For teams being in different divisions, the Cleveland Browns sure do face the Jacksonville Jaguars pretty often -- this will be the fourth consecutive season that they have had a game against each other. That has largely been a byproduct of both teams finishing in the same slot in the division (third- or fourth-place). Interestingly enough, that could change next season. Right now, the Browns are in fourth place in the AFC North, while the Colts are in fourth place in the AFC South. If things hold, that ends up probably being a tougher game for Cleveland next year than Jacksonville would be.
The circumstances under which the Browns played the Jaguars last year are eerily similar. In 2010, Cleveland played at Jacksonville on November 21 and entered the game with a 3-6 record. In 2011, Jacksonville comes to Cleveland on November 20 and the Browns are again entering the contest with a 3-6 record.
If you think the Browns should have won last week against the St. Louis Rams, then they really should have won last year against the Jaguars. That was a game in which the Browns forced six turnovers...but lost 24-20. The frustrating part about the game was that after having moved the ball well in the first half, the defense had a span between the third and fourth quarters in which they forced four turnovers to set the offense up with great field position. The Browns managed just three points off of those four turnovers.
The Jaguars scored a touchdown with a little over three minutes to play. The Browns tacked on a quick field goal. Just before the two-minute warning, Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew unbelievable ran a 75-yard screen pass against Cleveland's defense before getting a touchdown two plays later. The Browns lost a game that they should have had in the bag when you look at the turnover ratio and how big of a lead the Browns had late in the game.
The Jaguars aren't as good of a team this year as they were last year. They have struggled to move the ball on offense under rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert. In fact, the only team that has scored less points after nine games in the NFL is the St. Louis Rams, a team the Browns' defense did not allow to erupt. The Jaguars do feature a tough defense though -- they are among the top five teams in the league in not allowing points, and they stymied the Baltimore Ravens a couple of weeks ago.
The Jaguars also have former Browns wide receiver Brian Robiskie and linebacker Matt Roth on their roster. Hopefully this year's outcome is different than last year's.