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Kampman, Alualu making impact

Join Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Andy from Jacksonville:
There was also the multiple holds caused by Kampman, one of which may have saved the game as the Bills were potentially going to go up 17-3. Instead, the Bills had to hold a penetrating Kampman, which meant the Bills had to settle for a field goal. Alualu was also held on a play where he was in the backfield almost instantly. The hold was not called but Fitzpatrick had to dump it and the Bills were forced to punt.

Vic: Those are astute observations. You don't judge linemen on stats, you judge them according to their impact. Aaron Kampman and Tyson Alualu have made a major impact on the Jaguars defense this season.

Richard from Goshen, IN:
Is it safe to say Scobee is becoming the best kicker in the league?

Vic: I think that's a fair statement. He's tied for fifth in the league in scoring and he's one of six kickers who's made all of his field goal attempts. In my opinion, he's the best long kicker in the game, as evidenced by his 59-yarder against the Colts, the long in the league this year. He's also kicked a field goal from 51 yards, two from 49 and one from 48. That's really impressive. What has me puzzled is why he's fallen so far in the touchbacks category. He's tied for 16th with three.

Brett from Jacksonville:
I've noticed that most players today jump when they catch the ball, even if the throw isn't high. Have players always done this, or is it a newer trend?

Vic: It's a way of covering up to soften a potential hit and making sure you don't get your feet caught in the ground should you get hit low. It's a means of protecting yourself against the hit and scouts look for it when they scout a receiver. That's why I've said I like guys that play along the ground. What I mean by that is that I like guys who aren't thinking about getting hit. You can't run after the catch if your feet aren't on the ground.

Tommy from Newark, DE:
The projected revenue left on the table for all the tickets unsold for the remainder of the season if the average ticket price is $75 is $2,982,375. You cannot be a sustainable business in any industry leaving that kind of revenue on the table. Time for Jacksonville to step up and support the single-most important private-sector business in Northeast Florida.

Vic: You have grossly underestimated the value of the tickets likely not to be sold this season. The figure you've provided isn't even half of the ticket revenue lost on the club seats that are likely to be unsold this year.

Chris from Jacksonville:
Marcedes Lewis certainly looks the part. Does he remind you of any former tight ends?

Vic: He doesn't have the body type of a typical tight end. Usually, tight ends are more blockish than Lewis, who's longer and more angular than you normally see in a tight end that's employed as a classic in-line blocker and deep-seam receiver. He reminds me a little of Charlie Sanders.

Kevin from Navesink, NJ:
I wonder how many people got your dash 30 dash comment in the blog. I guess all these dumb journalism classes are paying off.

Vic: You're the only one who's mentioned it.

Stans from Jacksonville:
A question that has been on my mind for awhile is how to evaluate a quarterback in college for NFL potential. You see some people that are great in college and are not expected to do that much, and the reverse is true, as well. Personally, I have been watching McElroy at Alabama. He looks good to me but everyone thinks he may make a good backup quarterback, at best.

Vic: He looks good to me, too. He's got size and toughness. He appears to have plenty of arm strength and I love the way he keeps his eyes downfield. He has a warrior mentality and I love that in a quarterback. Can he make all the throws? That's what the scouts will wanna know and they'll test that at the combine and the personal workouts. The question I have about McElroy is this: Is he sudden enough to be a front-line NFL quarterback? He appears, at times, to labor in the pocket. Is that a product of fearlessness or the offensive system, or is it the result of him just not feeling sure about what he's doing? It has to come naturally for a quarterback to be successful in this league. You can't manufacture star quarterbacks.

Wayne from Jacksonville:
With Mercedes Lewis opting to wait until the end of the season to negotiate a new contract, and the level at which he is performing this season, does Gene pay him the big money to keep him in town? Or is Marcedes playing himself out of town to a team that is willing to pay him the big bucks?

Vic: The financial landscape of the NFL will remain uncertain until a new CBA is in place. I will remind you, however, that the 2009 franchise tag for tight ends wasn't real high. It was $5.9 million. I wouldn't worry about losing Lewis.

Joe from St. Augustine, FL:
You always say you like to watch but, in your profession, you usually are required to miss the end of ballgames. Doesn't that bother you that you never get to see the end of a game?

