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Looking at Blaine Gabbert’s first scrimmage

Blaine Gabbert

Jacksonville Jaguars rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert (11) throws a pass during NFL football training camp Saturday, July 30, 2011, in Jacksonville, Fla. Gabbert was the Jaguars top pick in the April 2011 NFL Draft. (AP Photo/Rick Wilson)


Blaine Gabbert has impressed onlookers at practice during training camp by all accounts.

During his first scrimmage, he reportedly looked more like you’d expect from a rookie.

“I thought maybe he was a half-step slower than he has been in practice,” Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter told Vito Stellino of the Florida Times-Union. “Maybe it’s the conditions or whatever. The first time with crowd. He’s got undeniable talent. But he just needs reps. He’s been here a week.”

Gabbert’s numbers were pretty poor: He completed 12-of-27 passes for 76 yards and a score. There were reportedly four drops.

While Luke McCown put up better numbers, coach Jack Del Rio liked Gabbert’s decision making and poise. He cut out Gabbert’s headset communication at one point.

“Those things happen, in particular when you’re going to New England,” Del Rio said with a laugh. “Those things tend to happen from time to time. You’ve got to get yourself ready.”

We aren’t trying to say that Gabbert’s numbers in a scrimmage mean that much, but they are still interesting to track. Scrimmages and the preseason matter to these first-round quarterbacks. It is their time to audition.

Gabbert will have to light it up in the preseason to overtake David Garrard by Week One, and even that likely wouldn’t be enough.