Blake Bortles took a significant step forward under Greg Olson at offensive coordinator and Nathaniel Hackett at quarterbacks coach in 2015. Can he move forward with another change?
Another 300+ yard game for Blake Bortles and another loss. It’s a sad but predictable story in his career as he struggles to have a measurable impact in the win-loss total when he actually plays competent football.
In Week 8, that meant 337 yards while completing 61 percent of his passes for three touchdowns. Those are impressive numbers and would be even better if they were accompanied by a ‘W’ at the end of the game.
Instead, the abysmal first half play (when the Jaguars couldn’t even muster up 100 yards) has led to the deserved dismissal of Greg Olson and the promotion of quarterbacks coach Nathaniel Hackett to offensive coordinator. It’s a move that is both drastic and also conservative, forcing some shifts in offensive play calling and philosophy while also keeping a familiar and guiding force on staff for Bortles.
Hackett has worked as an offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills before (under Jags assistant head coach/offensive line coach Doug Marrone) and had moderate success. He improved a miserable passing offense behind quarterbacks E.J. Manuel, Thaddeus Lewis, and Kyle Orton, among others, into a middle-of-the-road offense. Still, the record is mixed.
More from Black and Teal
- Jacksonville Jaguars should welcome Derrick Henry into the kingdom
- Jaguars Rumors: Trent Baalke seems to be getting respect now
- Bold trade proposal has Jacksonville Jaguars shipping LT Cam Robinson
- Jaguars News: This division rival might be making a big move
- Former Jacksonville Jaguars S Johnathan Cyprien: “New Profession, Same Standards”
Hackett undoubtedly had less talent to work with in Buffalo than he will with Bortles. Bortles has the kind of raw ability that quarterback coaches and offensive coordinators dream of crafting. If Hackett can guide him forward over the rest of the season he could well earn himself the new job for the coming years.
After Jedd Fisch’s abysmal offense in his first year, the resurgent 2015 under Olson, and now Hackett, Bortles is falling into a trap that many talented but unproductive quarterbacks fall into. It’s one that few ever truly get out of. Changing offensive coordinators with regularity makes it difficult to actually focus on improving the key fundamentals (which Bortles needs to do) that are critical to success.
Hopefully the Jags don’t see a major deviation and Hackett can help Bortles grow.