Doug Marrone on LB Telvin Smith: 'We're here for him'

Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone didn't waste any time Friday morning to address linebacker Telvin Smith, who announced Thursday that he was stepping away from football for the 2019 season.

Marrone stepped up to the podium and began his opening statement not on the rookie minicamp, rather on Smith and revealed the Jaguars were taken by surprise.

"I'll go ahead and address the situation from yesterday in regards to Telvin Smith and what he tweeted out," Marrone told reporters. "Obviously, I have not spoken to him. You found out the same information that I found out at the same time that I found it out."

The Jaguars head coach said he is concerned over Smith's well-being, and highlighted football remains secondary over anything else.

"I think that, for me, I kind of put football to the side," Marrone said. "To me, that's an afterthought right now in concern with Telvin.

"I really believe in my heart that Telvin knows that we're here to support him in any which way. Not just myself, the coaches, the organization, his teammates. I'm sure he's aware of that and all we can do is make sure we pray and he knows that is he needs some support, we're here for him."

Marrone said he has not spoken to Smith's agent, but the Jaguars attempted to contact Smith, who has hasn't had much communication with the team since electing to not attend the voluntary offseason workout program.

Smith, who was set to enter his sixth professional season, said Thursday in a social media post on Instagram that he was stepping way to give time to himself, his family and his health. The linebacker also requested that others respect his decision.

The Jaguars then issued a statement and stressed, "If there is a way we can support him we need to understand that."

A day later, Marrone reinforced the team's message.

"It's not about football," he said. "It's making sure he's OK as a person and being a good human being. That's the part that we want to be able to help him with. Obviously, we respect his decision."

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