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O-Zone: Back to school

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Steve from Woodbine, GA

The Jaguars should be trying to win a Super Bowl. You don't win a Super Bowl with average-to-below-average players. This Jaguars team is littered with average-and-below-average players. Granted, the scope of this can and most certainly will change over the coming months with free agency and the draft. But, "He hasn't been an All-Pro or Pro-Bowl player in four NFL seasons. He needs to improve. But at worst, he is average." You can say this about every single player that is currently on this roster. That, Sir, will not win us a Super Bowl.

You actually can't say wide receiver DJ Chark Jr. hasn't been All-Pro or Pro-Bowl player in the last four seasons. And you can't say it about defensive end Josh Allen. And while you can say it about linebacker Myles Jack, it's not really fair. Now that I think of it, you can't say it about guard Andrew Norwell, either. Or middle linebacker Joe Schobert. Or kicker Josh Lambo. Chark, Allen, Schobert, Lambo and Norwell all have been in the Pro Bowl or All-Pro since 2017, and Jack probably should have been last season. If memory serves, rookie running back James Robinson pretty much played at or near a Pro Bowl level as a rookie. Obviously, the Jaguars haven't been good enough. But to say there are no good players on the roster is incorrect. As far as trying to win a Super Bowl … yes, the Jaguars know that's the objective. I feel certain Owner Shad Khan and Head Coach Urban Meyer touched on it in the hiring process. But on a serious note, you're not going to have Pro Bowlers at every position – and you can't pay premium money and spend high-end draft equity at every position. You have to manage the roster based on value and building the best roster possible given your circumstances. Bigger question: Meyer and General Manager Trent Baalke are in their first season running the organization. Do we really think they're trying to make decisions to weaken the team?

John from Jacksonville

Hi KOAGF - The news on Josh Hill makes me ask what rules or scenarios allow teams to sign a free agent ahead of 3/17?

Tight end Josh Hill signed as a free agent with Detroit Lions Saturday. This could happen because he had been released by the New Orleans Saints earlier this month. The release meant he was a free agent and therefore able to sign with any other team. That's a different scenario from many "unrestricted free agents" who were in the final seasons of their contracts last season. Those players will become free agents at the start of the following NFL League Year, which this year begins on March 17.

Roy from Ridgewood

John, are you going to defend Urban and Baalke as passionately as you did Dave and Doug? Because when D&D made wrong or bad decisions, you defended them daily on "".

What I'll probably do is answer questions each day based on 26-some years covering the NFL and based on talking to people – and based on watching the Jaguars. That's what I've done for the last decade and it seems the best approach going forward. If you interpret that as "defending" … well, I can't control that. I've been through worse and remained "awesome." My sense is I will again.

Aqeel from Toronto, Canada

On Gregg Rosenthal has listed his best FA's available. Yannick is listed at number 12 with the following write-up: "It's clear that Ngakoue's pure outside rush doesn't work in every scheme after a lost season in Minnesota and Baltimore. He's a liability against the run, and it's a red flag that his production has fallen every season since 2017, when he played on a historically good Jags defense."  Hmmm.... sounds familiar...

I can't wait to see how much Gregg loved No. 11 on his list. Is that guy headed to Canton?

Jim from Neptune Beach, FL

I've often thought it would be really nice to be able to take a particular player (say Cam Robinson, just as an example) and watch an entire game focused only on his play. Then, I thought it would also be nice to watch it from several different angles. And, it would also be great to know what his specific assignment was for that particular play, and the task was against a particular scheme the defense was using. It would also be cool to know the QB's possibility of changing the play at the line and how that particular player adjusted to the instantaneous change in assignment. That would be nice, wouldn't it? An entire game focused on one player with all that knowledge in advance? Then, I'd do that for every player on the team, just for something to do to keep me occupied. Boy, would I be smart!

Coaches should try this. Then maybe they would know more than people without the time to do this. I'll mention this the next time Meyer asks me what I think coaches should be doing with their time.

Scott from Jacksonville

Seems like you're being a little rough on Robert from Jacksonville, no?

He's dead to me.

Keith from Palatka, FL

Wow! The only people who truly know about our offensive line are the Jaguars coaches, decision makers and media people who agree with you. Anyone with a different outside objective opinion is a buffoon (a la Eddie). I did not know that one needs to know the assignment when watching an offensive tackle being beaten by a pass rusher to determine if the offensive tackle gave up a sack. Your arrogance is only exceeded by your ignorance. When you die, wisdom shall exit the planet.

One doesn't always need to know the assignment on every play to know if a player got beat, but does one need to know the blocking assignment and play call to assess how a player played over the course or a season. Absolutely and without question. But I only know this because Hall of Fame coaches, players and personnel people with Super Bowl rings have told me that for the better part of three decades. But forget all that. You're right and they're wrong. Why wouldn't that be how it is?

Sam from Winter Park, FL

When fans say they "watched tape" of so and so, what percentage are watching YouTube highlights think that's what "tape" scouts watch?

Ask Keith. He seems pretty tied in.

Swamp Dude from Waycross, GA

Please explain, "Oh Great One," the reason for the national media writing about the Jags having no compensatory picks for 11 years, and the formula for determining the comp picks. I'm confused. By the way, I find that is the best state of mind for me.

I didn't see the national media focused on the Jaguars while covering the compensatory-selection process this week, but you are correct that they haven't had a compensatory selection since the 2010 NFL Draft. The reason for this is that the NFL awards compensatory selections for a draft based on the free-agency gains and losses from the previous offseason. To make it simple: the more a team loses in free agency, the more and better compensatory selections a team will receive the following offseason. If a team gains more than it loses in free agency, it will receive no compensatory selections. Because the Jaguars for the last decade constantly have signed big-name free agents and lost comparatively few, they have not had a compensatory selection during that time.


Turned on the Golf Channel to watch the TPC just when Urban Meyer was interviewed, in a Jaguars hoodie. He said, "I would not have taken this job if I did not think we could win." Talking about golf. When he was at OSU, he lived on the 7th hole of "Jack's Course". He knew Jack Nicklaus and played a few rounds with him. He said once he was in a sand trap, and Jack asked him, "Do you know what you are doing?" He said no. Jack then said, "see you tomorrow at 10:00." Urban got a one-hour, private lesson from Jack about sand traps. I'm guessing he knows a bit about coaching/teaching?

Ya think?             

Jozy from Jacksonville

Hey John, hope all is well. How much would you attribute the teams' lack of success at tight end to quarterback play over the last decade? Or have the tight ends just been awful? Thanks.

As with most things in football, one area affects the other. The Jaguars' tight ends haven't been effective in the last decade, but they also haven't had anything close to an elite quarterback. The tight ends for the last decade would have benefitted from better quarterback play. Would they have been elite with elite quarterback play? Very doubtful.

Lol from Jacksonville

You should show up to Cliff's party anyway and make a huge mess.

What is this? High school?