Why was the world of American sports fans so into the retirement of Blake Bortles? Some deemed him a legend, is that really accurate? Or is it just the fact that the NFL slaughters everything in America, and Wednesday was actually a slow news day, National Football League wise.
Blake Bortles saw action with five teams over the course of his pro career, but he’ll obviously be mostly remembered as a Jacksonville Jaguar, as he is second all-time in franchise history in passing yards (17,646) and touchdown passes (103).
Blake Bortles retires, a legend who walks away having taken his team to an AFC title game and made nearly $48M(!). https://t.co/fctogvdE5i
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 5, 2022
As the Jaguars’ QB1 from 2014-2018, Bortles set franchise records for single-season passing yards and touchdowns in 2015.
The Jaguars are definitely improved this season, sitting at 2-2, but they are a far cry from their most successful season ever, which came with Blake Bortles at the helm, in 2017.
Ol’ #5 led the Jaguars to their first ever division title and second AFC Championship Game. However, it was a game defined by controversy.
This game is widely considered the NFL’s version of the 2002 NBA Western Conference Finals Game 6, in that the officiating was extremely questionable to say the least, with the calls going mostly in favor of the already established dynastic team.
Which means the calls obviously went against the small market upset team, the side that would be bad for ratings.
Is Blake Bortles a true “legend” though? He will forever be linked with that extremely infamous game, so that is legendary.
And while Blake Bortles set single-season franchise records in passing yards (4,428) and passing touchdowns (35) in his second season, he also led the league in interceptions during 2015.
Blake Bortles also had a league-high 75 interceptions by the end of his five years in Jacksonville. In 2016, he threw 16 interceptions, including three pick-sixes. And did he “retire”, or did he just one day stop finding potential suitors in the NFL?
He hasn’t thrown a pass in the NFL since 2019, and despite signing with four different teams after the Jaguars, Blake Bortles only played for one of them. He went 1-2 passing for three yards with the L.A. Rams in 2019.
Blake Bortles, 30, announced his retirement on an episode of the “Pardon My Take” podcast.
“I quietly… I didn’t tell anybody, I retired,” he said today, when asked if he was still in playing shape these days.
“I guess you guys are kind of the first to hear it publicly.”
I guess that’s why so many of us are talking about Blake Bortles today- we just don’t know how to process this news and/or his so-called legacy.
Overall, he was very up and down, so bottom line, the definition of mediocre. Which would then make him a bust, since he was the third overall pick in the 2014 draft. But hey, he made about $50,000,000 so more power to him!
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He has regularly appeared in WGN, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and he co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast, part of Edge of the Crowd Network. Follow him and the website on Twitter and Instagram.Follow paulmbanks