JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it . . .
Rob from Orange Park, FL:
I am really starting to like this Jedd Fisch offense. After going 0-8 I felt pretty comfortable he would not be returning next year. Now, I'm pretty sure he will stay and hope that he does. How would you characterize his offense?
Characterization: Evolving, and I mean that in the best way possible. Think of it: the Jaguars started the season with a significantly different lineup than the one playing now and have gone from a team that couldn’t score a touchdown offensively to one that scored two touchdowns and moved pretty efficiently for the most part on Sunday. It did so without Cecil Shorts III
, Justin Blackmon
and Maurice Jones-Drew
. Fisch clearly has established that he’s going to be creative and it’s likely he would incorporate more read option with a more mobile quarterback. You also get an idea the Jaguars will be more up-tempo under Fisch as they get more efficient. They’ve moved in this direction at times this season, particularly in recent weeks. It’s hard to be up-tempo when first downs are tough to come by, but you see flashes. It’s interesting how the wind blows on issues like this. Early in the season, the inbox was flooded with emails critical of Fisch; now, it’s flooded with emails worried he may leave for another job. Such is the life of an NFL offensive coordinator.
Bryant from Las Vegas, NV:
I was looking through the list of Top 25 Jags on the jaguars.com
and it lists Brunell fifth. Jones-Drew is fourth. Does that make him a lock to be inducted in the Pride of the Jaguars in the future?
John: That list was compiled by a vote of media members and doesn’t guarantee future membership in the Pride. But, yeah, I think there’s a pretty good chance Jones-Drew gets in at some point.
Jason from Section 124:
Do you see the Jags rebuilding the secondary in the offseason? So far only Cyp has showed that he has the ability to be a quality starter.
John: I don’t see that. Apparently you and I are watching different things.
Steven from Fernandina Beach, FL:
In your opinion, which player made the most progress since training camp? Todman? Brown? Pasztor? Branch? All of the above are due consideration, and I have become a believer in "trusting the process."
John: I’d say Branch, but I’d say the fact that it’s a legitimate question and the fact that that answer may not be clear-cut makes this season a pretty clear success.
Paulo from New York City, NY:
Regardless of the fumble, Denard Robinson
showed big-play ability. I hope Gus gives him another chance this year. I'm pretty sure he learned his lesson and won't ever make the same mistake again. O-man, can you ask Gus to give him another chance when you bump into him across the hall?
John: On it.
Scott from Vienna, VA:
People keep talking about trading for Cousins, or Flynn. Don't they realize that neither has established themselves as a starting QB in the league?
John: No, people are attracted to names they recognize – sort of like my cat, Spike, is attracted to anything that moves outside of a window.
Princefigs from Jacksonville:
I never heard anyone talk about it, but I would really like to see Tom Coughlin inducted into the 'Pride of the Jaguars' one day. Do you see this happening?
John: I certainly hope so. As much as any player, Coughlin during the early years of the team defined the franchise. He was a force of personality as a head coach that as much as anyone was responsible for four playoff appearances, two division titles and two AFC Championship Game appearances. I believe Coughlin will be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and when that happens, much of the discussion will focus on his career with the New York Giants. But within the context of this franchise, he should absolutely be in the Pride of the Jaguars.
Dave from Jacksonville:
I don't get the Henne bashing. The guy will stand in a pocket and throw knowing he's gonna get absolutely killed after he throws. They were bashing Gabbert for not doing that but can't give praise when it's due.
John: Quarterbacks get criticized unless they win Super Bowls. After each year the Colts didn’t win the Super Bowl with Peyton Manning at quarterback there were fans who believed he was the problem and that the team needed to make a change at the position. Really.
Chuck from Summerville, SC:
What is your opinion on the recent reports that the NFL is considering looking at all replays coming from a central location in the booth? I know the refs are human and do their best, but have also thought that it is a lot to ask a guy to overturn a decision he or his team has already made.
John: I don’t believe officials have as much of a problem overturning an on-field decision by their crews as some people believe. For the most part, the officials with which I’ve dealt have a passion for getting the call correct more than a worry over how it might look to reverse a call. As for the central-location idea, I don’t mind it. Although some people might balk at the idea, technology often brings change that feels foreign at first, then over time just makes a lot of sense. This seems like it might be such a change.
Al from Orange Park, FL:
John: What your question lacks in verbosity it makes up for with accuracy. Lewis indeed has played well this season since returning from an early-season calf injury. He has been critical in the running game, which long has been the case, and he has three or four of the most team’s most athletic plays in the passing game. He’s a talent and the Jaguars in the last few weeks have gotten quite a bit from him.
Jerry from Jacksonville:
Can you explain the logic behind the NFL rule that a ball fumbled through the end zone is considered a touchback? It seems silly that a ball could be fumbled out of bounds on the 1-inch line and remain in the possession of the team that fumbled, yet if that same ball travels into the end zone and out of play, it goes over to the defense. I don't understand.
John: It is a little confusing. The first thing to think about is what the alternative would be. Do you move it back to the spot of the fumble? In that case there is no penalty for a mistake by the offense. It wouldn’t be a shock in these days of encouraging scoring to see the league change that rule and have it go to the offense in some capacity, but I hope they don’t. It just seems like teams should finish the drive down there and that there should be some penalty for a mistake in the red zone.
Tom from Aberdeen, SD:
Who has the best mustache in the NFL. It's gotta be between Shad Khan and Andy Reid.
John: Shad Khan has the best moustache in the world.
Terrence from Laurel, MD:
How likely is this the final time we see MJD, Marcedes Lewis
, Poz and Meester at The Bank? If these players do leave, will that signal more of a youth movement to continue to build for the future? Who steps in as the leader in the locker room?
John: If all four were gone, sure, that would be a seismic change in the locker room, but I don’t anticipate that. It almost certainly will be Meester’s final game at EverBank Field. While it seems reasonable that at least one of the other three you mention may not return, it’s possible, too, all three could return. It’s difficult to put odds on such things, but I’d think Posluszny will be back, and I’m leaning more and more toward Jones-Drew returning. Lewis’ contract is very pricey next year, so that could be an issue. As far as leadership in the event of players leaving, that happens organically. Cecil Shorts III has assumed a leadership role, and others will follow as needed. That’s part of the dynamic of a growing NFL team.
Vince from Section 103:
Any chance Denard Robinson doesn't make the team next year?
John: There’s a chance for anything, but in this case, it’s slim. Robinson has struggled with fumbles this season, but the Jaguars still like his talent, his attitude, his work ethic, his desire. He can’t keep fumbling, obviously, but my guess is he’ll be on the roster next season with a chance to show he can get that fixed.
Matt from Norfolk, VA:
Watching the defense Coach Gus Bradley built in Seattle, and the way the Jags have played this year, I’m excited for what we will look like once he gets the roster set up the way he wants. It's the kind of excitement a kid feels on Christmas Eve as they wonder if every sound is Santa slipping in through the chimney.
John: I like Christmas.
Nicholas from Fort Hood, TX:
I am going to sharp-shoot your power rankings. The Texans have won in the AFC South this year and it was against the Jaguars.