JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …
Nick from Jacksonville:
Wow, after seeing these questions recently it's clearer than ever you need me as much as we need you. Aside from that picture, which had me roaring, it's clearly Dead in here. So, today's question: if Cyprien continues the growth we saw in the second half of last season, do you expect him to be the dominant force that Kam Chancellor is in Seattle, or is Cyprien an different type of player?
Both. The Jaguars absolutely expect Johnathan Cyprien
to develop into a dominant force. He showed signs of that in the second half of last season, and to listen to Jaguars coaches, he is showing the confidence and growth needed to make a serious second-year jump. But that doesn’t mean he’ll be the exact style of player as Chancellor. The Seahawks’ strong safety is 6-feet-3, 232 pounds and his game is based on that size and physicality. Cyprien is 6-0, 217, and perhaps isn’t the all-out hitter Chancellor is yet, but he has very good ball skills and instincts and appears to have a chance to reach elite status. As for the picture of me and my green bike, I guess I fail to see the humor … I was, after all, a pretty sharp-looking kid.
mike from middleburg:
I once threw my moms broom handle in the front wheels of a bike that with a kid riding it like that just saying you made me remember it but he was not as chubby
John: I hated kids with broom handles who threw them in front of my bike I dont know that it was you but I dont know that it wasnt either and I have this place on my knee from back then when i fell on my bike over a broom handle you can still kind of see the scar
Jim from Nottingham, England:
So, the live cam keeps being taken down. What’s up with that? Can we not handle screen tests, etc., or are they putting pages from the playbook up there?
John: I see this is going to be a topic in the next few days/weeks, so let’s emphasize it again: the Jaguars want fans to be involved and know what’s going on, but they aren’t going to show all of the screen tests and video content on the website’s video board live cam. It’s OK to save *something* for when the real action starts. In fact, it’s more than OK. It’s what’s going to happen.
Joe from Charleston, SC:
I started eating healthier recently, which means each meal takes longer to eat. Each meal taking longer to eat means that I finish my daily O-Zone long before I finish lunch. I respectfully request that you make each O-Zone longer in support of my healthy eating habits. Thank you.
Mike from Jagsonville:
I always envisioned one of the biggest transitions from college into the NFL is "how to be a pro." Likewise, I imagine the biggest jump is seen in the offseason leading into Year Two. In that regard, how does last year's draft class compare to where they were this time last year?
What you envision is pretty much the belief of most people in the NFL. I hesitate to say how the 2013 rookie class is compared to last year, because the players obviously are well ahead of last year. This time last year, they hadn’t been in full pads in the NFL and now they have a year of NFL experience. Several players out of last year’s rookie class did stand out in the offseason – offensive tackle Luke Joeckel
, safety Johnathan Cyprien, cornerback Dwayne Gratz
and running back Denard Robinson
chief among them. Undrafted linebacker LaRoy Reynolds
also looked good. They showed maturity and seemed to have a more veteran presence. That means very little if it doesn’t translate to the field, and we’ll know a lot more about that in training camp.
Billy from East Northport:
I think you're really devaluing Brady in that Super Bowl-drive question. If he needed a touchdown he would have went for the touchdown; if Montana only needed a field goal, he'd have gotten in field-goal range and settled for the field goal. You play the cards your dealt; Brady did what he had to win those three Super Bowls and put his team up with his last possession before his defense failed him. Just because Brady never "had" to drive for a touchdown to win a Super Bowl doesn't mean he isn't capable of doing it. Also, if Brady gets one more ring is he the hands-down best?
John: Of course Brady is capable of doing it. So are the others in the mentioned scenario. But you can’t assume he would have gotten the touchdown in those situations just because he would have gone for it. Driving for a field goal is dramatically different than driving for a touchdown in the final minutes, not only because of the distance but because how the defense can play. And no, I don’t believe Brady is “hands-down” the best if he wins one more ring. That stems from my belief that Super Bowl rings are not the end-all measure for a quarterback, something obviously not everyone believes, but that nevertheless is reality.
Andrew from Harkstead, UK:
I know you/we don't care what the national media has to say, particularly, but two Jags players and the management team in the Top 20 of Making The Leap is nice - another sign that some are just starting to pay more attention...
Yes, it is a sign people are paying attention. And while I long have said little reason to pay much attention to criticism – or praise, for that matter – from the national media, that people are noticing what’s going on around the Jaguars hardly is a bad thing. And it makes sense. The offseason signing of Toby Gerhart
has been getting praise as a logical, affordable move – and Johnathan Cyprien played well enough late last season to merit mention in the offseason. That, plus a growing respect for the approach of Gus Bradley and David Caldwell, has led to a lot of praise for the team and the front office. All of that makes for a happy, fun summer reading list for Jaguars fans. And while all of it’s great, it means just as little as the criticism. What will matter will be how it plays out in August and the fall.
Nate from Visalia, CA:
The Jaguars are getting far more national coverage lately. I dig it. On that note, I also dig that Cyprien is getting some attention outside of the organization. Well deserved. He needs a nickname. Is there anything floating around the facility that seems to be catching on? My vote is for Chris Hyprien or Chris-ManBeast-Cyprien. Actually, I'm siding with ManBeast. Or, darn, maybe just, The Beast. Oh, and would you like to join my fantasy football league? We've got an opening.
John: Nicknames usually happy naturally and without effort. I think this email is a good example why that’s true.
Gene from Jacksonville:
If I’m remembering my ESJ 10th grade geometry correctly, then a2 b2 = c2. So if Ramon saw the video board from 200 miles away while flying at 40,000 feet then that means the video board could also be seen (if unobstructed) from 199 miles away at ground level, which means they could be easily seen from Melbourne (176 miles), Tampa (200 miles) and Tallahassee (164 miles) and almost seen in Albany, GA (206 miles) and Charleston, SC (238 miles). This little light of ours, were gonna let it shine
John: I was under the impression there would be no math.
Bryan from Tampa, FL:
JO, what causes a young, talented receiver such Mike Thomas or Mike-Sims Walker to have only one really productive year, then struggle to make a team the next few consecutive years? Is it weight gain, defensive strategy …how do they go from great promise to can't get open, so quickly?
John: All players are different, and I don’t know enough about Mike Sims-Walker to know what happened. Mike Thomas was a bit of a mystery to me. With his size I never thought he’d be a dominant player, but there were times in 2010 he looked very good and there were times in the 2012 preseason, for instance, that he looked like he had a chance to really fit into a decent receiving rotation. But the reality of the NFL is you have to keep improving each season because there are always young players entering the NFL. If you don’t improve by the time you’re in Year Five or Six and become very reliable, teams are usually going to move on to a player they drafted and try to develop that player.
Michael from Las Vegas, NV:
Hey O-Zone, I figured since it is the dead zone there is no better time to ask the most important question of all: how did you become so cool?
John: I’m way too cool to answer this question.