Week 15 SNF Recap

Written by: William Petersen

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Week 15 of the NFL season was the start of fantasy football playoffs as well as a week for the visiting Baltimore Ravens to clinch a playoff berth and position themselves for a shot at the number one seed in the AFC as they took a trip to Duval County to face a 8-5 Jacksonville Jaguars squad. Jacksonville was looking to fight for the one seed in the AFC until Trevor Lawrence suffered that high ankle sprain two weeks ago on Monday Night Football, triggering a three game losing streak for the Jags after the Ravens rolled in and handled business winning 23-7 on Sunday Night Football. Lamar Jackson continued to show the league that he should be compared to Henry Houdini after the miraculous plays he pulled off to help extend plays and keep the chains moving for the Ravens all night. Action Jackson finished 14.24 for 171 yards, a touchdown, interception, and 12 rushes for 97 yards to round out a Ravens offensive scheme that flustered the Jaguars secondary and pass rush all night thanks to Jackson’s uncanny pocket presence and athleticism. Jacksonville tried to contain the former NFL MVP and Heisman Trophy winner, sacking him 3 times and hitting him another 9, but Jackson continued to find a way to help improve his Ravens team to 6-1 on the road and firmly in the fight for the first overall seed in the AFC.

The Ravens now move to 11-3 on a season that continues to be budding into something special despite the major injuries to star tight end Mark Andrews, running back J.K. Dobbins, and numerous other major pieces to the Baltimore squad. Jackson has now thrown for 3,105 yards, 17 TDs, 7 interceptions, and rushed for 741 yards and 5 TDs so far this season, epitomizing arguably the most complete team in the NFL besides the San Francisco 49ers. Gus Edwards had 16 rushes for 58 yards and a touchdown as well as rookie tight end Isaiah Likely finding the endzone for his second straight game in addition to 5 receptions for 70 yards. The consistent offensive production has been met by a stout Ravens defense that has equally lived up to their end of the bargain all season, especially defensive tackle Justin Madubuike who now has eleven straight games with at least half a sack. Baltimore continues to be the best team in the AFC and will hope Santa Claus can bring them their biggest win of the season as they travel to the bay area next week to face the San Francisco 49ers on Monday Night Football on Christmas Day. This game could be a major indicator to who could take home the NFL MVP as Niners quarterback Brock Purdy is the current front runner after throwing for 3,795 yards, 29 TDs, and 7 interceptions through fifteen weeks.

Jacksonville is now on a three game losing streak after failing to get any sort of offensive momentum going all night. Trevor Lawrence finished 25/43 for 264 passing yards and a touchdown but fumbled the ball twice due to a tenacious Ravens pass rush. The Jaguars struggled to establish the run only getting 10 rushes for 31 yards out of Travis Etienne Jr. who has had a solid season after tearing his ACL last year. Lawrence did have a highlight throw, recording his longest touchdown pass of his career in a 65 yard bomb to Jamal Agnew for the Jaguars only score of the game. Jacksonville is now fighting to win the AFC South after now moving to 8-6 and are now in a three way tie for first with the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans. The Jaguars travel to Tampa Bay next week for a date with the 7-7 Buccaneers who are finding their stride in hopes of winning the terrible NFC South. I would be surprised to see the Jaguars drop four in a row but Tampa Bay has a stingy defense and Baker Mayfield is coming off a career high 381 and 4 touchdown passing game and may give the Jaguars defense trouble.