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Jags coach Mularkey hopes to rid Gabbert of bad habits

If you're Cam Newton or Andy Dalton, right now you're trying to figure out how to capture last season's lightning in a bottle.

If you're Blaine Gabbert, you don't want to take anything from 2011.

New Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey knows about the struggles Gabbert went through in his rookie season. Gabbert threw just 12 touchdowns in 15 games and finished with the lowest passer rating in the league.

More disconcerting was Gabbert's skittish nature in the pocket. The 10th overall pick in the 2011 draft developed some bad habits, including a troubling tendency to duck in the face of the pass rush.

Mularkey is hoping to wipe the slate clean.

"I don't want to get into the things that took place last year, but (I think) there were things in his head even before the ball was snapped," Mularkey said, according to The Florida Times-Union. "He knew there may be a chance the rush could get to him for a variety of reasons. I don't want to step on any toes, but I've got to get that out of his head."

Yes, erstwhile offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter. We hope Mularkey didn't mangle your toes too badly there.

As he's done with all of his players, Mularkey has already met with Gabbert. He believes the QB will be receptive to new methods.

"I think he can do a lot of things for us. And I think the guy wants to be coached," Mularkey said. "You can tell some quarterbacks think they know it all. I don't have that feeling (about Gabbert)."

Gabbert exhibited all the signs of a bust in his rookie season, but his first-round pedigree ensures he'll get at least one more season (and perhaps more) to make things right.

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