Vic: It's not that way in all stadiums. I can get down to the field without too much trouble at EverBank Field, so there's no pressing need to leave early. I was in the press box for Scobee's kick against the Colts. If the outcome is not in doubt, I'll start to make the move down to give myself a more comfortable descent. At some places, however, it's an absolute must to get out of there early. Ralph Wilson Stadium is one such place. You literally have to walk out of the stadium and back into it to get to the locker rooms. It also requires walking against the flow of the crowd, if you wait too long. Back when Ernest Wilford made that game-winning catch on the final play of the game in Buffalo in 2004, I stayed in the press box to the end and I had a terrible time getting to the locker room. Even when I leave early, I'm able to see what's left of the game on TV monitors and on the scoreboard. When I finally get to the interview room, there's always a TV in there. In the case of having to use an elevator, that's when I go into re-entry blackout. You hear nothing, you see nothing. You just hope that when the doors open the crowd isn't screaming.

John from Jacksonville:
There was an illegal-touch penalty during the game, when a punt hit a Bills player that had been out of bounds. I understand the illegal touch, but another question came to mind. This player was between the punter and the punt-returner. Assuming he had stayed in bounds, is a player from the kicking team allowed to catch a short punt like that one before it hits the ground, essentially denying the punt-returner a chance to field it?

Vic: The returner must have an unimpeded opportunity to field the punt, regardless of whether he signals for a fair catch or not. If the kicking team player denies the receiving team player the opportunity to field the punt, it is a 15-yard penalty for either fair-catch interference (if there was a signal) or interference with the opportunity (no signal given). If a returner is not present, a kicking-team player may catch the ball before it hits the ground.

Sam from Orlando, FL:
Eli Manning, Schaub, Ryan, McNabb, Flacco and Henne: These are just some of the names that have a lower passer rating than David Garrard's 90.4. He's on pace to throw nearly 30 touchdowns. He has had a passer rating of over 100 three times already. What is everyone's problem?

Vic: I honestly don't know, but I'm still getting e-mails from people asking me when I think Trent Edwards will get a chance to play. Even this week I'm getting them. It's perplexing. Garrard is playing at a very high level right now.

Paul from Fleming Island, FL:
Coincidence? Scobee's number is 10. The date was 10-10-10. Josh Scobee's name has 10 letters in it. Scobee has kicked 10 field goals in a row. The Jaguars were down by 10 and then won by 10.

Vic: You're forgetting his 10 fingers and 10 toes.

Charlie from Jacksonville:
I was watching some highlights of old games and saw that the goal posts used to be in the middle of the end zone. Why were they moved to the back?

Vic: They weren't in the middle, they were on the goal line. They were moved back as a safety precaution. If they were still on the goal line, the offensive coordinators in this league today would be using them to rub off defenders.

John from Jacksonville:
The Dallas end zone celebration this past weekend may have cost the team any chance of making the playoffs. If you were a coach, how would you get players to act like the professional football players that preceded them?

Vic: I've answered this before: I would have a dancing circle on the sideline. My players would be instructed that, immediately after doing something of major significance, such as tackling a player with the ball, they were to go to the dancing circle and wiggle and jiggle for the TV cameras. I'd literally have an area adjacent to the dancing circle cordoned off for the TV cameras to position themselves so they could get up-close shots of the players dancing. We would practice going to the dancing circle. Any player that danced on the field and not in the dancing circle would be fined harshly.

PigeyeX from Fruit Cove, FL:
I'm glad you liked my "Vicbow and GM Gene" YouTube videos.

Vic: There are two kinds of "Ask Vic" readers: the angry and the fun-loving. You are one of the fun-loving.

Ric from Jacksonville: reported these statistics for quarterbacks this week (not including the Monday night game). "There were 64 sacks and 120 hits on the QB on Sunday, to say nothing of the 65 times quarterbacks crossed the line of scrimmage and ran with the ball." Obviously, teams are responding to the trend of quarterbacks becoming more and more important, and they are attacking the QBs for it. Do you think the backup quarterback position will become more and more important as time goes on, getting more time, attention and money?

Vic: The answer is obviously, yes. In my opinion, the greatest challenge every team faces is finding a way to protect its quarterback and make sure it has an ample supply of them.

Kevin from Jacksonville Beach, FL:
Is it illegal to lead with the helmet when making a tackle? I was under the impression it was, but throughout the league we see a defender knock the ball loose by leading with his helmet and projecting himself at the ball. I have only seen it called in the case of spearing. Could you clarify this for me?

Vic: Don't go to the head of the quarterback and don't lead with the helmet or launch at a defenseless receiver, which is to say a receiver in the act of catching a pass, but once a player becomes a runner, which is to say ball tucked and feet moving (see Willis McGahee play from 2008 AFC title game), he's fair game and you may strike him with your head and on his head.

Kamen from Bethel, CT:
So about a quarter of the way through the season, who are the top three quarterbacks in the league?

Vic: In my opinion, they are Tom Brady, Philip Rivers and Peyton Manning.

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