With the Jacksonville Jaguars’ offseason addition of Quarterback Nick Foles, I thought it would become a little easier to publicly identify as a Jags fan. I really did.
Prior to the $88 million contract the Jaguars signed Foles to, the team had trouble finding a solid quarterback to lead the offense. If anyone cares to remember, Blake Bortles was at the helm for a while, sparking a little bit of hope into Jaguars fans like myself before everyone realized he just wasn’t really that good. Cody Kessler was in there for a brief amount of time, but really, who cares. The bottom line is, Foles was supposed to solve the Jaguars’ quarterback troubles, and he hasn’t.
In the simple words of ESPN Staff Writer Dan Graziano, “The Jaguars made a mistake with the Nick Foles signing.”
Of course, Foles cannot be blamed for the Week 1 injury that sidelined him until Week 11. Coming off his success with the Philadelphia Eagles, the injury may have just been the incident that snuffed his fire. The Jaguars have the quarterback for three more seasons, so I’d say—in my optimistic Jaguars fan voice—that there is still hope. Once Foles gets his groove back, we’ll start to see gameplay similar to Superbowl MVP caliber, but it won’t be this season.
Where Foles has been absent, another quarterback has made himself very, very present in a Jaguars uniform.
Gardner Minshew II, rookie quarterback out of Washington State University, has been “named Jaguars’ QB for rest of season,” according to a headline by ESPN Staff Writer Michael DiRocco.
Taking over after Foles’s injury in Week 1, Minshew has ignited what has now been called “Minshew Mania” among Jacksonville fans. DiRocco wrote that since inserted into Jacksonville’s QB slot, Minshew “led the Jaguars to a 4-4 record, throwing for 2,285 yards and 13 touchdowns with four interceptions.” For Jags fans, this is potential. This is hopefully the beginning of something wonderful in Jacksonville.
If Minshew can keep up the good work as the Jaguars starting quarterback for the rest of the season, the team will be taking steps in the right direction. In my view, a solid team starts with the quarterback, and both Minshew and Foles seem like guys a team can rally behind.
Having lost their last four games, the Jaguars are due for a win going into their Week 14 game on Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers, who have the same sad record of 4-8. I predict Minshew fits well in the starting quarterback role and grants the Jaguars a couple more wins before their season comes to a close.