Besides finishing with a slightly higher win total than expected, one of the things the Jacksonville Jaguars can take from the last season is realizing Blaine Gabbert is not their future franchise quarterback, which means he can expect to be released or possibly traded before the next offseason training period begins.
Gabbert started in three games this season for the Jags (all losses), completing only 48.8% of his passes, throwing one touchdown pass and 7 interceptions. He hasn’t played at all since tweaking his hamstring in the week 5 loss at St. Louis, probably giving the Jags one final excuse to bench him in favor of Chad Henne.
Henne didn’t have an amazing season, but he did a lot better than Gabbert, starting in 13 games in which the Jags went 4-9. He completed 60.6% of his passes, throwing 13 touchdown passes and 14 interceptions. He is turning into a free agent, but the Jags are likely to sign him on a one or two-year contract. He isn’t their ideal quarterback, but they like having him around, while adding a player through the draft or signing a quarterback that becomes available.
Henne has no illusions about the Jags trying to see if there’s someone better than him in the market for them. Gabbert, according to his chat with reporters, is expecting to be part of the team when the preparations for next season commence in four months. However, considering he has a 5-22 record as a starting quarterback in Jacksonville, posting a passer rating of 66.4 during his short NFL career, it isn’t likely the Jags will give him any more opportunities or see him as part of this franchise in the future.
Release or trade? If they can get anything for Gabbert, they’ll take it. The problem is that teams don’t usually trade for someone who seems to be a third-string quarterback at best for most teams in the NFL. The Jags are probably going to release him in the next few months, as Gabbert tries and keep a spot with a team desperate for some help at quarterback, although it won’t be surprising to see him finding his way out of the NFL, at least for one season.