According to Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports, the reason the Jacksonville Jaguars didn’t draft a quarterback this year is because they want to see what Blaine Gabbert can do this year and then possibly get a signal caller in the 2014 draft.
While the Jaguars spend this season sorting through whether 2011 first-round pick Blaine Gabbert can become the starter the previous regime hoped for, there is a bigger plan playing out within the organization.
The Jaguars are doing everything they can to solve the quarterback situation once and for all and, just as importantly, in a logical way. The weird moves of cutting passers like Byron Leftwich and David Garrard on the eve of the season are gone. The drafting of Gabbert when the team was dealing with a lame-duck coach (Jack Del Rio) is now a thing of the past.
“We’re going to give everybody a fair chance to see who can win the job and whether that person is the long-term solution,” Caldwell said as he surveyed practice.
A year from now, Gabbert and Chad Henne might not even be on the roster – that’s how up in the air the Jaguars quarterback situation is. Caldwell is taking advantage of what many people have called a “scholarship” year for him to work on the team’s roster without feeling the pressure to immediately add a quarterback.
Instead of grabbing passers Geno Smith or E.J. Manuel or even Matt Barkley, Jacksonville stood pat, content to see what might happen with Gabbert. Moreover, offensive tackle and No. 2 overall pick Luke Joeckel was brought in to give any quarterback more stability.
“Whether it’s from the pocket or if we run some rollout stuff, we’re going to find ways to give the quarterback more of a chance,” Caldwell said. “And then we’ll see how it goes.”
At the same time, Caldwell is going to spend much of the season studying the likes of Bridgewater, Boyd and whoever else emerges as a candidate next year. Privately, the Jaguars were only too happy to see the Buffalo Bills (Manuel) and New York Jets (Smith) grab quarterbacks in the first two rounds of the draft. That likely takes both teams off the market for next year and leaves Jacksonville and Cleveland as the top likely teams in need.
I think the Jags were smart to not draft a quarterback this year They had so many other needs to address and aren’t in bad shape with Gabbert and Henne. I think they realize they’re probably not going to be a playoff contender this year and will look to get a quarterback next year if they have too. It already looks like the 2014 crop of quarterbacks will be a lot better than this year’s.