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Jaguars say Bortles suffered from a dead arm late last year

Jacksonville Jaguars v Baltimore Ravens

Jacksonville Jaguars v Baltimore Ravens

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Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles struggled through a rough rookie season, but the team expects much more of a fresh Bortles this year.

Jacksonville General Manager Dave Caldwell told USA Today that by the end of last season, Bortles was worn down and had a “dead arm.”

“People don’t realize that as you look later in the season, he was on injury report,” Caldwell said. “You’ve just got to do what you’ve got to do to survive. It wasn’t anything that was ingrained in him [mechanically]. He knew he was doing it. But in order to drive the ball 15 yards, there were some things that he needed to do to get the velocity on the ball.”

We noted late last season that Bortles looked like he was throwing shorter passes and not going downfield as much as he had earlier in the year. That led to a decrease in interceptions, which was good, but it also led to a decrease in his passing yardage -- and it was alarming because Bortles’s big arm was a big reason the Jaguars chose him with the third overall pick in last year’s draft. It would appear that the “dead arm” was a big part of the reason Bortles changed his playing style.

So far, Bortles hasn’t proven that he’s the man to lead the franchise in the future. Now the Jaguars hope Bortles will be well-rested and ready to go for his second season.