This was a new start, a new era.
And if Doug Pederson’s first game as the Jaguars’ head coach was uneventful, that debut came without a slew of front-line players – including starting quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
Reserve veteran Jake Luton started in place of Lawrence, and the Jaguars fell behind quickly in a 27-11 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton, Ohio., Thursday. The game was the 2022 NFL preseason opener and televised nationally by NBC.
“I thought overall the effort was really good,” Pederson said. “We just have to clean up. There were too many little mistakes.”
The Jaguars held 21 front-line players out of the game.
“We made sure everybody played in this game,” Pederson said. “As we move forward, it will be a little more the starters and guys we think will be on the 53[-player roster] as we go.”
Luton, the third-team quarterback behind Lawrence and C.J. Beathard – who did not play while rehabilitating an offseason groin injury – completed 10 of 17 passes for 94 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions in two quarters.
The Jaguars trailed 20-0 at halftime, with fourth-team quarterback Kyle Sloter completing 13 of 25 passes for 127 yards and one touchdown and no interceptions in the second half.
The Raiders outgained the Jaguars 321-273 for the game, including 234-106 in the first half. The Jaguars were penalized six times for 60 yards.
“We talk about details; we talk about being a smarter football team,” Pederson said. “Tonight, we didn’t show that with too many costly penalties at the wrong time. We have to protect the football. That was really the deciding factor there.”
Most of the Jaguars’ front-line offensive skill players were held out: quarterback Trevor Lawrence, wide receiver Christian Kirk, wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr., wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr., wide receiver Zay Jones, tight end Evan Engram and running back Travis Etienne Jr. Starting offensive linemen Brandon Scherff, Cam Robinson and Tyler Shatley also missed the game.