JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Jim from Jagsonville
Fred Taylor as a semifinalist for the HOF! We have something to root for this year!! Here's to Big Bo and Freddie T making it in!!!
Former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor on Tuesday indeed was named one of 25 modern-era semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2021. It's the second consecutive year Taylor has been a Hall semifinalist. And former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli indeed was named a Hall semifinalist for a sixth consecutive year. The voting committee will trim the list to 15 modern-era finalists in January, with the '21 hall class to be determined and announced the week of the Super Bowl in Tampa. We'll discuss this much more in January, to be sure, but my sense from speaking to voters and from following this process in recent seasons – and for the last two-and-a-half decades – is Boselli likely will be inducted in the next year or two. Taylor, though equally deserving, likely will have a longer wait because it's rare to go from a semifinalist not making the final list – as Taylor was last year – to being inducted the following year. I'll reiterate here what I long have said about Taylor – that the more voters study his career and speak to players and coaches from that era, the more his chances will increase. Some players' careers don't stand up to heavy scrutiny. Taylor's absolutely does.
Chris from Neptune Beach, FL
Is James Robinson a ROTY prospect in your mind? Quarterback Gardner Minshew II certainly had a chance to be that guy last year. Is our low standing within the league holding these guys back, or is it performance-based exclusively?
Jaguars rookie running back James Robinson absolutely is a possibility for Offensive Rookie of the Year. His chances improved Sunday when Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow's season ended because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament. The Jaguars' record won't help, but if Robinson continues at the level he has played thus far this season he absolutely has a chance.
Greg from Boise, ID
We always need the same thing(s) in the next draft ... QB, DE, DT, TE, DB. Year after year, we need the same things we seemingly got the year prior to the one we are in, but the positions never seem to be solidified. We have had DL-and DB-heavy drafts and still need more. We have free-agent TE signings yearly and a drafted TE (sparingly) and yet the position is still one of need. OL is not horrible, but has needs as well for maintenance for the future as it's starting to age. How can we address all the needs of both offense and defense without a bunch of high-priced free agents and back into salary cap hell again in a few years? It doesn't seem that the team is having enough success drafting, developing and retaining enough talent worth a second contract. Finally has General Manager Dave Caldwell (presuming he will be the GM next draft) learned that sixth-round quarterbacks are rarely the answer to a quarterback problem? I would think anyone who would be in charge of a NFL roster would know that the QB is the most important piece of the puzzle and you have to do what ya gotta do to get him instead of looking for a diamond in the rough, or a quarterback off every team's radar and grab one in the later rounds who will be good enough to be "THE GUY," not that it never happens, but we need one bad, but we need everything else too. Maybe a trade for a seasoned vet that isn't washed up or trying to prolong his NFL life but is really nothing better than a backup?
Can you repeat the question?
Matt from Houston, TX
I think it's time to give another receiver a shot and put Conley away for a while. He is consistently inconsistent, which is extremely frustrating for a vet. He looks sloppy out there and his drops have plagued this team for a long time. Luton's unpredictable throws didn't help but damn ... it's the NFL. Any chance we get Laviska back next week?
Veteran wide receiver Chris Conley has had some costly drops this season, which he also had last season. He is an NFL-caliber wide receiver and a good rotational player, but not a great wide receiver – which also was the case last season. Head Coach Doug Marrone will update rookie wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr.'s injury status Wednesday. This feels like a day-to-day situation for this week. We'll see.
Dane from Melbourne, Australia
O-Man: through 11 weeks it seems Caldwell had a decent idea of which high-priced veterans were not going to play up to their contracts. Former Jaguars defensive end Calais Campbell has four sacks and only 24 tackles from his eight games yet being paid $13 million, cornerback AJ Bouye sits without an interception in his five games ($13.5 million) and Pro Bowl hopeful Yannick Ngakoue is still not helping his various teams with the run with only 18 tackles for the year. These contentious person's decisions that freed up our salary cap seemed to have been the right ones to make.
Shhh … that doesn't fit conventional wisdom.
Sascha from Cologne, Germany
Hey John, would you still put defensive tackle over defensive end and cornerbacks next offseason? What I've seen the last weeks from the defensive tackles was better than what I have seen from the ends, or do I miss something there?
Yes, because the Jaguars need serious depth and serious front-line ability at defensive tackle. They need that at defensive end, too. Corner appears to be in better shape; remember, starting cornerbacks CJ Henderson and Sidney Jones IV missed Sunday's game at Pittsburgh. Jones/Henderson has shown some signs of being a decent corner tandem in recent weeks; the Jaguars may not need to draft early there this offseason.
Steve from Nocatee, FL
Mr. "O…" Why wouldn't we keep quarterbacks Gardner Minshew II and Jake Luton next year? They carry very little salary cap numbers.
Who's to say the Jaguars won't do that?
Brian from Gainesville, FL
Big O, we all know that the Jaguars must select a QB with their first pick no matter what. It just stinks that there is probably only one QB who is considered "can't miss" this year (Trevor Lawrence). I know there are others about whom positive things are said, but like most years there will be somewhere between zero and one franchise QBs drafted. If the Jaguars miss again, do they just wait four more years and try again?
I disagree with your premise. While historically there might be between zero and one franchise quarterback each year, fewer quarterbacks bust recently and far more quarterbacks are somewhere between good and great than used to be the case. It has become far easier for young quarterbacks to transition successfully in the NFL in recent seasons. That doesn't mean the Jaguars will hit on quarterback next offseason. It does mean you will be surprised if the next early-drafted Jaguars quarterback doesn't break the recent trend of misses for the team at the position.
Jim from Home
Jim from Home
Hey John,. What do you think our record would be if we had Philip Rivers this year?
John from Jacksonville
Hi KOAGF - Is it paranoid of me to think that when the Jags finally get lucky and find a franchise quarterback that the franchise quarterback will pull a Ramsey or a Yann after a couple of years? This would be completely disheartening.
Yes, that is paranoid. You can't assume every player will have the attitude of former cornerback Jalen Ramsey and you can't assume that every player will have the negotiating stance of Ngakoue. Also, remember: a franchise quarterback is a different entity than a defensive end or cornerback. The Jaguars couldn't extend Ngakoue because they didn't want to pay elite money for a defensive end who wasn't elite. Paying a franchise quarterback his value is a much different decision. They traded Ramsey at least in part because you can't bend the entire franchise to the wishes of one player. Building an entire franchise around a franchise quarterback … again, a different situation.
Graham from Dundee, Scotland
So, Mr. O. It looks like many have lost faith. Many have given up. It's true, but we need to stick together as a fan base. I can look to next season and see the potential. Young talent, a lot of (assuming) high draft picks and a huge salary cap. Do you think this will be enticing to all potential head coaches and staff? Again assuming that Doug won't be around. Yes, there is a lot of assumptions and if buts and maybes. As a side note, can you boogie?
Yes, many have lost faith. Yes, the Jaguars' draft capital and cap situation would make this an enticing situation for head coaches and general managers. Yes, I can boogie.