Admittedly, Justin Blackmon’s return to the Jacksonville Jaguars this week will likely go largely overlooked by national audiences. After all, the second year receiver plays for a team with no hope, and the Jaguars need a lot more help on offense than the addition of one receiver. Still, he may be able to make the Jaguars at least a little more competitive.
With Blackmon back in the fold, the Jaguars actually have a pair of receivers that would normally be part of a very good offense. Add in Maurice Jones-Drew, and the Jaguars should be able to produce points, if Blaine Gabbert can play better at quarterback.
The Jaguars are a strange football team. On paper, they actually appear to be a decent team. They have a suspect defense full of young players, but so far this season, they’ve played reasonably well. Without any run-support from the offense, however, they’ve never had a real chance.
Justin Blackmon won’t change the Jaguars’ whole offense, but he should loosen up windows for Blaine Gabbert to connect with Cecil Shorts III as well as Blackmon himself. To this point, Shorts has simply been unable to gain any traction as the team’s only serviceable wideout, and the Jaguars’ passing game has been a joke because of it. With Blackmon, defenses will have to at least pay some respect to the passing game.
I’m not going to go out on a limb and say the Jaguars will suddenly become the league’s next Cleveland Browns (who ever saw that coming?), but the Jaguars play a very winnable game against the St. Louis Rams this weekend, and it would be the ideal place for the team to turn a corner.
The simple fact of the matter is this. The Jaguars are a bad football team with a select few cornerstone pieces, especially on offense. Blaine Gabbert probably isn’t the quarterback that will benefit from those pieces, but there’s no reason the Jaguars can’t put points on the board, especially with Justin Blackmon back with the team. Blaine Gabbert has had plenty of chances to prove himself, and this will be his best and last chance to show us all that he can be the Jaguars’ franchise quarterback.