JACKSONVILLE -- Let's get to it . . .
Bill from Jacksonville:
Would the Jaguars and Shad like to address Roger Goodell saying the Jags may start playing two "home" games in London soon?
John: The Jaguars did address this Tuesday, and so did NFL spokesman Greg Aiello. While a New York-based reporter tweeted and eventually wrote a story that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said there was a good chance the Jaguars would soon be playing two home games in London, Aeillo shortly thereafter said Goodell had not said that. The Jaguars also addressed the issue with local media, saying through a spokesman, “Our focus is on one game per year we are committed to play there the next four years. That's all we're thinking about.” The New York Post quoted Goodell saying, “If we go to three London games, what we’ll likely do is ask Jacksonville to potentially play two or ask three different teams to host. That’s one issue we’re debating.” Again: The NFL would have to ask the Jaguars to play two home games in London. I don’t sense that’s the Jaguars’ plan.
Dane from Jacksonville:
It's really amazing how much the national media wants the Jaguars out of Jacksonville. Just when relocation talks start to quiet down we read yet another article on NFL.com stating how in several years we could be watching the London Jaguars. The article based this wild proclamation off of Roger Goodell's desire to build more of an NFL presence in Europe. All relocation nonsense aside, how likely is it really that our Jags could eventually play multiple games a year overseas? While one-game a year over the next four years is exciting, I hope the chances are slim that our overseas ventures go any farther than that.
John: I think for now the chances are slim. I say “for now,” because it’s tough to predict the future. Shad Khan has said since buying the team that the fan-team relationship is a two-way situation. The team must provide a quality game-day experience that eventually includes winning and in turn, the fans in a city must support the team. Khan and Jaguars President Mark Lamping also have been consistently clear that local revenue is key to the Jaguars’ success in this market. One home London game is a significant supplement to that local revenue. I could perhaps – perhaps – see a scenario in which the Jaguars played a home London game and a road London game back-to-back, but I can’t see in the short-term the team putting two home games there. As for the whole “London Jaguars” thing, it goes back to the original team-fan relationship. If the team performs and the local market doesn’t respond, could the team eventually leave? Of course. A local market has to respond or a team can’t work. If the local market responds, then I can’t see the team leaving? Khan has been committed to Jacksonville since buying the team. If it’s working here, that shouldn’t change.
Earl from Las Cruces, NM:
O-Zone, was that you sharing the spotlight with Gus Bradley in his press conference? Nah . . . couldn't have been that person with red sun visor who looked really disinterested. Answered my own question.
John: That was me in the red visor, and I assure you, Gus Bradley doesn’t have to worry about me cutting in on his spotlight. As for how I looked, I have been accused at times of looking disinterested in press conferences, but that’s not usually the case. Usually, it’s gas.
Martin from Fernandina Beach, FL:
“The Jaguars do need to find out what they have in Gabbert, and if he wins the job, they’ll get their chance." A point that seems to be missed in the quarterback discussions is this: If he doesn't win the job, then they still have found out what they have in Gabbert.
John: Well, certainly there is that.
Tom from Melbourne, FL:
O, do you love it?
John: “Love” is a very strong word. I like it, and I have great admiration for it. You might even say I have strong feeling for it, so in that sense, “Do I love it?” Well, maybe. Yeah, you know what? Maybe I do.
Mike from Mandarin, FL:
My dad is an original season-ticket holder, and I have been going to every game since '95 with him and my brothers. With that being said, I have always taken rumors about LA, and some sort of move to another city, with a grain of salt. However, hearing the rumors that the Jags might play "two home games" in London from the Commish has me extremely concerned. I think this would be a huge mistake, and I personally take this rumor as a shot across the bow.
John: Yes, except that the rumor was wrong. Except for that.
Daniel from Summit, NJ:
The Cicadas are everywhere and driving me crazy. Apparently you can eat them. What kind of beer do you think would make a good pairing?
John: There are a thousand stories in the naked city, and mine’s one of them.
Bo from Dresden, NC:
John, why is it so difficult to understand that the coaches are going to start the best quarterback. There is no conspiracy – right?
John: There’s no conspiracy because there’s no reason for there to be a conspiracy. No one involved with the Jaguars’ decision-making has any motivation to do anything with the quarterback position but to start the best player. They just don’t.
Joe from Fleming Island, FL:
Aside from a lack of quality players, (a big aside, I know) what do you think was the problem with last year’s coaching staff that made Mr. Khan change directions? (Ya ya . . . lack of wins, but really).
John: I don’t know that Khan was hell-bent on changing coaches. He did believe that a change in general managers was in order. Once that change was made, Khan decided that the general manager should be in charge of all things football. David Caldwell decided that a culture change was needed, and it’s difficult to change the culture without change at head coach.
Chris from Duval:
Much praise be upon the O-Zone this day, for there is no other Zone of O so divine as the one true O. 'Oehser' [pronounced: "oh, sure.."]- the one true protector of the realm and keeper of all that is 'O'.. the one who sacrificed himself['s] dignity and respect so that we - the little people, might feel better about our own selves, thanks be to him. Can I get an amen?
John: Actually, it’s pronounced, “Oh-Zhure,” but forget that. I like where you’re head’s at right now. Stay strong.
Patrick from Jacksonville:
The Babin injury sounds a lot like Daryl Smith last season, so how long will he really be out because we waited for Smith until Week 14?
John: It sounds similar in the sense that it’s a groin, but the difference in groin injuries can be extreme. They can be brief or they can shut a player down for a season. Babin is expected back for training camp, but even if he’s not, there are more than three months until the opener. Babin underwent surgery Tuesday. There’s time.
Sam from Fruit Cove, FL:
I am amused by the bevy of questions that you field asking whether this position or that position (particularly quarterback) will have competition or an 'open' competition. Can you think of an instance where an NFL coach did not play the player who was evaluated to be the best at a given position based on some hidden agenda?
John: Most coaches wouldn’t do it intentionally, but there certainly have been cases where coaches have been loyal to players based on history rather than the ability of the player at that certain time. It seems Bradley goes out of his way to not have that be the case, and in this case – a new coach in a new situation establishing a new start and new culture – I can’t see that being an issue.
Gamble from Washington, D.C.:
Considering the league-wide trend toward passing offenses, the Jaguars' single-season passing TD record is shockingly low. Since Gabbert's future will depend on his regular season play in 2013, is it reasonable to expect him to break the Jags' single season passing TD record?
John: I can’t say I’m shocked that the record – 23 – is as low as it is. At the same time, it’s pretty striking. Some of that can be attributed to style of play through the last decade, but certainly you would expect it to be broken soon. Is it reasonable to think it could be this season? Yes, that’s certainly attainable.
Marcus from Jacksonville:
You don't read everything written about the Jaguars??? Come on! First MJD works out in Miami and now this? Does anyone around there even care about the team?
John: When I want to know what’s going on with the team, I go talk to J.P. Shadrick. After doing that for a while, I go find out what’s going on with the team.