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Wednesday update: Glennon, Minshew "have each other's back"

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Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Mike Glennon (2) looks for a receiver against the Tennessee Titans during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

JACKSONVILLE – Mike Glennon understands the situation. 

So does Gardner Minshew II.

To hear the two quarterbacks competing to start for the Jaguars Sunday tell it, both will take a similar approach to a decidedly unusual situation.

"We're going to compete and then support whoever's out there," Minshew said Wednesday as the Jaguars (1-13) prepared to play the Chicago Bears (7-7) at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville Sunday at 1 p.m.

Glennon echoed a similar sentiment.

"Whoever they go with, we have each other's back," he said.

Glennon and Minshew both take starting quarterback repetitions in practice this week, with Head Coach Doug Marrone saying Wednesday he will decide Sunday's starter later in the week.

"It's been a challenge all year, and really it's up to the quarterback now to understand that if you're dressed out you're supposed to be ready to play," Jaguars offensive coordinator Jay Gruden said Wednesday. "We'll see how Gardner's throwing. We'll see how Mike's throwing. 

"Those guys have been great as far as mentally getting themselves ready to play. Physically, us gearing to the individual is quite the challenge. But all of these plays (repetitions) will be good for both of them, we hope."

Glennon laughed when asked if he ever had been part of a Week 16 quarterback competition.

"I've never been part of any competition in practice the week of a game," he said. "It's definitely unique. We just have to do our job and that's to go out there and play to the best of our ability and leave those decisions to the decision-makers. 

"It's a unique situation. It has been a unique year. A lot of has come up this year that I don't think any of us saw coming."

Minshew, a second-year veteran, started Games 1-7 before a thumb injury. He passed for 226 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions in a 40-14 loss to the Baltimore Ravens this past Sunday – his first start since Week 7. He threw for 53 first-half yards and the Jaguars trailed 26-0 at halftime.

"I'll do everything I can, Mike's going to do everything he can – and then leave the decision up to coach," Minshew said.

Glennon, an eight-year veteran, threw three touchdowns passes with three interceptions in three games as a starter before Minshew replaced him during a December 13 loss to Tennessee.

"It's unique," Gruden said of a Week 16 quarterback competition. "I think really you have to look at the body of work that both of these guys have put together through training camp and on to now. We have to evaluate their games as we go on and see how they're doing in practice and see who gets the game plan a little more soundly. 

"Really, it will be up to Coach Marrone. We'll have some input as a staff. Hopefully, the players will have some input on the practice field: If somebody's throwing the ball a lot better than the other, then we have to go with the guy who's throwing the ball better.

"It's not so much how you throw your first pass in Team Period 1. But we're going to go back and really evaluate the tape – the games that Mike played and the games that Gardner has played – and hopefully make a determination over the overall big scope of things."

NOTABLE I

The Jaguars issued one of their shorter injury reports of the season Wednesday, with three players not practicing: running back James Robinson (ankle), cornerback Sidney Jones IV (Achilles) and wide receiver Collin Johnson (hamstring). Marrone early Wednesday said Jones and Johnson will have a difficult time playing Sunday and said Robinson has said he expects to play.

QUOTABLE I

Glennon on the difference in perspective between players and fans, with many fans wanting the Jaguars to lose to ensure the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft: "It's our job as the 2020 Jaguars to go out and get a win. Our focus is on getting wins. When the 2021 season gets here, that's when they can shift the focus. The fans are kind of lifers. A lot of us (players) are on one-year deals. You never know where you're going to be. You always have to put your best foot forward. Our focus is on the present this year rather than what's going to happen with the draft."

QUOTABLE II

Minshew: "It's been a crazy year: a whole bunch of ups, a whole lot more downs. We're just going to finish it strong and go on to the next one."

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