Calvin Ridley caught a touchdown pass against his former team and Darious Williams returned an interception for a 61-yard touchdown as the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Atlanta Falcons 23-7 at Wembley Stadium.
The Jags (2-2) stopped a two-game losing streak with a series of big plays as the team celebrated playing in London for a 10th time.
After a dismal first half, the Falcons (2-2) attempted to fight back in the second, but were met with a resolute Jags defense.
A bright starts for the Jags
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence sidestepped Richie Grant and threw a deep ball to Ridley for a 30-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter.
Williams then stepped in front of receiver Drake London, intercepted Desmond Ridder‘s pass and outran the sophomore quarterback into the end zone to make the score 17-0 in the second quarter. It was the first pick-six to happen in London since 2016.
After the pick-six, Andre Cisco intercepted Ridder‘s very next pass, intended for Kyle Pitts on a crossing route, and returned it to the Atlanta 20-yard line. Cisco lost the ball, but teammate Foyesade Oluokun recovered it at the 16-yard line.
Ridder, in his eighth NFL start, showed his inexperience with interceptions on consecutive throws in the first half. It was such a disastrous display that some feared he would even be pulled from the game at half time.
Jaguars coach Doug Pederson opted not to kick a field goal for a 20-point lead and Lawrence was caught on fourth-and-1 from the 7-yard line by David Onyemata, handing both the ball and momentum back to Atlanta.
A better Atlanta in the second half
Atlanta came out energized in the second half and Ridder finished a 75-yard series with a 15-yard touchdown pass to London to cut Jacksonville‘s lead to 17-7.
London only put one foot in the back of the end zone on a fourth-and-3 from the six with just over six minutes left and the score 20-7.
The stats in Jacksonville vs Atlanta
Lawrence finished 23 of 30 for 207 yards and had a single touchdown pass. Christian Kirk led the Jags with eight receptions for 84 yards. Ridley, selected 26th overall in the 2018 draft by the Falcons, had two receptions for 38 yards.
Ridder finished 19 of 31 for 192 yards, with touchdown pass and two interceptions. It was a significant recovery after a disastrous first half, but there are still serious doubts over his suitability to lead a talented offense in the NFL.