Following up on an item in this week's Team Notes. ... One practice into his return from a 38-day holdout, Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew’s biggest challenge will be mental, not physical.
According to Florida Times-Union staff writer Ryan O'Halloran, Jones-Drew, who reported to the team on Sunday, showed enough during a conditioning test to put on the pads Monday. He was again in pads on Wednesday and will play in the opener at Minnesota.
Before practice Wednesday, Jones-Drew said: “I have to work to get my job back. That’s all it is. Nobody has ever given me anything so I’m used to it. I like it because the competition is going to be great.”
Rashad Jennings will start against the Vikings, head coach Mike Mularkey said. Jones-Drew will likely have a role on third down.
Jennings and running backs coach Sylvester Croom have spent time with Jones-Drew in the classroom to help him pick up enough of the offense so he can play a role against Minnesota.
“Instead of working against each other, you work together to get to a goal,” Jones-Drew said. “Rashad has helped me out. We just want to be better to help the team win and at the same time, compete for the same job.”
Asked if it will be difficult to be patient as Jennings starts at least the first game, Jones-Drew said: “It won’t be tough. Last year we had a little fall out because I thought I should have carried the ball more after I thought I was ready. It’s not necessarily about being ready, it’s about earning that position and earning that time. It’s going to take a little longer and I understand that. That’s what happens when you do the things I did. ...”
I suspect that Jones-Drew will earn his spot back in short order. Which means Jennings owners need to cash in while they can. ...
Also of interest. ... Justin Blackmon suffered an ankle injury in Wednesday's practice so he had to be listed as limited because he didn’t take all the reps.
According to Times-Union beat writer Vito Stellino, the Jaguars hope Blackmon’s injury isn’t serious, but will have to wait to see if there is any swelling Thursday to determine if he can resume practicing. Blackmon suffered the injury after the 30-minute media viewing period ended.
Stay tuned. ... More undoubtedly to come on both MJD and Blackmon.