JACKSONVILLE – The Jaguars named their 53-man roster Saturday.
That happened at 4 p.m., and Jaguars Executive Vice President of Football Operations Tom Coughlin on a conference call several minutes later made a few things clear. Most notable was this:
The weekend isn't over yet.
While the Jaguars reduced their roster to the NFL-mandated 53 players by Saturday's 4 p.m. deadline, Coughlin said the team will look in depth at released players from the other 31 teams.
"The entire scouting operation, the personnel department, has been totally engaged in research and study of other teams and their rosters – who may well come available," Coughlin said, adding that the personnel department will work all night Saturday.
"There's a lot of research and a lot of study that goes into this. It doesn't matter what position it is: we've done some homework in all areas."
Coughlin added of the roster, "It's a constant battle. Can you improve radically overnight? We'll see. But I think you can say that at any position, that you wish perhaps we were better.
"But at this point in time it is what it is."
Coughlin on Saturday made this clear, too:
The team is not interested in signing Colin Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who remains a free agent.
"We did the study, the research and we weren't interested," Coughlin said.
Coughlin also on Saturday addressed an offensive line that struggled during much of the preseason. The Jaguars traded fourth-year veteran offensive lineman Luke Bowanko to Baltimore for an undisclosed draft selection Saturday.
The following offensive linemen made Saturday's 53: left tackle Cam Robinson, center Brandon Linder, right guard A.J. Cann, right tackle Jermey Parnell, left guard Earl Watford, left guard Patrick Omameh, center/guard Tyler Shatley, tackle Josh Wells and tackle Jeremiah Poutasi.
Omameh started the first two preseason games at left guard, with Bowanko starting Preseason Week 3 and Watford starting the preseason finale. Watford, who signed as an unrestricted free agent in the offseason, missed the first three preseason games with an injury.
Cann, who struggled at times while starting the first three preseason games, started the preseason finale.
"Quite frankly, it has been a questionable group going forward," Coughlin said. "There were some things resolved [in the preseason finale Thursday] even though it was not against starters. The guys who played did play pretty well."
Coughlin said both Shatley and Watford played well Thursday. He also said Omameh played well at left tackle Thursday, and that Wells can be a swing tackle.
"We've got some versatility," he said, adding that Shatley's performance Thursday "gave us the idea we have depth at that position."
"It's a group we feel have the best people who competed for positions and jobs in spots where they can help us going forward," Coughlin said. "So, let's see what happens. Let's go play."
Other highlights from Saturday's conference call:
*Coughlin on quarterback Blake Bortles, who entered training camp as the starter and was re-named the starter a week ago after Head Coach Doug Marrone opened the job for competition between Bortles and Chad Henne. "I think he's paid strict attention to his fundamentals; I think he's done better at that. You know in studying and making this thing an open duel and then feeling as if he won the job … we've kind of gone over that hurdle, so let's play." …
*The Jaguars did not shop wide receiver Allen Hurns for a potential trade, Coughlin said. Observers had speculated trading Hurns as a possibility in the last several weeks. …
*Coughlin addressed rookie wide receiver Keelan Cole, who made the roster as an undrafted free agent from Kentucky Wesleyan: "He spent the entire summer here. He spent every hour, every minute, trying to be a better football player. He showed tremendous stamina. He played special teams. He played wide receiver – so on and so forth. He definitely earned his spot and hopefully he just keeps getting better."
*Coughlin discussed keeping rookie Jalen Myrick over Brian Dixon, the latter of whom worked extensively with the starters at times during training camp/preseason. "That was not an easy decision, to be honest with you," Coughlin said. "Brian did perform well for us. It ended up kind of being a numbers game. I have high regard for Brian. He played hard. He competed, and in reality the people you feel bad about are the guys who give what they have. Brian was one of them." …
*Coughlin on Myrick: "He has great speed and is physical. He has a lot to learn. I think quite frankly he didn't have any idea what he was getting into when he first got here. But he has improved and he has made some plays on special teams. He's a corner. He has been trained as a nickel as well. We think there will be some time to invest in this young man to see how good he can be. We'll see." ....
*Coughlin discussed tight end Mychal Rivera, placed on injured reserve Friday. Rivera signed as an unrestricted free agent from the Oakland Raiders in March. Because he was placed on IR before Saturday at 4 p.m., he is not eligible for the NFL's designated-to-return IR option. "That would've been a risky move on our part," Coughlin said. "I think he probably needs the entire season to recover, get better. It is a blow, no doubt. The way he looked in the spring he would've answered some of our issues, no doubt, but that's just the way it is." …