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Everything you need to know ahead of Jaguars-Titans

While 0-4 on the season, a win Sunday could catapult the Jaguars just one game out of first place in the AFC South. Kick-off is set for 1 p.m.
Credit: AP
Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) looks to make a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

The Jaguars (0-4) are back at TIAA Bank Field for the third time this season, as they host their rival Tennessee Titans (2-2) in an AFC South showdown. Kick-off is slated for 1 p.m.

After a week filled with off-the-field controversy surrounding head coach Urban Meyer's transgressions at an Ohio bar, the Jaguars say they're as focused and locked-in as they can be ahead of this divisional match-up.

"I feel like the team has been the exact same," quarterback Trevor Lawrence said of this week's slate of practices. "At the end of the day, I can speak for myself for sure, and I know most of the team feels this way, he’s still my head coach. I still respect him regardless of what happens. Like I said, we’re a team and we’re figuring it out, so we’re all good."

"We’re locked in. As soon as we step in the building man, it’s football," echoed outside linebacker and fellow captain Josh Allen. "All the distractions that everybody’s dealing with at home, whatever, as soon as you step into the facility, it’s all about football. It’s all about the team, and it’s all about winning, preparation. As soon as you step into this building, as soon as we all step in the building, our main focus is the Titans."

The Jaguars are coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Bengals on a walk-off field goal. Because it was a Thursday Night Game, the Jaguars will have had 10 days off for Sunday's match-up. The Titans are coming off an overtime, 27-24 loss to the New York Jets. 

Despite the defense giving up 24 points in the second half against Cincinnati, the Week Four game was a break-out game for both Lawrence and running back James Robinson. Lawrence did not turn the ball over for the first time in his young career, and while he did not throw a passing touchdown, he recorded his first rushing touchdown. He finished 17-24 for 204 yards. Robinson had 18 carries for 78 yards and two touchdowns.

The other storyline heading into Sunday's Week Five match-up: the kicking situation. After missing two extra points against the Cardinals Week Three, veteran Josh Lambo missed the loss to the Bengals due to non-injury related personal reasons. Matthew Wright, signed to the practice squad days before that Thursday Night match-up, was elevated and made all three point-after try's. He did not attempt a field goal. Meyer announced earlier this week that there would be a "kicker competition" between the two; on Saturday afternoon, the team announced that Wright would be elevated from the practice squad. On Sunday, Lambo was announced as a healthy scratch.

Rookie cornerback Tyson Campbell (toe) is also inactive for Sunday's game. Presumably, it will be some combination of the veteran Tre Herndon, Nevin Lawson and Chris Claybrooks opposite Shaq Griffin.

Sunday's game is also the first game the Jaguars will play since losing wide receiver DJ Chark to a fractured ankle. Some combination of Tyron Johnson and the veteran Tavon Austin is expected to fill his "X Receiver" position -- as well as return specialist Jamal Agnew, who had a highlight-reel, toe drag 27-yard reception from Lawrence against the Bengals. 

Tennessee is banged up as well, having more than 20 players featured on their injury report throughout the week leading into Sunday's game. Both star wide receiver Julio Jones and edge rusher Bud Dupree will be inactive. After a one-week absence, the Titans' other star wide-out, AJ Brown, is expected to make his return.

And of course, it wouldn't be a Jaguars-Titans match-up preview without discussing Derrick Henry. The Yulee High School product continues to wreck havoc on NFL defenses, already toppling 500 yards on the ground through four games. That includes a 33 carry, 157-yard performance in a losing effort to the New York Jets last week. Henry is well on his way to a second-straight, 2,000-yard rushing season. 

The Jaguars and the Titans kick-off from TIAA Bank Field at 1 p.m.