Jaguars general manager Gene Smith did not trade up to take Gabbert with the tenth pick in the draft in order to have Gabbert to save the franchise in 2011. He chose him to develop him and play him down the road. Gabbert’s role for the foreseeable future, barring anything unexpected, will be as the No. 2 quarterback to David Garrard.
“Fortunately for us, with David returning as a very capable starter, you don’t have to rush the development of Blaine,” Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio told me. “That’s a good situation. We’re operating from a position of strength as opposed to having to force a guy into duty before he’s ready.”
“In a perfect world, I’d like to see him not have to play this year in terms of having time to develop,” Del Rio said. “That doesn’t mean I would keep him on the bench if I thought he was the best option to win. Ideally he’s able to get that time to develop and really learn the game at this level. I’d love to see Garrard have a nice season, lead us into a playoff position, and then see if we can get hot. Things don’t always happen the way you have them planned though.”