Jaguars tight end Marcedes Lewis opens up offense for Jacksonville

Prior to the Week 3 win in London, the Jaguars targeted their tight ends just seven times in the first two regular season games.

Quarterback Blake Bortles was unable to consistently get the tight ends the ball and when he did, they failed to take advantage.

However, against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, the Jaguars' tight ends found a way to open up the Jacksonville offense. Jaguars tight ends caught 5-of-6 targets for 74 receiving yards and three touchdowns.

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Offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett frequently discusses mismatches and adding to layers to a game plan.

He has acknowledged that adding a fullback creates more for opposing teams to study. With the way the Jaguars utilized their tight ends in London, another element has been added to their opponents' study halls.

After being used as mostly a blocker in the team's first two games, veteran tight end Marcedes Lewis became the team's solution to Pro Bowl wide receiver Allen Robinson's absence. The 33-year-old player was a force in the red zone, collecting three of Bortles' four touchdown passes.

Lewis became only the third player in team history to produce three receiving touchdowns in a single game. Ironically, Robinson is another member of that historical trio.

The veteran tight end has been a sturdy role player as a blocker for the last three years. He isn't a fantasy football prospect and he probably isn't among the higher selling jerseys at EverBank Field. 

None of that mattered on Sunday, as he was one of the main heroes of the team's second blowout win of the season.

Lewis wasn't the only tight end to get involved in the Jaguars' offensive onslaught against the Ravens. Tight end James O'Shaughnessy caught a 12-yard pass from Bortles. It was his second catch of the season.

Using the tight ends as "safety nets" for Bortles worked well, as it opened up the offense for the quarterback. He was able to move the ball around frequently, hitting nine different targets against the Ravens. 

Moving forward, the Jaguars could have a sound strategy for shaking up opposing defenses. Spreading the ball around keeps opposing teams on their toes and creates potential mismatches in coverage.

The catching committee also puts pressure on the opposing run defense, potentially taking attention away from the Jaguars' running attack.

It took three games, but the Jaguars now have a slightly more dynamic offense with the use of some preexisting weapons.

Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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