Tom Coughlin: 'We Have Two Very Good Quarterbacks'
Jacksonville is one of the many NFL teams this season that has had to turn to two different quarterbacks, and the Jaguars' top executive seems more than happy with both Nick Foles and Gardner Minshew II.
Jaguars executive vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin said during his Wednesday press conference at TIAA Bank Field that he is optimistic about the development of Minshew, who went 4-4 as a starter after Foles sustained a clavicle injury in Week 1.
“We have two very good quarterbacks," Coughlin said. "We are very fortunate.”
Foles returned to the lineup in Week 11 after Minshew had his worst performance of the season in the team's 26-3 loss in London to the Houston Texans in Week 9. Foles has gone 0-2 since then and has failed to throw for over 300 yards in a game, but Coughlin said Foles has simply not had a large sample size.
When asked about the decision to put Foles back into the lineup over Minshew, Coughlin pointed to Minshew's poor game in London, where he turned the ball over four times.
“[Nick] has only played two games, didn't play in the preseason. He has played two football games," Coughlin said. "Gardner played very well, did not play well in London. Nick was ready to come back. That was the basis of the decision at that time.”
Jacksonville signed Foles to a four-year, $88 million contract with $50 million in the offseason. The theory from Jacksonville's front office at the time was that the team was only a quarterback away from competing, but that has hard;y been the case this season. Despite that, Coughlin reaffirmed his belief that quarterback was far and away the largest need on the team when they obtained Foles.
"Well at that time, I think it was," Coughlin said when asked about the quarterback assessment. "I don't think so. It is always a combination of things. Do you need more players? Sure you do, but you always do. If you look around the league, you will see that on most teams.”