Report card

September 01, 1997

Running backs

Earnest Byner was basically a one-man show. He ran well, rushing for 63 yards on 14 carries, and did a nice job of picking up the Jacksonville blitzes.

B

Quarterback

Vinny Testaverde put up impressive numbers, but those three interceptions were extremely costly, one leading to a Jacksonville touchdown and the other stopping a Ravens drive late in the game.

D

Receivers

Michael Jackson and Jermaine Lewis had good games, and tight end Eric Green is starting to emerge. But the timing seemed off between Testaverde and Derrick Alexander.

C+

Offensive line

The interior was rebuilt in training camp, but for the most part the line held up well. The unit picked up a number of Jacksonville blitzes, but Jonathan Ogden wasn't as overpowering at left tackle as he was at left guard a season ago.

B

Defensive line

The line settled down after Jacksonville pounded it on two first-quarter drives, but the Jaguars also had some success running off tackle.

C

Linebackers

Rookies Peter Boulware and Jamie Sharper hustled and combined for eight tackles, but their inexperience showed at times, especially on passing plays. Ray Lewis can't cover the entire field.

C-

Secondary

The cornerbacks limited the long bombs, but Jacksonville was successful on mid-range passes. The cornerbacks couldn't cover receivers Jimmy Smith or Keenan McCardell, especially McCardell out of the slot.

D

Special teams

They don't get much better than this. Jacksonville had only 64 yards on four kickoffs, and just 6 yards on two punts. Bennie Thompson and Tony Vinson have become quite a tandem on the kickoff team. Jermaine Lewis had four kickoff returns for 118 yards, including a long of 42.

A

Pub Date: 9/01/97

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.