags.

Look for Indianapolis to run a similar game plan in this game as they did last week. They’ve tried to establish the run in all three games, and it’s obviously working. Considering that they’re playing a team that ranks last in defending the run, it seems pretty simple how this game is going to go. Like the 49ers, the Jaguars will have to stack the box, which will allow Andrew Luck to hit Reggie Wayne and T.Y. Hilton for easy passes downfield.

I just don’t see how Jacksonville will stop Indy in this one.

Prediction: Indianapolis 34 — Jacksonville 10

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