O-Zone: A beautiful mess

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

RAS from Jacksonville

Hey O, how do fans want Jalen gone? It's like Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and Chicago Bears linebacker Khalil Mack in their position being traded. What are they thinking? Do they think why Tennessee Titans quarterback Mariota couldn't pass with two lockdown cornerbacks? And even with two first-round picks, will the Jags draft any better? If the Jags’ good players don't drop in their laps, they wouldn't have edge defender Josh Allen, right tackle Jawaan Taylor and linebacker Myles Jack in the second, and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue in the third. Fans having to fan isn't good enough. A well-thought-out idea would be nice instead of hot air.

I can’t explain why fans want what they want. And you’re correct that Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey indeed helped shut down the Titans offense Thursday while also allowing a couple of the bigger pass plays of the evening. But while the Jaguars have missed on their share of draft selections over the years, it’s not fair to say that players such as Taylor or Ngakoue “fell into their laps.” Plenty of teams passed on those players, just as plenty of teams passed on players such as linebacker Telvin Smith, linebacker Quincy Williams and the like. The Jaguars were fortunate that these players were available, but they drafted them. If you’re going to criticize the misses, you must also acknowledge the hits.

Dwayne from Jacksonville

THANKS! I understand zone defense now.

No worries.

James from Jacksonville

People make mistakes and do stupid things for the sake of winning. You say there was no call for him to act that way for the sake of winning. What about the stupid things management has done? Saying everyone should be at a voluntary minicamp was wrong. Drafting a running back so high was wrong. Paying a mediocre quarterback so much money was wrong. Paying money to the wrong people and not paying money to the right people was wrong. Etc. Management hasn’t said any of these things were mistakes, thinking they were the best things to do to win at the time. How would you feel if you didn’t think management had your back and apologize for errors even for the sake of winning? Everyone should say mistakes were made, pay the right people what is deserved and start playing the winning football that this team can play.

First off, no teams go around “apologizing” for mistakes they make in terms of personnel. How the concept that the Jaguars’ management should do this somehow got to be a thing, I haven’t the foggiest idea. But to what I think is your bigger point: I hope the Jaguars keep Ramsey. I like him, and I like covering him. I think he has a chance to be one of the two or three best players in franchise history – perhaps the best. But if you can’t see a difference in management making moves that don’t work out in a genuine attempt to do what’s best for the team and a player who demands moments after a game in the middle of the season to be traded – therefore expressing a desire to leave the teammates and the fans he says he loves … well, if you don’t see the difference in that, we’re probably never going to see things the same way. And that’s OK. Not everyone has to agree on everything.

Stephen from Wallingford

Trade Ramsey for Gordon and move Fournette to fullback like Greg Jones.

Nah. Ramsey for Los Angeles Chargers Melvin Gordon is a horrible trade for the Jaguars from a value standpoint, and Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette’s not a fullback. He’s a running back.

Nicholas from Mogadishu, Somalia

As frustrating as this season may have been at the start, fans should realize that this team is only inches away from being 2-1 and the AFC South leaders.

Yes.

Ken from Vero Beach, FL

What is wrong with the coaching staff that they can't figure out how to spread out the opponents’ defense? It is hard to run against an eight-man line.

Defenses stay in eight-man boxes until teams pass effectively enough to get them out of those fronts. The way Gardner Minshew II has played in recent weeks, you might see teams pull out of those fronts. #Whatswrongwiththecoachingstaff #alwayscoachingintheNFL

John from Playa Del Carmen

I could tell you were really trying to make a point with the capital letters, but it didn't really get through to me because you didn't use any exclamation points. Not even one. PATHETIC!!!!

fair

Ethan from Wampum, PA

There's a lot of football to be played between now and Nick Foles' targeted return in Week 11, but in my opinion, if the Jags are winning and Gardner Minshew plays well against the Saints in Week 6, Foles will be on the bench when he returns.

We’re not there yet. I’m not saying your point doesn’t have merit or that we couldn’t get there. But we’re not there. Yet.

Tom from Gainesville, FL

With the acquisition of Chris Conley and the improvement of Dede Westbrook and DJ Chark Jr. and hopefully the return of Marqise Lee, do you think the Jaguars receivers have achieved a pretty good quality so far? I am not saying excellent, but at least less of a concern compared to previous years. By the way, I felt bad when Minshew missed a wide-open Lee with nothing but grass in front of him. That would have made the evening.

The Jaguars throughout the offseason believed the wide receivers were far better than observers believed, and they believed more-accurate quarterbacking would help the group. So far, so good.

Crash from Westside

Don't trade Ramsey. Keep playing him. He'll be a happy camper when the Big Cats make the playoffs. Next offseason there will be lots of cash to throw his way.

OK.

Kris from Neenah, WI

I would also like to grow a mustache. My wife however has threatened bodily harm if I do. Worth the risk?

Yes. Be a man. Splash on some cologne. Hunt game. Read Hemingway. Walk into the house and say, “This is how it is and how it shall be.” I wouldn’t do this, but perhaps it will work for you.

Brad from Orange Park, FL

"QB Rudolph is legit" is what the headline reads, on NFL.com. And my first thought is "yeah, and if so - it will most likely because he was able to learn from a backup role, and not forced in to a “sink-or-swim” scenario in which it's wildly more likely that - besides the one percent of quarterbacks that are capable to swim in those circumstances - that he would sink. My question is how have NFL teams been so shortsighted on this front? At what point is starting a guy right away or sooner than if you were to let him sit and learn for a season, not worth the risk of passing on the reward it will be to get the guy that comes in with confidence and better prepared?

Teams are short-sighted because there is more pressure to win immediately than before and because we are in far more a quick-trigger society – and league – than once was the case. This isn’t good, but I doubt it changes.

John from Jacksonville

This Ramsey situation is improving my skills in holding my breath. Every time I refresh my browser for the latest, I'm dreading news of the Jags trading him for some scratch and pick lottery tickets (aka draft picks). If my browser takes a while to refresh, it strengthens my lungs. However, I must say that the Jags office needs to make a decision now and tell the fans. There are many Ramsey fans, many who invested in jerseys, that are on the edge of their seat. I want to either celebrate or mourn and move on.

If I didn’t know better, I would think you just said the Jaguars need to make and time their decision on whether to trade Ramsey based on the fact that fans who bought Ramsey jerseys are curious and anxious about the outcome. That’s how interpreted your email. Please tell me I’m wrong. Please?

Jim from Middleburg, FL

John. The defense is good. Very good. It will remain good even with personnel changes.

Yep.

Ed from Jax

What do you think our quarterback situation will be after the season? If Nick Foles is the starter, do we trade Gardner Minshew II? If Minshew is the starter, what do we do with Foles?

We’re not remotely there yet, and there are far too many possibilities to adequately go into detail on each one. Minshew has started two games and won one. Foles has played a quarter for the Jaguars. If both players play great when given an opportunity the rest of the season, then there’s certainly a possibility that the Jaguars could have some serious decisions. If Minshew is great, I can’t imagine they would trade a great young quarterback. In that scenario, perhaps you keep both and allow Foles to leave after two seasons. It would be a mess, but it would the most wonderful mess imaginable.

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