Join jaguars.com Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.
Don from Fruit Cove, FL:
Gee, with all this sharing of TV and merchandise revenue, you would think the NFL is in a socialist country.
Vic: Some might call it teamwork. Call it whatever you want, but it works. Pooling the revenue is what made the NFL great because it leveled the playing field and allowed small-market teams to be competitive. I've never considered sharing to be a bad thing. I was always taught that greed is bad.
Richard from Starke, FL:
Do the players get any extra income from sales of their jerseys?
Vic: They get 60 percent of all gross revenue. I've used the "Ask Vic" golf tournament to explain it thusly: If we took the golfers' money and gave it to the golf course, the players would take 60 percent of that money off the top, leaving us with 40 percent to pay 100 percent of the costs, and that's a bad business model. To avoid that mistake, we don't touch the money. The golfers pay the golf course directly, which works perfectly because we have no cost in the event, nor do we pocket any of the profit. I'm still amazed that NFL owners agreed to the current Total Football Revenue model.
Clay from Jacksonville:
Should I believe that anyone that plays on a true 3-4 team in the NFL would be able to easily transition to a 4-3?
Vic: You should not believe that. Did you see the game last night? Ziggy Hood is a defensive end. At 6-3, 295, the knock on him as a 4-3 defensive tackle prospect was that he lacked the kind of size you want at that position, but he wasn't a good enough pass-rusher to be an end. That made him a tweener, which is what a 3-4 end is. Look at the Steelers defense and what you see are a lot of misshapen men. You see short, squat guys and tall, skinny guys. The Steelers' defensive players are a strange mix. It's almost as though they've created them especially for the defense they play. If you put the Steelers' personnel in a 4-3 scheme, they would not be successful because their body types and skills wouldn't fit that scheme.
Dustin from Melbourne, FL:
Going into Monday, I have a new outlook on preseason games. So what would a win mean to you? Is it just confirmation that the Jaguars won the individual battles when they needed to?
Vic: Anyone who needs a scoreboard to tell them whether their team "won" or "lost" a preseason game doesn't understand football. You'll know winning or losing when you see it. When I watch Monday night's game, I'll be watching for examples of physical competitiveness. Execution is for later. What I want to see now is talent. Do the Jaguars have the talent to match up against a team that was in last year's playoffs?
Billy from Tampa, FL:
When you say "rookie defensive tackle Terrance Knighton offers two-gap, nose-tackle potential," what exactly does two-gap mean? Where does he line up?
Vic: Two-gapping is a term used to describe the responsibilities of a defensive lineman who has lined up on the nose of an opposing offensive lineman, as a nose tackle would line up on the nose of the center. In that alignment, the defensive lineman is responsible for two gaps, the ones immediately to his right and left. His job is to stand up the blocker, hold his ground, read the direction of the play, shed the block and react to the direction of the ball. That's old-time football. That's Bob Lilly and Joe Greene stuff and it's very difficult to find players who can do that and rush the passer, too, so teams have gotten away from two-gapping and moved their defensive linemen into the gaps, instead of on the nose of offensive linemen. Lined up in the gap, a defensive lineman's responsibility is to beat the offense off the ball, penetrate into the backfield and disrupt the flow of the play. When a coach talks about "fits," he's describing the scheme that accounts for every gap so that if every defensive player executes his gap responsibility, there's no place for the back to run. Terrance Knighton has the kind of low center of gravity to be able to play on an offensive lineman's nose, hold his ground, shed, read and react. To be able to play a 3-4 defense successfully, you have to have a nose tackle that can do that because, in so doing, he keeps the blockers off your linebackers. The linebackers are the stars of the defense. They have to be allowed to run free. The next time you're watching the Steelers or Patriots, watch Casey Hampton or Vince Wilfork. They're the key to it all.
Tom from Jacksonville:
I want to buy a Maurice Jones-Drew jersey. I also want all the profit of the sale to go to the Jaguars, not 1/32nd of it. Does this mean I have to buy it on jaguars.com or at the stadium? Is there another team store anywhere?
Vic: You'd have to buy that jersey on jaguars.com or at the stadium. The Jaguars do not independently sell their merchandise otherwise.
Kyle from Indianapolis, IN:
Last season, the Chargers had a chance to compete for the Super Bowl. They will own the AFC West this year but now have to face a Patriots team led by Tom Brady. I know they can beat my Colts (two years in a row), but do you think they have enough talent to beat the Patriots in a playoff game?
Vic: The Chargers have S. Merriman back this year and that's making them a sexy pick in the AFC. The best thing the Chargers have going for them is that they play in, possibly, the weakest division in the league. They should breeze into the playoffs. I like them and I've liked them for quite a few years. This is their time, no more excuses. They should be ready to win it all. In my opinion, they've got to use their weak-division edge to win homefield advantage in the playoffs. The Chargers lost in Pittsburgh and in New England in the last two AFC title games. Their road to the Super Bowl needs to avoid the northeast in January.
Daniel from Montebello, CA:
Do you truly believe the Jags defensive line can be effective this year?
Vic: I don't know. It's a legitimate concern. I've seen good things in this training camp and I wrote about them on Thursday, but we can't really know where this team stands until it starts playing against other teams.
Z. from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
Would it be fair to say that preseason games determine who can't play at this level and regular-season games determine who can play at this level?
Vic: Yeah, I think that's fair. Regular-season games are the standard by which players are judged. Preseason games are the standard by which rosters are cut. There's one more standard: the postseason. It's the standard by which players become champions.
Kenny from Atlantic Beach, FL:
Have you had a chance to read the website "profootballtalk.com?" The guy who runs it is named Mike Florio and he seems to have it in for the Jaguars. Every post about the Jaguars on that website is so negative and it seems he will not be happy until this team moves to Los Angeles. The latest rant on there is how desperate the Jaguars are to sell tickets. I, for one, am fed up with national sports hacks criticizing this team and Mr. Weaver. Your thoughts?
Vic: Buy the tickets. That'll end the criticism. This isn't going away, folks. The media is watching and it will continue to watch. If this town has recurring blackouts this season, criticism is certain to become intense. It's time to stop blaming the media and start buying tickets.
Rob from Jacksonville:
If you're Gene Smith, what six receivers are you gonna take?
Vic: Six is kind of heavy. Five should be enough. The five wide receivers I would keep are Torry Holt and the other four who play the best in the preseason and offer the greatest upside for future development. It's too early to start picking a roster. Let it play out.