Skip to main content

Jaguars News | Jacksonville Jaguars -

O-Zone: Draft-day strategy

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it … Kevin from Jacksonville and Section 104:
I am very much bolstered by the progress that has been made by the work done via Shad Khan and Mark Lamping regarding the Jaguars, but would it kill the talking heads to give even a modicum of praise to the team? With all of the improvements, you would think they earned at least some mention ...
John: Lack of national recognition has been and continues to be a constant agitation for Jaguars fans – understandably and reasonably so, I suppose. The reality, however, is the mentions and modicums and all of the other fun stuff you want comes with winning – and it will indeed come with the winning for the Jaguars. You can make off-field improvements. You can make strides in the business office. You can improve the fan experience. You can do all of those things and the Jaguars have done all of those things – and I believe most fans here locally see the things, understand them and appreciate them. But talking heads talk about you when perception changes. The only thing that will change the Jaguars' national perception on the scale you desire is winning.
Greg from Section 233 and St. Johns:
John, kudos on the draft-prospect interviews. In years past, there were only rumors about visits. Now, we get interviews with the top prospects. Nice! Also do you believe – and do you think Caldwell believes –that there is a "stigma" against JUCO players such as Kevin White? Can you see him falling because of this?
John: The draft interviews were cool. A lot of people liked them, and Brian Sexton did a nice job interviewing the prospects over that two-day period last week. Credit in this case also goes to Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell. While many general managers balk at making players available in that situation, Caldwell and the Jaguars in the last two offseasons have allowed significant access to players making pre-draft visits. As far as junior-college players, no, there isn't really a stigma. NFL general managers like players who can make their team better. If a JUCO player can do that, he's going to get drafted early. Considering Kevin White's ability, I don't think he needs to worry about having gone to junior college.
Tim from St. Petersburg, FL:
John: What is the plan with Ryan Davis? Do the Jags plan on using him as a Leo or rushing from the inside during pass-rush packages?
John: Ryan Davis has established himself as a very good interior pass rusher because of an ability to use his quickness and athleticism to win one-on-one matchups with interior offensive linemen. While he has a role as a reserve Leo edge rusher, I expect his primary responsibility to remain on the interior.
Wallace from Jacksonville:
Happy to see Greg Jennings visiting the Jags and hope Dave Caldwell signs him using some cap money freed up from trading Marcedes Lewis or in some way reducing the cap hit from Lewis for 2015.
John: Former Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Greg Jennings indeed reportedly visited the Jaguars Monday. It's a visit that confirms there is some mutual interest between the sides, but it's not necessarily one that will lead to immediate action. Whatever happens with Jennings, it has nothing to do with trading Lewis or reducing his salary-cap hit or really anything to do with Lewis at all.
Garrett from Jacksonville:
O-Man, the Jags shocked the draft last year by selecting Blake Bortles at No. 3. Out of the top players in the first two rounds, what person or position would surprise you the most when we draft this year?
John: I don't know who you consider top players, but I'd be shocked if the Jaguars take an offensive lineman or a running back No. 3 overall. Basically, if it's not Dante Fowler Jr., Leonard Williams, Vic Beasley, Amari Cooper or Kevin White at No. 3 for the Jaguars I'd be surprised. There's no significance to the order of those names and the names are based only on speculation, but that's my list.
J. Hooks from Orange Park, FL:
Here's how you coach a punt returner... "Go that way … really fast … If something gets in your way, turn."
John: I want my two dollars.
Marty from Jacksonville:
O-Man, you said something very intelligent on the radio Monday. When asked about the anonymous scouts who say they would take Jameis Winston off their draft board, you said it's easy to take him off your board if you're not in position to draft him in the first place. That's a great point.
John: Thank you. I say enough unintelligent things on the radio that it's nice to be noticed when I slip up and go the other way.
Nathan from Fort Bevoir, VA:
Is there a requirement to announce every free agent visit to the media? How does the media find out about players and are there agents who travel to meet with a team?
John: There's no set way free-agent visits become public. It's not a requirement to announce free agents to the media, though the league office is aware of free-agent visits. That's sometimes how the media learns of visits, but more often than not it's either from the player's agent or through the team.
Matt from Bradford, England:
The more I think about the draft, surely in Round 1 – and in the Top 5, especially – you just have to take the player you feel most confident can be elite almost regardless of position because you need as many elite players on your roster as possible. Also, in later rounds you'll have probably a handful of players available at your pick with a similar grade and then can pick the bigger need or better system fit. What say you, O-man?
John: Yep.
Alan from Jacksonville, NC:
Just finished watching the 30 for 30 on Bo Jackson. Do you think he ever gets into the Hall of Fame for either sport?
John: No. Jackson was an otherworldly talent and he made an enormous cultural impact – a bigger impact than those not around in the late 1980s/early 1990s probably can imagine – but he did not have a Hall-of-Fame career in either baseball or football.
Bob from Not Duval:
Can I be the lame person who asks what #DWTD stands for? Don't just reply, "Yes," O-Zone. I know you want to...but give a brother some love.
John: Asking this question isn't want makes you lame, but yeah, you can ask. #DWTD actually means "Dancing With Tad Dickman," which is a little-known YouTube "Dance Party" show starring Jaguars public relations manager Tad Dickman. That's not to be confused with #DTWD, by the way, which means "Duval 'Til We Die."
Brian from New Hampshire:
It's funny because if Eli never got mad and basically forced the trade those questions never would have come up. I think the Giants still would have two Super Bowls rings. Tom Coughlin had the answer on defense in both Super Bowls to stop the Pats.
John: Somehow, I'm not sure the Giants would get the joke; what they did get was a quarterback who won them two Super Bowls – and that makes a franchise very happy. The Giants' defense certainly played a huge role in their two Super Bowl titles with Eli Manning at quarterback and Tom Coughlin as head coach. There's a good chance that the Giants would have won those Super Bowls with Philip Rivers at quarterback, but Manning played a big-time role in both championships. Anyone's entitled to an opinion about what occurred to get him to the Giants, but I don't think the franchise has spent much time regretting the decision.
Rob from Brunswick, GA:
I know the Jags are unlikely to have a Sunday/Monday night game on their schedule. And that is as it should be. But, I seem to recall that later in the year the league starts "FLEX" scheduling and moving the best games to those nights. How exactly does that work, and if we were to win and compete every week do you think we could possibly get a prime time Mon/Sun night game this year?
John: Under the flex-scheduling format, the league has the ability beginning in Week 5 to move a scheduled Sunday night game on NBC out of that slot and replace it with a game scheduled Sunday afternoon on CBS or FOX. The decision to flex must be made no later than 12 days before the game with the exception of Week 17, when games can be flexed six days beforehand. Yes, if the Jaguars were to win/compete their way into the national conversation they could have a prime-time Monday or Sunday game. The flex system was created with that sort of scenario in mind.
Payne from Jacksonville:
Who are the Jaguars targets in the upcoming draft?
John: Good football players.
Alex from Chapin:
Who should be the top picks in the draft?
John: The best of the aforementioned good football players.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content