Well, so much for the ominous news that Jaguars left tackle Cam Robinson might not be ready for the opening regular-season game. The team has done a reversal and activated the injured left tackle off the Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) list Monday morning and he participated in their camp workout.
Coach Doug Marrone made the announcement prior to practice that the Jaguars have changed their mind from what he told the media Saturday and will begin acclimating Robinson to practice and conditioning:
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) August 12, 2019
We wrote Saturday that Marrone discouragingly stated that it didn’t look like Robinson or injured wide receiver Marqise Lee would be ready for the season opener September 8th with the Chiefs. Both players are coming off of ACL knee surgeries after being hurt at the beginning of last year.
However, Robinson is obviously improved to the point where the Jaguars have decided to bring him along with hopes that he will be ready to start the season.
Florida Times-Union beat writer John Reid tweeted this video of Robinson working with a blocking sled with a medical sleeve and brace on his left knee:
Back to work for Cam Robinson pic.twitter.com/3oZ0WJBtj0
— John Reid (@JohnReid64) August 12, 2019
Robinson was drafted in 2017 in the second round out of Alabama, and he played in all 16 games his rookie year. A year ago, he was installed at the important left tackle position throughout the off season and preseason games. However, he suffered the torn ACL in the first quarter of the Jags week two win over the Patriots and was placed on season ending IR.
The Jaguars have had hopes that Robinson would be fully recovered for the 2019 regular season, as a decision would have been looming to put him on the final 53 man roster for week one or risk having to leave him, under PUP rules, on that list deeper into the regular season.
It’s very unlikely that Robinson will see much, if any actual live contact in the short-term, but rather the team will gradually work him in the next 10 days or so, as the preseason unfolds.
Jags WR Marqise Lee returns to practice
After losing veteran Alfred Blue in the first half of the 24–10 Thursday night loss to the Eagles with an ankle injury, the Jaguars are looking for offensive depth. In some fortunate news, WR Marqise Lee is off of the PUP list and has begun practicing today, roughly one year after suffering from knee damage that sidelined him for the entire 2018 season.
Head coach Doug Marrone made the announcement before practice on Saturday.
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) August 17, 2019
First Coast news reporter Ben Murphy got a video of Lee at practice receiving a pass from QB Nick Foles.
— Ben Murphy (@BenMurphyTV) August 17, 2019
Last year, Lee was injured in the first quarter of a preseason game against the Falcons. He was hit by reserve defensive back Damontae Kazee on this play after a reception.
— Kevin Boilard (@247KevinBoilard) August 25, 2018
Lee suffered a torn ACL and went on injured reserve missing the entire season.
Lee became more prominent in Jacksonville’s pass offense in 2017 with 56 catches for 702 yards and three TDs. The Jags are surely going to rely on him this season which could mean he’ll see the field a bit in their third preseason game to get him readjusted to competitive game play.
However, they might not want to risk another potential injury before the season begins. We could see it going either way. We do know that he’ll be a great weapon for Nick Foles to utilize this season.
The return of Lee is coming off the heels of some other good news for the Jags announced earlier this week. Starting left tackle Cam Robinson was also removed from the PUP list on Monday after suffering a torn ACL in Week 2 last season. He has since made enough progress participate in some individual drills and should be ready, along with Lee, for their season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs.
In other injury-related news, we await how serious Blue’s ankle injury is coming off this second preseason game. Meanwhile, the likelihood is that Leonard Fournette, backed up by Thomas Rawls, will be the two running backs when the Jaguars play at the Dolphins next Thursday night.
Jaguars searching for RB depth after second preseason game
With preseason game number two in the books, it’s apparent the Jaguars have real issues with running back depth due to injury. This after veteran Alfred Blue left the first half of the 24 – 10 Thursday night loss to the Eagles with an ankle injury and did not return.
Blue carried the ball four times for just five yards has Jacksonville offense once again sputtered behind a makeshift offensive line. Coach Doug Marrone was so concerned about that line situation and their ability to protect/block that starting quarterback Nick Foles and running back Leonard Fournette never saw the field for a single play during Thursday night.
That means that veteran at Thomas Rawls (above Thursday) was called upon to carry the ball a little more, and he did so, seven times for 19 yards including a long run of 11 playing in the first half.
Rawls is a 5th year veteran who had some modest success with the Seahawks, including rushing for 830 yards his rookie year in 2015 with a 5.6 yard per carry average. His numbers tapered off in 2016 – 17 with ankle and foot injuries, as he only played in 21 games in those two years. Rawls was later released and picked up by the Bengals, but injured again last season, and never carried the ball in Cincinnati.
Obviously, the Jaguars are wanting to implement Fournette, as the primary ball carrier, but they will need someone else to spell him on a series or two. Also, Fournette has had durability questions, as he missed parts or all of eight games last year with a hamstring injury.
The Jags were also hoping to bring along Temple rookie running back Ryquell Armstead, but after he carried eight times for 22 yards last week, he suffered a concussion in the preseason opening loss to the Ravens. Armstead hasn’t practiced since, and is still being evaluated with no further update Thursday.
Speaking of updates, we await how serious Blue’s ankle injury is coming off this second preseason game. Meanwhile, the likelihood is that Fournette, backed up by Rawls, will be the two running backs when the Jaguars play at the Dolphins next Thursday night.