Three years ago the Jaguars used the fifth overall pick in the NFL draft on receiver Justin Blackmon. Now the Jaguars think Blackmon’s career is over.
Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell said today that Blackmon, who has been suspended by the NFL for the last 21 months because of repeated failed drug tests, appears to have decided that he’s not willing to put in the work to get himself back on the field.
“I have not heard anything and I guess I harbor a little bit of hope but realistically I think when you’re away from the game for two-and-a-half years what you were once is not what you probably will be,” Caldwell said. “Your skills do erode and especially if you’re not staying in tip-top shape and you’re not in football shape. I don’t know to expect but I would say common sense would probably be if you haven’t played football in two-and-a-half years apparently that’s not a priority for you.”
That’s a shame. Blackmon has great, great talent. He was a two-time winner of the Biletnikoff Award for the best wide receiver in college football, and he was the first wide receiver ever to win the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year Award. He could have been something special in the NFL.
Instead, Blackmon will be a cautionary tale of a player whose great talent wasn’t enough to overcome his off-field problems.