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It's a young man's game

Join senior editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Lee from Jacksonville:
What was the purpose of going for the two-point conversion on the last touchdown we scored? With the touchdown, we were up by four and the two-point conversion only made the lead six. Either conversion would have the Chiefs win on a touchdown. What gives?

Vic: The two-point conversion would have forced the Chiefs to convert the extra point, had they scored a touchdown. Remember, their kicker had just missed an extra-point attempt and a field-goal try.

Gary from Jacksonville:
You mentioned in an earlier column that a player can be acquired from another team's practice squad if signed to the active roster. Can the new player later be assigned to the new team's practice squad or must he remain on its active roster?

Vic: A player signed from another team's practice squad must be assigned to his new team's active roster and remain there for three weeks. After that, he may be cut and signed to the team's practice squad, after he clears waivers, of course.

Nick from Estero, FL:
I think this offense is becoming explosive. I think it's expected to score in the 20's in every game and I think a lot of it has to do with Byron. Once the running game gets going, I think the offense will become playoff caliber. How do you think the offense will do in the Colts rematch?

Vic: My expectations are higher for the offense now than they were when the two teams played for the first time three weeks ago.

Tony from Suwanee, GA:
What are your thoughts on the Keenan McCardell trade? I was a huge fan when he was with the Jags but he is 34 years old and only under contract through 2005. My "Ask Vic" education makes me believe the Chargers gave up too much by trading a third-round pick and a jar-on-the-shelf sixth-round pick for a player who is on the backside of his career.

Vic: You have stated my opinion perfectly. It is what I was taught to believe a long time ago and I've seen no evidence since then to make me believe differently. My thing is this: Can you tell me who those third-round and sixth-round picks would've been? Curtis Martin was a third-round pick. Terrell Davis was a sixth-round pick. I know the odds are overwhelmingly against finding those kinds of players in the third and sixth rounds, but I don't like tempting fate. I do understand the Chargers' reasoning in making this kind of deal. They just lost Reche Caldwell for the season and they are desperate for a wide receiver. A year ago, this is a trade the Chargers probably wouldn't have made because they weren't a playoff contender, but they are clearly in the hunt this year and contemporary wisdom is that you have to take your swings when you have the chance. The NFL is different from what it was when I learned my lessons. This NFL is about now; owners aren't nearly as patient. I am, however, a curmudgeon when it comes to these things. I remain firm in my belief that football is a young man's game, and I have trouble warming to the idea of trading draft picks for players whose best days are behind them.

Haron from Chicago, IL:
When a ball is kicked and accidentally touched by the receiving team, can the kicking team retrieve the ball and advance it for a touchdown?

Vic: The kicking team may recover but not advance a free kick (kickoff or safety kick). The ball is awarded to the kicking team at the spot at which it recovered the ball. Touching by the receiving team does not constitute possession. The kicking team may recover a ball touched or muffed by the receiving team, but the ball is dead at the spot of recovery. The kicking team may recover and advance the ball on a free kick if the receiving team had established possession before fumbling.

Grant from Manchester, England:
What do you prefer, football in domes or outside? I prefer outside in the sunshine, wind, rain or snow.

Vic: I'm with you. I hate domes.

Alex from Las Vegas, NV:
What was the attendance for last Sunday's game against the Chiefs, and do the Jags have a private plane? Does it have a logo on it?

Vic: The Jaguars announced that 66,413 tickets were distributed for Sunday's game against the Chiefs. The Jaguars do not have their own plane, but even if they did, I'd like to think they wouldn't paint their logo on it. That's a little too over the top for me. The next thing you know everybody would want it to be painted black, and I don't think that would give me a good feeling.

Jack from Oakville, Ontario:
I saw something on TV about the Falcons-Chargers trade before the 2001 draft, when Vick was the number one pick. In your opinion, who do you think got the better of the deal and would the trades still be made today after knowing everything that has happened?

Vic: Star quarterbacks are special. You never regret taking one and you would never trade one for a star at another position, unless you had two star quarterbacks. San Diego was concerned that Michael Vick's talents would not translate well into the pro game, and it was a valid concern because Vick is not your standard drop-back pro quarterback. They took the safe way out by drafting a player, LaDainian Tomlinson, who was considered a can't-miss prospect, and he certainly hasn't missed. But he's not Michael Vick. Tomlinson doesn't touch the ball on every play. There were people who agreed with the Chargers, that the Tomlinson-Drew Brees combination was the way to go in the 2001 draft. It could still turn out that way, but I'll take Vick.

Al from Kingsland, GA:
Doesn't the home team have their choice in uniform color (dark or white)? That will resolve a dispute at work.

Vic: The home team chooses the uniform it wishes to wear. Those decisions are made in the spring and the visiting teams are informed of those decisions.

Josh from Jacksonville:
What do you think of Bobby McCray compared to the other ends from this year's draft? Considering he was a seventh-rounder, wouldn't you say he's been one of our most valuable picks? Does he have a shot at being a big-time pass-rusher in this league?

Vic: Two defensive ends – Will Smith and Kenechi Udeze – were selected in the first round. They are each starting and they each have two sacks. Tennessee took Travis LaBoy and Antwan Odom in the second round, and Odom is a starter at left end. New England drafted Marquise Hill in the second round and he is not starting. Kansas City drafted Jared Allen in the fourth round and he got a sack against the Jaguars on Sunday on the play that resulted in Byron Leftwich bruising his left shoulder. The bottom line is that Bobby McCray represents a real good pick in the seventh round. He's playing quite a bit, he has a sack and he's flashed talent that can be developed.

Jon from Richmond, VA:
I noticed that Nathaniel Adibi is on the practice squad and I remember that he was a hyped DE/OLB in college. What is the news on his development and possible use as a situational DE?

Vic: He hasn't been with the Jaguars long enough for there to be news about his development. All I can tell you is that he was a second-day draft choice by the Steelers, who cut him.

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