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Blame it on Jaxson de Ville

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

Patrick from Lima, OH:
I know you will get a million e-mails about the first Leftwich start. I hope I have a semi-original. Now that Leftwich has had his first start as a quarterback in the NFL, and lost, giving the Jaguars their worst start since 1995, do you feel he should be sat down until next year and let this be a learning year for the whole team? I feel why get him hurt while improving the rest of the team.

Vic: Patrick, I'll give you an example from your neck of the woods. In 1985, Bernie Kosar was a rookie quarterback who probably got more playing time than he deserved. Kosar struggled, but Browns coach Marty Schottenheimer stuck with his rookie because the Browns had committed to Kosar as the team's quarterback of the future. The following season, Kosar led the Browns to the AFC title game. Do you think he would've done that had he not played as a rookie? Yes, I think Byron Leftwich should play a lot this year. It's the only way a young quarterback can learn. The Jaguars committed to him when they made him the seventh pick of the draft, and they didn't draft him to sit the bench.

Scott from Cocoa, FL:
I know everyone is giving their opinion on what the Jaguars need to do to become a better football team, so I would like to give you mine. Get rid of Jaxson de Ville. He is the ugliest, most raggedy looking mascot in the NFL. The Jags should release him of his contract and look to the free agent market for a mascot with more talent. Your thoughts?

Vic: So it's come to this. We're even blaming Jaxson de Ville.

Bobby from Orange Park, FL:
I know for the future of the team it's probably best to get Leftwich in the game, but for the sake of argument I've had with a co-worker, please give your opinion. If Brunell would have started (against the Texans) healthy, who do you think would have been the better quarterback to give us a chance to win? I say Brunell; my thick-headed co-worker insists Leftwich, even after the loss.

Vic: I think it's reasonable to assume a quarterback with 11 years of experience might've played better than a rookie quarterback making his first pro start. By the same token, if Byron Leftwich doesn't fumble or if the Jaguars just hand the ball to Fred Taylor a couple of more times and put it on the toe of their Pro-Bowl punter, it's likely the Jaguars would've won and you and your co-worker wouldn't be having this argument. Bobby, make the smart play and graciously concede to your co-worker's point of view. Your blood pressure will go down and you'll feel better about life in general.

Terrance from Jacksonville, FL:
In my opinion, Byron Leftwich did a great job yesterday, despite throwing three interceptions and the fumble. He didn't get sacked, two of his picks were good plays by the defensive backs, and the third was a "Hail Mary." He did some great things and showed the poise of a seasoned vet. I think our future is very bright with him and we should just roll with him. Your thoughts?

Vic: You're throwing around some words that really don't fit, such as "great" and "seasoned vet." What I will say is that at no time did the game appear to be too big for him. He clearly belonged on the field, and that's what I liked the most. From a technical standpoint, I thought a couple of his throws were late. I thought the interception along the sideline was an example of that. But his accuracy was pinpoint on a couple of very difficult passes. I saw nothing that can't be fixed by playing time. In contrast, if you're the Texans you have to be concerned about David Carr, for this reason: The rap on him coming out of college was his release point was too low. It's still low and yesterday he had at least five passes tipped at the line of scrimmage. How are you going to fix that?

Pete from Washington, DC:
I know Byron Leftwich got a great amount of hype since it was his first start and he is supposed to be our "quarterback of the future." I think he did an outstanding job, even though his stats don't really show it. He made a few very costly errors that will only speed up his growth and harden his poise. I know he wanted to start with a win, but how do you think he handled the loss, since it was his worst error of the game that led to the loss?

Vic: Byron Leftwich was outstanding in the postgame interview session. He stood in front of the media and answered questions until there were no more. He also gave a very accurate account of the play during which he fumbled, which tells me his mind was not in a fog as he scrambled for what probably would've been a game-winning first down. I have nothing negative to report about Leftwich's postgame behavior, but it was only one game and we shouldn't get carried away. He'll prove himself over the long haul, and there will be plenty of opportunities to show whether he has the right stuff to deal with adversity.

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