Re: 2.8L MPFI starting problems MAYDAY!!
Usally a timing chain will jump when the engine is shut off, not necessarily while running.
Have an assistant at the ignition key and you observe the the spark plug and screwdriver to ground trick while it cranks. as you've said, it should be a blue spark for 1/4 inch gap, if battery is good charged.
Remove spark plug(s) to see if they are wet with fuel. If wet, then injectors are working. Speaking of injectors, see/measure if there is 12 volts to one side of the injector connector on both sides of the engine. Each side is powered by a relay and fuse. ECM lowers the voltage on the other wire in the connector to turn on the injector. Food for thought there. Power comes from a fused wire from starter solenoid.
If spark plug is out, do a compression check to the one cylinder. If compression is lower than 100 PSI, then maybe the timing chain did jump, but I doubt it.
Check timing chain slack. Turn engine over by hand to timing marks align, then rotate backwards. You will feel the slack. Anything over 10* means the chain is stretched.
You're sure the engine didn't overheat?
You're sure the charging system is working?
EGR valve isn't stuck open?
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