The Denver Broncos appear to have learned their lesson from last week’s disaster.
The Broncos ended up without an actual quarterback available for their Week 12 loss at home to the New Orleans Saints. They started a practice squad wide receiver at QB even though he hadn’t taken any reps at the position all year.
Denver won’t be making the same mistake in the future. The Broncos had third-string quarterback Blake Bortles go to the team’s facility after mostly everyone else was there and won’t have him fly out with the team to Kansas City for their game against the Chiefs.
This is a prudent move many teams should be following. They all should keep one quarterback effectively in quarantine so they will have at least one available.
On top of adjustments they’re making with Bortles, the Broncos signed a fifth quarterback.
The Denver Broncos are working through some serious issues at the quarterback position.
The Broncos pulled three quarterbacks from practice on Saturday due to contact tracing concerns. Jeff Driskel, who is third on the Broncos’ depth chart at quarterback, tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday.
According to 9News Broncos reporter Mike Klis, the NFL reviewed tape of the interactions Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles had with Driskel on Wednesday.
Klis says all four quarterbacks are asymptomatic, but there is still a concern about limiting the spread of the virus.
The Broncos are scheduled to host the Saints on Sunday. They are hoping to have all quarterbacks except Driskel cleared to play in the game. Denver is 4-6 this season.
The Denver Broncos are searching for quarterback depth in the wake of Drew Lock’s shoulder injury, and Blake Bortles is reportedly one name that is near the top of their list.
The Broncos are giving “strong consideration” to signing Bortles, according to Mike Klis of 9 News in Denver.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that Bortles will visit with the Broncos on Tuesday. Denver came close to signing the 28-year-old last year.
Bortles, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, spent last season as a backup behind Jared Goff with the Los Angeles Rams. The former UCF star was with the Jacksonville Jaguars for five years before that.
Bortles has a career passer rating of 80.6. He never lived up to expectations after being the first quarterback taken in 2014.
Lock is expected to miss somewhere around a month with a rotator cuff injury. There was already speculation that the Broncos could reach out to Colin Kaepernick, but it doesn’t sound like that is happening.
Blake Bortles will no longer be an NFL starting quarterback this season, having accepted a role as Jared Goff’s backup in Los Angeles. In his mind, though, it will be a one-year absence from the starting ranks.
Bortles said he sees himself as a starter and expects to be in that role in the future, even if he knows it won’t be this season.
“I have a role. I’m here to back Jared and do whatever I can to help him out,” Bortles said, via Gary Klein of the LA Times. “And if I get an opportunity, I’ve got to make sure we don’t miss a beat offensively and we continue to roll.
“And at the same time, I also expect to be a starter in this league again, and I know it’s not going to be here in L.A. So I’m trying to just better myself. … And if I get an opportunity to play, great. If not, then I spent a year learning from [Sean] McVay, and being around a really good organization.”
Bortles’ confidence is admirable, but he’s going to have to improve a lot considering how badly things went for him in Jacksonville toward the end of his tenure. He may get another chance somewhere, but he has work to do.
Blake Bortles bought himself a Tesla for the silliest reason.
The former Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback appeared on Barstool Sports podcast “Pardon My Take” and shared the story of his new car purchase. Bortles says he bought the fancy electric car to help him quit dipping tobacco.
Unfortunately, the expensive solution to the problem did not work. Bortles says he drives to the gas station just to buy his dip now even if he doesn’t need to fill up his car.
It’s too bad the solution didn’t work for Bortles, but at least he has a sweet car to show for it. And don’t worry about the $160,000 price tag; he is more than taken care of in that department.
After five seasons with the Jags, Bortles is beginning his first season with the Rams.
We all love anonymous scout opinions, where people that refuse to put their name on something dish on a young man. Sometimes, though, the concerns and issues pointed out by someone in confidence prove to be accurate. I thought I would take a look back at some recent past quarterbacks who have played enough for us to make an evaluation, and see if the scouting comments proved prescient or problematic.
