Quarterback David Garrard might miss as much as a month of the season with what coach Jack Del Rio termed a high-ankle sprain. Quinn Gray will be Garrard's replacement in Tampa on Sunday and the Jaguars worked out three veteran quarterbacks this afternoon in an attempt to fortify the position.
"David will be out this week and it looks like, at the minimum, he'll be out a couple of weeks and potentially it could be as much as a month," Del Rio told reporters at his Wednesday press conference.
"We will elevate Quinn. We'll rally around Quinn and do our best as a football team to compete," Del Rio added.
Todd Bouman, Doug Johnson and Drew Henson auditioned for a roster spot. Another veteran quarterback, Drew Bledsoe, was contacted by the Jaguars but did not want to come out of retirement. Del Rio said the team will "either elevate (rookie) Lester Ricard (from the practice squad) or sign another player to be active."
Del Rio would not divulge what the team is considering in the way of making room on its roster for a new quarterback. The team would have to either release a player or move him to the injured reserve to make room for a quarterback. Roster moves could be announced late Wednesday afternoon.
"He's intelligent, has a quick release and a strong arm," Del Rio said of Gray, who will be making his first pro start on Sunday. "Can he be consistent? Can he lead the team, make good decisions and be productive? He hasn't been in this situation before. We're dealing with some unknowns. We don't want him to carry the team. We want him to be a good distributor and play his role."
The Jaguars are one of 14 teams that began the season with only two quarterbacks on their active roster.
"It's a calculated risk you take," Del Rio said.
Also on the injury front, running back Maurice Jones-Drew did not practice on Wednesday. Jones-Drew sustained what is thought to be a minor knee sprain in the late stages of the loss to the Colts on Monday night. Del Rio volunteered Jones-Drew's status as "questionable" for this Sunday's game.
"We hope to get him back by the end of the week and that he'll play on Sunday," Del Rio added.
"It's a loss. You lose sometimes. You have to brush it off. We're adults," Jones-Drew said of the loss to the Colts.
"The best way to get that feeling out of your system is to go get a victory," running back Fred Taylor said on Wednesday. "You hate to lose but it's not the end of the world.
"If you find one person in this locker room who says we're not going to get it done, please let me know," Taylor added. "We still feel we're headed in the right direction. We took a small step back. It was very embarrassing."