Jaguars release QB Blake Bortles after signing Foles

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  • By Grant Gordon NFL.com
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The inevitable has become a reality in Duval.

As the NFL's new year officially opened, Blake Bortles' tenure with the Jacksonville Jaguars officially ended.

Bortles, the third overall pick in 2014 NFL Draft by the Jaguars, was released as expected, the team announced Wednesday, effectively ushering in the Nick Foles era.

A starting signal-caller since his rookie season, Bortles' struggles matched the franchise's as Jacksonville was 24-49 in games he started. Hence, when the predictable signing of Foles, a free agent who led the Eagles to the franchise's only Super Bowl win, came to fruition, the official departure of Bortles was slated for Wednesday.

Under the Bortles umbrella, the team's best season was 2017, when the Jaguars advanced all the way to the AFC Championship Game. However, the team's defense was its calling card, as Bortles seemingly did just enough, though he would show flashes of brilliances such as 370-plus-yard performances against the Steelers and Patriots in the playoffs.

This past season, with Bortles at the helm the majority of the time, the Jaguars' offense was usually inept at best, muddling to 302 total yards per game, bad enough for 27th in the NFL. For all intents and purposes, the 2018 campaign was a disaster, as a squad predicted to follow up on an AFC Championship Game run with further success skidded to an ugly 5-11 record. Bortles was shouldered with much of the blame leading to reserve Cody Kessler drawing four starts.

So now, the Jaguars move on with a former Super Bowl MVP looking to rekindle the promise of 2017.

The good news for Bortles is there's likely to be a market for him and a fresh start awaiting.

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