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O-Zone: Exciting stuff

Posted Mar 22, 2018

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Bill from Jacksonville:
The Jaguars’ offense in 2018 will consist of five unproven wide receivers, an average quarterback and a running back that averaged 3.9 yards per carry last year. Is that really the plan for 2018? Please tell me there’s going to be more to this offense than that, John. Thanks! Go Jags!
John: I suppose that’s one way to look at the Jaguars’ 2018 offense. Perhaps an equally realistic way is it will consist of essentially the same wide receivers as last season along with Donte Moncrief. It also will consist of a quarterback who appeared to improve in many areas last season, and who will be entering his second season in this offensive system. It also will consist of a new tight end, but most notably it will consist of an offensive line that will consist of a newly added guard who was as good as any NFL player at his position last season. I don’t know if all of that consisting will add up to the Jaguars’ offense being great on a historical level, but considering the unit did rank first in rushing, fifth in points and sixth in total yards last season … well, heck, Bill: maybe – just maybe – things aren’t so tragic after all.
Jags Fan 818:
Zone, so much change, so many emotions. I'm just at a point to where I don't know what to say anymore!!!
John: If only more people were similarly afflicted …
Robert from Jacksonville:
I get that they were fan favorites, and it's not a bad thing to fan when players you like are no longer with the team, but can you help some of us with our selective memories? What was the Jags’ record this past year with nothing from A-Rob due to injury and little from Hurns? And what was our record when they both went for over 1,000? Huh? Oh yeah … weird.
John: The Jaguars’ record in 2015 when Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns both had more than 1,000 yards receiving was 5-11. Their record this past season with 17 yards from Robinson and 484 yards from Hurns was 10-6 with an AFC South title and an appearance in the AFC Championship Game. I don’t know how weird it was, but a change in offensive philosophy to a more run-oriented system certainly influenced the Jaguars’ decision to not retain the duo.
Tom from Ormond Beach, FL:
Do you recall several years ago, when Marcedes Lewis was asked about him having a down year, he admitted to losing his focus due to family distractions? That was understandable, but not fair to the team. “Classy?”
John: Your perfection and the accompanying perch above the rest of us is a gift, Tom. Don’t squander it.
Tom from Charleston, SC:
You have commented countless times that quarterback is the most important part of any franchise. If that is the case, why is the franchise putting so little effort into addressing that position? No signing in free agency and there are few to none expecting an early round signing in the draft. I know that they almost reached the Super Bowl at quarterback. I firmly believe that was in spite of Blake Bortles rather than because of. They keep bringing in great defensive players and a few good players on the offensive side while ignoring the "most important position on the field.”
John: You not knowing what the Jaguars are doing or planning to do with the backup quarterback position in no way, shape or form equates to the team putting little effort into the position. I understand the disconnect here, but that disconnect doesn’t mean negligence on the part of the team.
John from Jacksonville:
Ah, yes … spring is arriving this week as planned. With spring comes our 2018 NFL schedule; we can relish the joy of getting two or three prime-time slots this coming season instead of only one. It's always fun to see who we play and when as we plan our fall and winter calendars. Do you expect to see the schedule announced in April before the draft?
John: Yes.
Ray from Monroe:
There is no competition between Tom Brady and Roger Federer. The 20 Grand Slam titles Federer has captured as a pro? That's 10 percent of all Grand Slam majors in tennis' 50-year Open era. He dominated competition from 2004-2007 when he had a 93 winning percentage; for his career, it’s something like 82 percent. Plus, he was ranked No. 1 in the world for 237 weeks! Also, he competes against the world not just in the United States, so when you talk about GOAT he dominates the world. Federer doesn't get enough respect since the U.S. isn't as big of fans of tennis as football and basketball. ESPN did a thing on the 20 most dominant athletes and they put Federer behind LeBron James and Peyton Manning ... a total combined of four championships …Really? Federer all the way!
John: Manning and James have combined for five titles in their respective sports, but you’re right: Federer should be placed behind no athlete in the last 20 years. It’s a touch different in tennis because there are four Grand Slams a year, but considering Federer was World No. 1 in 2004 and again in 2018 in an individual sport traditionally geared toward younger players … yes, it’s remarkable. And incidentally, FedWifeFan and I are trekking to Miami Saturday in an attempt to see Fed play in person for the first time. We tried this two years ago; he withdrew hours before the match – one of the rare times he has withdrawn from a tournament. We’re giving it another shot. Wish us luck. Or don’t. It doesn’t matter either way.
Julio from So Cal:
O, Good job with your recent handling of the questions regarding the recent cuts. Fans need to understand that to win you have to have a team first attitude in the front office, too. Do fans want to win or have the same players for years? You can’t have both. You said something very important. The $10 million saves on cap space from the Hurns and Lewis cuts will be ROLLED OVER to 2019. Fans are forgetting about cap roll over. The Jags will need that cap room next year even more. Settle down, armchair general managers.
John: Fans gonna fan.
Troy from York, PA:
Hey, O: I don't understand why they didn't sign Aaron Colvin back. I thought that was the whole reason for not signing AR15 back … so we had room to sign him? Did they even offer him a contract? So now who do we get to play the nickel that can play at a high level as he did?
John: The Jaguars wanted to sign Colvin back, but they didn’t want to go as high as the Houston Texans were willing to go. But, no … re-signing Colvin was not the “whole” reason the Jaguars didn’t re-sign Robinson. Trying to re-sign Colvin was among the reasons the Jaguars didn’t re-sign Robinson, reasons that include long-term cap stability, the ability to sign guard Andrew Norwell, etc. As far as who will play nickel, that will be D.J. Hayden. I don’t know that he’ll play it at Colvin’s level, but he will play it.
Steve from Upper Tract and currently in Colorado:
I was a big fan of Dennis Miller on MNF!!!!
John: Hey, one fer Dennis Miller!
Andy from St. Augustine, FL:
You're not alone - I also kind of like Dennis Miller on MNF. But Tony Kornheiser? C'mon - what were they thinking?
John: I actually liked Kornheiser on MNF, too – but I have a soft spot for aging, camera-challenged, irascible sports writers. I have no idea why.
Julio from Southern California:
O, do you think the Jags can find a starting right guard in the draft? What is the team feeling of Jermey Parnell? If Parnell plays well and we find a gem in the draft, do you think the Jags could have an elite line?
John: I do think the Jaguars can find a right guard in the draft, and I think there’s a fairly high chance they will try to find one in the first three rounds. The team likes Parnell, though he is reaching the point because of age and injuries that the team must soon start looking at the future of the position. And yes … if the Jaguars find another starting lineman in the draft, the line should on paper be very good.
Nathan from Fort Belvoir, Virginia:
How is it that almost every national sportswriter is a football genius? I read national articles because they tend to have stories first. That said, they seem to add commentary about the horrible decision a team just made or how great the decision is. If this was true, wouldn't the owners immediately fire every team executive and start hiring sports writers to manage their multimillion dollar assets?
John: Are sports writers supposed to offer no analysis? Whether they are right or wrong, wouldn’t that be sort of boring? I mean, more boring than sports writers are anyway?

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