2014 Record: 3-13, missed playoffs, 2-3 in last five
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1st: 31st in DVOA* overall offense (32nd pass, 20th rush) | 20th in DVOA* overall defense (17th pass, 120th run)
2nd: Least effective defense in the league against WR1s (7.3 pass attempts per game, 83.8 yards per game) and fifth-least effective against TEs (6.1, 52.2), according to Football Outsiders’ defense vs. receiver types chart.
3rd: Key loss: WR Cecil Shorts | Key addition: TE Julius Thomas
4th: As one of the worst teams in the NFL, the influx of rookies and the continued improvement of other recent picks will determine whether Jacksonville continues to live in the basement or start it’s quest for that ever-elusive mediocrity. Sure, the team lost Cecil Shorts, but the young receivers added to the mix last season — Allen Robinson, Allen Hurns and Marquise Lee — are a pretty strong bunch. They’ll be made stronger with Julius Thomas drawing all sorts of coverage over the middle. While he’s still developing, Blake Bortles needs to flash more talent this season considering the talented receivers around him and that there’s nowhere for them to go but up — they were dead last in the NFL in passing DVOA in 2014. An improved offense should also take some pressure of the defense. They have some playmakers, like Jonathan Cyprien and Telvin Smith, and were probably better than their ranking indicated because the three-and-out club on the other side of the ball kept them on the field.
*Defense-adjusted Value Over Average, a Football Outsiders’ advanced NFL metric, measures a team’s performance on a per-play basis. The metric attempts to limit variance and provides a more realistic measurement of how good a team is regardless of matchup or situation, making it a strong indicator of future success. Read more about DVOA.