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O-Zone: For fifty-one

Posted Mar 14, 2018

JACKSONVILLE – Call this one a two O-Zone Wednesday.

We’ll call it that, because that’s what it is. Here’s why: Enough went on Tuesday around the Jaguars to fill two news days: wide receiver Allen Robinson leaving as an unrestricted free agent, the Jaguars reportedly obtaining Carolina Panthers guard Andrew Norwell as an unrestricted free agent, middle linebacker Paul Poslusnzy retiring and …

Well, you get the idea.

So, here’s what’s happening Wednesday: We’ll have this O-Zone dedicated solely to Posluszny, who retired on Tuesday after 11 NFL seasons and seven with the Jaguars. The other will post later Wednesday morning and will be dedicated to the back and forth over the comings and goings of – and anger and angst over – the Jaguars’ free-agency news.

As for this All-Poz-All-the-Time O-Zone … I said enough on the site Tuesday that I’ll mostly stay out this and let the fans share their thoughts on Posluszny’s career and what he meant to the Jaguars. Considering what he did for seven seasons here, he deserves a lot more, but this space can offer that much.

Let’s get to it …

Fred from Jacksonville:
What a beautiful statement from Poz. I will truly miss the relentless effort he demonstrated on EVERY play (and I'm not an all caps sort of guy). Can he enter the Pride of the Jaguars immediately?
John: You’re referring to the statement Posluszny wrote to the franchise and the fans. That can be found here and it’s worth the read. As for Posluszny in the Pride of the Jaguars, that’s one of the first things Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith mentioned when I spoke to him about Posluszny Tuesday. Smith felt strongly Posluszny should be in the Pride eventually. No argument here.
Stephen from Mandarin:
Just heard Paul Posluszny is retiring. Sad. What a great guy and a great representative of the game of football and most of all a great representative of the Jacksonville Jaguars. I hope the talk around him is about how good of a person and player he was, and I hope he stays here in Jacksonville to support the team and the fans that truly respect him! One fer Poz!
John: One fer Poz.
Biff from Jacksonville:
A lyric for Poz … you'll be missed, sir. "You see a hammer finds a nail … and a freight train needs the rails … and I'm doin' what I'm on this earth to do … And I don't think on why I'm here where it hurts … I'm just lucky to have the work …"
John: Sing it, Biff.
Alan from Jacksonville:
No more Poz. Sad day in Jacksonville. With all the hype about A-Rob, I was really hoping to see Poz back for at least one more year. I wish him all the best. He will be missed.
John: Yes, he will.
Nels from Jacksonville:
No question, just a comment. I am pretty bummed about Paul Posluszny retiring. I hope he stays in Jacksonville and is part this organization for a long time. He is the poster boy for class acts in today’s NFL. I know players come and go but this one is a bummer.
John: This departure indeed is different. I feel confident saying that anyone who knew Posluszny during his time with the Jaguars feels the same way. He carried himself with class during a lot of tough weeks, months and seasons with the Jaguars for nearly seven years and was never anything but professional. That’s rare enough for players who are playing for contending teams, but for players who are playing for teams that are struggling? That’s really rare. The media who covered Posluszny realized this and my sense from reading emails in the wake of him announcing his retirement Tuesday is that fans realized it, too. Bummer? Yep.
Bryant from White Plains, NY:
I'll definitely wear my Poz jersey tomorrow. What a player. What a class act. He will be missed on and off the field. #oneforpoz
John: #oneferpoz
Bill from Danville, NY:
Being from the Western New York area, I only get to watch the Bills play on Sundays. I remember Poz from his days there. I was a big fan of his and always thought Buffalo was dumb for letting him test free agency. But then I heard he was signing with my beloved Jags. I was so dang excited for our team. I thought with Daryl Smith and Poz this defense was going to be great again. Turns out he would be the only bright spot on those teams until just recently. Now he is riding off into the sunset. Poz definitely deserves to be on the list of greats that never got a ring, but did more than enough to earn it. From your biggest NFL career fan, I'm gonna miss you. #PPTWD
John: Very well said. Some NFL players get to play for and win championships – multiple championships in some cases – but here’s the reality of that: there’s a lot of luck involved with who gets those opportunities. Football is simply usually too much of a team game for one player – particularly a defensive player – to overcome a team struggling around him. Here’s what a player can control: how he approaches the game on a daily basis. Posluszny approached the game as professionally on as consistent a basis as any player I ever have covered in more than two decades. He did more than enough to earn a ring, but he actually did more: he did it the right way for a phenomenally long time – and for that, he should be proud.
Ralph from Jacksonville:
As outstanding a player as Paul Pozluszny was, it is clear he is an even better person. I admire him greatly. Let me join the many who I am sure are clamoring for his inclusion in the Ring of Honor.
John: Consider yourself joined.
Jim from Pahrump, NV:
Wow! What a letter from Poz. What a true professional, teammate, and all around human being. John, you hit on four very solid points, but you could have added fifty more. I hope he returns in some capacity because life won't be the same without him.
John: My four thoughts on Posluszny’s retirement can be found here. I don’t know what Posluszny’s immediate post-football plans entail. I think he would be successful as a coach, though I have no idea if he would want to commit to the hours and time away from family that entails. Whatever he does, it’s hard to imagine him not being successful.
Jon from Brentwood, UK:
Wow, Zone, that feels like two body blows in a very short space of time. I get the situation with 15 [Robinson] but would still have loved him to remain a Jaguar. As for Poz, this feels at least as much of a loss. Fantastic for him to have gone out on a career high but seems like a big void to fill in so many ways. I can only hope there is a chance to buy him a beer at The Finery very soon. One fer 51!
John: One fer 51.
Pete from Queensbury, NY:
John, I just read Poz's retirement letter. Wow. So glad he got a winning and playoff season before hanging up the cleats. Is it too early for a Ring of Honor request?
John: As can be read here, teammates were glad for the division title and run to the AFC title game in Posluszny’s final season – as was Posluszny, who mentioned it prominently in the letter he wrote to fans. As for the Ring of Honor, no it’s not too early to request it. Such things take time, but it’s absolutely something that needs serious consideration.
Damian from Jacksonville:
I was hoping we would get one more year from Poz. It is hard to see a long-time favorite go. He was a star when the team wasn't doing so great. What do you think the odds are Poz will return to present a draft selection this year? Also, do you think he will return to football after retirement as a coach or something like that?
John: We shall see.
Bill from Hawthorn Wood, IL:
No question. Just taking a moment to reflect on Poz. What a class act; a true professional. He played hard, cared a lot, was a role model on and off the field. He had the attitude of winner on a team well before the record indicated as such. One big one for Poz!
John: Indeed.
Logan from Wichita, KS:
Paul Posluszny! THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING! When we were at the bottom of the league, Poz was our bright spot. A true leader! THANK YOU POZ!
John: True.
Pedal Bin from Farnborough, Hampshire, UK:
Oh Mighty 'O,' I just looked up "class" in the dictionary. It just said "Paul Posluszny." One fer – no several fer – the mighty Poz!
John: True.
.J. from Orlando, FL:
No question, just a standing ovation for Poz. Drop whatever you're doing, stand up and clap for that man!
John: Good plan.


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