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O-Zone: Trick play

Posted Apr 20, 2014

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it . . .

Bill from Jacksonville:
John, we continue to hear just how talented Clowney is. There are NFL experts saying he is a once-in-a-generation player, and could be one of the greatest defensive ends in the history of the NFL. So, if he is so talented, and such a "once-in-a-generation" player, why did he only have three sacks last year? If a quarterback was called a "once-in-a-generation" player after throwing 10 touchdowns people would laugh. Or a running back who only rushed for 300 yards, or a wide receiver who only had 300 yards receiving. How can only three sacks happen to someone so good?
John: That of course is the question general managers must ask – and no doubt general managers with Top 5 selections are researching the heck out of the topic. I’ll answer two ways. First, defensive end – like any defensive position – is different from offense in that a defense can’t always control opportunities a player gets. Also, an offense can double team a defensive player and game plan in such a way that it dramatically limits the chances a defensive player gets to disrupt a game. A great player on offense will get enough opportunities to make plays to avoid having miniscule numbers. Secondly, though, many NFL people do share that concern and don’t like his production dropping as much as it did. That’s why you’ve heard that debate around him so much. Such is the level of his talent that he may go No. 1 overall even with those questions. Without the questions, there would be almost no doubt.
Dane from Pooler, GA:
Regarding Don from Macclenny's question, let's not rewrite history here. Blaine Gabbert was widely regarded as a strong quarterback prospect, the top prospect by some. Byron Leftwich was also considered very “NFL ready,” a mid-first-round prospect. To go back and say we "reached" for both of them isn't really fair. Swung and missed? Maybe. But reached? No.
John: Hey, one fer good memory!
Billy from Orange Park, FL:
Can a team write a clause in a player's contract to void the contract in the event of alcohol/drug suspension?
John: The Collective Bargaining Agreement provides rules for how alcohol and drug issues are to be handled. But in one a sense, a clause already is in there. A team almost always has the option of releasing a player, and while bonuses and past salary can’t be recouped, unless a player’s salary is guaranteed – which usually isn’t the case – a team usually doesn’t owe a player money after he’s released.
ivan from jacksonville:
c'mon ozone you cant have a guy just spew cliches with no actual facts or real tangible data behind it and say the "arguement for manziel is impressive"
John: why not I often run emails from people with callous disregard for speeling and, punctuation
Scott from Tampa, FL:
Can you give a clearer picture of how Matt Scott may play into the quarterback picture? I could see us getting a quarterback in the second or third round and then having Henne, Scott, and the draft selection and no need for Stanzi (unless we need the extra arm for off season reps).
John: I’d say there’s a possibility of that, though I wouldn’t expect the Jaguars to release any quarterbacks until after the draft. Also, I’d say the Jaguars draft two quarterbacks with Henne starting and Scott and the two draft selections competing for roles beyond that.
Invisible woman from Jacksonville:
Check it out John, I'm not wearing anything.
John: Don't I know it!
Will from Jacksonville:
You suggest there isn't much difference between the "Top 3" quarterbacks in the draft and the others. Doesn't the fact that there's constant reference to the "Top 3" instead of the "Top 6" suggest otherwise?
John: It suggests otherwise, and it means a whole lot of people are discussing the class as if there is huge separation between the top three and the rest, but that doesn’t make it real. The Top 3 quarterbacks –Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater and Johnny Manziel – have been discussed in one breath for so long they have become the consensus Top 3. It wouldn’t surprise me a bit if they weren’t the first three quarterbacks selected, and it wouldn’t surprise me if all three are taken lower than many project. The draft as often as not plays out nowhere near what people expect, and I suspect that will be the case this year.
Brian from Atlanta, GA:
Do you think that if the Jaguars trade down to No. 7 or No. 8, they would consider trading down again?
John: Sure.
Brian from Mandarin:
To the unknown pundit: 260-pound men who run a 4.5 are not lazy. Just sayin. Thx
John: There’s probably some truth to that, but they don’t always work hard or play with maximum effort. If that’s the case then it’s the general manager’s job to evaluate it and factor it into the equation when deciding whether to draft the player.
Chris from Mandarin:
Hey O-Zone, I ENJOY THE GAME. Think I'll be a success?
John: Oh, I’m sure you’re already successful in your own way.
Ray from Jacksonville:
As to the questioner's statement that football is 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical, wow, I never knew Lawrence Taylor was that smart. Why didn't anyone take a chance and draft Stephen Hawking in the seventh round?
John: I’m not going off on a rant about how smart football players are, but Lawrence Taylor was a smart player and more often than not the great players are very intelligent players. There are exceptions, but generally speaking it’s hard to play the game and not play it intelligently.
Josh from Fort Lauderdale and Fernandina Beach, FL:
Generic Observation - If we could pick up Sammy, and Blackmon manages to keep his nose clean, the Jags' receiving corps could be one of the league's elite. It's been a while since any phase of the team has been recognized in that respect.
John: Your generic observation is quite observant.
Chris from Stratford, CT:
In regards to the transition tag, I know we were trying to get a good player but didn't it also work as a disadvantage because now the Browns have Mack for a minimum of two years where if Mack had signed just the transition tag and played under it. He would again be a free agent next year, barring a franchise tag.
John: That would have been the case had Mack indeed played under the transition tag this season. Usually what happens in the case of transition or franchise-tagged players is the player and the team come to a long-term agreement. That would take the player off the market. There seems to be a perception that somehow the Jaguars could have done something this offseason to make it possible for Mack to play for a year or two for the Browns and then be happily united with the Jaguars in a year or two. This wasn’t a case where two crazy kids are madly in love and vow to wait years for each other. A player is loyal to whoever is paying him and can’t – or at least shouldn’t – be thinking about one team while playing for another. The Alex Mack/Jaguars situation is over. Neither party is thinking about the other and I’d be surprised if that’s ever not true.
Dave from Orlando, FL:
There is a pompom blocking the navel of the franchise! Somebody has to answer for this!
John: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Greg from Jacksonville:
What’s with all the national talk about various quarterbacks going in the second and third rounds of the upcoming draft? I've never noticed so much talk about quarterbacks selected after Round 1. Are Garoppolo, Mettenberger, McCarron, Savage and Murray thought to be potential franchise quarterbacks?
John: It depends who’s doing the thinking. The players you mention don’t fall under the category of consensus potential franchise quarterbacks, but neither did a lot of players who are now considered franchise quarterbacks. More accurately, the players you mentioned are players enough people think could develop that it’s worth a second-to-fourth-round selection to have a chance to let the guy grow. That’s a route the Jaguars could take more than once on draft weekend.
Bruce from Gotham:
That Charles in Charge was a good one but it doesn't compare to the MacGyver when he gets caught by the bad guy and gets put in a holding cell. Then out of nowhere he puts together something using his belt, shoelace and gum and gets out and saves the girl. THAT was awesome.
John: That was almost as good as that O-Zone when the senior writer kept running a joke into the ground and annoying people who didn’t “get it” just because the joke happened to amuse the senior writer and he thought annoying people was “kinda funny.”
Tym from Southside:
O-Zone, have you seen that one episode of House? It was the one where the patient contracts the rare illness. Then Dr. House and his crew incorrectly diagnose it a few times. I don't mean to ruin it for you if you haven't seen it, but they end up finding the cure five minutes before the episode ends.
John: Have you seen this? This is awesome!

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