Bortles: "I put myself in this position"

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Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles, left, throws the football to Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Cody Kessler during a training session at Allianz Park in London, Friday Oct. 26, 2018. The Jacksonville Jaguars are preparing for an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles at London's Wembley stadium on Sunday. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

JACKSONVILLE – Blake Bortles began with an understatement.

"It's been different," he said of the past few days.

Bortles, who on Monday lost the job he held for more than four years – the Jaguars' starting quarterback – on Wednesday spoke to the media for the first time since Head Coach Doug Marrone replaced him in the lineup with Cody Kessler a day after a seventh consecutive loss.

"I put myself in this position," said Bortles, who has thrown for 13 touchdowns with 10 interceptions this season. "I didn't play good enough. I didn't win football games. I couldn't find a way to get it done.

"When that happens, it's a business. Everybody understands that. I don't think there's anything personal involved. As a quarterback, your main job obviously is to win football games. If you don't do that, your time is going to come."

Bortles, who has started 72 consecutive regular-season consecutive games from Week 4 of 2014 through a 24-21 loss to the Buffalo Bills this past Sunday, said the experience has been more than just "different."

"Obviously tough and not what you want to go through as a quarterback – to not only have the offensive coordinator get fired and obviously lose your job as the starting quarterback," Bortles said. "It's difficult."

Bortles also was asked on Monday his view on his long-term future with the team.

"I think that's definitely a big picture thing, but not something I'm worried about right now," Bortles said.

Marrone on Monday not only moved Kessler into the starting lineup, he dismissed Jaguars offensive coordinator Nate Hackett – the Jaguars' play-caller since the eighth game of the 2016 season.

"I owe a lot to him," Bortles said of Hackett. "He has taught me a ton of football."

Quarterbacks coach Scott Milanovich will call plays when the Jaguars play host to the Indianapolis Colts at TIAA Bank Field Sunday at 1 p.m.

"He's awesome," Bortles said, adding that Milanovich is a "super-intelligent guy – smart, kind of has a different perspective on things."

Bortles said he was surprised Hackett was replaced.

"I was definitely surprised, but it's a business and when things aren't going well it's sort of, 'Head coach, offensive coordinator, quarterback are kind of the three,''' Bortles said.

Bortles said his focus now will be on helping Kessler and Milanovich as much as possible, and that he will draw on his experience from when he took over as the starter as a rookie for veteran Chad Henne in Week 4 of the 2014 season.

"One thing I always thought was one of the most incredible things I've ever seen was how Chad handled going from being the starter to the backup and how he was able to maturely handle that and be there for me and do whatever I needed and help me out in anyway," Bortles said. "Anytime I'm ever in that situation, I'll look back on what he did and what I witnessed him do – be a professional and handle it the way you should. It's a job. Our job is to be a professional and try to win football games."

Bortles was asked about the possibility of competing for the Jaguars' quarterback job next season – with a veteran or a rookie.

"I have no problem with competition," Bortles said. "I'm not in charge of decisions that are made. I obviously put myself in this position and forced their decision to be made. At the end of the day, they're in charge of making those personnel decisions. If it's a competition or if it's 'See ya later, you're out of here' … whatever it is, I love playing football and would love the opportunity to play again."

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