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Jaguars QB Chad Henne: Rookie QBs better off sitting


The Jacksonville Jaguars would seem to be in the market for a quarterback, whether the pick comes at No. 3 or later in the draft.

No matter the round, current Jaguars starter Chad Henne thinks the rookie signal-caller would be better off sitting and learning for a while. He uses his rookie experience in 2008 with the Miami Dolphins as a touchstone of sorts.

"I had a pretty good preseason (in 2008), but there was a lot to learn and I'm pretty thankful I sat out that first year, learning a lot from Chad (Pennington) -- the film work, the prep and going through the whole process," Henne told the Florida Times-Union.

Henne was one of two second-round picks of the Dolphins in 2008, going 57th overall. Henne was set to be the backup again in 2009, but Pennington was lost for the season in Game 3 and Henne became the starter.

Jacksonville picks third in the first round, and if the Jaguars bypass a quarterback then, picking one up in the second round (Jacksonville picks seventh in that round, 39th overall) is a definite possibility.

Henne said the run-up to the draft can be tiring -- something the likes of Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater, UCF's Blake Bortles and Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel surely are finding out.

"You go from the Senior Bowl to the combine and then you really never take a couple months off," he told the Times-Union. "You need a break to get your mind at ease and get accustomed to being an NFL player."

The Houston Texans own the draft's first pick, and Texans owner Bob McNair agrees with Henne that it's best for a rookie quarterback to sit and learn. The Texans took David Carr with the No. 1 overall pick in 2002; Carr started as a rookie and never lived up to his hype.

"I think the main thing I look back on is that we should have had a veteran quarterback in there," McNair said. "We should have let him start the season and let David learn what it takes to be an NFL quarterback."

But drafting a quarterback early in the draft and letting him sit usually doesn't happen in the NFL. There have been 25 quarterbacks taken in the first three rounds of the past five drafts, and 14 started their first NFL game; all but five started before the team's ninth game of their rookie season.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.



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