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It was all about replay

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

Robert from Daytona Beach, FL:
What is the Jaguars' record coming off a bye week?

Vic: Under Jack Del Rio, the Jaguars are 1-1 in games immediately following the bye week. In team history, the Jaguars are 6-4.

John from Neptune Beach, FL:
Did football sort of evolve from rugby? What is the origin of the early football rules?

Vic: Midway through the 19th century, the exact date is not known, a group of young men at a sports bar became enraged when the rugby game they were watching on TV included an obvious officiating error. The error was made obvious by TV replay, but the sport did not include a provision for replay-review so the call couldn't be corrected. The young men vowed never to watch another rugby game and set out to invent their own version of rugby which, of course, would use replay-review to govern itself. It was their dream that they would one day spend their Sunday afternoons in the fall debating whether or not the ball had begun to move out of the runner's hands before his knee made contact with the ground. "I see a day when games will last 10 hours; a day when men across America will dedicate their Sundays to viewing the same play over and over," one of the pioneers said. They were clearly men of vision, but what they failed to see was the scourge of their creation, down by contact.

Tom from West Falls, NY:
An article in the "Los Angeles Times" said the teams that might relocate there are: Vikings, Jags, Chargers, 49ers or Bills. I honestly can't see any of those teams leaving their respective areas. I am a homegrown Buffalo fan, but since the beginning of the Jags I have been a fan of them, too. Can either the Jags or Bills be moved there or is Los Angeles just wishful thinking?

Vic: I don't know who it's going to be, but it's going to be somebody. Some poor town is going to lose its team. You can count on that.

John from Tampa, FL:
What do the red, blue and yellow diamonds in the Steelers helmet logo represent?

Vic: They're not diamonds, they're hypocycloids and they represent the three ingredients necessary in the manufacture of steel. Red represents fire, blue represents water and yellow represents ore, which includes all things mineral in the production of steel, such as coal and sulfur. The logo on the Steelers helmet was created by and belongs to the American Iron and Steel Institute. In 1962, the Steelers agreed to put the institute's logo on the team's helmet. The AISI logo bears the name "Steel." The Steelers, of course, modified "Steel" to read "Steelers."

Andy from Jacksonville:
I read that a Bengals player said they were a better team than the Steelers even after their game last week. This reminds me of comments by Fred Taylor in 1999 after the Tennessee games. Now I see that Fred thanked Houston for beating them last year. It sounds like he has matured. Is this team mature enough now to put a winning streak together?

Vic: That's what we're going to find out, but I think the answer is yes. What Fred Taylor's thank you to Houston represents is an awareness of the need for the team to keep its motor running for all of its remaining 10 games. It would indicate to me an acceptance of the balance that exists in the league and an acknowledgement that any team can beat another team on "any given Sunday." Is that maturity? Yes. I prefer, however, to call if professionalism. The proof, of course, isn't the saying, it's the doing.

Steve from New York, NY:
I'm a huge fan of the column and you're my main source of info as a transplanted Jags fan in New York City. I recently heard a rumor about a potential scenario whereby the Jags-Colts game on 12/11 could be bumped to Monday night in favor of the scheduled Saints-Falcons game, if the Jags-Colts game presents a better matchup. Is there any truth to this?

Vic: No, but the game could be moved from a one o'clock start to a four o'clock start.

Raymo from Jacksonville:
As always, I appreciate your column and your viewpoints, but I have an issue with you now. How can you say that replay equates to games resulting in fewer plays or games reaching 10 hours in length? I have to suggest that since the clock is stopped during replay, the total number of plays is unaffected by replay.

Vic: The 10-hour comment is obvious an attempt at sarcasm, but I don't think it's a stretch to say replay-review has made games longer in time. The league has always been very sensitive to the time issue and it has taken steps to shorten the game when the trend demanded those measures. For example, once upon a time the clock stopped and remained motionless following an incomplete pass. It's not that way now. Once the ball is spotted, the clock starts. That change was made because games had become too long. One of the other results of that rules change was that the play count in the game decreased. The Jaguars and their opponents combined for 29 fewer plays last season than the Jaguars and their opponents ran in 1995, and 68 fewer plays than in 1996. It's a simple equation: If the games are getting longer, attempts to shorten them will probably result in fewer plays.

Steve from Detroit, MI:
In your opinion, who's the better running back, Barry Sanders or Emmitt Smith?

Vic: Emmitt Smith.

Brian from Boston, MA:
Now that Jacksonville will play host to a Florida State-Alabama game in 2007, does the rights to the revenue generated by the electronic signage for that game have a factor in the negotiations between Wayne Weaver and the City?

Vic: Wayne Weaver has sought a monetization of the electronic signage for the four major non-Jaguars events at Alltel Stadium: Florida-Georgia, ACC title game, Gator Bowl and Monster Truck Show. In early September, the City assigned a $9.6 million value to the electronic signage for those events, which the City proposed would be given to Weaver in the form of rent credit. I can't speak for Weaver, but it would only make sense to me that a fifth event would increase the value of the signage.

Kevin from Jacksonville:
Let's say the Colts lose two more games, one being to the Jaguars and the other to another AFC team, and the Jaguars win their final 10 games. How would the winner of the division be determined?

Vic: The first criterion for breaking a tie within the division is head-to-head. The two teams would have split. The next criterion is division record. If that other AFC loss you're giving to the Colts is in the division, the Jaguars would claim the division title based on a better division record. If that other AFC loss is outside the division, then we would go to the next criterion, which is best record in common games. That's where I'm going to leave you because it's getting too hypothetical for my taste.

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