Bob McGinn, who used to write for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel compiled scout comments on the draft for years, and so I am looking at what he relayed for the 2011 to 2014 drafts.
2011, of course, was the year of the lockout and also the year that Cam Newton was entering the league. That entire spring was full of negative comments about Newton, most notably with the controversy involving Nolan Nawrocki’s assessment of Newton.
I could not find a recap that went down each QB individually, like some future editions, but McGinn did go in depth on Newton.
Let’s start of with this fire assessment from one scout. “I don’t like any of them, really. There’s no Sam Bradfords. There’s no Josh Freeman. I think they’re all second- or third rounders.” That one does not stand up well to history. Freeman flamed out soon after and Bradford never became a star, while Cam Newton won an MVP award, Colin Kaepernick appeared in a Super Bowl, and Andy Dalton has started for almost a decade.
Bill Polian was quoted as saying there was a big dropoff after Cam Newton, but of the 24 personnel people interviewed by McGinn, most thought Newton would be a bust. Sixteen of them had Blaine Gabbert as the best quarterback in the class, and only two thought Newton would be a perennial pro bowler.
Some scouts did favor Newton, though. One said, “our coaches just ripped his (expletive), but I’d take him top-10. This guy is so talented, so much a winner, such a force.”
That scout has largely been proven right.
Blake Bortles appears to have found a new team.
Bortles is finalizing a deal to sign with the Los Angeles Rams, according to ESPN’s Jeff Darlington.
The Rams were Bortles’ first stop after he was released by the Jacksonville Jaguars last week. Bortles had spent his entire career with the Jags after being drafted No. 3 overall in 2014. He had some ups-and-downs with them, with his 35-touchdown season in 2015 and a playoff win over the Steelers included in the highlights. Being benched last season for Cody Kessler was one of the down points.
With the Rams, Bortles would serve as Jared Goff’s backup. He will work with Sean McVay, who is noted for his prowess in working with quarterbacks and bringing the best out of them through his schemes and playcalls.
Bortles is a significant upgrade from Sean Mannion.
Blake Bortles has a big visit ahead now that he is a free agent.
Bortles will visit with the Los Angeles Rams on Monday, according to a report from NFL Media’s Mike Silver.
Sean Mannion served as the backup to Jared Goff last season but is a free agent, leaving Brandon Allen as the backup to Goff. The Rams would like an upgrade in that department, and Bortles, despite his limitations, is significantly better than either player.
Bortles was released by Jacksonville on Wednesday at the start of the new league year. There are not many opportunities available where he would be able to compete for a starting job, so heading to the Rams where he could work with Sean McVay seems like a wise move.
In five seasons with the Jaguars, Bortles passed for 103 touchdowns and 75 interceptions.
Blake Bortles’ career with the Jacksonville Jaguars has come to an end.
The Jags officially released Bortles on Wednesday, which is the first day of the new league year.
The move comes two days after the Jags reached a deal with Nick Foles to make him their starting quarterback.
Bortles was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 draft. Despite showing some signs of promise, he never materialized into a franchise quarterback. The team’s decision to give him a 3-year, $54 million extension last year was viewed by many as a mistake. Them moving on from him now seems to confirm that. The signs pointing to the two sides parting ways became obvious when Bortles was benched in favor of Cody Kessler midway through the season.
Bortles finishes his Jags career with 103 touchdown passes and 75 interceptions. His bright spots include a 35-touchdown season in 2015 and helping the Jags to a playoff win over the Steelers two seasons ago. He will likely be a desirable backup.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are expected to move on from Blake Bortles at some point this offseason, but they may keep the quarterback around until they can be certain they have a replacement for him.
After the Jaguars released several veteran players on Friday to clear salary cap space, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that they are in no rush to part ways with Bortles.
All indications have been that Jacksonville will sign Nick Foles when free agency begins, but it makes sense that they want to be sure of it before making any major moves at the quarterback position. While Bortles appeared to have lost the support of his teammates early last season, there aren’t many better options than him on the roster at the moment. That should change in the near future.