For the second straight preseason game, the Jacksonville Jaguars will send Gardner Minshew out as their starting quarterback.
His second audition with the team, miss you, a six-round draft pick out of Washington state in April, I will get a chance to improve on a lackluster performance in week one of the preseason.
Minshew, who appears to be the winner of the quarterback battle to back up starter Nick Foles, showed moxie as the Jaguars offensive line had issues with the Ravens pass rush last week. A second go-around for the rookie, as the team sits most of my starters again this week, gives him an opportunity to show that he can play better against a tough defense.
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The man with the cool mustache and swagger about him continues to be a cult hero of sorts with the fans here in Jacksonville. Even as a backup player, he gives the Jaguars another personality in the locker room and on the field.
As of right now, there are no plans for the Jaguars to grab a veteran signal-caller to back Foles up, and they really like their rookie’s football acumen and his desire on the field. His ability to read defenses and break down opponents from his college days were two reasons why the Jaguars were eager to bring him on board.
"“I like the kid,” Marrone said, this week when he met with the media."
Minshew took his share of hits this past week against the Ravens, even one where his helmet came off. We all have seen over and over again. One of my friends suggested we take up a collection for an extra chinstrap for him so he can come out of the Eagles game in one piece.
His grit – a favorite term of Tom Coughlin – is something the coaching staff has noticed since he stepped onto the practice field. And the fact he looked good in practice this week bodes well for him continuing to hold onto the primary backup role on this team.
"“He’s had a good week and he has made progress during the week,” Marrone said. “Now it’s just a matter of can he do it at that level at a consistent basis. It’s young, he’s young. Again, a lot of times it’s just being mentally tough and not caving into the stuff on the outside, the noise. That happens to a lot of people. I don’t see that in him. He is one tough sucker now, so I’m excited, I really am.”"