Let's get to it . . . Jeremy from Navarre, FL:
What about that Prosinski guy on the roster? How do you see him fitting in the next year or two? I thought he might develop into a solid long-term starter. How sweet would that be if he turned out to be a John Lynch-type of player?
John: Chris Prosinski played a role as a backup and finished last season on injured reserve. I'd put him in that category of players needing to make a significant leap from Year One to Year Two in order to develop into a long-term starter. Many NFL players are in that situation each year because the off-season before a second season is a critical time. And yes, it would be sweet for the Jaguars if he became a John Lynch-type player. Few teams in the NFL wouldn't want that.
Bryan from Jacksonville:
I am not so concerned about the schedule. I think the Panthers had the hardest schedule last year when it was released, but ended the season ranked around 22. My concern is that learning is maximized for the rookies. With new rookie salary structure, is it fair to assume that there should not be a rookie reporting after the first day of camp? In 1995, all draft picks signed on the same day.
John: I agree about the schedule. Although I look at it when released, I don't put a lot of stock into strength-of-schedule stories or stories that project records in April. Too much changes too fast in the NFL. As for rookie holdouts, the dynamic has indeed changed. One of the benefits of the new CBA indeed is rookie holdouts should be kept to a minimum. With the new salary-cap structure, it certainly shouldn't be an annual concern.
Mark from Jacksonville:
Could Maurice Jones-Drew be the first player inducted into the Hall of Fame?
John: The Hall of Fame has been around since the 1960s. Many, many players are already in.
Dave from Duluth, GA:
Re Richardson or Claiborne falling to No. 7 and Jags not having a "need" at their positions: Vic used to say you draft them anyway if they're the best player because "why would you want to give your competition a better player than you are selecting?" How do you feel about that?
John: I agree. I'm not sure I've ever said the Jaguars shouldn't draft Claiborne if available. I have sort of assumed he will have been selected by the time the Jaguars select. As for Richardson, my only argument against is I'm not sure running back is a position you take in the Top 10 anymore. There are many believe his talent trumps that theory, but I've never thought the presence of Maurice Jones-Drew is a reason to not take Richardson.
Jeremy from Navarre, FL:
The "Inside the Jaguars" piece you guys are doing along with the other articles and videos is awesome! Please keep up the great work, it is VERY much appreciated!
John: I like emails with words such as awesome and great that end in exclamation points! I especially like them when those words apply to the jaguars.com staff. I like them better when they apply to me alone, but in this case, I like them enough to post a second email from Jeremy from Navarre, FL.
Tucker from Jacksonville:
Regarding your response to Ron yesterday, the heat and players were a factor in what? Was the NFL actually planning around keeping Manning safe?
John: In the games, Tucker, in the games. The email to which you refer talked about heat being a big factor in the Jaguars-Colts games when Peyton Manning played. I merely noted that the Jaguars' players were a bigger factor for the Colts in those games than the heat. The Jaguars, it may be recalled, had some pretty good players then.
Ray from Vernon:
Since we have missed on so many first-round picks in the past anyway with the so-called BAP approach – and since we know that nothing is for certain – why can't we just go ahead and get the best available wide receiver since that is the most needed? I watched every game last year and we could have won more games had the receivers just caught the ball. To me it seems BAP is sometimes overused/rated.
John: I don't know that the Jaguars really started adhering to BAP in the first round until the last three years. I'd argue that they haven't missed in the first round during that time.
Andrew from Kadena AB, Okinawa:
MJD and Fred Taylor did more than coexist. They were a nightmare for opposing defenses. I think another back would be good just to give MJD a break. I'd rather not destroy our team's star because we make him account for almost half the Jaguar's total yardage.
John: On the field they obviously did more than co-exist. They absolutely were one of the great running-back combinations of recent seasons. My co-existing comment was in reference to a question about the Jaguars drafting Trent Richardson and how Jones-Drew might feel about it. I pointed out that it wasn't an issue for Taylor when Jones-Drew was selected.
Drew from Jacksonville:
How about Quinton Coples to the Jaguars... in Round 2? There always seems to be a guy every year who free falls from the first round.
John: Although he is considered a significant risk, I am sure Coples will be selected by someone next week. Whatever the round, I doubt that team will be Jacksonville.
Chad from Jacksonville:
Let me know if you agree with this statement or not. Everyone seems to bash Gene Smith for the way he is running the Jags. My take is that Gene has a vision on how a team should work and succeed. He thinks that if he can implement this team the way he envisions it than it will be a success. What do you think?
John: Well, yeah.
Joe from Jacksonville:
I'm not sold on these "elite" level players in this year's draft. Andrew Luck should not be compared to John Elway, and therefore has been overrated. RG3 is a risk to me. I think he's either a boom or a bust. I like Matt Kalil as an elite offensive lineman. I'm skeptical about Trent Richardson and just how game changing he will be. I like Morris Claiborne as an elite corner. I am also skeptical about Justin Blackmon's ability to be a true number 1 receiver. I like players such as Fletcher Cox, Courtney Upshaw, and Nick Perry more than I like some of these "Elite" players.
John: And therein is the fun of draft time. Everyone has an opinion, and no one has any idea who is right. And because this plays out over time in various cities and various circumstances, it's a long time before we ever know.
JOHN FROM JACKSONVILLE:
gENE SAID EARLIER THAT THIS YEAR IS COMMITTED TO DRAFTING OFFENSE. wHAT POSTIONS ARE BEING CONSIDERED?
John: wHEN DID GENE SMITH SAY THAT?
Bobby from Jacksonville and Section 245:
Theory: Gene makes up the draft board according to value and it includes a mix of small-school and big-school guys. Most GMs in the league probably pass over the small-school guy but Gene is clearly not afraid to pull the trigger. Therefore, a higher percentage chance exists that higher-rated small-school guys fall to the Jags based purely on the fact that other teams might reach for a big-school guy based purely on the level of competition in college. A little wordy, but makes sense?
John: There's a lot of truth in the theory. But Jaguars Director of Player Personnel Terry McDonough explained this issue best early this week when he said the Jaguars don't draft based on size of school. As hard as that may be to grasp, the best personnel departments grade players then select players based on that evaluation. If it happens that they are from a big school or small school so be it. This is the best way to ensure you draft the best possible player. The lone exception is because there can be a transition period for small-school players – and because you expect your first-round selection to start early – it usually is best to draft players from big conferences in the first round. That's precisely what the Jaguars have done each of the past three drafts.
Brian from North Mankato, MN:
I know it is just offseason conditioning for you as well as the players, but I don't think the word "verbiage" means quite what you (or apparently the coaches or players) think it means. Verbiage is "speech or writing that uses too many words or excessively technical expressions" (New Oxford American Dictionary). "Terminology" may be more appropriate. I don't want to overreact at this point when you are just writing in your underwear, but should we be concerned if this stuff continues into camp.
John: Thanks for the information. I didn't use the word verbiage. The players did. I quoted them. And who says I'm wearing underwear?
A capitalization issue
Let's get to it . . . Jeremy from Navarre, FL: