A by-the-numbers review of the Jaguars’ defense and special teams from their 12-7 season:

 

IN THE RANKINGS

The Jaguars’ team defense rankings at each of the season’s quarter poles:

Defense

|Yards (rank)|Points (rank)

Game 4|312.5 (11)|18.5 (T6)

Game 8|281.3 (3)|14.6 (1)

Game 12|282.5 (1)|14.8 (1)

Final|286.1 (2)|16.8 (2)

PLAYING TIME

DEFENSE (1,259 snaps)

DL: Calais Campbell 988, Malik Jackson 926, Yannick Ngakoue 924, Abry Jones 615, Dante Fowler 581, Marcell Dareus 405, Dawuane Smoot 287, Eli Ankou 174 and Lerentee McCray 36

LB: Myles Jack 1,227, Telvin Smith 1,068, Paul Posluszny 521, Blair Brown 58 and Donald Payne 4.

DB: A.J. Bouye 1,232, Jalen Ramsey 1,215, Barry Church 1,206, Tashaun Gipson 1,203, Aaron Colvin 837, Jarrod Wilson 90, Tyler Patmon 75 and Peyton Thompson 21.

MAKING/STOPPING BIG PLAYS

Any rush of at least 12 yards and any completion of at least 16 yards are considered an “explosive” play.

Defense: The Jaguars allowed 114 explosive plays (77 passes/37 rushes) for an average of 6.0 per game. They allowed 7.6 per game in 2015 and 5.7 in 2016.

The Jaguars allowed 35 touchdowns (down from 44 in 2015 and 37 in 2016).

The Jaguars allowed 11 rushing touchdowns for an average length of 19.8 yards (up from 7.8 in 2015 and 9.1 in 2016), the average dented by scoring rushes of 75 and 69 yards by the New York Jets in Week 4.

The Jaguars allowed 24 passing touchdowns for an average length of 26.9 yards (up from 16.9 yards in 2015 and 16.2 yards in 2016). The defense allowed only four touchdown passes in the first eight games, but 20 in the final 11 games, including 14 of at least 20 yards.

In total, opponents scored 17 offensive touchdowns of at least 20 yards, up from nine in 2015 and seven in 2016. Among that total were eight touchdowns of at least 40 yards, up from five in 2015 and four in 2016.

MISSED TACKLES

We booked the Jaguars for 110 missed tackles for an average of 5.8 tackles per game, improved compared to 2015 (163/10.2 per game) and 2016 (96 total/6.0 per game).

The Jaguars’ team game-by-game missed tackles: at Houston (7), Tennessee (8), Baltimore (9), at the New York Jets (6), at Pittsburgh (4), Los Angeles Rams (3), at Indianapolis (5), Cincinnati (2), Los Angeles Chargers (10), at Cleveland (3), at Arizona (5), Indianapolis (4), Seattle (5), Houston (2), at San Francisco (7), at Tennessee (9), Buffalo (4), at Pittsburgh (13) and at New England (4).

The Jaguars had only two double-digit missed tackle games (10 vs. the Chargers and 13 in the Pittsburgh playoff game), compared with two double-digit games in 2016 and seven in 2015.

The individual totals: Telvin Smith 23, Barry Church 13, Myles Jack 10, Calais Campbell 10, Aaron Colvin 7, Jalen Ramsey 7, Abry Jones 7, Tashaun Gipson 5, A.J. Bouye 5, Malik Jackson 4, Dante Fowler 4, Marcell Dareus 3, Jarrod Wilson 2, Yannick Ngakoue 2, Dawuane Smoot 2, Paul Posluszny 1, Blair Brown 1, Tyler Patmon 1, Eli Ankou 1, Michael Bennett 1 and Peyton Thompson 1.

The individual single-game high was by Smith (four against the Chargers).

DEFENSIVE LEADERS

(Regular season)

Top 10 tacklers: Telvin Smith 102, Myles Jack 90, Barry Church 72, Calais Campbell 67, Tashaun Gipson 64, Jalen Ramsey 63, Paul Posluszny 60, A.J. Bouye 56 and Aaron Colvin 44.

Sacks: Campbell 14 1/2, Yannick Ngakoue 12, Malik Jackson 8, Dante Fowler 8, Jack 2, Eli Ankou 1 1/2, Church 1 1/2, Lerentee McCray 1 1/2, Posluszny 1 1/2, Abry Jones 1, Sheldon Day 1, Marcell Dareus 1, Smith 1 and Blair Brown 1/2.

Interceptions: Bouye 6, Ramsey 4, Gipson 4, Church 4 and Smith 3.

Top five in pass break-ups: Bouye 18, Ramsey 17, Church 8, Gipson 7 and Jones 6.

Forced fumbles: Ngakoue 6, Jackson 4, Campbell 3, Fowler 2, Smith 1 and Jones 1.

