The Jacksonville Jaguars might have to play without quarterback Trevor Lawrence for the first time since drafting him.
Lawrence sprained his right ankle in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s 34-31 overtime loss to Cincinnati and will have more tests to determine the severity of the injury. He left the locker room in a walking boot and on crutches.
Left tackle Walker Little stepped on Lawrence’s ankle on a third-down play, causing him to twist it as he was sacked. Lawrence tried to get up, but dropped to the ground, ripped off his helmet and threw it in disgust. He was helped off the field and into the tunnel for X-rays, which were negative.
It ended an otherwise stellar night for Lawrence, who completed 22 of 29 passes for 259 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for a score.
“It sucks for Trevor,” backup quarterback C.J. Beathard said. “It takes the breath away from the guys on the sideline to see him hurting.”
Beathard said Lawrence was “in good spirits” in the locker room after the game and added “obviously he’s sore right now.”
Beathard completed 9 of 10 passes for 63 yards in relief of Lawrence. Beathard put the Jaguars in position for Brandon McManus’ 40-yard field goal with 26 seconds remaining in regulation. But he couldn’t do much after the Jaguars won the toss and took the ball to start the extra frame.
Beathard appeared to complete a long pass to Calvin Ridley on third down that would have put the Jaguars near the goal line, but it was negated by a holding penalty on rookie right tackle Anton Harrison. Jacksonville ended up punting, and the Bengals quickly moved into field-goal range. Evan McPherson’s 48-yarder ended the game and sent the Jaguars into wait-and-see mode on Lawrence’s availability for Sunday at Cleveland.
Lawrence injured his other leg against Indianapolis in mid-October. He has played with a brace on his left knee since. Lawrence has never missed a game in his three-year NFL career.
“We’ve got 100 percent confidence in C.J. going forward,” coach Doug Pederson said. “I don’t think we have to change up a whole lot.”
Beathard last started a game in Week 16 of the 2020 season with San Francisco. He is 2-10 as an NFL starter.
“This is my seventh season in the NFL,” Beathard said. “It’s not like I’m a young guy going in there.”
Reporting by The Associated Press.
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