JACKSONVILLE – He talked about quarterbacks and offensive line.
Doug Marrone also talked about books, and it was the latter that likely will be the most-discussed topic from the Jaguars head coach’s media availability Tuesday.
The subject: comments made by Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Doug Pederson in his newly-published book, Fearless: How an Underdog Becomes a Champion, regarding the Jaguars’ approach against the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game in January.
Marrone’s thoughts on the matter?
“Those things happen, and that’s it,” Marrone said Tuesday morning as the Jaguars prepared for Day 18 of 2018 Training Camp at the Dream Finders Homes Practice Complex. “I respect the hell out of him and his team, and he won a Super Bowl.
“We lost – and when you lose, you question everything. So, I don’t have a problem with it.”
The Jaguars lost the title game to the Patriots, 24-20. The Eagles beat New England two weeks later in Super Bowl LII, 41-33.
Pederson in Fearless discussed the Jaguars’ strategy in the championship game, addressing the Jaguars taking a knee to run out the clock with a 14-10 lead and 55 seconds remaining in the first half. “When they knelt right before halftime, inside I was like, ‘I'll never do that,’’’ Pederson wrote. “It fueled me."
Marrone said Tuesday, “Doug won the Super Bowl; Doug did a great job of coaching. I’m sure there’s a long line of people that have the same questions or feelings. And it’s, ‘What are you going to do?’”
Marrone was asked if he would explain his strategy if/when he wrote his own book.
“I’ll never write a book; I’m not smart enough to write book,” he said. “I’m not a big book writer. I’m a big drink-a-beer-and-tell-a-story guy.”
Marrone also discussed backup quarterback Cody Kessler and the performance of the Jaguars’ offensive line against the Minnesota Vikings in a Preseason Week 2 victory in Minneapolis Saturday.
“I feel good about him,” Marrone said of Kessler. “I hope we can protect him better. I’m not foolish enough to not know if the quarterback gets hit early it’s going to be tough. We need to do a better job protecting him, and that’s everybody – and a better job of getting open – to get a true evaluation. But I have no issues with him.”
Kessler was sacked four times in the victory over the Vikings. He completed 11 of 16 passes for 72 yards and no touchdowns with no interceptions. He had completed 14 of 17 passes for 139 yards and a touchdown with no interceptions while being sacked once in the preseason opener against New Orleans.
Also on Tuesday:
*Marrone discussed the release afternoon of linebacker Brooks Ellis, who the team announced Monday afternoon it had waived with a “left-team” designation. Ellis spent the final nine weeks of last season on the Jaguars’ practice squad. “The players’ conversations are private,” Marrone said of Ellis, who missed the preseason opener against New Orleans in the concussion protocol. “But he was cleared. The statement speaks for itself.” …
*Guard Chris Reed was expected to return to practice after missing Monday with a knee injury sustained against Minnesota Saturday. The team also said defensive tackle Marcell Dareus (pectoral) returned to practice Monday after missing the Minnesota game. …
*The following players were not expected to practice: Cornerback A.J. Bouye (illness), center Brandon Linder (knee), safety Don Carey (hamstring), nose tackle Eli Ankou (knee) and defensive end Dawuane Smoot (ankle). All of those players missed practice Monday except Bouye. …