Jags go with another 6th-rounder, Jake Luton, as backup QB

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The Jacksonville Jaguars are going with another college journeyman and sixth-round draft pick as their backup quarterback.

General manager Dave Caldwell and coach Doug Marrone kept rookie Jake Luton to play behind Gardner Minshew as they finalized their 53-man roster Saturday. They cut veteran Mike Glennon and waived Josh Dobbs.

“Jake has been very impressive,” Caldwell said. “He actually made the decision relatively easy for us.”

Luton was one of the biggest surprises of Jacksonville’s training camp, along with undrafted running back James Robinson, sixth-round receiver Collin Johnson and undrafted cornerback Luq Barcoo.

They are four of 16 rookies who made Jacksonville’s opening-day roster. Throw in eight second-year pros and Marrone will have one of the youngest teams — if not the youngest team — in the league in 2020.

No team is younger at quarterback, where Luton and Minshew followed similar paths to the NFL. Both bounced around in college, had solid senior years and then got passed over repeatedly before becoming two of the last QBs taken in the final hours of the draft. They then had to beat out veterans to become backups in Year 1.

Caldwell reiterated the stance Jacksonville players and coaches have taken this week — since the team parted ways with three potential starters — and insisted the revamped roster is far from a rebuild.

“Let us play the season. Don’t count these players out,” Caldwell said. “I love this team. I love the energy this team brings. I love some of the veteran leadership we brought in. … We can’t afford a rebuilding year.”

Luton could be a building block for the future, though.

He began his college career at Idaho, transferred to a community college in Southern California for one season (2016) and spent his final three years at Oregon State. He was granted a sixth year of eligibility after missing most of 2017 with a back injury.

Jacksonville drafted Luton with the 189th pick, the ninth quarterback off the board, after he threw 28 touchdowns passes and three interceptions as a senior.

Minshew’s road to the NFL started at Northwest Mississippi Community College and included stops at East Carolina and Washington State. He was the 178th selection and the 10th quarterback selected in 2019. Minshew replaced Nick Foles in last year’s opener and went 6-6 in 12 starts. He supplanted Foles for good late in the season.

Jacksonville also waived 18 others Saturday: running back Nathan Cottrell, tight end Ben Ellefson, linebacker Nate Evans, tight end Matt Flanagan, linebacker Joe Giles-Harris, receiver Terry Godwin, receiver Josh Hammond, offensive lineman Blake Hance, cornerback Amari Henderson, offensive lineman KC McDermott, offensive lineman Garrett McGhin, cornerback Parry Nickerson, long-snapper Matt Orzech, offensive lineman Austen Pleasants, offensive lineman Ryan Pope, safety J.R. Reed, receiver Marvelle Ross and offensive lineman Tre’Vour Wallace-Simms.

The Jaguars also released defensive lineman Caraun Reid, waived/injured receiver Michael Walker (knee) and placed cornerback Tramaine Brock (hamstring) on injured reserve.

Running back Ryquell Armstead went on the COVID-19 list a day earlier, and defensive linemen Carl Davis (four games) and Josh Mauro (five games) were placed on the reserve/suspended list.


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