Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles had a chance to lead his team down the field on a late drive in Sunday’s AFC Championship game, but he came up short.
Bortles missed on a pass intended for Leonard Fournette during the drive, which could have resulted in a go-ahead touchdown. Fournette ran a wheel route, but the pass sailed out of his reach. Bortles fumbled the football on the play that followed, which led to a third-and-19 situation, and the Jaguars eventually turned the football over on downs with under two minutes remaining in the game.
The Jaguars quarterback was emotional in the waning seconds of the game. Bortles was seen crying on the sideline after the Patriots iced the game with a game-sealing run by Dion Lewis for a first down with 1:30 remaining.
It will be interesting to see what the Jaguars do with Bortles going forward. He’s under contract through the 2018 season, but the Jaguars could look to acquire a veteran quarterback in free agency to lead the team going forward. Bortles did make a solid case for why he could be their signal-caller in the future, as he completed 23 of 36 passes for 293 yards in the game, with one touchdown. Most importantly, he did not turn the football over, as he recovered his lone fumble.
There was a lot of emotion shown on the field at the end of the game, with Bortles crying, and Bill Belichick sharing an emotional hug with defensive coordinator Matt Patricia.