Blake Bortles Among NFL’s Most Underrated QBs


Blake Bortles isn’t generally considered an underrated quarterback because of his struggles during his rookie season. Many are concerned about his ability to take a step forward and prove successful in the long term for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

While we here at B&T are very pro-pro-Bortles and believe he’ll be able to put it together and get some wins for the Jags, it’s rare to find that opinion outside of Jaguars circles. Evan Massey of This Given Sunday may be one of the few to pick up on the Bortles hype, though. He recently threw together his list of top five underrated quarterbacks and Bortles headed it up. Here’s what he had to say:

"Due to his struggles as a rookie last season, Bortles has been passed over by quite a few analysts and isn’t expected to put up huge numbers in 2015. Despite those expectations, Bortles has every physical tool to succeed and the Jaguars went out and brought in former Denver Broncos star tight end Julius Thomas to help him out. That addition alone will be a big piece for Bortles, and having a full offseason to work on his game and figure out what he needs to improve will be enough to get him on track for a big year."

If the full offseason and a couple of key offensive additions are enough to bring Blake Bortles up from the bottom of the quarterback rankings to even the middle, then we Jags fans will in for a real treat.

I believe he can do it, but Massey may be oversimplifying the case a bit. There were some serious concerns with the quarterback’s mechanics and decision making. Having some better players around will help and having a full offseason with Bortles expected to be the starter is big too, but we can’t overstate enough how Bortles has taken his development into his own hands and has spent time committing himself to getting better.

Blake Bortles is looking more and more like a quarterback who will do anything to make sure he gets better. From working out with Tom House in California to leading the team in the offseason, Bortles is taking every step to get better. That factor is just as important – and maybe more-so – than him having a better supporting cast and an offseason with the first team. This is a guy who wants to be great.

I believe he’ll get here. He isn’t underrated based on his past performance. He’s underrated based on his overall  approach and trajectory. I hope he manages to make most people eat crow next year.

Next: But what if he doesn't step up?

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