Cody Kessler traded to Jaguars to backup starting quarterback Blake Bortles – ESPN


ORLANDO, Fla. — The Jacksonville Jaguars finally found someone to back up starting quarterback Blake Bortles.

The team traded for Cody Kessler on Wednesday, sending a conditional 2019 seventh-round draft pick to the Cleveland Browns for the third-year veteran.

“We are excited about the opportunity to add Cody as depth to our quarterback position,” Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell said. “From our research and through getting to know Cody during the draft process, we know he is a smart, tough and competitive young man, and we expect him to be a great addition to our quarterback and offensive meeting rooms.”

The Jaguars haven’t had a backup quarterback on the roster since the team decided not to re-sign veteran Chad Henne. Henne — who signed with Kansas City on March 16 — had held that spot since losing his starting job to Bortles at halftime of Week 3 in 2014. Bortles has started every game since.

Kessler was a third-round choice in 2016 as the Browns’ front office, under former vice president Sashi Brown, focused on analytics. (Brown was also was the lead counsel for the Jaguars for eight years.) Kessler began his rookie season third on the depth chart but was forced to start after injuries to Robert Griffin III and Josh McCown in the first two weeks. He did not win a game in eight starts in 2016 and did not start a game in 2017. The trade for Tyrod Taylor and the signing of Drew Stanton made Kessler expendable.

Kessler has completed 63.8 percent of his passes for 1,508 yards with six touchdowns and three interceptions and has an 87.4 career passer rating.



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