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Mascots and goaltending

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

Bert from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
I know teams have mascots to get the crowd going and sometimes they can be extreme. What is done when a mascot affects a game by wandering onto the field while the clock is running? Jaxson de Ville did that in the Indy game. Repelling down a scoreboard before a game does not impress me. What would impress me is if a C-5 escorted by F-14s, 15s and 16s flew over the stadium before the game and de Ville jumped out without a shoot (just kidding). But the mascot needs to stay off the field when valuable time is ticking off the clock. Would you agree?

Vic: Bert, I grew up covering a team that had no cheerleaders, no mascot and wore its logo on the right side of its helmet only. I have no idea what the rules are governing mascots.

James from Jacksonville:
I don't think the Jags will ever get the respect they deserve. If they do beat Philly, all the analysts will talk about is what the Eagles did wrong and not what the Jags did right. It seems to me they are ignoring our team on purpose. Is there any other reason than Jax being a small market? And I'd like to know if the players ever read the fans' questions and opinions.

Vic: I'm sorry, James, but I'm just not into this respect thing. Yes, New York teams that win get a lot more praise than do small-market teams that win. But New York isn't a good place to hide if you're losing. Have you checked out what's being said about the Jets? I believe the Jaguars are getting the respect they deserve. If they continue to win, more will come. As far as players reading fans comments and opinions, a couple of years ago Mike Logan, Brant Boyer and Bryan Barker, after they had left the Jaguars, posed questions to "Ask Vic." As far as the message boards are concerned, it's possible they check them out, but I'm afraid a lot of the crude commentary that has become associated with message boards has caused players to stay away, and that's a shame because it's an otherwise perfect medium for fans and players to relate.

Matt from Jacksonville:
In the Jets game, during one of the first series, our defense was called for "simulating the snap." Could you please explain this rule to me?

Vic: It was a flinch by Tony Brackens and he got caught. He did the same thing against the Eagles and got away with it, as the Eagles got called for a false start. Defensive linemen are allowed to move, but they are not permitted to "simulate the snap," which is another way of saying they're not permitted to cause the offense to false start due to a gesture intended to appear as though they were reacting to the snap of the ball.

Harry from Jacksonville:
Vic, I listen to you on the radio. It appears the two young defensive tackles are making it difficult to throw short over the middle due to their size. Is that a correct assessment?

Vic: You're absolutely right.

Evan from Regina, Saskatchewan:
Is it possible for a team to position someone back near the goalposts for a long field goal attempt and for that player to knock the kick down if it was barely going to clear the crossbar (like goaltending in the NBA)? Would that be considered a blocked kick?

Vic: There is no goaltending rule in the NFL. The crossbar is 10 feet high; the same as an NBA hoop. Go ahead, jump up and knock the ball down, but you better make sure you recover it. You are not permitted to be assisted by another player in your leap.

Robert from Daytona Beach, FL:
Now that the Jags have beaten a good team, the questions will arise of their ability to sustain momentum. With the trip to Tennessee in front of us -- a team that is truly reeling -- will they have the focus to keep the ball rolling and beat a still-dangerous team at their own place?

Vic: Robert, I wish I knew. There are ways to make money with that kind of information, you know.

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