Aug 21, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;   Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety Terrell Edmunds (34) reacts after a defensive stop against the Detroit Lions during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars sign DBs Terrell Edmunds, Tre Flowers

The Jacksonville Jaguars added three players on defense Thursday, signing defensive backs Terrell Edmunds and Tre Flowers, as well as linebacker Ty Summers.

The Jaguars also waived linebacker Dequan Jackson and cut ties with wide receiver Wayne Ruby on a injury settlement.

Edmunds, 27, was a first-round draft pick in 2018 and played his first five seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers before splitting time with the Tennessee Titans and Philadelphia Eagles in 2023.

In 95 career games (79 starts), Edmunds has 458 tackles, six interceptions and 28 passes defended.

Flowers, 28, has 283 tackles with four interceptions and 22 passes defended in 90 games (44 starts) over six seasons for the Seattle Seahawks (2018-21), Cincinnati Bengals (2021-22) and Atlanta Falcons (2023).

Summers, 28, has 60 tackles in 67 games (one start) for the Green Bay Packers (2019-21) and New Orleans Saints (2022-23), while also playing three games for the Jaguars in 2022.

–Field Level Media

Dec 24, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) drops back to pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence to miss first start of career

After making 49 consecutive starts since he was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 draft, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence will miss Sunday’s game against the visiting Carolina Panthers due to a sprained right shoulder.

Lawrence, 24, suffered the injury to his right AC joint in last Sunday’s 30-12 loss at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. C.J. Beathard will replace Lawrence, who didn’t practice all week, and make his first start since the final game of the 2020 season with the San Francisco 49ers.

The Jaguars (8-7) have lost four in a row to fall into a three-way tie for first place in the AFC South with the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans.

If the Jaguars beat the Panthers (2-13), and the Colts and Texans lose Sunday, Jacksonville would clinch the division title. The Jaguars close the regular season at the Tennessee Titans on Jan. 7.

Lawrence’s streak of 49 straight starts was tied with Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes for the second longest active streak at the position.

The injury occurred late in the third quarter against the Buccaneers when Lawrence dove for a first down on a fourth-and-1 play. He stayed in and eventually threw an 18-yard touchdown to Calvin Ridley to finish the drive but sat out the rest of the game.

Beathard, 30, was 11-for-15 passing for 94 yards and a touchdown after Lawrence’s injury. Beathard also relieved Lawrence after the latter suffered a right ankle sprain against the Cincinnati Bengals on Dec. 4, completing 9 of 10 passes for 63 yards.

In 12 games over three seasons as Lawrence’s backup, Beathard has completed 76.2 percent of his passes for 239 yards, with one touchdown and one interception. In three seasons with the 49ers, Beathard was 2-10 as a starter.

It’s been a painful season for Lawrence, who has now dealt with four injuries in 2023. In a win against the Colts on Oct. 15, he sprained his left knee. In addition to the high ankle sprain against the Bengals, he suffered a concussion against the Baltimore Ravens on Dec. 17.

In 15 games this season, Lawrence has completed 65.5 percent of his passes for 3,736 yards, along with 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Dec 24, 2023; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) is sacked by Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David (54) in the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence has sprained AC joint

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence is dealing with a sprained AC joint in his right shoulder, coach Doug Pederson confirmed Tuesday.

Lawrence sustained his latest injury while stretching to convert a fourth-and-1 in the third quarter of Sunday’s 30-12 loss at Tampa Bay. He landed out of bounds on his right shoulder.

Pederson said Lawrence is improving but his status for Wednesday’s practice is uncertain.

“Obviously he’s a little bit sore but doing better today than he did yesterday,” Pederson said Tuesday afternoon. “We’ll see where he is at again tomorrow.

“May do a little something tomorrow but I would doubt that just because it’s a little bit too soon, but we’ll see as the week goes on.”

Backup C.J. Beathard will work with the first team in practice Wednesday if Lawrence is unavailable.

Jacksonville has lost four in a row but still leads the AFC South based on tiebreakers. The Jaguars, Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans are all 8-7.

The Jaguars host the Carolina Panthers on Sunday and finish the regular season on the road against the Tennessee Titans on Jan. 7.

