JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jaguars played their final preseason game of 2017 on Thursday in Atlanta. Head coach Doug Marrone opted to sit 37 regulars for the final game. Now, the Jaguars must cut 37 players to get down to the league mandated roster limit of 53 by Saturday at 4 p.m. Here are the answers to the four big questions that we had heading into the preseason finale.
How much will the starters play?
Basically...none. Right guard A.J. Cann played. Fullback Tommy Bohanon, who is fighting for a starting role, played--can you call the fullback a starter? Other than kicker Jason Myers and punter Brad Nortman, you couldn't find another starter on the field for the Jaguars. That pretty much tells you that the fear of injury is greater than the benefit of seeing players showcase their skills one more time.
Will the Jaguars stay healthy in the final preseason game?
When you don't play the starters, they won't get hurt. Rookie safety Jarrod Harper was carted off the field in the first half with a possible concussion.
Who separates themselves in the wide receiver battle?
The big surprise here is that Rashad Greene didn't play. He was on the bubble coming into the game and wasn't allowed to make his case for a roster spot. Whether the concern was an injury or if it was in deference to him to keep him healthy for another team, it appears clear that the former Florida State Seminole is likely done as a Jaguar. Rookie Dede Westbrook, who was drafted to compete with Greene, caught a 43-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Allen in the first quarter and topped the 100 yard mark. He looks like a player who can make a paly to win a game for the Jaguars this year. Shane Wynn also continued to look good. It's going to be difficult to go into the season without both of them on the active roster. That may make for some difficult roster decisions on Saturday.
Does someone suddenly improve their chances at making the roster?
Every year, some player on the bubble makes a play or plays that pushes them from the “maybe” category to making the roster. On Thursday, there were a few who did it again. Allen has to be one of them. Although he threw three interceptions, he continued to show that against second and third team players, he has potential. Will the Jaguars keep three quarterbacks? It seems unlikely, but it will be tempting for Tom Coughlin.