Justin Blackmon didn't play Friday night in Jacksonville, but even that didn't keep him out of trouble: Jaguars teammate Maurice Jones-Drew had to escort him to the locker room after a verbal spat with Miami Dolphins cornerback Nolan Carroll.
Mark Long of The Associated Press wrote that Jaguars coach Gus Bradley had to get involved at one point before Jones-Drew calmed down the situation. Long later tweeted that he heard it all went down like this: Jaguars defensive end Jason Babin told Blackmon to be quiet since he's suspended for four games. That caused Blackmon to turn on Babin.
Blackmon returned to the sideline in the second half and hugged it out with Bradley. (No word if Babin received the same treatment.) The Florida Times-Union reported that Bradley and Blackmon met after the game in the coach's office, which is what new teachers do with troublesome pupils.
"You know how it is in the preseason," Bradley said. "Sometimes a player talks to the sideline. It started off as just banter and I just addressed it. I turned to him and said, 'There's no place (for that). I'd rather you use your energy to encourage our guys and not get caught in that.' "
Bradley said Blackmon "came right to my office and met with me," although the coach added that he knew nothing about the Babin angle of the argument. Blackmon wasn't in the Jaguars' locker room after the 27-3 preseason loss.
In Bradley's short tenure as Jacksonville's coach, he already has dealt with a few Blackmon issues. Last year's No. 5 overall draft pick received the four-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy. He's also recovering from a groin surgery and remains on the physically unable to perform list.
We previously have read reports that Blackmon struggles with focus and maturity on the field. Friday's incident isn't a huge deal, but it's another sign Blackmon has some growing up to do.
UPDATE: Bradley told reporters Saturday that he had both Blackmon and Babin in his office following the game and was pleased with the meeting.
The spat was "a lot smaller than what I initially thought," Bradley said, per The AP.