JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Backup quarterback Chad Henne got snaps with the Jacksonville Jaguars' first-team offense late in the first half of the team's game against Tampa Bay on Thursday night at EverBank Field.
Though the team says the move was planned before the game, it does nothing to end the speculation that Blake Bortles' starting job could be jeopardy, especially in the wake of his performance against the Bucs.
Bortles was an unimpressive 8-for-13 for 65 yards in four drives against the Bucs, all of which ended in punts. He also was sacked once. He has completed 11 of 18 passes for 81 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions in two preseason games.
Despite saying the starters would play just the first half, Jaguars coach Doug Marrone sent the first-team offense back on the field with Henne to start the third quarter.
Marrone told ESPN at halftime that he did this because he was upset with the entire offense's performance, emphasizing he felt all 11 players struggled and not just Bortles.
Aside from the second part of last Sunday's practice, Henne has worked exclusively with the second-team offense. Henne took those first-team reps last Sunday because Marrone said he wanted to rest Bortles, saying Bortles' arm "looked tired." Marrone also said the move was not made in response to the two interceptions Bortles threw in the first part of the practice. Two days later, Bortles said his arm was fine.
Bortles has had an up-and-down training camp, with the lowlight being a five-interception practice on the first day the team was in full pads, in what is a make-or-break season. Bortles, who has committed the most turnovers (63) and thrown the second-most interceptions (51) in the NFL over the past three seasons, has won just 11 games as a starter and has thrown 11 pick-sixes.
The Jaguars did not bring in any quarterbacks in the offseason to compete with Bortles and instead planned on building the offense around the run game, which is why the team drafted Leonard Fournette fourth overall.
The team picked up Bortles' fifth-year option for 2018, but that's guaranteed for injury only. If the Jaguars decide Bortles is no longer their quarterback of the future they can cut him after this season without owing him any money as long as he isn't injured.
Henne has played just one snap since Week 3 of the 2014 season and has thrown 58 touchdowns and 63 interceptions in 53 starts with Miami and Jacksonville.