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Friday update: Joeckel questionable, Cyprien doubtful


JACKSONVILLE – After a week of waiting and seeing, Luke Joeckel will wait and see some more.

Joeckel, the Jaguars' starting left tackle, missed a third consecutive practice Friday with the ankle sprain that forced him from the regular-season opener six days ago.

Joeckel's status for Sunday is questionable. Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley on Friday said in this case, that's an accurate description – and that Joeckel could be a game-time decision Sunday.

"It could be a possibility that we work him out, yes," Bradley said Friday as the Jaguars (0-1) prepared to play the Miami Dolphins (1-0) at EverBank Field Sunday at 4:05 p.m.

If Joeckel doesn't play, six-year veteran Sam Young will start in his place with second-year center/tackle Luke Bowanko the likely swing tackle. Right tackle Jermey Parnell is also an option at left tackle in an emergency situation.

Joeckel, the No. 2 overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft, injured his ankle late in the first half against Carolina Sunday then left the game permanently after re-aggravating it in the second half.

"We'll see how it goes Sunday," Bradley said Friday. "I'll talk to the trainers today. We still have a couple of days."

The Jaguars on Friday released their final injury report of the week, ruling out cornerback Dwayne Gratz (ankle), tight end Julius Thomas (hand), defensive end Andre Branch (knee) and defensive tackle Sen'Derrick Marks (knee). Marks and Thomas worked limited this week.

The rest of the injury report: strong safety Johnathan Cyprien (calf/finger, doubtful), running back Toby Gerhart (abdomen, doubtful), Joeckel (questionable), linebacker Thurston Armbrister (back, questionable), wide receiver Marqise Lee (hamstring, probable), wide receiver Rashad Greene (hamstring, probable) and safety Josh Evans (illness, probable).

Bradley said though Gerhart is making progress after being out since Preseason Week 2, the team is being cautious in his return.

"Every day he feels better and it's getting closer," Bradley said.

Gratz injured his ankle in practice Wednesday. His absence means Demetrius McCray will enter the game as the third corner, playing outside in passing situations when starter Aaron Colvin moves inside to play the nickel. McCray started 12 games last season.

"It's great to have that kind of depth," Bradley said.

Third-year veteran Josh Evans expected to start if Cyprien can't play. Evans has started 25 games in two seasons, with his last start at strong safety coming when Cyprien missed Week 2 versus Washington last season. Rookie James Sample also could get time at the position, and Bradley said he has picked things up well despite missing three preseason games.

Evans has worked at strong safety throughout training camp and preseason this year.

"I'm feeling comfortable doing it during camp," Evans said. "I'm treating it like a man-down, man-up situation and keeping things together. I feel better prepared now. Last year I was going back and forth, kind of learning a little bit of strong (safety). This year I've had more time to learn everything about strong safety and the scheme, so I feel way more comfortable this year."

Lee was listed as limited in practice this week because he took fewer reps than normal, but Bradley said he looked good throughout the week.

"He's had a good week of practice," Bradley said. "We're very pleased with his progress."

Lee, a second-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft, hasn't played in the preseason or regular season, missing all but the first three practices of training camp.

"I'm pumped," he said. "I can't wait – to have the opportunity to be out there is going to be amazing, to feel part of it will be great. I'm looking forward to it. It's still a little sore here and there, but nothing major to prevent me from going.

"I'll pretty much be out there rolling. I'm staying focused and will be out there Sunday."

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