JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville Jaguars aren’t willing to shut the door on the possibility of cornerback Jalen Ramsey playing Sunday just yet.
Ramsey hasn’t been with the team since Wednesday because he was in Nashville for the birth of his second daughter, but the team listed him as questionable for the game at Denver. In addition to the personal leave, Ramsey also is dealing with a lower back issue.
“First of all, congratulations to Jalen and his family on the birth of his second daughter,” coach Doug Marrone said Friday. “Both mom and baby are healthy, and obviously that’s important. We’ve been in communication and we’ll just see [if Ramsey will be available to play], and if anything comes up I’ll make sure you’re aware of it.”
Ramsey has not missed a game since the team drafted him fifth overall in 2016. Marrone is hopeful that the streak continues.
“It’s not something to joke around with, but obviously when you say your level of hope [is that Ramsey will return to play], you’re hoping that every player is going to play from injury,” Marrone said. “When he gets back, we’ll see how he’s doing.”
If Ramsey does not play, his replacement would be second-year player Tre Herndon, who made the team as an undrafted rookie last season.
“‘If we don’t have Jalen, we still have to go out there and it is what it is,” nickelback D.J. Hayden said. “We still got to go out there and we still have a game to win. So I feel 100% confident [in] anybody we got on our team and on this defense and still feel like we’re going to go out there and not skip a beat.”
It has been an eventful two weeks for Ramsey, who asked the team to trade him after being chastised by Jaguars executive vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin following the Jaguars’ 13-12 loss at Houston on Sept. 15. Ramsey got into a sideline shouting match with Marrone after Marrone refused Ramsey’s request to challenge a completion to DeAndre Hopkins.
Ramsey played against Tennessee on Sept. 19 but did not practice Monday because of an illness. He also missed Wednesday’s practice with a back injury, which created its own drama. Three hours after Marrone said he didn’t know when Ramsey suffered the injury, the team released a statement saying Ramsey did report back soreness to the team’s medical staff during the fourth quarter of the Titans game.
After Ramsey sat out Wednesday, league sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that it was considered unlikely that Ramsey would play Sunday. Earlier Wednesday, Marrone said he thought the two-time Pro Bowl cornerback would be able to play against the Broncos “if he has the ability to play.”
On Wednesday night, the team announced that Ramsey would return to his hometown for the impending birth of his second child and released a statement from Marrone that Ramsey “will return to the team when he’s ready.”
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