BLAKE BORTLES WIND UP THROWING MOTION, FOOTWORK, WOBBLY BALL, THROWING OFF HIS BACK FOOT, FLAT TRAJECTORY, AND SIDEARM DELIVERY ARE LONG TERM ISSUES.
Bortles managed the game against the Pittsburg Steelers well on Sunday. His only “interception” was not his fault and didn’t look like an interception. Luckily, the running game and defense played well enough to win the game. Therefore Bortles was not asked to do much. Unfortunately future games require solid quarterback play. Herein lies the problem. Bortles quarterback play is not solid.
A LITTLE BACKGROUND
Blakes Bortles was drafted number three overall in the 2014 draft. He played adequately during his rookie season. Amazingly, he had very good stats during the 2015 season. However, when studied closely, many of his stats were garbage time stats after the game was out of hand. He had a very poor season in 2016. Suddenly, his mechanics were the topic of many conversations. The mechanics issues were not new. As a result, he must prove himself this season or become a perennial NFL back up quarterback.
COLLEGE PLAY AND DRAFT REPORT
The 2014 Tostitos Feista Bowl video of Bortles is available on U Tube. He shows excellent ability to run the football. Sadly, the passing difficulties are the same as they are today.
The NFL draft analysis gave him an overall score of 6.22 and suggested he had first round draft potential. In order to compare, Leonard Fournette had a score of 6.8, Myles Garrett had a score of 7.63, and DeShawn Watson had a score of 5.98. Mike Mayock compared him to Ben Roethlisberger.
The problems described in the NFL.com draft report are: winds up to throw deep, doesn’t throw spirals consistently, throws off his back foot, footwork deteriorates under stress, and struggles to hit open receivers against better competition.
This information shows his problems are long term in nature and very difficult to change.
First, Bortles tried to improve his mechanics. He spent time with quarterback gurus. However, his mechanics deteriorate in games in pressure situations. Next, Coach Doug Marrone divised a system based on strong defense and a strong running game. This puts less pressure on Bortles. Unfortunately, this great idea but it won’t work every week. Last the question is simple. Can Bortles change the patterns he has played with for his entire football career?