JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It's Gardner Minshew's team now.
The Jaguars placed Nick Foles on injured reserve on Monday following successful surgery for a broken collarbone. They now shift their game plan around the rookie sixth-round pick from Washington State. He's the starter from here on out.
Minshew certainly gave fans a reason for optimism after going 22 of 25 for 275 yards and a pair of touchdowns and a pick in a 40-26 loss to the Chiefs. His completion percentage (88.0) was the highest in NFL history for a player in his NFL debut (15 or more passes) according to ESPN's Adam Schefter .
"The players obviously believed in him from practice," Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said. "When you go out there and perform like that, people have a lot of faith in him."
Marrone said on Monday that Foles would go on injured reserve with the hopes for a return this season.
Foles, who signed an $88 million contract with $45 million in guarantees, was expected to be the steadying presence the Jaguars needed. Instead, he played just a quarter and a half in the preseason and threw just eight passes in Sunday's regular season opener against the Chiefs before breaking his left collarbone.
Foles broke the same bone in 2014. He said on Sunday that this injury felt worse. Marrone said that Foles' work now will come as a mentor to Minshew.
"To tell you what type of person Nick was, his first thing was he's trying to help Gardner," Marrone said of Foles. "I was on the field and the doctor came up to me and said, ‘Hey Nick wants to come back out here so he can help the offense and help Gardner.' That just shows you just what type of person he is."
Players who receive the injured reserve with a designation to return must spend eight weeks on the injured list before being allowed to return. Foles would reach eight weeks on the injured list on Nov. 10, although the Jaguars have a bye that week. The earliest Foles could come back is Nov. 17 at Indianapolis.
To back up Minshew, the Jaguars traded a fith-round pick to the Steelers for third-string quarterback Josh Dobbs. Marrone said that he didn't know much about Dobbs, or Chase Litton, whom the team signed to the practice squad last week.
"Tom [Coughlin] and Dave [Caldwell] went out and got the best guy they felt to come in here," Marrone said. "I don't know much I've been really with the team most of the day, working with them."
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