Don’t look now, but the Jacksonville Jaguars have won four of their last five games and still have a shot at making the 2014 NFL Playoffs. We aren’t kidding.
On Thursday night, the Jaguars corralled their first home win in what feels like forever. They topped the Houston Texans, 27-20. Jacksonville’s last home victory prior to Thursday was a 24-19 win over the Tennessee Titans on Nov. 25, 2012.
Head coach Gus Bradley has found a way to turn around a team that started 0-8 on the year; one that many had pegged for a winless season.
So how can the Jaguars find themselves competing in the playoffs? The scenario is as long as long shot gets, but as Lloyd from “Dumb and Dumber” famously said, “So you’re telling me there’s a chance.”
1. Jacksonville wins out: The Jaguars have remaining games against Buffalo, Tennessee and on the road in Indianapolis. They are all winnable games, especially considering the Colts will likely be resting up for the playoffs.
2. Baltimore loses three of last four: The Ravens need to lose to the Detroit Lions, New England Patriots and Cincinnati Bengals. All games they could very well lose.
3. Tennessee loses to Denver, and wins no more than one game against the Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans. A loss to the Broncos is a distinct possibility. Houston is abysmal, while Arizona is decently respectable at 7-5.
4. Miami beats Pittsburgh, before losing three straight to end the regular season: New England Patriots, at Buffalo Bills, vs. New York Jets. This is definitely a long shot scenario.
While it’s highly unlikely the Jaguars make the playoffs, it was also improbable for Auburn to return a missed field goal 109 yards for a touchdown against Alabama to win. So essentially: never say never.
Bradley has this team picking up what he’s putting down. Playoff berth or not, he has the Jaguars heading in the right direction.