Justin Blackmon needed to be escorted to the locker room (USA Today Sports Images)
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Justin Blackmon may not have been able to play in Friday night's preseason opener against the Miami Dolphins due to recent groin surgery, but he made his presence known while watching the game from the sideline.
According to Mark Long of the Associated Press, Blackmon needed to be escorted to the locker room by teammate Maurice Jones-Drew after getting into a heated argument with Dolphins cornerback Nolan Carroll in the second quarter of the Jaguars' 27-3 loss.
Blackmon's argument prompted first-year head coach Gus Bradley to intervene, Ryan O'Halloran of the Florida Times-Union reports.
"You know how it is in the preseason," Bradley said following his head coaching debut. "Sometimes a player talks to the sideline. It started off as just banter and I just addressed it. I turned to him and said, ‘There’s no place (for that). I’d rather you use your energy to encourage our guys and not get caught in that.’
"He came right to my office and met with me (after the game)."
According to Long, the altercation may have involved defensive end Jason Babin, one of only seven Jaguars over the age of 30.
Story I got: Blackmon & Carroll jawing. Babin tells Blackmon to pipe down since he's suspended 4 games. Blackmon turns on Babin. #Jaguars
— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) August 10, 2013
Blackmon's lack of maturity may have him on thin ice with the Jaguars. The 23-year-old wideout, who former general manager Gene Smith traded up to select with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft, was arrested on DUI charges last offseason and will serve a four-game at the start of this season after violating the league's substance abuse policy.
Bradley, who arrived this offseason from the Seattle Seahawks, has given Blackmon a "fresh start". Considering that Bradley coached cornerback Richard Sherman the previous two seasons, he's probably not averse to a little trash talk, but a player doing it from the sidelines while in street clothes is not going to fly with him. Especially when it's a player who is rehabbing an injury and won't be available until October due to a suspension.
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