By: David Levin (@davidlevin71)
With one comment on Thursday, an entire season for the Jaguars is set.
Blaine Gabbert is the starter for the game against the Jets.
While it is only a preseason contest, it is the second in a row for Gabbert, who was expected to “battle” Chad Henne for the starting role in the Jaguars production this year,.
Let’s just hope Gabbert’s performance is worthy of award nomination.
This isn’t something that comes as a huge surprise, but it means a great many things moving forward for this team. I, like many of the listeners here at 1010XL and 92.5 FM, believe Gabbert will start this season, but won’t finish. This means either Henne or someone off the street could end the season as the team’s starter.
That does not make for a positive outlook, but this is a necessary process.
Gabbert really has not been given a fair shot here and has not been able to show what he can do. I know there has been grumbling and complaining by fans and the media. But for once, I am going to defend the youngster.
* He was thrown to the wolves as a rookie when he should have learned the system on the bench.
* He was still erratic with Mike Mularkey as head coach and the offense, which should have been more effective with Bob Bratkowski, Mularkey and Gregg Olson here in town. It wasn’t.
* He has had to learn three offensive systems in three years. Add his last season of college and he was a true junior. Four schemes in four years will destroy a quarterback, no matter whether you might be Brett Favre or not.
* And whether we like it or not, the more athletic Gabbert is tied to this team for two more seasons. If he cannot win in Jedd Fisch’s system, then we set him free at the end of the year. We will be searching for a new quarterback and starting from scratch if that happens anyway.
The list of free agents in 2014 and 2015 are not promising as you think.
What I am hoping to see Saturday is a quarterback who plays like just he won the lottery. An athlete confident in his ability, one who can lead a team from behind and win. And, a community that rallies around him. I am not one who usually feels like we should throw support to one player or another, but in this case Gabbert needs it. Like you, I am just as quick to criticize when things go wrong. Now, we all need things to go right.
For better or worse, we are married to this situation. We need to find a way to make a go of it because a divorce is not soon in the offing and even if it was, the fallout might be worse than expected.
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