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Trevor Lawrence, Jaguars stun Chargers in playoffs

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jaguars began on the mistaken aspect of historical past and got here out of it on the opposite.

Similar to that, the storybook season continues with a playoff efficiency for the ages.

Trevor Lawrence erased the worst half of soccer in his life with among the finest, main the Jaguars to a somehow-they-did-it and you-still-can’t-believe-it-happened 31-30 comeback over the Chargers now we have a cold Saturday evening at TIAA Financial institution Subject.

Riley Patterson’s 36-yard area as time ran off the clock set off an electrical celebration that put a sequence of exclamation factors on a comeback from a 27-0 deficit.

Sure, 27-0! The Jaguars had 5 turnovers and had been lifeless within the water within the opening half. They roared again and delivered Doug Pederson some of the gorgeous victories of his profession.

“I imply, it is every little thing. That is simply what I instructed them at halftime, it is form of like our season,” Pederson mentioned. “We have put ourselves in a gap at instances, and we have labored ourselves out of it at instances. Simply to have the resilience and the battle and the will and the power to proceed to play, as a result of it may have simply gone the opposite method, and that is what I am so pleased with these guys for. Every thing is on the road, they usually exit and get the job carried out.”

Lawrence tossed 4 interceptions within the first half and countered that with 4 touchdowns and a clutch two-point conversion vault after that with 5 minutes, 30 seconds to play to get Jacksonville in place for a comeback that did not appear practical. The protection pressured a punt and Lawrence engineered a traditional drive from his personal 21 to set Patterson up for the dagger to win it.

It was the third-largest comeback in playoff historical past and sends the Jaguars into the divisional playoffs subsequent week. Their opponent might be finalized Sunday however will seemingly be both the top-seeded Chiefs or the No. 2-seed Payments, barring main upsets.

“Typical us,” mentioned receiver Marvin Jones. “We all know learn how to throw a great celebration.”

Added receiver Christian Kirk: “I instructed them we’re by no means doing that once more.”

That the Jaguars had been even sniffing the divisional spherical was unthinkable when the sport was within the first half.

Lawrence threw 4 interceptions within the first two quarters — half of what he threw within the earlier 17 video games mixed — that silenced the gang of 70,250 nearly instantly. That begin was traditionally dangerous, however Lawrence’s end managed to make {that a} footnote.

From a 27-0 deficit within the second quarter, Lawrence threw second-half landing passes to Zay Jones, Christian Kirk and to Marvin Jones, then added a two-point conversion leap over the pile to make it 30-28 with 5:30 to go. Lawrence, sensing that the unattainable was inside attain, spiked the ball down as onerous as he is ever carried out after a scoring play and the gang went ballistic.

The Jaguars protection got here up big after that. Roy Robertson-Harris sacked Justin Herbert for a lack of 8. And Foye Oluokun stopped Joshua Kelly quick on third right down to drive a punt. Lawrence obtained it again with 3:09 left at his personal 21.

“I imply, the chances, I instructed the boys, I do not like my odds however I really like my probabilities,” Oluokun mentioned. “So long as there’s just a little chance of successful in any respect, we’ll preserve combating. We noticed the tables begin turning, we had momentum, we stored that, we preserve getting the ball again to the offense they usually began rolling.”

Down the sector Lawrence moved the Jaguars, hitting Kirk, Marvin Jones and Zay Jones with 4 passes, though a third-and-1 goal to Kirk was off. That arrange a play for the sport. Fourth-and-1 on the Chargers 41 and too far for Patterson, Pederson referred to as on Travis Etienne.

As an alternative of going up the center, Etienne broke round the suitable aspect and had an open area to work with. He was tackled after a acquire of 20 and that set Patterson up for a makeable shot which he nailed.

Ballgame.

Lawrence’s three first-quarter interceptions marked the primary time in NFL playoff historical past {that a} quarterback was picked off thrice within the first quarter, in accordance with the Boston Globe.

His 4 first-half interceptions are a doubtful feat completed only one different time in playoff historical past, within the 1978 Tremendous Bowl by Denver’s Craig Morton towards the Cowboys. Lawrence completed 28 of 47 for 288 yards, 4 touchdowns and 4 interceptions.

“For myself, clearly yeah, undoubtedly the worst half of my soccer life, of lots of people’s soccer life, too,” Lawrence mentioned. “Some sort of historical past most likely in that stat.”

He discovered a rhythm after that disastrous begin, bringing Jacksonville to inside 30-20 on a 39-yard landing to Zay Jones late within the third quarter.

Lawrence turned within the worst recreation he is had at any stage of soccer, throwing an interception on the second play of the sport, one other on Jacksonville’s subsequent drive and one other late within the opening quarter. These led to 17 fast factors for the Chargers and a lead that was almost too steep to beat.

“I performed with one of many best quarterbacks ever in Brett Favre and there have been instances he did not have an amazing first half and got here again within the second half and will gentle it up,” Pederson mentioned.

“That is what I really like about Trevor and his demeanor and his aggressiveness and the power to simply overlook and transfer on. However he’ll be the primary one to let you know that it is not about him, it is the blokes round him, too. [They] made performs, the safety was good, receivers had been doing a pleasant job being the place they wanted to be. However from a person standpoint, that is actually an amazing efficiency by our quarterback.”

Lawrence obtained out of his funk earlier than halftime, throwing a 9-yard landing to Evan Engram. He added that 39-yard strike to Jones and a 6-yard go to Marvin Jones within the third quarter that whittled the deficit to 30-20.

That began the thought course of. Possibly, simply perhaps?

“Hopefully we play just a little bit higher subsequent week. The protection, hopefully they play similar to they did tonight. They did an amazing job. However offensively you may’t flip the ball over that many instances and count on to win. We discovered a method tonight, nevertheless it’s most likely not a great components shifting ahead,” Lawrence mentioned. “So, I do know for me personally, it should not take that sort of second half to go win the sport. In case you simply play higher within the first half and care for the ball.”

The beginning drained the electrical energy from the stadium within the blink of a watch. After picks on Jacksonville’s first two drives and a punt after that, Lawrence was picked for a 3rd time within the first quarter, and the second by Asante Samuel, that arrange a 6-yard landing run by Austin Ekeler. By the point the opening quarter resulted in a 17-0 deficit, Lawrence had accomplished 4 passes to his teammates and three to the Chargers.

Nobody anticipated the Jaguars to be on this place. Cleansing up the mess of City Meyer and years of struggles earlier than that, it will have been formidable to Jacksonville turning the nook in 2022.

However the Jaguars escaped a 2-6 begin and received their ultimate 5 video games of the season to grab an surprising AFC South title.

That is home cash. And the Jaguars are nonetheless spending it.

Copyright 2023 by WJXT News4JAX – All rights reserved.

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