Former Jacksonville Jaguars starting quarterback Blake Bortles is “officially retired,” he revealed on a podcast Tuesday.
“I have not touched a football since January,” Bortles said on an episode of Pardon My Take. “I quietly, I didn’t tell anybody, I retired. I guess you guys are kind of the first to hear it publicly, maybe.”
When asked if he’d be willing to come out of retirement for a two-year, $15 million contract, he said “absolutely.”
“I’m pretty set with where I’m at with the decision,” Bortles said. “I think if someone were dumb enough to offer that kind of money, it’s kind of hard to pass on.”
Bortles, 30, was the third overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft and took over as the Jaguars’ starter early in his rookie year. In his second season, Bortles set franchise records which still stand for passing yards (4,428) and passing touchdowns (35), although he also threw a league-leading 18 interceptions that year.
In 2017, with Bortles still starting at quarterback, the Jaguars reached the AFC Championship, although it was primarily a credit to the NFL’s second ranked defense and top ranked rushing offense.
Bortles re-signed with the Jaguars after that season on a three-year, $54 million deal, but was benched late in the 2018 season. Jacksonville released Bortles in March 2019 on the same day the team signed Nick Foles.
After his tenure with the Jaguars, Bortles spent time as a backup with the Los Angeles Rams, and was on the practice squads of the Denver Broncos and Green Bay Packers. Earlier this year, he signed a reserve/future contract with the New Orleans Saints, but was released in April after the team added Andy Dalton.
Bortles had a 24-49 record in his five seasons as a starter with the Jaguars with 103 touchdowns and 75 interceptions. He’s second in franchise history in passing yards and passing touchdowns, and he’s eighth in rushing yards.