One quick Wizards note before making my Thursday pick: When I woke up this morning, I wasn't the least bit surprised to find out that they lost to the Sacramento Kings. Consecutive losses to the Clippers and Kings, while Arenas, Butler, and Jamison all play heavy minutes? Wizards basketball -- where torturing your fans happens!
Colts (-3) over JAGUARS
The Colts (13-0) have already clinched their division and home-field advantage, but they claim that they’re not going to rest all of their players just yet. Interestingly enough, the Colts listed 29 players on their injury report, with 20 of them listed as probable. The other nine are RB Donald Brown (out), DT Eric Foster (questionable), DB Aaron Francisco (out), DE Dwight Freeney (questionable), WR Anthony Gonzalez (out), OT Charlie Johnson (questionable), DE Robert Mathis (questionable), DB Jerraud Powers (out), and K Adam Vinatieri (out). Still, if the Colts don’t plan on resting the starters in the second half, they should be just fine.
The Jaguars (7-6), meanwhile, could really use a win in this game after falling back to the pack after a disappointing 14-10 loss to the Dolphins at home last week. My question, though, is: How good are the Jaguars? They’ve played some close games, but their seven wins are against the Texans (twice), Titans, Rams, Chiefs, Jets, and Bills. The Texans and Jets are decent, but even the win against Tennessee isn’t all that impressive now because they won when the Titans were still playing Kerry Collins and looking pretty bad. With Vince Young under center, the Titans beat the Jaguars easily, 30-13, a few weeks later in Week 8.
Their offense is ranked 23rd in the NFL in points per game (18.1), 18th in passing yards per game (213.5), and eighth in rushing yards per game (127.8). So, obviously, the best thing the Jaguars do is run the ball, which makes sense because they have Maurice Jones-Drew, one of the most exciting and explosive players in the league.
On defense, the Jaguars allow 22.1 points per game (ranked 20th), 239.5 passing yards per game (ranked 26th), and 107 rushing yards per game (14th) -- not particularly good numbers. But the Jaguars are +3 in turnover margin, so that’s good.
Anyway, Jones-Drew hasn’t rushed for over 76 yards in more than a month. In these two teams’ first matchup, the Colts shut down the Jaguars’ offense in a 14-12 win. Jacksonville only had 228 yards of total offense, but Jones-Drew accounted for 123 of those yards. That wasn’t enough then, and I don’t think it’ll be enough now. I’ll take the Colts.