Jaguars Mailbag: What happens if Bortles struggles? Does Cole have a shot at the roster?

Jaguars vs. Buccaneers joint practices: Beat writer Mike Kaye previews the workouts

Entering the second week of the preseason, the Jaguars Monday Mailbag features questions about Blake Bortles, the pass rush and more.

@Jagsarepgood asks: If Bortles continues his struggles in practice, do you think there's any way he gets benched before the season, or a trade or FA is signed?

Mike Kaye: As far as bringing in another quarterback, I think that ship has sailed. You can't expect to bring in a quarterback the way the Minnesota Vikings did with Sam Bradford last year and be extremely successful. If the Jaguars thought they needed competition for Bortles, they would have made that move already.

I don't see him being benched before the season starts, but I could see there being a pretty tight leash. Going at least 1-1 in those first two games against the AFC South is absolutely critical. If he struggles in those two games, it may be time to pull the plug. If Bortles struggles and then suffers a major injury, the Jaguars would be on the hook for his fifth contract year.

The Jaguars clearly feel comfortable with Chad Henne as the backup. It's just a matter of whether or not they think he has a shot of winning consistently as a starter.

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@jags1185 asks: Only one preseason game but how worried should we be about the pass rush?

MK: I don't think you should be worried. I think you have to wait for the next two preseason games to play out.

Remember, Calais Campbell wasn't active and the defense was rather vanilla with blitzing. I think Campbell adds a new dimension to this pass rush.

Also, keep in mind, the top three cornerbacks were missing against the New England Patriots, so keeping guys covered longer will help the pass rush as well.

I think Yannick Ngakoue can be special. I also think Malik Jackson will find a lot more consistency in his second year under defensive coordinator Todd Wash.

 

Mary asks: Do you think it's possible that Keelan Cole will be on the team? 

MK: He has certainly made his case in practice and in the preseason opener. He was fantastic on special teams and on offense. I think he has a great shot at being the sixth wide receiver.

If there is an injury, I think he is capable of playing right away. He has been quite the find. I think the last spot is between him, Rashad Greene and Shane Wynn.

 

Dylan Goldman asks: Which player on offense and defense has impressed you the most in training camp?

MK: On offense, Allen Robinson continues to be the best player on the field. He is catching passes in a variety of aerobatic ways. I think he will be able to rebound from last year's inconsistencies.

On defense, when healthy, Calais Campbell has been unblockable. As I said up top, I think he could be a major difference-maker for this team.

 

Ryan O'Bleness asks: Which matchups between the Jags and Bucs are you most excited to watch at joint practices this week?

MK: There are three matchups I will be paying a lot of attention to during joint practices.

First, DeSean Jackson against A.J. Bouye. I want to see how Bouye does against game-breaking speed. Jackson is crafty and he will be a challenge for the highly paid cornerback.

Second, Gerald McCoy against the entire Jaguars offensive line. McCoy is a top five 4-3 defensive tackle at worst and he will be a huge challenge for the line. I want to see how the interior line establishes the run against a dynamic talent like McCoy

Third, Demar Dotson against Dante Fowler. Dotson did a good job of shutting Fowler down after the then-second-year player took the offseason program by storm. Fowler never seemed to recover last season, so it'll be interesting to see how he handles Dotson this time around.

Follow Mike Kaye and ask him your mailbag questions on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye. "Like" his Facebook page by clicking here.

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