A lot was expected of Blaine Gabbert when he was drafted with the tenth overall pick in 2011. The Jacksonville Jaguars saw in Gabbert the future of the franchise – a 6-4, 235-pound quarterback who could make any throw and lead the team to the playoffs.
Unfortunately for Gabbert, that never happened. The Jaguars went 11-37 during his three seasons in Jacksonville. Gabbert payed in 28 of those games, throwing for 22 touchdowns and 23 interceptions. Gabbert, labeled a bust, was traded to San Francisco in March 2014 for a sixth-round pick.
And yet, that doesn’t tell the whole story. Maurice Jones-Drew, who played with Gabbert in Jacksonville, believes the Missouri product would have been more successful had there been more consistency among the coaching staff and with the offensive scheme.
“Oh, most definitely,” the former Pro Bowl running back and current NFL Network analyst said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “When we were in Jacksonville at that time, there was so much going on from owners selling the team to I think Blaine played in four or five different offensive systems – completely different systems where the terminology is nothing like the other, the footwork is completely different. And for a young quarterback, consistency is always going to make him feel comfortable – and he never had that. And so you get in these situations, he’s getting banged up where some guys (didn’t know what they were) doing, (and) he’s getting hit from all over the place.”
Jones-Drew believes that Gabbert, who has appeared in just one game for the Niners, might get an opportunity in San Francisco, especially with Colin Kaepernick struggling. Kaepernick was just 9-of-19 for 67 yards and four interceptions in a 47-4 loss to the Cardinals this past Sunday.
Indeed, perhaps Gabbert’s wait won’t be as long as we think.
“Even though he is the backup there, when he gets in the game, he looks comfortable,” Jones-Drew said. “He stands in the pocket well, he throws the ball with accuracy. He does a lot of things that we saw that everyone thought he could do when he was coming out of college. So I’m excited that he has a chance to sit and be in the same system over and over again and get comfortable. You never know. Obviously with the way things are going for the Niners, he might get a chance. You just never know.”