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Peterson professes support


The Mike Peterson saga ended on Friday and the Jaguars said they've turned their full attention toward Sunday's game in Detroit.

"I'm 100 percent behind my coach and my teammates, ready to do what I need to do to get a win," Peterson told reporters shortly after Friday's practice. Peterson had missed Wednesday's and Thursday's practices after having been sent home by coach Jack Del Rio, in what was one of several disciplinary measures by the coach on Wednesday.

"It's private. It happened behind closed doors and I'd rather keep it behind closed doors," Peterson said of his conversation with Del Rio that led to the middle linebacker's return to the team.

"Good to have him back," Del Rio said on Friday. "He'll travel and we'll decide what's best for the team," the coach added when asked if Peterson will play against the Lions on Sunday at Ford Field.

Peterson was in agreement with that strategy. "The decision is his. I'm ready to roll. The decision is up to coach," Peterson said.

So ends a three-day, midseason story that garnered a lot of attention, even nationally, largely because the 3-5 Jaguars are struggling to hit the stride predicted for them in the preseason. Sunday's game begins the second half of the season for the Jaguars and Del Rio was asked if he sees it as an opportunity to get back into the playoffs race.

"We're not worried about getting back into anything. We just want to play well and win a game. All of our energy, everything we're about right now is about beating the Lions," Del Rio said.

Cornerback Rashean Mathis, a member of the Jaguars leadership council of players, said he was happy to see Peterson return to the team.

"With him being back in the locker room and us knowing the outcome, it makes it a little bit easier. It was smart that it happened today," Mathis said.

The Jaguars will play without defensive tackle John Henderson, who was ruled "out" with a knee injury. The Jaguars are otherwise in good health, with the only other players on the injury report all listed as "probable."

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