'We can be successful with him,' Gus Bradley says of Blaine Gabbert

Sam Greenwood

If Gabbert can elevate his play, the Jaguars could be successful with the 2011 first-round pick at the helm of the offense, according to Gus Bradley.

With fewer than three weeks remaining until the 2013 NFL Draft, speculation has continued to build that the Jaguars could be a landing spot for the top quarterback prospect in the draft class, West Virginia's Geno Smith. If the team doesn't elect to take him with the second pick, though, they will likely look to Blaine Gabbert to lead them in 2013 and head coach Gus Bradley doesn't think that's such a bad scenario,

General manager Dave Caldwell told Dan Pompei of National Football Post that if there's a quarterback on the board that they "gravitate to" it will be an option, but if not, Bradley thinks Gabbert can be a solid option as well:

Caldwell said the Jags also are open to a trade down, in which case Gabbert may have the upper hand to start. Bradley sounds as if he'd be fine with that. "We don't need [Gabbert] to be anybody other than himself," he said. "And we need to try to challenge him to be the best he can be. We've seen enough things on tape with both him and Chad [Henne], that if we can elevate his level of play, we can be successful with him."

It's hard to make too much out of comments before the Draft because the Jaguars would never say anything that effectively damages their connection with Gabbert. Even if they were 100 percent sold on selecting Smith with the second pick, Gabbert is still the second-best option in the off chance that another team takes Smith with the first pick.

Gabbert finished his second season with the team with a 77.4 passer rating, up 65.4 from the season prior. As Bradley says, Gabbert would need to elevate his play further for the team to be successful, but given the jump he made from his rookie season, it's not something that can necessarily be ruled out.

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