Fumble recoveries: Smith 2, Ngakoue 2, Fowler 2, Jack 1, Campbell 1, Gipson 1, Colvin 1 and Jones 1.

(Postseason)

Top five tacklers: Smith 35, Jack 19, Bouye 16, Church 13 and Campbell 11.

Sacks: Dareus 2, Fowler 2, Ngakoue 1, Jack 1 and Jackson 1.

Interceptions: Colvin 1, Jack 1 and Ramsey 1.

Pass break-ups: Jack 3, Smith 3 and Wilson 2.

Forced fumbles: Smith 1, Ngakoue 1 and Jack 1.

Fumble recoveries: Jack 1 and Smith 1.

APPLYING PRESSURE

In 19 games, the defense rushed at least five players on 129 of 783 drop-backs in 19 games (18.1 percent). They blitzed at 26.6 percent in 2015 and 22.1 percent in 2016.

High percentage this year: Houston in Week 1 (20 of 58) and Tennessee in Week 17 (10 of 29) – both 34.5 percent. The only other game the Jaguars reached 30 percent was against the Titans in Week 2 (10 of 32 – 31.3 percent).

Low percentage this year: Week 5 in Pittsburgh – 1.7 percent (1 of 60); Week 6 against the Los Angeles Rams – 3.8 percent (1 of 26).

The Jaguars blitzed on less than 10 percent of the opponent’s drop-backs in six of 19 games.

(In the playoffs, the Jaguars blitzed only 16 of 157 drop-backs – 10.2 percent.)

The Jaguars had a combined 62 sacks in the regular season/playoffs and 18 came via extra pass rushers.

Individual breakdown for the top seven pass rushers:

Player|Sacks|Knockdowns|Hurries|Total

Calais Campbell|14.5|16.5|16|47

Yannick Ngakoue|13|15|32|50

Malik Jackson|9|7.5|24|40.5

Dante Fowler|10|5|16|31

Myles Jack|4|2|5|11

Marcell Dareus|3|2|2|7

Abry Jones|1|1|1|3

Total|62|63|107|232

*The Jaguars averaged a QB pressure once every 3.4 opponent’s drop-backs.

Blitz chart (defensive back or linebacker blitzed this year): LB Myles Jack 74, CB Aaron Colvin 38, LB Telvin Smith 33, SS Barry Church 17, LB Paul Posluszny 13, FS Tashaun Gipson 5, LB Blair Brown 2, LB Lerentee McCray 2, CB A.J. Bouye 2 and CB Jalen Ramsey 1.

TAKE AND PROTECT

In the regular season, the Jaguars were plus-10 in turnover ratio, tied for fifth-best in the NFL. (In the playoffs, they were plus-5, which leads the NFL entering the Super Bowl).

The Jaguars had a franchise record 33 takeaways, breaking the mark set in 1998, ’99, 2000 and ’07 (30).

The Jaguars had at least one takeaway in 14 of 16 games.

The Jaguars’ 21 interceptions in the regular season were a franchise record.

The Jaguars led the NFL in points off turnovers – 137, ahead of Baltimore (121) and the Los Angeles Rams (119) – in the regular season. Included were six defensive touchdowns.

PLAYING COVERAGE

Tracking the Jaguars’ secondary when they were targeted in man coverage (regular season and playoffs):

QBs vs. Jalen Ramsey – 34-of-90 passing for 497 yards, two touchdowns, five interceptions and a 40.8 rating. … In three postseason games, quarterbacks were 3-of-7 passing for 41 yards (one interception).

QBs vs. A.J. Bouye – 38-of-86 passing for 554 yards, two touchdowns, six interceptions and a 44.4 rating. … In three postseason games, quarterbacks were 10-of-16 passing for 171 yards, two touchdowns and a 138.3 rating.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

Where the Jaguars ranked to the NFL leader in several statistical categories during the regular season:

Tackles: 1. Preston Brown, Washington, 144; 20. Telvin Smith, Jaguars, 102.

Sacks: 1. Chandler Jones, Arizona, 17; T2. Calais Campbell, Jaguars, 14.5; T8. Yannick Ngakoue, Jaguars, 12.

Forced fumbles: 1. Yannick Ngakoue, Jaguars, 6.

Pass break-ups: 1. Darius Slay, Detroit 26; T6. A.J. Bouye, Jaguars, 22.

Interceptions: 1. Kevin Byard, Tennessee, 8; T3. A.J. Bouye, Jaguars, 6.

40-yard pass completions allowed: 1. Houston 17; T6. Jaguars/Tampa Bay 12.

IN THE RED ZONE (DEFENSE)

The Jaguars ranked second in red zone defense, limiting opponents to 11 touchdowns in 28 possessions (39.3 percent). The Los Angeles Chargers were first (36.1 percent – 13 of 36).

(Last year, the Jaguars were 15th (54.5 percent) and scored 30 touchdowns in 55 trips.)

