The Indianapolis Colts visit the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 13 of the 2017 NFL season. PFF previews the top player matchups of the game.
PFFELO Ranking: 28
Coverage by: Mike Alessandrini
Matchup: Indianapolis Colts offense vs. Jacksonville Jaguars defense
- Colts offensive tackles vs. Jaguars edge rushers – If the Colts stand any chance in upsetting their division rival this week, their offensive line must improve in pass protection. Quarterback Jacoby Brissett was pressured on 57.9 percent of his dropbacks in Week 12, which was the highest rate in the league. It starts on the edge with Anthony Castonzo and Denzelle Good, who recently returned from injury. Castonzo has a 76.9 pass-block grade, good for 25th at his position. His 95.5 pass-blocking efficiency ranks 32nd among tackles with at least 60 pass-block snaps. Good has been effective when on the field this season. In three games (64 pass-block snaps), the right tackle has surrendered two total pressures. On the other side of the ball, Jacksonville’s defensive line features two of the league’s fiercest edge rushers in Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue. Campbell ranks fifth among edge defenders with 52 total pressures in 2017 and second with a 92.5 overall grade. Ngakoue ranks 12th at his position with a 12.5 pass-rush productivity grade, which includes two sacks and seven total pressures in the teams’ Week 7 meeting.
- RB Frank Gore vs. LB Telvin Smith – Gore has been a durable presence in Indianapolis’ backfield this year. The veteran has averaged 2.67 yards after contact per attempt (seventh best among running backs) while forcing 25 missed tackles on 161 touches. His 14.7 breakaway percentage however, ranks 43rd out of 51 running backs. Gore has just five 15+ yard runs in 2017. The key member of the Jaguars’ run defense is Telvin Smith, who is in the midst of a breakout season. No linebacker currently tops Smith’s 93.9 run-defense grade, as the young defender has been making plays all year. His 11.2 run-stop percentage leads his position, which includes 28 total stops.
- WR T.Y. Hilton vs. CB Jalen Ramsey – Round two of the Hilton-Ramsey matchup will be an exciting one to watch this week. In their first matchup, Ramsey held Hilton to just two catches for 27 yards on five targets while defending two passes. The Colts’ top offensive player has been plagued with inconsistencies in 2017, but his 1.89 yards per route run still ranks inside the top 15 for receivers. Ramsey, on the other hand, is enjoying a stellar sophomore campaign. His 92.8 overall grade currently ranks third among cornerbacks and his 93.2 coverage grade ranks second. Ramsey’s 2017 résumé includes shutting down Keenan Allen (one catch for seven yards on three targets), Larry Fitzgerald (two catches for -4 yards on four targets) and DeAndre Hopkins (three catches for 23 yards on six targets).
PFFELO Ranking: 13
Coverage by: Aaron Resnick
Matchup: Jacksonville Jaguars offense vs. Indianapolis Colts defense
- T Cam Robinson vs. Edge Jabaal Sheard – Like many rookie tackles, Robinson has had an inconsistent season. While he has shown flashes, Robinson's overall grade of 37.5 ranks 75th among tackles. For the season, Robinson has allowed 24 total pressures on 240 pass-blocking snaps for a pass-blocking efficiency of 92.5, 65th at the position. Due to injury Robinson played just two snaps the last time these teams met, so how he fairs against a well rounded player like Sheard will be quite the test. Sheard's overall grade of 89.1 ranks 10th among edge rushers, and his 22 run stops are the third most among 3-4 outside linebackers. Robinson's run-blocking grade of 34.5 is 73rd among tackles, so it will be interesting to see if Sheard can force the Jaguars to stray from their initial game plan.
- WR Marqise Lee vs. CB Pierre Desir – While Lee was limited due to shadow coverage last Sunday, his 45 targets from Week 6 through Week 11 were the 11th most among receivers in that span. For the season Lee has an overall grade of 73.9 and is running the majority of his routes from the left side, so he figures to see plenty of Desir this Sunday. To this point, Desir's overall grade of 46.6 ranks 92nd among cornerbacks but he has only played significant snaps in the Colts' last four games. In that span, opponents have had a passer rating of 115.2 when targeting Desir in coverage and his 1.54 yards allowed per coverage snap is 92nd. After just one reception last week, look for Lee to be targeted early and often in a more favorable matchup.
- WR Dede Westbrook vs. CB Kenny Moore II – As evident from last Sunday, Blake Bortles continued to show faith in Westbrook. Through his first two games, Westbrook has ran 53 routes and has been targeted 16 times; a ratio that you'd normally see with some of the league's premier receivers. Last Sunday, Westbrook ran the majority of his routes from the right side where he is slated to lineup opposite Moore. Like Westbrook, Moore has just two games where he has played significant snaps, collecting just 90 snaps to this point. In those two games, Moore has allowed 0.94 yards per coverage snap while being targeted four times. As evident by Westbrook's usage, Moore will be tested more frequently this week and the winner of this individual matchup could sway the game.