Jaguars coach sounds ready to bench Blake Bortles after ugly outing against Bucs
It looks like we're going to have a quarterback competition in Jacksonville
Blake Bortles was so bad against the Buccaneers on Thursday that he might have actually just played himself out of a starting job in Jacksonville.
Following the Jags'to Tampa Bay, coach Doug Marrone made it clear that Bortles was no longer a lock to be the team's starter for Jacksonville's regular season opener on Sept. 10.
"I met with both quarterbacks afterwards. I told them what I'm looking for is, I'm looking for someone that's going to lead this offense, so I'm not happy with the performance today," Marrone said, via ESPN.com.
The Jaguars coach insinuated that he's going to have an open quarterback competition between Bortles and Chad Henne to determine who'll be the team's starter at Houston for a game that's just over three weeks away.
"I'm not gonna sit here and B.S. anyone, I mean, everyone saw it out there," Marrone said. "Whatever you want to call it, I'm still trying to evaluate who the best person is at that position. I told that to both quarterbacks."
Although Bortles didn't put up horrible numbers against Tampa Bay (8 of 13 for 65 yards), the truth is, it might have been the most painful 8 of 13 game in NFL history. Bortles had trouble hitting receivers when they were wide open, and the only passes he managed to complete came mostly due to the fact that he was making short, safe throws.
Things actually got so bad for Bortles that the fans in Jacksonville started booing him after he overthrew Allen Robinson on a play early in the second quarter.
Eventually, Marrone decided to pull Bortles from the game and put Henne in with the first team, but that didn't do much to spark the Jags.
"I need someone to lead this offense," Marrone said.
Marrone did make one thing clear about the quarterback situation: It doesn't sound like he wants to bring in a free agent quarterback at this point in the preseason.
"I don't work with the 'outside the roster stuff,'" Marrone said when asked if the starter might not be on the roster yet. "So for me, I can't answer that question. I work with what we have."
That comment ostensibly rules out Colin Kaepernick as the possible starter in Jacksonville, which is too bad for the fan below.
As for Bortles, his time in Jacksonville might be up if he loses the starting job.
Bortles has been one of the most inconsistent quarterbacks since 2014 when the Jaguars made him the No. 3 overall pick in the NFL Draft. Although the Jaguars recently picked up Bortles' fifth-year option, which gives them his rights through the 2018 season, that doesn't necessarily mean he'll be on the team that long.
The option is only guaranteed for injury, which means if Bortles doesn't get injured in 2017, the Jaguars can cut him at the end of the season and not owe him any money for 2018.
If Henne were to be the Jags' Week 1 starter, that means the former Michigan quarterback would be making his first NFL start since 2014.
No matter who starts, the Jaguars are exactly where you don't want to be at this point in the preseason: They're three weeks away from their regular season opener and they have no idea who their starting quarterback is going to be.
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