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Jaguars vs. Buccaneers: Takeaways and analysis from the second joint practice

There were ups, and there were downs, to the Jaguars final open practice of 2017.

The Jaguars wrapped up their second joint practice against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers today — The Jaguars’ final open practice of 2017.

Today’s practice was more upbeat and intense than yesterday’s practice, however it had it’s fair share of negatives... stemming from both players and the organization as a whole.

Let’s get to the takeaways.

Blake Bortles has yet another up and down day — But it was more down than up

Quarterback Blake Bortles has, for the most part, been up and down all offseason and preseason. He’s had his share of nice throws, as well as many head-scratching and straight up bad throws.

Today was no different. I only saw two throws I could hang my hat on, and I got them both on video. The first being throw near the sideline to Allen Hurns. Hurns made a very athletic play on the ball, and it was very well placed by the quarterback:

The second good throw came later in the day, when Bortles threw a fade to Allen Robinson with Vernon Hargreaves. Robinson (6-3) has four inches on Hargreaves (5-11), so Robinson made things looks easy:

Besides these throws, however, Bortles had a bad day. He overthrew Keelan Cole several times, even when Cole was a solid step ahead of his defender:

He also visibly under-threw a ball outside to Dede Westbrook, but Hargreaves, who was in coverage, got called for defensive holding:

One thing that really stood out to me about Bortles today was the lack of a sense of urgency or ability to make decisions. On at least five plays, including three in 7v7’s against no pass rush, Bortles hesitated to throw the ball or move out of the pocket quickly enough — Which would have resulted in five sacks in a real game.

Perhaps the most memorable moment of the entire practice was when Bortles overthrew Robinson in a 1v1 drill. Bortles threw a fade route out of bounds, leading Robinson into a fan standing nearby, knocking said fan over...

Robinson’s reaction, which can be heard in the video: “F*****g keep that s**t in bounds, bro!”:

Many people have rushed to the defense of Bortles, saying “It’s only practice”, or “Why don’t we hear about his good throws”, or “You really have something against Bortles, don’t you?”.

This is kind of a nail in that coffin. Robinson, who Bortles has utilized as his No. 1 receiver since the start of his NFL career, is visibly frustrated with the issues Bortles has displayed. This quote almost says it all.

And, if that quote doesn’t put the nail in the coffin, head coach Doug Marrone’s comment after practice is the hammer used to finish the job:

This is why I say Bortles has been up and down all camp. Some of his throws have been solid, and he’s even had a couple really impressive tosses. But the bad throws aren’t good signs for the future, and the team is beginning to express their frustrations with the quarterback.


The Buccaneers brought the HBO “Hard Knocks” crew into town with them, as Tampa Bay is the featured team for the successful show that covers the NFL offseason and preseason.

The “Hard Knocks” production crew will leave Jacksonville with footage and action aplenty, as the practices not only displayed some fun football, but also included several fights.

Near the end of practice today, there were at least two and potentially even four fights between Jaguars and Buccaneers players. I specifically saw two fights during the Jaguars offense vs. the Buccaneers defense in team drills, both stemming from Buccaneers’ defenders being chippy and tackling Jaguars players to the ground. Whether the hard hitting was for show in front of the cameras or not, the Jaguars fought back. Helmets flew off and fists were thrown, specifically from Benn after being targeted in the middle of the field.

I didn’t see this following fight myself, but here’s Yannick Ngakoue and Buccaneers left tackle Donovan Smith getting into it. Several other teammates interjected:

It was certainly fun and intense to watch, but I’m sure Doug Marrone will be having conversations with the team about the fight breakouts.

Ngakoue impresses again

Jaguars pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue has had a great camp so far, and he looked great again today. He has been going against Donovan Smith all week, and beat him for at least two sacks today in team drills. Here’s a video of him beating Smith swiftly — The play was called within seconds, but quarterback Jameis Winston let the ball fly anyway:

Team tid-bits

  • For the second day in a row, the Jaguars called practice an hour early, without giving a reason as to why and with no inclement weather in the area. Sure, this doesn;t mean much in terms of how the team is performing, but I view that as kind of cheap to the fans who called off of work on a Monday and Tuesday to attend the team’s practices.

The tickets to the event are clearly labeled, stating that the practice was to go from 10 A.M. to 1:05 P.M., but on both days, the team ended practice before 12:10 P.M. The Buccaneers exited the field today at 11:55 A.M.

  • Cornerbacks Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye both participated in the two days of practice this week, but neither took the field in contact or team drills. I figure that neither will play in the team’s second preseason game on Thursday.

Play of the day

In case you missed it above, Allen Hurns’ toe-tapping catch on the sidelines is today’s play of the day:

Today was the Jaguars last open practice of the 2017 season, so I won’t be covering any more of the team’s future practices until next season. Thank you for following along!