The Jacksonville Jaguars have just wrapped up two weeks of organized team activities (OTAs) and for the first time in five seasons, there's no argument as to who the starting quarterback will be. It's hands down Blake Bortles, and by all accounts he looks like a much improved player over the course of the two week practices. As always however, we have to remember these are underwear practices.
I'm optimistic, though.
The last time the Jaguars entered a season with an unquestioned starter at the quarterback position was the 2009 season. Then starter David Garrard was one season removed from the 2007 season that earned him a brand new contract and a hold on the starting position and coming off season the team was decimated with injuries. Garrard had a mediocre season that year and the Jaguars traded for Luke McCown in the offseason. No one thought he'd win the job or even push for it that year, but he did the next season and would have ended up starting some games had he not torn his ACL early in the season against the San Diego Chargers.
The next year the team drafted Blaine Gabbert and Garrard struggled in training camp and the preseason, eventually being released and McCown being the opening day starter. The next season the Jaguars signed Chad Henne in the offseason and some thought he could beat out Gabbert. Henne started some games late in 2012 and statistically was good, leading a lot of people to want him as the stater in 2013. Gabbert once again started and Henne once again took over late in the season.
Last year, the team picked Bortles with the No. 3 overall pick with the intention of Henne being the starter all season. Bortles gave Henne a run in training camp and the preseason, but the team stuck to their guns as long as they could, but eventually made the switch.
Heading into this season, there's no question who will start. Arguments otherwise at this point are just being contrarian for contrarian sake. It's a bit refreshing to not have to deal with the headache of arguing which quarterback is less bad, which is typically the case when you have a "controversy", but it also makes it much harder to find things to write about.