Enough was enough on Thursday night in Jacksonville, as once again QB Blake Bortles demonstrated he’s not only not improved for 2017, but he looks a lot like the guy who stunk it up for most of 2016. So, his head coach, Doug Marrone, made it clear to everyone post-game , Bortles may be headed to the bench.
While he didn’t come out and say the fourth year quarterback from UCF is being replaced, clearly Bortles’ 8-15 showing for 64 yards and no third down conversions in the first half Thursday night against the Bucs has opened the door for that.
— The Jaguars Wire (@TheJaguarsWire) August 18, 2017
For his part Henne, does have a lot of starts in his career (53), and immediately came in an laid a ball perfectly into the hands of wide receiver Keelan Cole for what should have been a second quarter TD. Alas, Cole flat dropped it behind the defense and the Jags even missed the field goal to stay scoreless in the whole first half.
As we wrote two weeks ago off their night scrimmage, Bortles was by all accounts awful throwing five ints in the practice. And, it only reinforced the short-sighted view by new boss Tom Coughlin that he wouldn’t bring in legitimate competition in free agency or draft another QB in the high rounds last April.
Off a 2016 year where his QB rating was 78.8 and he won three games, Bortles was basically asked to do very little throwing the ball in the preseason opener in New England last week. Then, when he woefully under threw Allen Robinson, who was behind the Bucs D in the second quarter, the boo birds cascaded in the stands.
Now, the Jags have to figure it out before the starting offense plays most of the three quarters next Saturday against Carolina. Also, as previously scheduled, their camp is now closed to the public and practice is also closed to the media from here on out.
This means that it will likely remain a mystery next week, as to who will start the third preseason game for Jacksonville. But, don’t be surprised if that’s Henne.
The Jags have too much talent, especially at receiver, to not try to spark things with a change.
The spark is out for now, and maybe for good, in Jacksonville for Bortles.