The Jacksonville Jaguars made headlines on Monday when they announced that Blaine Gabbert had won their offseason quarterback competition.
The Jaguars also announced that Gabbert would also miss the remainder of the preseason with a hairline fracture in the thumb on his throwing hand which he suffered in Saturday’s preseason loss to the New York Jets. In his press conference, Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley sounded confident that Gabbert would be ready to play when they open their regular season against the Kansas City Chiefs.
However, is two weeks an overly ambitious timeline for recovery on Gabbert’s injury?
Ryan O’Halloran of The Florida Times-Union asked a hand and wrist specialist about Gabbert’s injury and he suggested that having him play only three weeks removed from his injury is a “risky proposition.” The doctor suggested that Gabbert’s injury typically requires a 4-6 week healing period, which would have Gabbert missing the Jaguars opener.
The biggest risk in having Gabbert come back before he is healed is injuring the thumb to the point that it would require surgery, which would require him to miss a significant amount of time. So with the Jaguars taking a new, more cautious approach to players returning from injury this season, it is not yet set in stone that Gabbert will be the starter on Sept. 8.
If Gabbert cannot go in the opener, the Jaguars will roll out Chad Henne. Henne figures to get all of the first-team reps the next two weeks with Gabbert out and will likely get significant playing time this Saturday against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The only thing certain for the Jaguars moving forward at quarterback is that Gabbert is the starter when healthy, no matter how well Henne plays with him out.
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