Lawrence finished 17-for-29 passing for 211 yards, two interceptions and a lost fumble against the Buccaneers.

He has also dealt with a high ankle sprain and a concussion this season but has not missed any games. The 2021 No. 1 overall pick has thrown for 3,736 yards with 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 15 starts.

–Field Level Media

Nov 26, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA;  Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) calls an audible against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Surging Jaguars, skidding Bengals take stage on Monday night

It’ll be a battle of coaching brothers when the Jacksonville Jaguars host a rare Monday night game against the slumping Cincinnati Bengals.

Cincinnati head coach Zac Taylor brings his Bengals (5-6) into Jacksonville having lost three straight and falling into the cellar of the AFC North after winning the division the last two seasons.

Jacksonville (8-3) is coached by Doug Pederson, and Taylor’s younger brother Press serves as the Jaguars’ offensive coordinator of unit that has star quarterback Trevor Lawrence.

“He’s somebody I’m very proud of,” Zac Taylor said of Press. “I’ve watched his journey. He’s earned everything he’s ever gotten. He’s worked really hard for it. He’s really smart and takes care of people.”

The Jaguars are playing their first Monday night game since Dec. 5, 2011, a 38-14 home loss to the San Diego Chargers. The Jaguars played two Monday night games that season, beating the visiting Baltimore Ravens 12-7 for a split.

The Jaguars are 8-7 all-time on Monday night.

Jacksonville has won seven of its last eight games and sits atop the AFC South. The Jags have the NFL’s fourth-ranked run defense (87.4 yards allowed per game), while Lawrence leads the offense and is coming off a 364-yard passing performance in their 24-21 win at Houston.

“What I’ve been most impressed with was how he’s just leading the football team,” Pederson said of Lawrence. “He has been taking care of the football the last couple of weeks.

“Honestly, there’s still some room if you watch the film to grow and improve and really anticipate certain things,” Pederson added. “He’s just continuing to make impressive throws and he continues to grow.”

The Bengals are trying to snap a long dubious streak of their own. With their loss in Baltimore on Nov. 16, they have dropped 15 straight prime-time games on the road and have lost 26 of 27 night road games.

The Bengals have dropped nine straight Monday night road games, including last season’s 32-13 decision in Cleveland on Oct. 31, 2022. Their last win in this category was on Oct. 22, 1990, in Cleveland. The Bengals are 13-26 all-time on Monday night, with a 19-16 home victory against the LA Rams in Week 3.

The Bengals turn to Jake Browning, who is making his second career NFL start after replacing Joe Burrow in Cincinnati’s 34-20 loss at Baltimore on Nov. 16.

In his first career start last Sunday against the Steelers in Cincinnati, Browning completed 19 of 26 passes for 227 yards and one touchdown and a costly third-quarter interception. The Bengals held a 7-3 lead at the half and were driving for another score to open the third quarter when his pass for Ja’Marr Chase was intercepted.

“I thought he handled some things really well for us,” Bengals coach Zac Taylor said. “It’s a tough task to play a divisional game versus a good defense in your first game. There’s going to be plenty of things he can learn from.”

Browning had to make his first start last week without Tee Higgins, who missed his third straight game with a hamstring injury. Higgins returned to practice in a limited capacity on Thursday and is hopeful to start alongside fellow star receiver Chase on Monday night.

“Tee’s one of the top receivers in the NFL,” said Browning, who was a full participant Thursday despite being listed for a right wrist issue. “I don’t think can really put into words how important he is to this offense.

“I think Andrei (Iosivas) has continued to play really well. Trenton Irwin has proven he can do it, but there’s just something that Tee brings the table being as big, as fast and having the experience he does, where it’s always nice to have him and Ja’Marr on the outside.”

–Field Level Media

Nov 19, 2023; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) calls the play against the Tennessee Titans in the first quarter at EverBank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports

Trevor Lawrence stars as Jaguars pummel Titans

Trevor Lawrence went 24-of-32 passing for 262 yards and two touchdowns to go with two rushing scores to lead the Jacksonville Jaguars to a 34-14 home win over the Tennessee Titans on Sunday.

Calvin Ridley caught seven passes for 103 yards and two touchdowns for Jacksonville (7-3), which evened its home record at 3 and has won six of its past seven games.

