Playing like an evolutionary Ben Roethlisberger, Bortles impressed for the second consecutive week, showing pocket poise, command of the offense, ideal size, mobility and a cannon arm that allows him to make even the toughest NFL throws. His skills are a perfect match for offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch's scheme, which relies heavily on boot-action.
Bortles finished 11 of 17 for 160 yards, bringing his two-game total to 18 of 28 (64.2 percent) for 277 yards (9.89 per attempt).
Operating a no-huddle attack, Henne moved the offense at will for a quarter and a half, completing 12 of 17 passes for 130 yards and a touchdown pass. He did nothing that would give the coaching staff cause for pause even if Bortles' stellar play means a tough decision is coming in three weeks.
In the face of general manager David Caldwell's determination not to rush Bortles' development, NFL Media's Jeff Darlington asked this offseason, "What if he looks like Marino in '83?"
Caldwell's response: "We'll know."
Darlington believes Bortles can only open the season as the starter if Henne suffers an injury or the No. 3 overall draft pick proves to be an obvious star.
Even if it's already obvious to Jacksonville fans, it's on the organization's brain trust to conclude that the future is now.
- With Cecil Shorts and second-round draft pick Allen Robinson still nursing hamstring injuries, undrafted rookie Allen Hurns started opposite Marqise Lee at wide receiver for the Jaguars. Hurns will likely drop down the depth chart, but this is a sign that he will make the team. NFL Media's Daniel Jeremiah noted early this month that the front office feels strongly that there will be a big role for Hurns, who played under Fisch at Miami.
- The Bears' run defense looks much improved from last year's historically bad unit. Competing for the starting middle linebacker job, Jon Bostic tore through left tackle Luke Joeckel to stop Gerhart for a 4-yard loss on an early third-and-1 play. The pass defense was troubling, though, surrendering 244 yards to Henne and Bortles in the first half.
- Coach Marc Trestman wanted to get a long look at Jimmy Clausen after the former Panthers second-rounder threw up a 134.6 passer rating against the Eagleslast week. Although the big plays were missing Thursday night, Clausen was competent enough to hold off Jordan Palmer for the second spot on the depth chart.