The last time Blake Bortles was at the New England Patriots’ home stadium, he was the Jacksonville Jaguars’ starting quarterback in the January 2018 AFC Championship Game.
Bortles threw for 293 yards and helped the Jaguars to a 10-point fourth-quarter lead, but the Patriots rallied for a 24-20 win.
Bortles returns to Foxborough, Mass., on Monday for the Broncos-Patriots game and just about everything has changed for him save for the fact he still plays quarterback.
Signed three-year, $54 million contract extension. … Helped the Jaguars to a 3-1 start in 2018. … Benched with five games remaining, breaking his streak of 76 consecutive regular season/playoff starts. … Started the final game of ’18, but was released to make room for Nick Foles. … Signed a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Rams to be Jared Goff’s backup. … Was out of the league until the Broncos signed him Sept. 24.
Get all that?
“Definitely, times have changed for sure,” Bortles said in a phone interview with The Denver Post after Thursday’s practice. “But it’s all part of the journey and part of the adversity and everything else. I had a great time and am very grateful for my time in Jacksonville. It was time to move on.”
I covered Bortles during his first four years in Jacksonville (2013-17). Through it all, he always provided insight and was available to talk about any topic.
The topics we covered the other day included the aforementioned exit from the Jaguars, but also his season working with Rams coach Sean McVay, watching the first two weeks of this season from home and his crash course learning the Broncos’ offense.
Bortles appeared in three games (1-of-2 passing) last year for the Rams.
“It was a very similar thing (to Denver) in seeing a different way of doing things and a different language and obviously getting an opportunity to see how (McVay) coaches, how he prepares, how he goes about game planning and his message and the ways to do it,” he said. “I learned a lot and had a great time the year I was there.”
The NFL offseason came and went and Bortles was still at home in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., with his family, including his 2-year old daughter.
“It was definitely different, something I hadn’t done before,” he said. “I tried to stay in shape and do everything I could so I would be ready if I got an opportunity to go somewhere.”
Within days of Drew Lock’s right shoulder injury at Pittsburgh in Week 2, Bortles was on a plane to Denver. He has been inactive for the last two games.
“It’s definitely a challenge, but I think it’s a cool opportunity and a chance to be around a different group of guys who call things differently than anything I’ve been around and think about it differently so to get another perspective and learn another way of doing things has been a cool experience and I’ve enjoyed it,” he said.
The Broncos’ coaches think differently?
“As far as the system and the way it’s called,” …read more
Source:: The Denver Post – Sports