Marrone not ready to name starting QB yet
Owner Shad Khan announced last week Marrone and general manager Dave Caldwell are both returning for the 2020 season, despite a 11-21 record over the past two seasons that includes a 6-10 record in 2019.
Under their new structure, Marrone will have more input on personnel matters than he had the past three seasons when former top football executive Tom Coughlin was in charge. Coughlin was fired Dec. 18. Minshew, a sixth-round pick in the 2019 draft, went 6-6 as a starter while Foles went 0-4.
Minshew stepped in for Foles after he suffered a broken left collarbone after 10 plays into the season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs.
With Foles out, Minshew led the Jaguars to a 4-4 record.
However, Foles regained his starting job in Week 11 against the Indianapolis Colts after he covered from his collarbone injury that required surgery.
After going 0-3 — which included three turnover performance during a 28-11 loss to Tampa Bay on Dec. 1 — Foles was benched for the rest of the season and replaced by Minshew.
The Jaguars are stuck with Foles’ contract at least through next season, unless they find a willing trade partner.
If the Jaguars were the release Foles prior to June 1, his contract would still count $33.8 million in dead money against the cap. With Foles on the roster, his cap number for 2020 is $21.8 million and it increases to $26.8 million in 2021.
By comparison, Minshew’s cap number for 2020 is $632,904 and $722,904 in 2021.
“The one thing I know is I look forward to whatever happens continuing to grow as a human being, player, excelling and ultimately and coming out slinging,” Foles said. “I know I can still play; there’s people out there that believe in me and I know what I can do, I’ve shown what I can do, so I look forward to what the future holds. Obviously getting away, refreshing myself, getting ready to roll. I’ll be ready to fire away.“
Similar to Foles, Minshew is gearing for a highly competitive quarterback battle that will begin when the offseason program starts this spring. Minshew is confident that he can deliver and will lean on what he learned from this past season.
Minshew had the highest passer rating (.912) among any of the seven rookie quarterbacks who earned starts this season. Minshew’s 21 passing touchdowns and his 3,271 yards are both the most by a rookie in franchise history.
In Sunday’s season finale, a 38-20 victory against the Colts, Minshew completed 27 of 39 passes for 295 yards and three touchdowns.
“I know I am going to go home, I am going to work really hard,” Minshew said. “I know Nick is going to go home and work really hard. We are both going to show up and do the best we can for this team. And however that shakes out, it is going to shake out.”
Jaguars coach Doug Marrone hasn’t yet committed to naming fan favorite Gardner Minshew II the team’s starting quarterback for next season.