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Always room for pass-rushers

Join Jaguars Inside Report Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Jordan from Lincoln, NE:
Which defensive end is typically the pass-rush specialist; left or right? Are there any teams in the NFL now where both ends are pass-rush specialists?

Vic: The right defensive end position is generally regarded to be the premium rush position, so you might position your pass-rush specialist there, but not if Bruce Smith is on your team and he's in his prime. Truth be known, there aren't a lot of pass-rush specialists of renown. If you have a natural pass-rusher, you want him on the field all of the time, which means you have to find ways of covering for him against the run. He's that valuable. Look at Jason Taylor. He's a skinny guy who was drafted solely for his pass-rush potential, but he's developed into one of the best every-downs defensive ends in the game. Every team can afford to make room for a pass-rusher who may be a little soft against the run, but two of them may present a problem. Normally, you would put your best pass-rusher on the right side and your best run-stopper on the left side, since most offenses are going to be "strong" to the defense's left side and would be likely to run behind the tight end to the offense's right.

Bruce from St. Simons Island, GA:
First the football virgin, now the "Godfather" fan. Is there any rehabilitation program for editors?

Vic: Yes, it's called golf.

Rob from St. Augustine, FL:
Do you know what our record is against Tennessee since the 1999 playoff game?

Vic: Is this a trick question? All right, I'll bite; 2-4 since the loss to the Titans on Jan. 23, 2000, in the AFC title game.

Ben from Fernandina Beach, FL:
When Quinn Gray gets cut, the way I understand it he has to clear waivers for the Jags to be able to sign him to their practice squad. So does that mean Cincinnati, Detroit, Houston, Chicago, Dallas, Arizona and Minnesota -- the teams ahead of the Jaguars in the claim order -- have to pass on him for the Jags to be able to sign him to the practice squad, or does the entire NFL have to pass on Gray?

Vic: The entire NFL would have to pass on Quinn Gray, but are you sure he's going to get cut?

Brian from Dayton, OH:
I don't understand why Del Rio is contemplating getting rid of the veterans and giving the young guys a chance just because Jimmy Smith got suspended. What is that saying to the fans if he decides to just give up on this year?

Vic: It would say the organization had come to the realization the smart play was to make a bold commitment toward its future.

Burney from Jacksonville:
What happened to the Raiders in regards to their salary cap? Weren't they $37 million over the cap going into the offseason? How did they survive with the core of the team?

Vic: They re-structured and pushed the money onto future salary caps. They're going to give it one more try. Sound familiar?

Butch from Houston, TX:
What percentage of his old self will Brackens have to be for him to be worth paying and keeping on the active roster?

Vic: Tony Brackens is a $3.8 million salary cap hit this year and his remaining amortization is nearly $10 million. His salary is $1.1 million, which would be the only real savings if the team cut him. So you might say that if the Jaguars got a handful of sacks and some representative playing time, Brackens would earn his keep. But is that a realistic expectation?

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