JACKSONVILLE – We begin this "Bowl Week" Week That Was at quarterback.
As our jaguars.com team fled Mobile, Alabama, following this week's 2019 Reese's Senior Bowl coverage, the thought kept returning that the coming months will be fascinating for the Jaguars at the position – the most critical and uncertain period the franchise has faced there in years.
The team's quarterback situation hasn't been this unsettled since 2014, the year the Jaguars selected Blake Bortles No. 3 overall in the NFL Draft. But this offseason is dramatically different than '14.
The Jaguars that season were still very much in rebuilding mode entering Year 2 under Head Coach Gus Bradley. There was little talk that offseason of signing a free-agent quarterback, and quarterback was far from the only position being discussed in the first round for the Jaguars in that draft.
Expectations for the following season also were muted, with little talking of playoffs – and little thought that the Jaguars were a particularly talented team.
This offseason, nearly every discussion involving the Jaguars will begin and end with quarterback until the team makes its direction at the position public. And the perception remains that the Jaguars could improve dramatically from a 5-11 record and perhaps contend quickly for the postseason.
If they can find the right quarterback.
Will the search focus on pursuing a veteran free agent? Will it mean trading up in the April 2019 NFL Draft? Will it mean staying at No. 7 overall and selecting the best available quarterback?
Would that best available quarterback be Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State? Kyler Murray of Oklahoma? Drew Lock of Missouri? Daniel Jones of Duke?
The quarterback conversation as January ends includes at least that many prospective draft selections and that many more veterans – from Nick Foles of Philadelphia to Joe Flacco of Baltimore, and perhaps beyond that much-discussed duo.
And that's not even including Bortles, who remains very much with the team.
Stay tuned. And buckle up.
UP THE BOARD
CBS Draft analyst Ryan Wilson said at the Senior Bowl four quarterbacks could be selected in Round 1 of the April 25-27 NFL Draft, with the presence of perceived quarterback-needy teams such as the Jaguars, New York Giants, Denver Broncos, Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins pushing players up early in the round. "You see teams get desperate," Wilson said. "We see it happen every year. They start trading up and there's an arms war. You saw it last year with the Bills; they went from the 20s all the way up to No. 7. The Jets traded up with the Colts to get to No. 3. I think that's going to happen. I wouldn't be surprised if four guys go [in the first round]. I think Kyler Murray is going to be in that mix, but I think right now Dwayne Haskins is [at the top].''
A SEMINOLE THING
Cornerback Jalen Ramsey and defensive end Calais Campbell are the Jaguars' representatives in the 2019 Pro Bowl, which will be held at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida, Sunday at 3 p.m. Ramsey this week said he spoke with Los Angeles Chargers defensive coordinator and former Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley briefly about playing safety in the game alongside former Florida State teammate and close friend, Chargers safety Derwin James, but said he doubted that will happen. "I wasn't bugging him," Ramsey said of Bradley. "I did mention it to him in the locker room, but that probably won't happen. We'll be on the same side the majority of the game, though. We're going to try to scheme that."
The NFL world next week moves from Mobile and Orlando to Atlanta, Georgia, the site of Super Bowl LIII – and for the Jaguars, the news moves again to the Hall of Fame hopes of former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli. Boselli's Hall momentum has built steadily in recent seasons, with this being his fourth consecutive year as a semifinalist and third consecutive year as a finalist; he also was among the final 10 players voted upon by selectors each of the past two seasons. Hall voters will meet Saturday morning – February 2 – to select five players from the following 15-member Class of 2019 finalists: Boselli, safety Steve Atwater, cornerback Champ Bailey, wide receiver Isaac Bruce, Head Coach Don Coryell, guard Alan Faneca, Head Coach Tom Flores, tight end Tony Gonzalez, guard Steve Hutchinson, running back Edgerrin James, cornerback Ty Law, safety John Lynch, center Kevin Mawae, safety Ed Reed and defensive end Richard Seymour. Talk among Hall voters this year is that Boselli – like the past two seasons – has a good chance to be among the final five. With Gonzalez, Reed and perhaps Bailey expected to get in as first-ballot finalists, that leaves two spots for Boselli and 11 other finalists. Jaguars.com will be in Atlanta beginning Wednesday, with coverage focused on Boselli's Hall-of-Fame candidacy.
SEFERIAN-JENKINS STATUS NOT DECIDED
Despite reports this week to the contrary, the Jaguars have not yet officially decided on tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins' roster status moving forward. While Jenkins on Thursday tweeted that he appreciated his time in Jacksonville and indicated being ready for the "next chapter," the Jaguars in fact have until February 19 to decide on his option for the 2019 season. No decision yet has been made.