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O-Zone: Around we go

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Philip from Jacksonville

So, the Jaguars couldn’t land Gary Kubiak. Spin that.

I don’t know how much “spinning” is necessary, but, hey … if you say so. The Jaguars reportedly planned to interview former Denver Broncos and Houston Texans Head Coach Gary Kubiak for their vacant offensive coordinator position Tuesday. Instead, he took a position with the Minnesota Vikings in an “advisory” role. His son, Klint, reportedly will be the Vikings’ quarterbacks coach. The Jaguars reportedly have interviewed former Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and former Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator John DeFilippo for the position. Both Bevell and DeFilippo have fine resumes, and I like the idea of Bevell as a fit for this offense. I’m sure some Jaguars fans will like the hire if it’s Bevell or DeFilippo, and I’m sure some won’t. Many Jaguars fans didn’t like former Jaguars offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, either. He is now the offensive coordinator of the Green Bay Packers – and I’m sure many Packers fans like and don’t like that hire, too. Such is the annual game of musical chairs that is coaching in the NFL.

JT from Fort Worth, TX

I'm glad to see Hackett get the OC gig with the Packers. He didn't deserve to get fired.

Fair.

Big on Blake from Philly

I hope the Nick Foles hype dies down. This guy is an average system quarterback. Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Doug Pederson is able to coach him to his best, but I don’t see him getting that in Jacksonville. How do you say: “Move on, because sometimes it’s just time?”

I would have no problem if the Jaguars pursued – and paid – Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles. That route almost certainly would mean overpaying for a player who likely wouldn’t fulfill expectations, but that’s part and parcel with free agency. I do believe Foles would make the Jaguars better at the position. I don’t believe he would be elite or that he would be a savior. Foles could improve the Jaguars at quarterback without being either.

Gabe from Chapel Hill, NC

How many quarterbacks will the Jaguars have on the 90-man roster during organized team activities and training camp? And how many of them are with the team now?

Three. One – maybe.

Brian from Greenwood, IN

If you were the general manager, and the Eagles offered Nick Foles for the No. 7 overall selection in this draft, would you take that trade?

Yes, probably. But draft compensation isn’t likely to be a factor. Foles essentially can buy his way into free agency with a $2 million buyout in his contract. Because he will be an unrestricted free agent at that point, salary and signing bonus figure to be the major factor in Foles’ future. The question, then: Will the Jaguars be willing to pay? We won’t know that until the market for Foles becomes clearer. If it’s in the $20-to-$25-million per season range, I doubt it – with the doubts increasing as the money increases. If it’s in the $15-million-per-season range, then the possibility makes more sense.

Chuck from Spanish Fort, AL

In a league where statistics are relied upon on heavily to gauge performance, why would the Jaguars even consider a defensive backfield coach whose last four years defenses have finished 23rd, 31st, 23rd, and 32nd in the league? Please tell me what am I missing?

You’re missing that while statistics do play a role in gauging coaching performance, they in no way are the end all. They are particularly not the end all in gauging coaching a specific position group. The Jaguars on Monday reportedly hired former New York Giants secondary coach Tim Walton to the same position and former Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive line coach George Warhop to the same position. Your question refers specifically to Walton, to which the answer must include questions such as “How effective was the Giants’ pass rush?” and “How good were the players in the Giants’ secondary?” If the answers to both questions were “very,” then maybe it’s a curious hire. Either way, though: Statistics are quite often not the best way of gauging an NFL coaching performance – and in fact, they mean next-to-nothing when projecting future performance.

Keith from Jacksonville and Section 436 Since 1995

Can the Jags (or any other team) do anything to protect themselves, if they want to draft Kyler Murray in case he decides to bolt to the A's? Also in a not unrelated question, given the current slotting system, even for first round players, the money Murray would make wouldn't be enough to pay back his signing bonus to the A's. What happens in the case?

Teams can have language in contracts to protect themselves financially if a player retires or leaves football for non-injury reasons. The risk is losing the player and therefore wasting an early draft selection – and there’s no way to contractually prevent that. But Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen signed a $21.4 million guaranteed contract with a $13.693 million signing bonus after being the No. 7 overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft. If the Jaguars selected Murray No. 7 in the 2019 NFL Draft, he would make slightly more than that. Unless I’m missing something, that’s enough to pay back his signing bonus.

Ed from Ponte Vedra, FL

Gus Bradley defense was carved like a Thanksgiving turkey. I like the man, but I'm still upset about the wasted seasons.

Be as upset as you want. Former Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley, now the defensive coordinator of the Los Angeles Chargers, is a good defensive coach. The Chargers’ result on Sunday doesn’t change that.

Chris from Space City, TX

O, your infamous "when it's time to move on, it's time...", is an offseason too late. Tom Coughlin and crew made a horrible investment in Bortles and what looks like an even worse draft class this past offseason. With the incompetence of TC, realistically how many years do you see this latest rebuild lasting before we get back to a contending team for AFC South championship and beyond?

It sounds like you already have answered your own question. Why ask me?

TheRealDeal from Ontario, Canada

When I look at the quarterbacks available in free agency and think that the Jags will draft a quarterback in the first round with the plan to sit him for a year or until needed, the name I think that makes most sense is Ryan Fitzpatrick. I think with a strong run game and better weapons around him, along with a strong defense, he could cut down his mistakes and wouldn't need to throw for 400 yards. He could do enough to make the offense a vertical threat and produce Ws as it won't be all on his shoulders. I think he could be signed for a reasonable amount and length of time and could even transition into a backup nicely once the rookie is properly assessed. If the rookie turns out to be the answer a younger prospect for backup can then be brought in. What are your thoughts on FitzMagic?

FitzMagic is more than capable of winning games and more than capable of throwing 300 or 400 yards for impressive stretches. He also is more than capable of committing turnovers and losing games. All of that means he is a backup/placeholder quarterback – and all that that implies. He makes sense as a placeholder – with cost being the unknown factor.

Gabe from Chapel Hill, NC

Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell has had some great signings, but looking at Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Andrew Norwell, Donte Moncrief, Marqise Lee, Carlos Hyde and Blake Bortles – not a lot of home runs in 2018. Not a lot of base hits, frankly.

You’re right. Injuries and a lack of effectiveness hurt the veteran acquisitions made by Caldwell and Coughlin.

Glenn from St. Mary’s, GA

How many times were the Jags penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct and how many yards did it cost us? Also, could the coach require the player that was guilty to address the team on Monday and speak about why he thought it way beneficial to the team that he act that way. It might be helpful to remind players that the fun of the game is played between the lines and before the whistle. It does not help to act out for the cameras. PLAY ON THE FIELD, PLEASE!!

The Jaguars were called for unnecessary roughness 10 times and unsportsmanlike conduct two more times in 2017 with multiple more taunting and face-mask penalties. As far as Marrone or any other coach having players stand up and explain the penalties … that’s not going to happen.

Robert from Oneonta, NY

Maybe Marrone did Nate Hackett the biggest career favor ever by firing him! Nate is going from working with Blake Bortles and the Jacksonville/London Jags to being the offensive coordinator with the storied Green Bay Packers and working with Aaron Rodgers. Congratulations, Nate!

Hey, one fer Hackett – and one for musical chairs!

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