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Defense has a few nasty guys

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

David Belisle from New York, NY:
One thing I think the Jaguars have always lacked, even at the peak of their success, is a mean streak, for lack of a better way to put it. All great, dominating teams have it. Are there any of the new players on the offensive line or on defense you feel will bring that nasty attitude toward the opposition?
I don't see it on the offensive line, though Maurice Williams appears to be a play-to-the-whistle guy who likes to cut-block, and that could earn him a reputation. On defense, T.J. Slaughter is definitely a "nasty attitude" guy, I've seen Eric Westmoreland take a swing at Brad Meester in practice, and Wali Rainer is a high-motor player who prides himself on physical play. This defense has legitimate high-energy players.

Aaron Thomas from Jacksonville:
Do you think that since the passing game is having such a hard time going against a good defense, that it will make them better when the season opens?
It's too early to say what's good and what's bad, though the defense has truly made an impression on me. Yes, working against a strong pass-defense will stimulate improvement in a pass-offense, but I also believe there are legitimate reasons for concern about the Jaguars passing attack. The next few weeks of the preseason will be a discovery period. What's wrong? Is it the wide receivers? The quarterbacks? The scheme? Or is it a simple lack of familiarity between the quarterbacks and the receivers? Let's give it time.

Jon-Michael Harris from Starke, FL:
How are preseason schedules made? Does the league make them or the teams?
As part of the divisional realignment agreement by the owners, the league agreed to assist teams in scheduling preseason games. That assistance came at the urging of Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver, who agreed to his team's placement in the AFC South if the league agreed to help Weaver schedule drawing-power teams such as Miami, Tampa, Dallas, Denver and Pittsburgh for preseason games in Jacksonville.

Vijay Oberoi from Montreal, Quebec:
Usually, when the season starts I get pumped up for the Jags offense. This year it's the other way around. I'm excited about our defensive tackles. Last year, Stroud had problems with staying low; this year Henderson, who is taller, would be expected to have more problems. Please compare these two to the two defensive tackles on the Bucs, who look like they are built low to the ground. Who would you rather have?
Nothing beats a squat and powerful defensive tackle, when it comes to stopping the run. Warren Sapp is the modern version of Curley Culp. However, what you lose in a dug-in, low-to-the-ground guy is the ability to knock down passes in the middle of the line. That's what Marcus Stroud and John Henderson will give the Jaguars. Now, can they get down low enough to stop the run?

Travis Reed from Jacksonville:
To remedy the Smith problem, could the Jaguars possibly add a bunch of incentives to step up his annual salary to, say, add $500,000 or $750,000 this year, and up to a million dollars next year, based on a 100-catch season? That money would be counted in the year paid, right?
I don't think that would satisfy Jimmy Smith.

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