Gabbert gets 15 stitches in hand, won't play Week 2
Any Jaguars fan who wanted Gabbert out from behind center will get his wish on Sunday when the team faces the Oakland Raiders. Gabbert badly injured his throwing hand with about 1:20 remaining in the Jaguars' season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs. He apparently hit the hand on another player's face mask, and the subsequent laceration required 15 stitches.
Gabbert admitted that he was questionable for Week 2 after being stitched up, but head coach Gus Bradley has since cleared up any confusion as to who will be under center on Sunday. Bradley told reporters on Monday that Gabbert is "definitely" out for Week 2.
Despite the loss of their starting quarterback, it's tough to see the Jaguars' offense playing any worse than they did in their opener. The team did not get the ball past midfield until there were less than eight minutes left in the game. Gabbert registered a 30.8 quarterback rating and a shockingly low 3.5 yards per pass attempt.
Backup quarterback Chad Henne is admittedly subpar, but at least he has a few wins on his resume. He went 7-6 in 2009 with the Miami Dolphins, and then went 6-8 in 2010. Gabbert's career record is 5-20. Henne had plenty of struggles in 2012 as the occasional starter in Jacksonville, but he did have some nice performances as well, such as a 354-yard showing in a narrow loss to the Houston Texans, and the 108.0 quarterback rating he posted in a win over the Tennessee Titans.
Henne should provide a slight boost to the Jaguars' pass catchers. Top receiver Cecil Shorts had some of his best games in 2012 when Henne was behind center. Shorts was implicitly critical of Gabbert's play following Sunday's loss, claiming that he was getting himself open throughout the game despite his measly three catches for 40 yards.
With Geno Smith and Terrelle Pryor doing better than expected in Week 1, the Jaguars are now in contention for the worst quarterback situation in the NFL. The offense is likely to struggle mightily on a weekly basis, and the team very well could be in the running for Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater down the stretch of the season. Yes, they just drafted Gabbert 10th overall less than three years ago, but based on his most recent performance, it would be a big surprise if the Jaguars weren't looking for a new quarterback of the future this spring.