Fournette back at practice, but Jags unsure if he will play
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette practiced for the first time in more than a month Monday, working with the first-team offense and looking like he might be fully healthy for the first time since the season opener.
But coach Doug Marrone stopped short of proclaiming Fournette back or ready to return Sunday at Indianapolis.
“I don’t know if he is going to play,” Marrone said.
Fournette has missed six games, including all four during the team’s four-game losing streak, because of a strained right hamstring. The Jaguars (3-5) reacted to Fournette’s prolonged absence by signing free agent Jamaal Charles and then trading for Carlos Hyde.
Fournette has 20 carries for 71 yards this season and has missed nine games in two years because of injuries and suspension, creating doubts about the fourth overall selection in the 2017 NFL draft.
Jacksonville built its offensive scheme around Fournette and needs him back to potentially take pressure off inconsistent quarterback Blake Bortles.
Marrone, though, won’t know about Fournette’s availability until later in the week.
“How things happen during the week is really what answers a lot of those questions,” he said. “Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, you are worried about this guy. Is he going to be able to play? Is he going to play the full amount? Did we get the other guys ready enough? What plays does he feel comfortable with? What plays do other people feel comfortable with?
“You go back and forth because, at the end of the day, your job is to try and put the team in the best situation to win. Sometimes I feel like I’ve done a good job of that. But sometimes I haven’t.”
Marrone said Bortles injured his non-throwing shoulder against Philadelphia in London, but took “his normal throws” Monday following the team’s bye week.
“It’s early in the week and we will just see how it goes,” Marrone said.
The Jaguars signed a third quarterback, Landry Jones, as an insurance policy in case Bortles’ injury becomes more significant.