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Jaguars would be surprised to have Blackmon in ‘14
Question of the Day
“It’s not something that we’re counting on,” Caldwell said at the team’s annual predraft luncheon. “It would be something that would be relatively surprising. Haven’t gotten a whole lot of updates from the league where he’s at or from Justin, to be honest with you.”
Blackmon is suspended indefinitely without pay for repeated violations of the league’s substance abuse policy.
He was previously suspended the first four games of last year for violating the policy. He played four games before getting suspended again - at least for a year.
“Without having contact, we just have to protect the team now,” coach Gus Bradley said. “We’ve got to do what’s right for the organization so we have to continue to move forward and project that. We’ve got to get some guys in here at that spot and that’s why you’ve heard Dave talk about wide receiver is a need because of that. Now, if everything works out to get him back, that’s OK. We always will love to get very talented players in here. But it’s hard. But we just have to keep going forward.”
With Blackmon’s future uncertain, the Jaguars are considering selecting Clemson receiver Sammy Watkins with the third overall pick in next week’s draft. If they don’t take Watkins in the first round, they expect to use at least one of their other 10 picks on a receiver. The wideout class is considered one of the deepest in the draft.
Blackmon has been involved in three substance-related incidents in three years. He was arrested on a misdemeanor DUI charge in Texas in 2010 after officers caught him speeding on a suburban Dallas highway. The charge was later reduced to an underage alcohol possession charge. A little more than a month after the Jaguars drafted him, he was arrested during a traffic stop in Stillwater, Oklahoma, after a breath test allegedly showed his blood alcohol content to be three times the legal limit.
A subsequent violation landed him the four-game suspension. Another one got him the indefinite suspension.
Blackmon caught 29 passes for 415 yards and a touchdown in the four games he played last season. He was the team’s leading receiver during that stretch.
He has 93 catches for 1,280 yards and six scores in 20 games - all since Jacksonville traded up to select the former Oklahoma State star with the fifth overall pick in the 2012 draft.
Without him, the Jaguars relied on Cecil Shorts III, Ace Sanders and Mike Brown last season.
By Mark Davis
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