JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- There will naturally be some growth for quarterback Blake Bortles now that he will be in his second season with offensive coordinator Greg Olson.
There won’t, however, be much difference in what they ask him to do in 2016.
Coach Gus Bradley said Olson isn’t going to be expanding the offense just because Bortles has a year of experience in it. The plan is to polish it.
"I think the common thing for an offensive coordinator is to say, 'Okay, he understands it. Let’s add more.'" Bradley said during the NFL's owners meetings this week. "That’s not what we’re going to do. I think that’s a big mistake to add more to his plate.
"I think it’s the stay the course with the offense that we run, find out what he does well, maybe stay to that portion of the offense a little bit more than others. Definitely not looking at adding to it, but just refining it even more."
Bortles set franchise records in attempts (606), completions (355), yards (4,428) and touchdown passes (35) in 2015 in his first season in Olson’s offense. The Jaguars averaged 23.5 points per game, and though that doesn’t seem like a lot, it is significantly better than the past seven seasons. The last time the Jacksonville Jaguars averaged more than 16 points per game was 2007, which also was the last time they made the playoffs.
However, Bortles also threw 18 interceptions, which was one more than his rookie season. Cutting down on turnovers has to be Bortles’ No. 1 priority this offseason, Bradley said, and it can be accomplished by fixing another weakness: completion percentage.
Bortles completed 58.6 percent of his passes, and the goal is to be well over 60 percent. Bortles previously said he wants to fall in line with the formula that quarterbacks coach Nate Hackett has developed. He breaks down passes into three categories: completions, down the field, and shots. The ideal completion percentage in each category is 80, 60 and 40.
According to ESPN Stats & Information, Bortles completed 61.5 percent of his passes (313 attempts) that traveled up to 10 yards in the air, which ranked 31st in the NFL. On throws that traveled 11-30 yards in the air, Bortles completed 45.5 percent (29th) of his NFL-high 211 attempts, threw 11 TDs (tied for seventh), had a passer rating of 79.2 (25th) and a total QBR of 67.5 (26th).
Bortles led the NFL in completion percentage (52.9 percent, 9-of-17), ranked 12th in passer rating (98.3), and had a perfect 100.0 Total QBR, in passes that traveled 31 or more yards in the air.
"It’s about making good decisions," Bradley said. "We never want to take away that aggressiveness, but at times there’s going to be some interceptions that take place, but try to stay away from the foolish ones. Just like penalties. There’s penalties and there’s foolish penalties. Stay away from the foolish [interceptions]."