The Jaguars picked up Blake Bortles’ option for the 2018 season, but Bortles’ return to the team for a fifth season is far from guaranteed because the contract isn’t guaranteed unless Bortles is unable to pass a physical at the start of the league year.
That makes it incumbent on Bortles to have a strong season if he is going to remain the quarterback in Jacksonville and he spent the early part of the offseason working on his mechanics in hopes of bouncing back from a rough 2016 campaign. Jaguars coach Doug Marrone gave a thumbs up to that work on Saturday, saying there was “no doubt” that Bortles has made progress.
“There are certain things, as far as his elbow and his arm, that are much improved,” Marrone said, via the team’s website. “I think there are still other things we’re still working on as well as everyone else at this stage. … If we’re throwing 100 footballs to 150 — if we throw 150 he’ll be better. If we throw 200 he’ll be better – 250, he’ll be better. What we’re doing now is trying to build him up and build the arm strength and all the other things along with all of our quarterbacks to get there. The more he throws the better he’ll be.”
At some point down the road, the team will have to be more clear-eyed, but there’s nothing to lose from accentuating the positive at this juncture of a crucial year for Bortles.