If you were up last night, you may have seen a link in the “Daily Links” directing you to this article. Maurice Jones-Drew recently appeared on the NFL Network and questioned why the Jaguars moved up to draft QB, Blaine Gabbert. For those of you that missed it, this is the paragraph I’m talking about:
“In a Monday night appearance on NFL Network’s Total Access, Jones-Drew said that the Jaguars should have gone in another direction in round one. “I just feel like what we needed as an offense wasn’t a new quarterback, we just needed another year amongst each other because we had a lot of new players come in,” Jones-Drew said. “You see a team like the Patriots or the Steelers or the Colts, those guys [have] been in the same system for the 10, 12 years together, and so that’s what we’re trying to grow right now.””
Maurice Jones-Drew has never been a harsh guy, but he’s also never been afraid to speak his mind. To that point, I admire the way he approached this situation. He excluded a couple of notable things in his statement. He didn’t throw Blaine Gabbert under the bus as “the quarterback of the future,” and he didn’t come out and say that the Jaguars should have drafted defenders for obvious reasons.
As for his actual statement, I disagree and agree at the same time. The Jaguars offense, and defense for that matter, do need more time together. This is still one of the youngest teams in the NFL, and the longer they are together, the more effective that unit will become. On that point, I completely agree with Jones-Drew.
I disagree that it wasn’t time to take a quarterback. David Garrard isn’t a young guy, and I think that it’ll make the transition much smoother if the guy taking over has been in the system for a year or two. I fully expect David Garrard to be the starting quarterback for every meaningful game (barring injury of course), and I also fully expect Blaine Gabbert to get some game time when games aren’t on the line (i.e. blowouts and any meaningless late season games).
Let’s not blow this whole thing out of proportion. Maurice Jones-Drew gave his opinion on the Jaguars’ trade-up for Blaine Gabbert and nothing more. Some will agree with him, some will disagree with him, and some will do both like I just did. This doesn’t represent a break in the ranks; it just means that there are differing opinions among players and the GM. That’s fine, and I’m glad that someone is speaking their mind.