Miami Dolphins vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Saturday, August 16th, 2008-7:30 p.m.
Jacksonville Municipal Stadium
Kickoff forecast: 82 degrees, 40% chance of precipitation
2007 records: Miami- 1-15, Jacksonville- 12-6
One most important thing for the Jaguars:
Stay healthy. We normally have five most important things, but in reality, it’s just one during the preseason. The Jaguars have already had three offensive starters go down with injuries, and they can’t lose any more personnel. It’s nice to get the starters some work, but it’s nicer if they are healthy enough to practice on Monday.
What to watch:
1. Tackling. The Jaguars struggled with tackling for much of last season, and although the page has turned toward a new year, the same faulty tackling was evident in the team’s preseason opener a week ago. Let’s see if there are fewer missed stops against the Dolphins.
2. Ball control. Three fumbles last week was one of the few down spots for a Jacksonville team that looked mostly impressive. The key to wins in the regular season for this Jacksonville team is to not turn the ball over. Lets see if that begins Saturday.
3. The sideline. The Jaguars had several potential contributors on the sideline for last week’s preseason opener, and hopefully Brian Williams, Troy Williamson, and Reggie Hayward will be able to play against Miami.
4. Brian Witherspoon. You have to watch him or else you’ll miss him. He’s simply that fast. Witherspoon made an impact last week with his punt and kickoff returns, as well as his play at corner. At this point it may be his job to lose.
5. Wide receivers. Matt Jones did an excellent job last week, and Mike Walker got open, but didn’t bring in two passes. With Reggie Williams and Jerry Porter on the shelf, the team needs these two guys to step up.
6. Greg Jones. Jones was mighty impressive last week as he showed an ability to run the football with suddenness. Let’s see if that can continue.
7. Mkristo Bruce. I gave you him as a possible player a week ago (pat on the back). He looked like Jason Taylor in a preseason game, let’s see if he can build upon that performance and make a push for a roster spot.
8. Richard Collier. Collier had a nightmare of a performance last week against Atlanta backups. It would appear that he’s played himself out of contention for the starting left tackle job, now he must earn his roster spot with the opportunities he has left.
9. Charles Davis. The mammoth tight end had another strong performance as he caught two passes for 29 yards a week ago. Davis is fully in the mix for a roster spot at an underwhelming tight end position.
10. Cleo Lemon. The Jaguars backup quarterback has been somewhat of a bright spot during training camp as he is getting a grasp on the playbook and seemingly looks more comfortable every time he hits the field. Let’s see if he can step up his game against the team that didn’t retain his services.
Charlie Bernstein is the Editor-in-Chief of Sports Media Interactive, covering multiple teams in the National Football League, NCAA, and National Basketball Association. Charlie is a regular syndicated contributor to FoxSports and Sirius NFL Radio, and has been featured on the NFL Network. Charlie is also a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. Feel free to contact him -HERE- with questions or comments.
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