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O-Zone: Age appropriate

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Devin from Richmond, VA

Wasn't Cam out the last few games last season? Best ability is availability and they seemed fine without him ... does he get a contract?

Left tackle Cam Robinson already has a contract with the Jaguars. It runs through the 2024 season with a salary-cap figure of $21.1 million if he plays with the Jaguars that season. He will count $5 million against the cap if he is released before the 2024 season. And while the line did perform OK without Robinson when he was out with a knee injury late in the 2022 season and into the postseason, it often didn't perform as well without him in 2023. I don't know yet if Robinson will be with the Jaguars in 2024. I'm not sure the Jaguars know if he will be with them in 2024. A lot must be addressed on the offensive line. Those discussions will take place over the next month.

Jesse from CA

If we had managed to back into the playoffs, we would have looked like the Philadelphia Eagles did. They're the only other team imploding like our beloved Jags. Not sure that would have been worth making the playoffs.

Making the playoffs always is worth it. If you're there, you have a chance to win the Super Bowl. While you say the Jaguars would have played like the Philadelphia Eagles did losing to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Monday, perhaps you are wrong. Perhaps they would have been healthier at receiver and quarterback and played well. We don't know. That's why they play games.

John from Jacksonville

Hi KOAGF - It seems that the difference between Trevor being a good quarterback and our franchise quarterback is simple. He has all of the tools to compete with other quarterbacks. He just needs to avoid the few stupid mistakes each game. They are mental errors related to ball control. As a fan, it makes me nervous with each snap on what mistake is he going to make. I don't feel that way with other quality quarterbacks. Do you think this alone can make the difference?

Perhaps one reason you don't feel nervous watching other quarterbacks is you're not an avid fan of those teams and therefore aren't emotionally tied to the results. But yes … the key for Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence absolutely is eliminating mistakes and improving his mental approach/awareness. Improving those areas can make a huge difference.

Steve from Nashville, TN

Can you explain again the NFL schedule formula that has us at the Philadelphia Eagles in 2024?

When the NFL added a 17th game, it was decided that that game would be an interconference game for each team against a team from a rotating division. The so-called 17th game rotation in 2024 has AFC South and NFC East teams playing the team from the other division that finished in the same spot in its division in 2023.

Jason from Jacksonville

How much can the Jags save in cap space by parting with DaVon Hamilton? It seems like his best days are behind him.

Releasing nose tackle DaVon Hamilton would cost the Jaguars $11 million in salary cap space in 2024 and a little more than $1 million in 2025 – and they would save only $3.4 million or so releasing him in 2026. But there's no reason at this point for the Jaguars to consider this. While Hamilton indeed was less effective in 2023 than in 2022, he was playing in 2023 after having a serious issue – a rare spinal abscess – in the preseason and early in the season. There's no reason that means his "best days are behind him."

Larry from Wattsburg(h), PA

Do you get the feeling that despite the phenomenally talented athletes coupled with brisk scoring, overall game quality is declining? (Pros do not practice tackling? Ha!) Also, feel free to play on my lawn but don't expect flags for defenseless receivers across the middle.

Saying that the NFL isn't as good as it once was indeed is the equivalent of yelling at kids to get off one's lawn. So, I won't do that. That's not me.

David from Ada, OK

Here's some food for thought. When you see a team like the Dallas Cowboys, who are undeniably a very good team, get embarrassed in the first half and end up one and done – and staying out of the championship game three years in a row – it's almost like the difference between the middle and the top is so close it's almost impossible to be dominant. Tom Brady retired (as much as I hate the guy). Any given Sunday has always been the NFL's mantra but is that what we really want? Or do we want dynasties?

I haven't the foggiest idea what "we" want from the NFL. My thought is any sport is at its best when there is continuity that enables fans to identify with teams. That continuity in eras gone by at times produced dynasties and at times produced parity. The reality these days is there's very little continuity on most teams except for a few key positions and quarterback. That is fine from the NFL's point of view, because fans identify with quarterbacks and their long-term presence on many teams allows the league to build those teams and players as "brands."  But I don't know that dynasties are as difficult to achieve as your question suggests. The New England Patriots won six Super Bowls from 2001-2018 and made eight Super Bowls during that span. And lest we believe only quarterback Tom Brady and Head Coach Bill Belichick capable of such a run, remember: The Kansas City Chiefs have played host to five AFC Championship Games and played in three Super Bowls in the last five seasons, winning two Super Bowls in that span. That's dominant, dynastic stuff.

Mike from Apex, NC

Could you see a scenario where all three starting interior linemen return in starting roles next year? (Please say no)


Drew from Buford

Since Head Coach Doug Pederson opened the gate by firing most of the defensive staff, what exactly is his role and accountability? If he has defensive people making those play calls, and offensive coordinator Press Taylor making the offensive calls, is he simply making the situational decision to go on fourth? If so, he may have been the worst performing coach on the staff. I guess I'm just confused as to how important he really is if he is letting other people make play calls all year and then fires them after the year is over. Can he not step in and take over earlier in the year? Because if not, what is the point of having him as head coach?

A head coach's responsibilities go far beyond play-calling – which is, in fact, low on the list of importance for the position. Foremost in importance: Setting the tone and direction for the franchise, instilling belief among players, putting the right people in place at the right time – i.e., leadership and organizational stuff. Either way, Pederson never was going to "step in and take over" the defense in 2023 – or any other season. His background is as an offensive coach, not a defensive coach. As for his accountability … he eventually will lose his job if ownership believes the on-field results aren't good enough. That's pretty much accountability in the NFL.

Nick from St. Augustine, FL

You gotta stop with this Trevor Lawerence has 'stretches of good play' nonsense. You at most talking about five-to-six games as a 'stretch.' I can make five-to-six pars in a row but that doesn't make me a scratch golfer. Especially when you throw in the double and triple bogeys into the mix. And there have been plenty of doubles and triples on Lawrence's card.


SteveC from Cardiff, UK

After the strong finish to 2022, we dared to hope we might "own" the AFC.

Jaguars fans spent the 2023 offseason convinced, incorrectly, that winning the AFC South in '23 would be easy. I wrote often that this was unlikely to be the case because the NFL is hard, and much can change week to week. I have no idea how Houston Texans fans will feel this offseason, but winning the AFC South is unlikely to be easy for them next season. The NFL is still hard, and much can still change week to week.

Mike from Jacksonville

The Houston Texans played well Saturday? Are you kidding? They dominated the Cleveland Browns. The national media realizes how good they are. I guess you all have to downplay it because the boss might get mad.

The Texans played well Saturday in the AFC Wild Card Playoff victory over the Cleveland Browns. They won a postseason game. It was impressive stuff. Why in the world would the "boss" – whoever he may be – get mad at this?

Donald from Jacksonville

How old are you?

Old enough to know better, too young to care very much.