In the regular season, the only teams that were perfect in the red zone against the Jaguars were Baltimore (1 of 1) and Cincinnati (1 of 1). Tennessee (home game), the Chargers, Cleveland and Houston (home game) did not run a red zone snap.

Opposing quarterbacks were 17-of-38 passing for five touchdowns and two interceptions in the red zone. The takeaways were interceptions by Tashaun Gipson (Week 1 at Houston) and Barry Church (Week 16 at San Francisco) and an 81-yard fumble recovery touchdown by Myles Jack (Week 4 at the New York Jets).

DRIVE ENGINEERING

Not including end-of-half/end-of-game kneel-downs …

Three-and-out (punts only): Sixty-three.

Ten-play drives: Twenty-three.

At least six minutes in duration: Five.

THIRD DOWN DEFENSE

The Jaguars finished the regular season fourth in third down defense (33.6 percent). They were 31st (46.3 percent) in 2015 and eighth (37.1 percent) in 2016.

Including the playoffs, opponents converted 91 of 266 (34.2 percent) against the Jaguars.

Only one team converted more than half of their third downs against the Jaguars – the 49ers were 10 of 15 (66.7 percent) in Week 16.

The breakdown …

3 or fewer yards go: 36 of 72 (50 percent), the same as 2016 but improved compared to 2015 (65.9 percent).

4-7 yards to go: 39 of 93 (41.9 percent), improved from 2016 (45.3 percent) and slightly worse than 2015 (41.3 percent).

8 or more yards to go: 16 of 101 (15.8 percent), another huge leap. The Jaguars were at 40.9 percent in 2015 and 22.6 percent in 2016.

The longest third down conversion allowed during the year will be one Jaguars fans will remember forever – a 21-yard catch by Danny Amendola on third-and-18 in the AFC title game.

SPECIAL TEAMS RECAP

*In veteran pro football writer Rick Gosselin’s annual special teams rankings – an average of 22 categories – the Jaguars finished tied for 24th with Cincinnati. The top five were the Rams, Kansas City, New England, Baltimore an Dallas. The Jaguars were the lowest-ranked playoff team.

*The Jaguars scored two special teams touchdowns – Corey Grant’s 56-yard run on a fake punt against the Chargers and Jaydon Mickens’ 63-yard punt return against Cincinnati. They also scored on a two-point conversion (Aaron Colvin’s return of a blocked extra point at San Francisco).

*A year after committing 33 enforced penalties on special teams, the Jaguars were called for 26 enforced penalties this year in the regular season, which Gosselin tracked as most in the NFL.

*The Jaguars had five enforced special teams penalties in two games (vs. Houston and at Tennessee). They had at least one special teams penalty in 14 of 16 regular season games.

*K Josh Lambo: In 13 regular season/playoff games, he was 23-of-24 on field goals and 31-of-33 on extra points. His only miss was from 41 yards. … Lambo’s 79 regular season points were 24th in the league. … He had 22 touchbacks on kickoffs in his 10 regular season games (Jason Myers had 26 in his six games).

*P Brad Nortman: A tough year statistically for Nortman, which puts his future with the Jaguars in doubt. … Nortman was 29th in net average (38.9 yards) and 25th in average (minus return yardage) at 44.1 in the regular season. … Of his 87 attempts, he had nine touchbacks, one block and 29 inside the 20-yard line. … He had seven regular season games with at least six punts. … His longest punt was 65 yards against Houston. … His best game in net average was Week 7 at Indianapolis (53.5 yards) and his poorest was Week 6 vs. the Rams (32.1 yards, skewed by a blocked punt). … He posted a net average of 38.9 yards in three playoff games (long punt of 62 yards against Buffalo).

*Leaders in special teams snaps (regular season and playoffs): James O’Shaughnessy 317, Peyton Thompson 314, Jarrod Wilson 270, Lerentee McCray 268, Corey Grant 253, Donald Payne 225, Blair Brown 224, Dawaune Smoot 186, Tommy Bohanon 181 and Calais Campbell 164.

*Special teams tackle leaders (regular season): Payne 12, Thompson 9, McCray 9, Wilson 8, Brown 5, Smoot 5 and O’Shaughnessy 5.

*Special teams tackle leaders (playoffs): Payne 4, Grant 3, Brown 3 and McCray 3.

*In the regular season, the Jaguars were eighth in punt returns (10.3) and 16th in kickoff returns (24.9). Mickens’ long punt return was 72 yards and Grant’s long kickoff return was 69 yards. Mickens’ 10.3-yard average was fifth in the league.

*In the regular season, the Jaguars were 16th covering punts (7.6) and 13th covering kickoffs (20.4). The long punt return allowed was 46 yards and long kick return allowed was a 103-yard touchdown by the Rams’ Pharoh Cooper to start the teams’ Week 6 game.