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OTAs Day 5: A cool honor, but …


JACKSONVILLE – This was a cool honor.

That was how Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles saw his inclusion in the NFL Network's Top 100 Players of 2016, with Bortles' place on the list being announced Wednesday night.

Bortles made the list at No. 56, becoming the fourth Jaguars player so named this offseason.

"I think it's pretty cool to have multiple guys from our team looked at from our peers," Bortles said Thursday following the fifth practice of Jaguars 2016 Organized Team Activities, which continued at the Florida Blue Health and Wellness Practice Fields.

Previously making the list were Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith, wide receiver Allen Hurns and running back Chris Ivory. This was Bortles' first time making the list.

At the same time, the third-year quarterback kept the moment in perspective.

"It's pretty cool, but I know myself as well as the rest of the guys that are on that list could (not) care less," Bortles said. "We'd rather worry about what we're doing and what we're going do to as a team than that stuff. I think it's cool. I think it's an honor, definitely, but I think it's pretty irrelevant."

The honor came after a season in which Bortles set franchise records for passing touchdowns and passing yardage in a single season, and Bortles said Thursday the task of improving on that season is ongoing during OTAs.

Bortles, who last week called the difference in the team's offense between early OTAs 2015 and 2016 "night and day," said the offense has continued to improve during the offseason.

"We've had a bad day here and there, but today compared to Tuesday was better," he said. "Tuesday was bad, and Monday in Week 1 wasn't very good and we finished the week strong. The goal is to try to eliminate those bad days.

"You can have a bad play, but you can't have a bad day. We've taken that mindset and we're being consistent and executing."

Also on Thursday in Day 5 of 2016 OTAs:

Images from the fifth day of Jaguars organized team activities.

*Bortles and Olson both said there could be more hurry-up offense in non-two-minute situations next season. "It's something we did well last year in those situations we had it," Bortles said. "It's the second year in the offense, so guys should be able to run our no-huddle offense and be more comfortable with it. It keeps defenses out of a lot of stuff and simplifies it."

  • Olson said Thursday was the first OTA practice in which the team had focused on the hurry-up. "When we evaluated at the end of the season, we thought that was one of the things that Blake was pretty comfortable with – our two-minute package," Olson said. "So, we've incorporated some no-huddle as well as that. … The players in general with so many returning starters are more comfortable in that type of mode, so it's something we can use as a change-up." …

 *Linebacker Dan Skuta discussed the team's revamped "Lotto" linebacker position, saying the position essentially is the "Otto" position he played last season with some pass rushing added. Defensive coordinator Todd Wash said Tuesday Skuta will play more defensive end in passing situations than last season. "We're just playing Otto and then some Leo [pass-rushing] stuff, so pretty much the same responsibilities," Skuta said. "That's why I originally came here [as an unrestricted free agent in the 2015 offseason], was to rush the passer, so anytime I get to do it … that's what I want to do." …

 *Second-year offensive guard A.J. Cann got reps at right tackle with starter Jermey Parnell out with a hand injury. Olson said the idea is to get players work at various positions in the event of injuries during the season. "We've moved a lot of guys around," Olson said. "That helps in a situation obviously where you have injuries. Guys need to be able to understand multiple positions. We want to try to get a feel for what guys may or not be able to do, too, and now's the time you can do that." …

*Cornerback Prince Amukamara worked in practice after working on the side during the first four OTA sessions. …

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