Jaguars kicker Josh Lambo used to be Lambo-Matic. Not any longer as his slump deepens
Josh Lambo cautioned patience when he was missing field-goal attempts in training camp.
He seemed back when he made two-of-two in the final preseason game against Dallas.
And he got a bit of a pass for missing his only attempt of the opening game of the season last week at Houston since it was a 55-yarder in a 37-21 loss.
But it can now be stated, officially, with evidence in a game that counts: Jaguars’ kicker Josh Lambo is in a slump.
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Nicknamed “Lambo-Matic” after missing only four field-goal attempts as a Jaguar — 76 of 80 since being signed in mid-season in 2017 with his .950 percentage the best mark in the league during that span — Lambo is now only one away from that total number of misses in two games this season.
He was wide right on a 52-yard attempt and wide left on a 48-yard attempt, both in the second quarter of Sunday’s 23-13 loss to the Denver Broncos.
Prior to his second miss, Lambo had made 16 of 19 field-goal attempts of less than 50 yards for the Jags, and nine of his last 10.
Compounding Lambo’s abysmal day is that he had never missed a field-goal attempt on the grass turf of TIAA Bank Field for the Jags, hitting 41 of 41 entering the game. Add 5 of 5 in Jags home games in London, and he was 46 of 46 in home games.
The second miss was especially costly. Quarterback Trevor Lawrence had led the offense from its own 25 to the Denver 29 with less than two minutes left, in the rain, completing three passes for 30 yards and gaining 11 yards on a fourth-and-five scramble.
Had Lambo made the kick, the Jags would have gone into halftime with a 10-10 tie and a bit of momentum.
Instead, the Broncos took their 10-7 lead and ran with it, scoring 10 points in the third period.
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After Lambo’s second miss, coach Urban Meyer, Lawrence and several other players tried to console him.
“For a kicker it’s tough,” Lawrence said. “Everything is on you to make that kick. I know how that feels. Let him know we’ve got your back, good or bad. We’re all in it together.”
Meyer said he would be more concerned if Lambo had not worked as hard as he did during training camp, and in rehabilitating hip and hamstring injuries that limited him to four games and five of five field-goal attempts last season.
“I’ve made the comment that the one thing I admire about him … he works his tail off,” Meyer said. “If he didn’t work hard, if he wasn’t a professional about everything he does, I’d have a problem with it. He’s missing some kicks and as a professional, he’s got to make those kicks. I have confidence that he will.”
Meyer was non-committal about bringing in another kicker to work out. Lambo had a competition in OTAs and mini-camp from Aldrick Rosas, one of five kickers the team used last season when Lambo was hurt, but the Jags cut Rosas on the first day of training camp.
Rosas is now with New Orleans and has made one more kick at TIAA Bank Field this season than Lambo has – a 44-yarder in his only attempt last week when the Saints beat Green Bay 38-3 in a game that had to be moved to Jacksonville because of hurricane damage in New Orleans.
“Not sure yet,” Meyer said about trying out another kicker. “I know he’ll [Lambo] be out there working again. I don’t know what the timing is going to be as far as bringing in someone else.”
Jamal Agnew provides a spark with kickoff return touchdown
The Jaguars' special teams were pretty good elsewhere. Jamal Agnew’s franchise-record 102-yard kickoff return following Denver’s final score with 5:26 left in the game was the first since Marquis Lee had a 100-yard return against Houston on Dec. 18, 2016.
Agnew now has four punt returns and two kickoff returns in his NFL career, the most since he entered the league in 2017.
Logan Cooke averaged 56.8 yards on four punts, but Dionte Spencer of Denver had a 25-yard return on the longest kick, 64 yards, in the third quarter.
Deep snapper Ross Matiscik also hustled down the field after a 63-yard punt by Cooke to make the tackle on Spencer after a 4-yard return.