Will Levis went 13-of-17 passing for 158 yards and two touchdowns in defeat for the Titans (3-7), who have lost three straight and all six of their road games.

The Jaguars opened the scoring with 2:58 remaining in the first quarter, grabbing a 7-0 lead on a 3-yard touchdown pass from Lawrence to Ridley.

Jacksonville took a 10-0 lead with 2:43 left in the second quarter on a 30-yard field goal by Brandon McManus, and then a 13-0 lead with 14 seconds to go until halftime on a 25-yard field goal by McManus.

On the first drive of the second half, the Jaguars went 73 yards in nine plays, taking a 20-0 lead on a 9-yard touchdown run by Lawrence.

Jacksonville struck again on its next possession, going 80 yards in six plays and taking a 27-0 lead on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Lawrence to Ridley.

Tennessee finally got on the board on the last play of the third quarter, cutting the Jacksonville lead to 27-7 on a 43-yard touchdown pass from Levis to DeAndre Hopkins.

After Jacksonville recovered a fumbled punt at the Tennessee 36-yard line, the Jaguars put the game away on a 5-yard touchdown run by Lawrence with 7:28 left that gave Jacksonville a 34-7 lead.

Tennessee cut the Jaguars lead to 34-14 with 4:28 remaining on a 2-yard touchdown pass from Levis to Jeffery Simmons, which finished off a 75-yard drive in five plays.

– Field Level Media

Oct 22, 2023; Inglewood, California, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin watches game action against the Los Angeles Rams during the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Steelers hope to keep success going against visiting Jags

Some pundits view the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 4-2 record as fraudulent, given that their offense ranks near the bottom of most major statistical categories and their point differential is minus-24.

Yet they are only a half-game out of first place in an AFC North where no one is below .500 and where they already boast home wins over the teams ahead or tied with them — Baltimore and Cleveland.

Translation: It might not be pretty, but it is good enough.

Pittsburgh attempts to keep its recent run of success going on Sunday at home when it takes on the AFC South-leading Jacksonville Jaguars.

“I think in 2023, when you’re talking about team identity, you’re talking about more intangible quality things — a grit, a mindset,” said Steelers coach Mike Tomlin when asked to assess his team.

Pittsburgh rallied in the second half last week to stop the Los Angeles Rams 24-17 in Inglewood, Calif., for its second straight win. The offense rebounded from a bad first half behind second-year quarterback Kenny Pickett, who was 7-for-7 for 138 yards in the fourth quarter.

Pickett also sealed the game by converting a 4th-and-1 on a quarterback sneak. It was the fifth time in his short career that he’s brought the Steelers from behind in the fourth quarter to earn a win.

“Some people relish the opportunity. Some people smile in the face of adversity,” Tomlin said of Pickett. “Some people are competition junkies and I think he’s all of those things. That’s not something that we’re just discovering. It’s something we knew even prior to him being a Pittsburgh Steeler.”

Still, Pittsburgh would love to up its offensive production. The Steelers are 31st in the league in total yardage and average time of possession, and 28th in rushing.

On the other hand, Jacksonville (5-2) has the kind of offense a team like the Steelers envies. The Jaguars are in the top 10 in scoring and time of possession, with their other key stats hovering around the middle of the pack. And they have won four straight, including a 31-24 triumph at New Orleans last Thursday.

With the rest of its division either sitting at .500 or looking like sellers at the trade deadline, Jacksonville seems to be in position to take its present 1 1/2-game lead Houston to another level. But coach Doug Pederson isn’t interested in projecting the distant future, only what might happen this week against a tough defense on the road.

“Just understanding the type of team we’re playing this week, they’ve beaten some really good football teams this year,” he said. “They play hard, they play physical. If you’re not ready for this one, it’s gonna be a long day up in Pittsburgh.”

Quarterback Trevor Lawrence (knee) was limited at Wednesday’s practice but is coming off a good game in New Orleans, throwing for 204 yards and a touchdown while rushing for a team-high 59 yards. One area of concern, though, is that he’s fumbled six times, losing three.

The Jaguars own a 14-13 edge in the all-time series (including 2-0 in the playoffs), though Pittsburgh won the teams’ last meeting three years ago, 27-3.

–Field Level Media