After reviewing Sunday’s game, Jaguars’ head coach Doug Marrone indicated he began to work on the quarterback decision Monday morning and ultimately made the decision to make the switch this morning.
Jaguars’ quarterback Nick Foles was officially activated today from the team’s reserve/injured list to the 53-man roster shortly after Marrone’s press conference this afternoon.
After breaking his left collarbone in week one, Foles was placed on injured reserve, forcing the Jaguars to turn the signal-caller duties over to their rookie sixth-round pick Gardner Minshew II. Last week, against the Houston Texans Minshew played as well as a rookie sixth-round pick is expected to play.
With four turnovers, in the fourth quarter, the Jaguars had almost no shot at mounting a comeback to potentially save their AFC South chances.
Speaking to members of the media on Tuesday, Marrone said the decision to start Foles over Minshew did not have much to do with the game against Houston in London, and more so as a full body of work.
“I tried to take that out and put it as a body of work, and that’s what I did,” Marrone said during his Tuesday afternoon press conference on the decision to start Foles over Minshew. “I think that’s important. I think emotions can run sometimes differently, so I looked at the body of work.”
Over the course of the season, Minshew completed 188 out of 307 (61.2%) of his passes for 2,285, 13 touchdowns, and four interceptions. However, after fumbling the football 11 times (losing seven), it became more obvious the Jaguars would go in another direction at some point.
Foles will enter as the team’s starting quarterback having played just 11 snaps this season completing 5 out of 8 of his passes for 75 yards and one touchdown. Now 4-5, the Jaguars will hope to benefit from some of Foles’ late season heroics over the past two seasons while the starting quarterback.
Starting eight regular season games over the past two seasons, Foles completed 198 out of 296 (66.9%) of his passes for 12 touchdowns and six interceptions.
Marrone stated frankly that Foles gives the Jaguars a better chance of winning right now, instead of Minshew.
“For me, it was looking back at all the work we put in. I just go back to the experience and what he’s going to be able to do. I think that’s going to give us the ability, a better chance of winning right now.”
Foles was brought back into drills along with other team activities two weeks ago before the team’s week seven matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. Marrone says that the team took all measures to make sure the veteran quarterback was ready once he was healthy.
Although the team has not lived up to expectations, the Jaguars’ head coach feels a lot better about his given quarterback situation than he did to begin the season.
“I feel a lot better because I did not know what we had as a backup quarterback going into the season,” Marrone said when asked if he felt fortunate to be 4-5 given his quarterback was injured only 11 plays into the opening week. “I feel that right now we have two really good quarterbacks.”
As for the rest of the team, moving forward Marrone mentioned key areas the Jaguars need to focus on and get better at coming out of their week 10 bye. Specifically the team’s red zone and third-down percentage, and getting to a better position on third down on defense.
“I do like this team. The way we work, the way we prepare, the way we’re focused.”