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Jacksonville Jaguars Maurice Jones-Drew to shed walking boot

Jacksonville Jaguars superstar running back Maurice Jones-Drew was held to just six games this past season due to a severe foot injury, and it seemed like both he and the Jaguars were slow to react to the severity of the injury. Jones-Drew even admitted that he underwent foot surgery too late, and the Jaguars did not place him on the injured reserve until later on in the season. The Jaguars suffered without their best offensive player, but Jones-Drew is on the mend right now.

According to the Florida Times Union, Maurice Jones-Drew is expected to shed the walking boot on his left foot later this week and will then begin the rehab process. The 27-year-old UCLA product, who is attending classes there this offseason, is expected to attend mini camp but will not participate in camp.

Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley told the Florida Times Union, “I’ve had some conversations with him. I know Maurice’s past history is that he leans up as he gets closer to the season so I know this is probably challenging for him to be in the boot and not be doing things physically but I trust him.”

Set to get $4.95 million in the final year of his deal, Jones-Drew will no longer complain about his deal and will instead focus on getting healthy and proving himself in a contract year. The Jaguars will reportedly review his contract situation at the end of the year, and Jones-Drew’s future in Jacksonville and his economic prospects as a whole rest on his ability to rehab, get healthy, and produce in 2013. He is just one season removed from a 1,606 campaign in which he carried the rock 343 times and averaged about 100 yards per game in the best year of his career.

The Florida Times Union also reported (in the same piece above) that Bradley met with West Virginia Mountaineers standout Geno Smith in a private meeting last week after WVU’s pro day. It will be interesting to see how interested the Jaguars are in Smith, because it sounds to me like they are willing to rebuild their roster around Blaine Gabbert and give the Missouri product a final shot.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter for more NFL updates and analysis @SorianoJoe.

Tags: Geno Smith Gus Bradley Jacksonville Jaguars Maurice Jones-Drew

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