Let's get to it . . . Mailman from Jacksonville:
Watched the videos of Khan, Mularkey, Tucker and Cullen. I'm hearing the right stuff. I'm feeling it too. They talk the talk . . . I'll bet they walk the walk in 2012.
John: There are good things in the air and from listening to the people involved, there indeed is a good energy. Anyone involved will tell you good energy only goes so far, but these are good people who I expect to mesh well. That's a good start.
Ken from Jacksonville:
Regarding your question yesterday from Charles, are there NFL representatives who are at EverBank that monitor these things or is it more of an honor system? I'm sure if they wanted to they could arrange practices with coaches outside of the stadium. And what would the penalties be if they were caught doing this?
John: There are no representatives, but if there were practices or work outside the rules anywhere in the NFL, the news of that process almost certainly would get out. It's a tight-knit league and people talk. Plus, coaches, officials and players switch teams constantly, and word of illegal behavior almost certainly would travel with them. As far as penalties, think SpyGate with the Patriots in 2007 and think a lot higher. The penalties would be such to ensure it wouldn't happen again.
Travis from Jacksonville:
Great Job you do John!! With the way things are going do you see Jaguars winning a Super Bowl in the next three years?
John: First things first, of course. Let's get a staff in place, and get the players back in April and start the process of the entire organization working as one. I believe that will take place over the next six months, and I believe if it does, you will see a team that functions smoothly and does not hurt itself with unnecessary mistakes on game day. That's the first step toward competitiveness. Next comes the process of the players gaining experience within that system and learning how to string wins together consistently and win big games. That can happen quickly or it can take time, but I believe those things will happen and I believe once they do this team can start competing for and reaching the playoffs. Once in the playoffs, you have a chance at the Super Bowl if things break right. That's the long answer. The short answer is if the things I just mentioned happened and if Blaine Gabbert makes the improvements the franchise expects then, yes, there's a chance.
Mike from Jacksonville:
Yes, Gene Smith may share some of Bill Polian's qualities, but does he cheer in the press box?
John: Smith does not.
Adam from Jacksonville:
Mularkey has already come out and said he will not be calling the plays. How much influence will he have on offense on game day? Does he tell his coordinator whether to call a run or pass play, or does he completely leave all decisions to the coordinator?
John: He will certainly influence the offense in the sense that he and the person he hired as an offensive coordinator, Bob Bratkowski, clearly are of like mind and approach when it comes to offense. Ideally, head coach, offensive coordinator and all others have spent enough time in off-seasons and in game planning that their philosophies and approaches are pretty close to being as one once the game begins. Mularkey was pretty clear this week that while he wouldn't be calling plays and wouldn't be force-feeding terminology, the offense would be his, which is at it should be. His job is to set the tone and the philosophy and put the right people in place to execute. It's his show. He's the guy.
Trey from Jacksonville:
Hey O man, I watched the press conference on Jaguars.com and I was struck by how Coach Mike answered the question about leaving Buffalo. It seems to me he is a man who will stand on his beliefs even when he knows it may cost him opportunities long term. I think how he answered that question for Shad and Gene was a big reason why he got the job. Care to comment or speculate?
John: I honestly don't know that Mularkey leaving Buffalo was a huge topic in the interview. Khan said Wednesday after announcing the hiring that he didn't spend much time on it when speaking to Mularkey, and indicated he knew as many details of the situation as he needed. Essentially, Mularkey believed the situation in Buffalo was a different one than it was when he took the job two years prior, and that he believed it best for all involved if he allowed then-Bills General Manager Marv Levy to hire his own coach. Mularkey resigned and in so doing, walked away from his contract. I have no doubt that Smith was well aware of the situation and circumstance and that he and Khan already had decided it wasn't an issue. In fact, from my conversations with people who were familiar with the situation – including people who covered the Bills at the time – the reality is that Mularkey resigning in Buffalo was very much an act of integrity. That's not surprising. This is a critical hire for the Jaguars and for Smith and Khan. If you know anything about Smith there was no way someone without integrity going to get involved in this search process.
James from Jacksonville:
Gabbert's helmet comes down over his eyes. No way he can see the defense when he is under center. Can you bring this to the attention of his coaches so they can look at that?
John: I'll forward the email.
Don from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
Tim Tebow has captured the imagination of the world. Albert Einstein thought Imagination is the preview of coming attractions. He also said Imagination is more important than knowledge. It's not a bad thing to try and capture the imagination of the fans regardless of the knowledge you think you have. There has got to be a lesson learned here. Energy and power can be captured by the imagination of the fans. Maybe there is no proof of this but it does not mean it's not the driving force behind a team's success. A good decision could be a bad decision so why not add just a little thought about how much will it stir the imagination of the fans. Just a thought! Go Jags! Lots of energy around Tim.
John: Congratulations, Don. For what, I'm just not sure.
Ron from Daytona Beach, FL:
Can you find out how many season-ticket holders from the first season have continued to be season-ticket holders for all years. I am one and was just wondering the count of us fans.
John: Jaguars Senior Vice President Stadium Operations/CFO Bill Prescott tells me the number is around 4,000 – or about 10,000 total season tickets.
Julie from Wahiawa, HI:
Hey O-man can you riddle me this: My dad said he heard someone say that a coach cannot laterally move positions in the NFL. For example, a defensive coordinator can't go to a new team to be a defensive coordinator. Is this true at all? What are the stipulations if so?
John: It depends on contract status and the position for which a coach is to be interviewed. If a team wants to hire an assistant for a head coaching position, the team for which the assistant is working must grant permission. If a team wants to hire an assistant for an assistant position and the assistant is under contract, the hiring team must ask permission and it is up to the coach's current team to decide whether it will allow the interview to happen. If a coach is not under contract for the following season, the coach's current team can't block the move if the permission is requested after a certain date following the season.
Sean from San Bernadino, CA:
I have been thinking about that "crapshoot" question, and when you really think about it, winning a Super Bowl in the NFL is a crapshoot. I mean, yes, organizing the right staff and players and plays are done with intent. But players staying healthy, other teams players being hurt, penalties, weather, which way the ball bounces. So many things that lead to a Super Bowl are out of coaches' and players' hands. Things really have to fall into place at the right time multiple times to hoist up that coveted trophy. The Crapshoot. Sounds like the name of an awesome book.
John: I have covered many Super Bowls, and twice a team I covered closely played in the game. One time that team won it and I was on the field during the post-game ceremony. What I remember most was the combination of exhilaration, exhaustion, amazement and relief all of the people who had been intimately involved seemed to feel. Years and years of daily work goes into these careers, and as you said, ultimately the winners of the ultimate, career-defining games are decided on things that are often beyond the control of the people involved. What professional football people do is plan and work to put their team in the best possible position to win, then hold their breath as it all plays out. It's an exhilarating ride, often one that is somewhat cruelly beyond anyone's control.
Bert from Anytown, USA:
If the Jaguars were a stock, should I invest in them?
Let's get to it . . . Mailman from Jacksonville: