Marrone won't commit to Jaguars starting QB

Marrone won't commit to Jaguars starting QB

One of the main storylines that everyone has been watching this National Football League preseason has been, really, the fall from grace of Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles. The former Dolphins quarterback went 5-14 in 19 starts for the Jaguars in 2012 and 2013, after which the Jags drafted Bortles in the first round of the 2014 draft.

The Jaguars have had four practices since last Thursday's game against Tampa Bay when Bortles was a pedestrian-like 8-of-13 for 65 yards with no points in four possessions.

Adds Benn: "It's about being more aware of the down and distance and really knowing what's going on at any point in the game".

Now, you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who thinks Blake Bortles can be an effective starter, let alone an above average passer in the NFL. The third overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft took a significant step backward in 2016 and threw for 3,905 yards, 23 touchdowns and 16 interceptions.

In a press release, the Jaguars say both Henne and Bortles will see snaps with the first-team offense against Carolina.

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Carolina is coming off a rough preseason loss to the Tennessee Titans that saw them nearly complete a 17-point comeback victory, only to choke and turn the ball over at their own goal line with two minutes to go. Even Marrone and the team's top decision-maker, Tom Coughlin, backed Bortles all season.

The third preseason game is the most important for the starters as the Carolina Panthers are likely to treat this as the dress rehearsal before the season.

Bortles is 11 of 18 for 81 yards through two preseason games and his struggles throwing the ball deep haven't improved.

Marrone reaffirmed that he still likes the plan he has formulated in his mind about the quarterback situation. But Henne getting the nod may mark the end of Bortles' time as starter. This still could represent a seminal moment for the Jaguars, who have seen Bortles become the latest first-round quarterback not to make good on a lofty investment. At the most important position, though, the Jaguars have run out of patience. If he were to be claimed off waivers, the Jaguars wouldn't be on the hook for his $6.57 million cap number this season or his guaranteed fifth contract year.