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Trevor Lawrence: We kind of realized we have something special here

Mike Florio and Chris Simms dive into Week 16’s best showdowns, from Geno Smith going head-to-head with Patrick Mahomes to Russell Wilson squaring up against Bobby Wagner and more.

Thursday night’s game between the Jets and Jaguars was a matchup of the first two picks of the 2022 draft and it saw them moving in very different directions.

Jets quarterback Zach Wilson was the second overall pick that year and he played poorly enough to be benched in favor of practice squad call-up Chris Streveler. That calls into question what, if any, future he has with the Jets because it’s the second time he’s been benched this season.

There were questions about Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence as a rookie and at points early this year as well, but doubts have faded over a 5-2 stretch that has the Jaguars on track for a division title if they win their final two games. Lawrence capped a 96-yard drive with a sneak for the only touchdown of the 19-3 win and said after the game that he and his teammates have thrived because head coach Doug Pederson’s confidence never wavered during a 2-6 start to the year.
“Every game is a must win for us and that’s how we’re treating it and we understand that, and we love it,” Lawrence said, via Gene Frenette of the Florida Times-Union. “That’s the position we put ourselves in, good and bad. We love where we’re at, we love the momentum we have, but yeah, good teams win these games because you have to. Just to see how the team has grown, how we’ve stuck together. . . . I think the staff and especially coach Pederson has had belief in us, even when maybe we didn’t in the beginning. Things were crazy and I think him just having that confidence in us, we kind of realized we have something special here and we had to kind of figure out what we wanted to do before it got too late. We made adjustments and really started playing our best ball at the right time.”

The Jaguars are definitely peaking at the right time this season and that’s creating a lot of hope for what the future will bring in Jacksonville.