Doug Marrone Sticking With Nick Foles as Jacksonville's Quarterback
The Jacksonville Jaguars' offense has sputtered in recent weeks, even with the return of $88 million veteran quarterback Nick Foles. Despite the offense's inability to score points before games get out of hand while Foles has been in the lineup, head coach Doug Marrone reaffirmed Monday that Foles is his starting quarterback.
“Right now, I believe he gives us the best chance to win," Marrone said about Foles when asked about the quarterback situation during a conference call with media on Monday.
“With the quarterback position, I look at it as right now I believe that he gives us the best chance to win, and I evaluate it like everyone else and I try to treat that position the same."
Marrone also said during his post-game conference following Sunday's 42-20 loss to the Tennessee Titans that he would not be making a change at the quarterback season. For now, it appears rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew II will remain on the bench for the Jaguars (4-7).
Minshew took the NFL by storm when he became Jacksonville's starting quarterback after Foles suffered a clavicle injury in Week 1 that would sideline him for the next eight games. Minshew led the team to a 4-4 record in his eight starts and outside of poor performances vs. the Houston Texans and New Orleans Saints, he led an explosive offense, albeit an inconsistent one.
In his two games starting since Minshew went back to the bench, Foles has combined for 65 of 95 passing for 568 yards, one touchdown and one interception. In each of Foles' last two starts, both losses, Foles failed to pass for 300 yards despite throwing 47 or more passes. Jacksonville has scored 33 points with Foles starting the last two weeks, and only 10 first half points.
“What gets difficult is when you have a player in a position that is inconsistent and you really don’t have any place to go except to coach him better and do things to get it clear, whether it’s cutting things down, or if it’s a point of not having maybe the right players in position then you got to do more to hide your deficiencies," Marrone said Monday. "And those are the conversations that we had today.”
When Marrone named Foles the starter in the days following a Week 9 loss to the Houston Texans, he said he did it because he thought Foles and his experience gave Jacksonville the best chance to win. Marrone doubled down on this argument again on Monday.
“If the person at that position — or any position is not gonna give us the best chance to win, then I’m gonna make a change at that position,” Marrone said. “I think I’ve done that — I think I’ve held true to that and that’s my call. And I’m not gonna put someone out there that doesn’t give us the best chance to win if I have an opportunity to put someone else in there.”
For now, Foles has a firm grasp on the starting quarterback position. It remains to be seen if that changes any time soon, but Marrone has not yet publicly indicated that it will.