Minshew Mania was fun while it lasted.
Jaguars coach Doug Marrone is turning the quarterback position back over to Nick Foles when the team returns to the field on Nov. 17 at Indianapolis, putting rookie Gardner Minshew II on the bench after a strong run as the team’s starter.
Marrone made the announcement Tuesday afternoon. The Jaguars originally had player availability scheduled, but scratched that and only made Marrone available to the media.
The decision wasn’t completely unexpected.
Foles has been on injured reserve since suffering a broken collarbone and undergoing surgery after a Week 1 loss to Kansas City. Minshew filled in for Foles and performed much better than anyone could have expected.
The sixth-round rookie draft pick from Washington State led Jacksonville to a 4-4 record as a starter and won six of eight NFL rookie of the week awards and spawning Minshew Mania, which took the league by storm.
Minshew’s mustache and jorts and personality won over fans and gave Jacksonville attention that it had never had.
It was bound to end at some point.
With Foles eligible to return and Minshew struggling in a Week 9 loss in London to the Texans (he had four turnovers), it was probably the time to make a change.
Foles signed a four-year, $88 million deal with the Jaguars in the offseason and was expected to be the face of the franchise in a make-or-break year for Marrone and the front office. Besieged by underwhelming quarterback play with Blake Bortles, the veteran Foles was considered the missing piece for a team that already had an elite defense.
But he was done almost immediately due to the collarbone and Minsew took over and delivered almost every week. He passed for 2,285 yards and 13 touchdowns in nine games and threw just four interceptions.