Let's get to it . . .
Travis from Jacksonville:
Gene tipped his hand, saying he has Tannehill as BAP around seven. The Jags may test the fans' resolve by getting Tannehill at seven. That will cause a gasket leak starting around the Georgia border and ending somewhere around Cuba! Go Gene! Show what BAP means!
John: I'm not sure Smith said he has Tannehill or any other player as Best Available Player around No. 7. What he said was there is a strong chance there will be a lot of interest in Tannehill at No. 7. That's because Tannehill is the only quarterback outside Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III who seems to be worthy of going in the first round and there likely will be a few quarterback-hungry teams come draft day. Because of that, Smith said there may be a chance to trade down and that he would be open to entertaining offers to do that. Nowhere in there did he indicate any plan to draft Tannehill at No. 7 and I would be shocked if that happened.
Joe from Orange Park, FL:
What happened to Alshon Jeffery? I remember a month or two ago I saw in a few mock drafts where he was being selected at No. 2 by the Rams and now Mike Mayock only has him listed as the fifth-best receiver available.
John: While Jeffery – a wide receiver from South Carolina – has size and very good college production, many scouts believe he is too slow to separate from NFL corners. Does that mean he can't make an impact in the NFL? No, but it does raise concerns over whether he can be an elite player – enough concerns to drop him pretty considerably. Right now, it would be a pretty big surprise if he went in the first round.
Justin from Chandler, AZ:
I know we have Jennings, and I'm not taking anything away from him: he is a good RB. But do you think there is any way that the Jags could select Trent Richardson with the seventh pick and try to get back to the amazing 1-2 punch that Freddy T and MJD had?
John: I doubt it and I hope not. Jones-Drew had a memorable season this past season and is one of the NFL's best players at his position, but I don't know that that's a direction toward which you want to continue to build. If Richardson is there and he's clearly the best available player then I suppose it would be difficult to not take him, but there are a lot of positions I would rather see improved.
Tucker from Ponte Vedra, FL:
A lot of people are wondering why a receiver like Laurent Robinson, with a relatively short history of success, commanded such a high price in FA. Especially now considering the apparent value in Brandon Lloyd's deal with New England. Was it based on the expensive contracts of receivers like Garcon and Jackson who signed just before Robinson? Or perhaps the fear of seeing one of the few remaining options fall off the board?
John: The contracts of Garcon and Jackson set the market for Robinson in this sense: had the Jaguars allowed Robinson to leave town without signing this past week he likely soon would have signed elsewhere for something close to what he got in Jacksonville – and that would have been in part based on what Garcon and Jackson received. Don't compare the contract of Lloyd to the others. People get excited by Lloyd's statistics, but don't forget that this is an older player who never has been re-signed by the team for which he had big numbers. There usually is a reason for that, and it's likely a reason Lloyd was available this weekend after younger, "ascending" players had signed more quickly for bigger contracts.
Nick from Fort Benning, GA:
I have a question that has nothing to do with free agency. I was wondering about if a franchise moves to another area, does the team still keep their old team records? For instance, do the Tennessee Titans still have Houston Oiler records?
John: Usually teams that move do keep their own records. When you think of it, it's logical because when a team moves, it's often the same coaching staff, front office and much the same roster as in the previous city. Only the name has changed. The Titans, for example, did keep the Oilers records and the Colts still include records from Baltimore in their media guide – much to the chagrin of many people from Baltimore, by the way. The case I can think of when that didn't happen is the Cleveland Browns. The Browns moved to Baltimore and became the Ravens following the 1995 season, but because of the emotion around that situation, the Browns' records stayed in Cleveland and became part of the new Cleveland Browns in 1999.The Ravens' history dates only to 1996 although the players and much of the front office were the same in the early years of Baltimore as they were in Cleveland in 1995.
Albert from Memphis, TN:
I'm going to make you a Wikipedia page one of these days. You're welcome in advance, O.
John: Thank you in advance for adding yet one more unread page to the white noise that is the World Wide Web.
Brooks from Ponte Vedra, FL:
If we get Freeney or Wimbley do you still see us getting a defensive end in the draft?
John: Yes, but perhaps not in the first round.
Dan from Jacksonville:
Cap question in regards to some of these inflated numbers being reported. Does the total potential value of a contract count towards the cap, or only the guaranteed money? Also, if a player gets cut, does the total potential value of said contract for the year come off the team's cap space?
John: The cap is so complex that it's difficult to give one answer that covers all scenarios. The answer often depends on how the contract is structured. Generally speaking, a player's base salary for a season counts against the cap for that season and the bonus he receives is prorated over the life of the contract. That means if a player signs a five-year deal with a base salary of $5 million every season and a $5 million signing bonus he would count $6 million against the cap each season. If a player is cut, the base salary that he doesn't receive doesn't count against the cap, but the bonus proration does. It's never that simple, but that's the basic formula.
John from Elizabeth City, FL:
Why is it we seem to always find short-term fixes at DE and WR? It seems like we bring in guys who have had injury problems or are someone else's backup. Is this just the Jag way like the Colts feel about LB or is it coincidence?
John: Finding a defensive end is difficult, and finding a wide receiver has become more difficult in recent seasons. I would say the Jaguars quite often have brought in players at both positions meant to be long-term solutions – although many of those players obviously didn't work out. Those players dominated the drafts much of last decade. The team has not addressed either position in the first three rounds of the draft in the last three seasons, selecting instead offensive tackle, defensive tackle and quarterback in the first round those seasons. I'd say there's a better than 50 percent chance they choose defensive end or receiver in the first round this year. That's often how you get the long-term answers.
Keith from Palatka, FL:
I was disappointed that we did not sign Eric Winston, and hope that we could still get someone like Demetrius Bell even though he has some medical issues. I do not agree with you that what we have on the roster at right tackle is sufficient. I hope that I am wrong and that Eben Britton is over his injury problems, or Will Robinson can develop, or Guy Whimper can play better. I do not share your optimism about RT just as I did not share optimism about Courtney Greene at safety. When we got Dwight Lowery, the hole was filled and the defense was much better. It only takes one guy at one position to make the whole unit look bad. We need to fix the problem. Please go back and focus on RT from film of last year and you will see there IS a problem.
John: I'm not sure I ever said right tackle was a position of strength last year. Guy Whimper started much of the season. Ideally, he would be a backup and that would be the ideal going forward. He also played hurt much of the season. My understanding is Britton played well before his injury problems, and from what I know, the belief is that his back issue from last season is behind him. If that's the case, then the right tackle position should be better next season. People have interpreted what I wrote that I thought the offensive line pass protected fine last season. Obviously, there were problems at times. It's certainly an area to watch once organized team activities start, and I'm anxious to see what the Jaguars are going to do in the draft and even later in free agency. Could the Jaguars improve on the line? Obviously. I'm just not sure the need there outweighs receiver, defensive end and corner.
Stephen from Lala Land:
I thought I'd take a break from studying for finals for more pressing matters. It's 3 a.m. and I was wondering why everyone, especially the talking heads, puts such an importance on who wins or loses free agency. Last year, the Eagles "won" free agency and were crowned Super Bowl champs before preseason! It seems to me that free agency winners usually turn into regular-season losers. Any thoughts, Mr. O?
John: I think you should get back to studying. You've got this free-agency thing figured out.
Back to studying
Let's get to it . . .
Travis from Jacksonville: