The Jacksonville Jaguars dropped their eighth straight game on Sunday to the lowly Buffalo Bills, prompting head coach Doug Marrone to fire offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett and bench struggling quarterback Blake Bortles.
In Bortles' place, the Jaguars will go with Cody Kessler, who has seen very limited action this season. It's obviously not what Jacksonville wanted to do, considering Bortles got a three-year $54 million extension in the offseason.
But there's really no choice but to try shaking things up, as the 26-year-old Bortles continues to hold back the offense with his limited abilities and bad habits of turning the ball over.
That being said, Bortles understands why the Jaguars benched him for Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts, and he had nobody to blame but himself.
"I put myself in this position and I didn't play good enough," Bortles said, via Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com. "Didn't win football games. Couldn't find a way to get it done. And when that happens, it's a business and everybody understands that."
After reaching the AFC Championship Game last season, the Jaguars entered 2018 as a favorite to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. They got off to a promising 3-1 start, highlighted by a dominant 31-20 home win over the perennial heavyweight New England Patriots.
But even though the defense remains a dominant unit, the Jaguar offense has been terrible during the eight-game losing streak. A handful of their losses have been close games that could have easily gone Jacksonville's way.
What This Means
If Kessler plays well enough to hold down the starting job, then it's very likely that Bortles has played his last game in Jacksonville. He's had five years to grow into a franchise quarterback, and it hasn't happened.
It'd be a surprise if Jacksonville brought back Bortles after this season. He's had more than enough chances to lead the franchise, and it hasn't happened.