Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars could have had Teddy Bridgewater as fallback to Bortles

The Jacksonville Jaguars have inexplicably never had a viable option behind Blake Bortles, and now they reportedly turned down a deal for Teddy Bridgewater.

When they did not pick up his option for 2019, it was clear the Jacksonville Jaguars did not see defensive end Dante Fowler as part of the future. They ultimately sent the third-overall pick in the 2015 draft to the Los Angeles Rams for two mid-round draft picks ahead of last week’s trade deadline, but it looks like they could have done a little better a little earlier.

During the preseason, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reported the New York Jets reached out to the Jaguars regarding Fowler’s availability. A deal did not happen, of course, but now there’s a specific idea of what the Jets offered.

When rookie Sam Darnold was named the Jets’ starting quarterback, Teddy Bridgewater became an easy trade candidate. There are still questions about Bridgewater’s long-term viability, after a career-altering knee injury late in the 2016 preseason, but he looked good during the preseason and ready to contribute if needed.

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, seemingly in parallel to their interest in Fowler, the Jets offered Bridgewater to the Jaguars but were quickly rebuffed.

Bridgewater was ultimately traded to the New Orleans Saints, along with a 2019 sixth-round pick, for a 2019 third-round pick. Meanwhile the Jaguars benched a struggling Blake Bortles in favor of Cody Kessler a couple weeks ago, and more recently they signed former Steeler Landry Jones rather than trade for an available quarterback like Tyrod Taylor or Nick Foles.

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As Bortles plays a lead role in torpedoing a season the Jaguars entered with high expectations, they could have had Bridgewater in place as a viable fallback starting late in the preseason. Instead, coming out of a bye this week, Kessler and Jones are the only other options on the depth chart.

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