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First off the field: Gerhart questionable for opener


JACKSONVILLE – The Jaguars may need to wait a couple of days on Toby Gerhart.

There remains a bit of uncertainty about Marqise Lee's status, too, with Lee and Gerhart representing the biggest remaining unknowns around the Jaguars as they prepare for the regular-season opener.

Gerhart was listed as questionable on the team's final injury report of the week Friday with an abdomen injury, meaning there is a 50-50 chance he will play. Lee was listed as doubtful, giving him a 25 percent chance to play.

Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley on Friday said a decision on Gerhart could come Sunday.

"That one could go up until game time," Bradley said as the Jaguars prepared to play the defending NFC South Champion Carolina Panthers in the 2015 regular-season opener EverBank Field Sunday at 1 p.m.

"It could be a situation where we work him out (Sunday before the game). Again, we'll see how he feels today and tomorrow, but it could be a game-time decision."

Lee, a second-year wide receiver who has missed all but three days of practice since the beginning of training camp with a hamstring issue, worked on the side with a trainer during the early portion of practice open to the media Friday.

"He did run full speed I guess today," Bradley said, adding that the team needed to discuss Lee's status with Head Athletic Trainer Scott Trulock before determining a final game-day status. "I guess until we get a chance to talk and see with Scott where he's at, how he's coming out of this … I think unlikely that he will be ready to go, but I guess there's a chance so we'll visit with that."

The status of Lee/Gerhart wasn't the only news around the Jaguars Friday. The Jaguars also extended the contract of long snapper Carson Tinker, who originally signed with the team as a collegiate free agent following the 2013 NFL Draft.

Tinker said the extension was for four years.

"It's really cool," Tinker said. "I don't think it's hit me yet. Maybe it will at the end of the year. Right now, I'm just focused on playing football."

Tinker said he told Jaguars Director of Football Administration Tim Walsh -- after signing – he would "do this for free."

"I love my job," Tinker said. "I love being up here. I love long-snapping. I know that sounds kind of lame, but I really do enjoy being up here. I love my teammates, my coaches and I'm really excited about the future, but especially this season.

Bradley said Tinker represents consistency for other players.

"He has a certain skillset that he's really worked hard at perfecting, or trying to perfect," Bradley said. "He's a tireless worker. He's here in the offseason so he's really what we're all about. I think it's a great credit to him that he got taken care of and I think we want to make sure we recognize that from a player.

"You can't do it all the time. You'd like to keep everybody, but in this case we were able to take care of him so we are excited for him."

The Jaguars' full injury report on Friday read as follows:

Defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks (knee, out), tight end Julius Thomas (hand, out), defensive end Andre Branch (knee, out), Lee (hamstring, doubtful), Gerhart (abdomen, questionable), linebacker LaRoy Reynolds (knee, probable), defensive tackle Michael Bennett (ankle, probable), wide receiver Bryan Walters (hamstring, probable) and safety Johnathan Cyprien (finger, probable).

Gerhart is expected to play a short-yardage role this season. Asked if that role could be filled by veteran Bernard Pierce, Bradley said "I think you're going to see us more running back by committee."

"Each one is going to have a specific role," Bradley said. "I think Benard has his role what he's going to do … You always have a plan B."

Bradley called Friday's one-hour practice "more of a mental day today, mental preparation day."

"We got a chance to go through and kind of rehearse all of the situations that apply," Bradley said. "The team meeting represented that tight philosophy as well, so .. very pleased with the way practice came out today. Now they take care of their bodies and still have a lot of work to do as far as that but we feel good with the direction we're going."

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