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OTA Report: Gabbert liking faster pace


JACKSONVILLE – Blaine Gabbert likes a lot about the new offense.

That may or may not mean Gabbert starts at quarterback for the Jaguars next season, with that issue being something Head Coach Gus Bradley said will play out over the coming months, but the up-tempo approach of Offensive Coordinator Jedd Fisch?

Gabbert said he likes it. A lot.

"It's very comfortable to me," Gabbert said Tuesday afternoon following the second of 10 scheduled organized team activities practices at the Florida Blue Health and Wellness Practice Fields just outside  EverBank Field.

"I'm familiar with a lot of the concepts, the little things that I've done in the past. It's been fun. We're having a blast. It's a fun time to be out here."

Bradley said entering the offseason the quarterback position – like other positions on the roster – would be about competition, and he said two days into OTAs that remains the case.

Gabbert is working with the first team, with Chad Henne – a starter the final six games last season after Gabbert was placed on injured reserve – working with the second team.

"We're rotating by periods," Bradley said. "There's still a lot of competition there and they're battling it. We're keeping track of scores and seven-on-seven. Everything we do we're trying to create some sort of competition for our team. Hopefully as OTAs go on and minicamp we get more and more of those situations to evaluate them."

Bradley added, "It's hard when you're not in full pads to see it. Right now we get some reps but they stop and they get close, so it's hard to simulate that. I think once we get pads on (in training camp) and see how they react in different situations it will become more clear."

Gabbert said Tuesday he likes the freedom of Fisch's no-huddle scheme, particularly the ability to get in and out of plays at the line of scrimmage.

"You have a lot of freedom to do whatever you do," Gabbert said. "When you get to the play, a specific play may be called but if you see something you like, call it.

"You get a play called and you get a loaded box, you get a nine-man front and you've got a draw called. Anybody in the stands is going to tell you that's a bad play. Honestly what the quarterback's job is to dig into your tool box, call something and make it work."


Rookie quarterback Jordan Rodgers underwent sports hernia surgery Tuesday morning and will miss the remainder of OTAs, Bradley said Tuesday.

Rodgers sustained the injury in rookie minicamp.

"We'll have him ready back for training camp," Bradley said.

Rodgers, who played collegiately at Vanderbilt, is the younger brother of Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. He signed with the Jaguars as a collegiate free agent shortly after the 2013 NFL Draft.


We'll get to the quarterback topic out of the way – for now, at least – on day two of OTAs. That's because the answer to the big questions regarding the most important position on the team aren't going to change any time soon – certainly not in the next few weeks. Who's going to start? Can the Jaguars be productive and consistent at the spot?  Can Blaine Gabbert play as well as he practices? All are critical questions, but as Head Coach Gus Bradley said after practice Tuesday, they're not questions that are likely to be answered without pads in May and June. Gabbert spoke to the media Tuesday for the first time since the team didn't draft a quarterback late last month. He downplayed the importance of that, pretty much avoiding the topic, instead focusing on Offensive Coordinator Jedd Fisch's scheme. Gabbert said he like that the scheme employs a lot of no-huddle and that he thinks this will be a really good fit. Coaches are optimistic about that, too. Gabbert's going to get every chance to earn the job, with the guess here is that he is the starter when the regular season opens. Coaches are optimistic he'll better in this scheme than in in his first two. Until the preseason – realistically, until the regular season – it's all speculation and talk, but for now, that's what we have. Without pads, that speculation and talk probably isn't going to change much in the next few weeks.

* *


"When that whistle blows, every day should be Sunday to them. That's how we roll."

* *


"It is different from college, as far as the context of defense that we're playing and also just the speed of the offense."

--- Jaguars rookie safety Johnathan Cyprien


The Jaguars will hold the third of 10 organized team activities practices at the Florida Blue Health and Wellness Practice Fields Wednesday at 11:25 p.m. Practice is closed to the public.


*Rookie wide receiver Ace Sanders missed practice Tuesday with abdominal and hip issues. Bradley said the fourth-round selection is being held out for precautionary reasons and the team hopes to get him back for the team's June 11-13 minicamp.

*Rookie right tackle Luke Joeckel spent time after practice speaking with former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli. Boselli was the No. 2 overall selection in the 1995 draft, and Joeckel was the No. 2 selection late last month. "It was great to meet him in person," Joeckel said. "He reached out to me and texted me after the draft, but I hadn't met him in person. We talked a little football and stuff like that, but it was great meeting him."

*Rookie quarterback Matt Scott practiced for a second consecutive day Tuesday, and said the ankle that kept him out the last two days of the May 3-5 minicamp continues to improve. "It's feeling a lot better," Scott said. "I did a lot of rehab on it. It was the worst time, really – the first day – but I'm glad to be back and trying to pick everything up."

*Defensive end Jason Babin (knee) worked on the side on a limited basis Tuesday, with the following players not practicing: running back Maurice Jones-Drew (knee), Rodgers, Sanders, running back Jordan Todman, running back Daniel Eskridge (school), linebacker Jeremiah Green (school), wide receiver Cole McKenzie (school), tight end Matt Veldman (knee) and defensive tackle Roy Miller (knee). Defensive end Austen Lane is attending the NFL's "Sports Journalism & Communications Boot Camp" this week at Bowling Green State University.

*Bradley said tempo of practice improved Tuesday from Monday. "We reemphasized that today and challenged our guys on both sides of the ball, and I thought they did a good job of responding," he said. "I don't know if it was because they had a couple of days off or what, but I was very pleased today."

*Bradley said veteran middle linebacker Paul Posluszny and tight end Marcedes Lewis have stepped forward as leaders early in the offseason. "Guys like that that we're challenging off to the side, a lot of one-on-one conversations with these guys, but just in my talks with them they've done a nice job," Bradley said.

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