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Brunell 'probable'


Mark Brunell says the condition of the swollen and sore middle finger on his left hand is improved over yesterday, but Brunell was to be held out of practice today and replaced by Kent Graham and David Garrard.

"We're going to practice the other two quarterbacks today and I probably won't say anything until game time about that situation," coach Tom Coughlin said of Graham and Garrard and which one of them would be deactivated if Brunell is able to play against the visiting Browns.

The Jaguars have listed Brunell on the team's injury report as "probable." In 1997, Brunell dislocated the same finger late in a loss in Pittsburgh. Though he was forced to leave the game for the few plays that remained, he was back under center the following week against the Titans.

Coughlin's hope is Brunell will be able to participate in Thursday's practice, and that the condition of Brunell's injured finger will continue to improve as Sunday approaches.

Meanwhile, new kicker Danny Boyd is pinning all of his hopes on a strong performance this Sunday in his Jaguars debut. Boyd certainly appreciates the lack of job security for kickers in Jacksonville.

"I just know I have to go out and do well," Boyd said when informed of Coughlin's comments that Boyd was signed for what he offered in the way of prospects for the Jaguars' future. "Doing well for the future starts with doing well this week," Boyd added.

Boyd was signed yesterday after the Jaguars cut Richie Cunningham, who had been with the team a mere six days and had converted his only field goal attempt. A veteran of Arena Football2 and NFL Europe, Boyd was working as a substitute teacher in Bradenton, Fla., when the Jaguars called him for a workout.

"It's an ongoing quest for someone who can be developed; someone who is a future prospect for this franchise," Coughlin said of his decision to cut Cunningham and sign Boyd. "We're impressed with the leg strength and felt this is the right move."

Coughlin was pressed by reporters to explain his team's volatility at the kicker position, which has seen seventh-round draft choice Hayden Epstein and veteran Tim Seder also fail to hold the job. Boyd is the Jaguars' fourth kicker since the seventh game of the season.

"It's going on all over the league. People are changing kickers everywhere. The original plan (Epstein) I would've liked to have had accomplished," Coughlin added.

Press conference questions are beginning to focus on Coughlin's future. Reporters are wondering if Coughlin will retain his job, and how the Jaguars' performance in the remaining four games of the season would impact that decision.

At today's noon press conference, Coughlin was asked to evaluate his and his coaching staff's performance this season.

"I think we've done a good job. I really do. It's not something that's perfect, but … what we've done with our team has been a good job," Coughlin said. "It's real important to show improvement; be ascending," he added of the final month of the season.

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