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Looking good early

Mike from St. Augustine, FL:
Saturday was my first time seeing a practice. Do they do more conditioning between practices? Because it seemed like they don't have enough.
John: NFL teams have about five weeks off before the start of training camp. As Jaguars Head Coach Mike Mularkey has said several times so far during camp, there's a limit to how much any player can prepare for the reality of Northeast Florida heat and humidity. Some things about football conditioning can only be obtained from practicing football. The Jaguars go into pads Monday, and that will be another test, but in the next few days you should see the conditioning improve.
David from Durban, South Africa:
Yo, Man. It is not Gene's fault that the incident happened or that he is insisting on tough offset language in the contract. The problem is Gene treated this like his usual rookie negotiation – that is to say negotiate the contract on the eve of camp while waiting for the other picks to be signed. This was always going to be a difficult contract and he should have started the process much earlier on. To that extent, he has dropped the ball. The irony is the tough stance means that he will effectively write off Blackmon's rookie year he will fall so far behind.
John: What you say makes sense except that the Jaguars had started talking contract with Blackmon before the incident, and it was the incident that delayed things. Also, it really wasn't going to be all that difficult before the incident. Before that, it was actually going to be a pretty typical slotted rookie contract. So, to that extent I really don't see where the ball has been dropped.
Strnbiker from Dothan, AL:
Last year versus this year, at this time, appears similar. Wondering if you would agree? Last year, the offense struggled with the defense. This year, the new offense appears to struggle with the defense. It seems that both years facing perhaps a Top 10 defense can only make the defense better.
John: There are similarities, but whereas last year you had the hovering, unspoken question of when a rookie quarterback would eventually take over for a veteran quarterback – not to mention an unstable coaching situation – this season there is a feeling that the offense is building a foundation. From a foundation should come progress. The offense indeed struggled a bit Friday, but looked better Saturday. In general, I think you'll see that improvement continue.
Casey from St. Augustine, FL:
So, from what I have read I have come to two conclusions. Poz is an absolute beast, and I will not cheer for MJD as I used to. Granted, when he scores a touchdown I will be happy, but there will be no DREWWWWWWWWWWWWW chants from me.
John: Posluszny if anything looks better starting camp than he did last offseason. He continues to appear to be one of the best free-agent signings in franchise history. As for Jones-Drew, I understand that there is some fan resentment right now. That goes with the territory when there is a disagreement that leads to a holdout. But I'm guessing when this is resolved plenty of fans will still be chanting, "DREWWWWWWWWWWWWW."
Jonathan from Palatka, FL:
Laurent Robinson said, "I feel like I'm a celebrity right now. This is crazy. This is living right here." With him just coming from the Dallas Cowboys, and that stadium still being very new and being worth over $1 billion, does that means Jerry Jones is more worried about impressing the fans with the stadium than focusing his players on the task at hand, of bringing home a Lombardi Trophy?
John: I think it just means the Jaguars have a really nice locker room.
Dennis from Palm Coast, FL:
Richard Murphy looked effective last year, then went on injured reserve. How is he doing this year, or is he one of the players on the Physically Unable to Perform list? Who is on the PUP list? I think I can guess a couple, but they are not on the roster on
John: Murphy has looked quick in practice the first few days, and he obviously will get more opportunity with Jones-Drew not having reported. Six players opened on the PUP list: linebacker Clint Session, guard Uche Nwaneri, tight end Zach Miller, defensive tackle Terrance Knighton, offensive tackle Cameron Bradfield and defensive end John Chick.
Sean from Section 146:
So, I have noticed a few new speaker-shaped objects being added between the lights. Is this part of the multi-year technology upgrade?
John: Those speaker-shaped objects are actually . . . speakers! Seriously, the speakers are being installed as part of a new sound system at EverBank.
Chase from Casper, WY:
I haven't heard or read anything about Chris Prosinski. Do you project him being a possible starter at defensive back for a large percentage of the season?
John: Probably not unless there is an injury to Dawan Landry or Dwight Lowery.
Scott from Grenada:
Just wanted to say thanks for all the work that you and the rest of the staff are putting in to give the fans an in-depth look at what's going on during training camp.
John: I appreciate that. I have to give a lot of the credit to new Video Coordinator Patrick Kavvanauugh. While we continue to file stories, editorials and O-Zone, his addition has allowed us to significantly upgrade the video content, and I think you'll continue to see a noticeable difference throughout the year.
Andres from Los Angeles, CA:
I think the best option for MJD and the Jaguars is to trade MJD. What do you think?
John: I disagree. I don't know that Jones-Drew would ever find a team that values him as the Jaguars do, and I don't know that another team would treat his contract situation all that differently. He is a seventh-year veteran with two years remaining on his contract, after all. I also don't think the Jaguars would get significant value in return – at least not value to make it worth trading him.
Lee from Jacksonville:
Your answer to Steve about what offensive coaches do when the offense is on the field is exactly the reason I believe the offense will be improved this year. Last year, I saw just about every time Gabbert came out of the game, he sat alone on the bench – no coaches helping him make adjustments. It was as if they expected Gabbert to figure it out on his own. With just a little attention, Gabbert can't help but improve.
John: I thought you were going to say he was going to be better because of the snack.
Jason from Section 104:
Just a though on MJD's contract dispute. Anybody who can afford to fork over $30,000 a day just to stay away from work is anything but underpaid.
John: In these situations it's difficult to put money in everyday perspective . . . but yeah, that doesn't exactly endear him to the public.
Perry from Orange Park, FL:
You said that once MoJo comes back the best players will start. However, is it possible that Jennings will be a better option because of his familiarity with the offense?
John: For a few days or a week, perhaps; for the long-term, no.
Jeremiah from Jacksonville Beach, FL:
I know from you not to care what the national experts' opinions are. This one, though, really got me to think. I was listening to ESPN radio because they were going to talk about the AFC South. When they were going to talk about the division one of the hosts said that the Jaguars are NEVER a factor, so they weren't going to talk about them. He then proceeded to discuss the other three teams. I'm not making this up. I know we need to start winning for this to end, but that was just wrong in many ways, including factually.
John: Yes, it was, and of course it was ignorant. The Jaguars were a victory away from winning the AFC South in 2010 and were competitive the year before that. I'll continue to say this: once the Jaguars begin to win, this will turn around. I remember for a few weeks in 2010 reading stories about the Jaguars being a surprise success story. You need to win and you need to maintain some success, but when you do, storylines gradually start to change.
Don from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
If I was Coach Mularkey, I would take Marcedes Lewis over to a gym and throw the small dodge balls at him until the season starts. After a while he would start catching them zingers. With his height and his wingspan he would be hard to stop. To me, his problem always has been slow eyes. He makes a ton of money and the team really needs him to be productive. He really could and should be a Pro Bowl-level tight end.
John: Yes, he should be – and has been. I'll reiterate here that Lewis remains perhaps the league's top blocking tight end, and while people often get frustrated when hearing this, that is part of why the Jaguars paid him big money as a free agent a year ago. That said, he has to have a better year receiving than he did last season. Lewis had maybe the best practice I've seen him have on Saturday. He's looking good early. He made several difficult catches, and seemed to have a good rapport with Blaine Gabbert. He also says he feels as if some off-field issues that bothered him last year are pretty much behind him, so overall, he feels good about the upcoming season. We'll see how it plays out.

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