DUVAL – Let's get to it …
John from Jacksonville:
The Matt Scott phenomenon is simple to me. We hadn't been impressed by Gabbert or Henne so we defaulted to the next best thing out of desperation. Gabbert is gone. Scott is gone. So, now we'll hear a lot about Bortles and Stanzi. I guess Henne is the Rodney Dangerfield of the Jags.
John: What you're describing is actually pretty typical among NFL fans, and it's understandable. There's a natural desire when dissatisfied to look to the next best thing, and no question that's what Jaguars fans were doing when they clamored for Matt Scott last season. As we said often, the Jaguars didn't see Scott as being ready to start last season, and there was no interest in just "putting him out there to see what he could do." They knew what he could do, and the feeling was that Henne and Gabbert could do it better. Yes, you'll be hearing about Bortles and Stanzi now because it's the nature of the quarterback position. It's a tough position to get respect, and even when you get it, it's tough to keep it.
Jim from Simpsonville:
Why can't you buy your own beer?
John: Because if I wait long enough, Shadrick can't help waggling a finger in the air and buying everyone within earshot a round.
Quinn from Tampa, FL:
Holding down DUUUVVVVAAAALLLL! On the Gulf Coast. Haters gonna hate.
John: True that.
Marion from Jacksonville and Section 437:
The Duval thing did not evolve organically just from the fans. Originally, it was the players' chant before games. When fans found out that was their chant, fans gradually adopted it as well. If you want to know "why Duval?" wouldn't you have to ask some of the older players like Meester?
John: Nah, the mystery and argument is part of the fun of this thing.
April from Pooler, GA:
Nine months pregnant here, with a girl due May 31. YOU have my husband lobbying for "DuValerie." As YOU know, I have the final vote and that will not be the name.
John: Time will tell.
Tim from Kingsland, GA:
I recently read an article about the Jaguars using an "Otto" back. For clarification is that basically another "Leo" just lined up on the strong side? Please give us an idea of what we should expect to see.
John: The Jaguars plan to use newly signed linebacker Dekoda Watson as an "Otto" linebacker. It's not a Leo, because the Leo is by nature a weak-side pass-rushing role. Though Watson was signed because he has some blitzing ability he more a strong-side backer. Defensive coordinator Bob Babich described the "Otto" to Jaguars Today this week as an edge player with some pass-rush responsibility. He can play the strong or weak side. The way Babich explained it, the Jaguars are still figuring out just what the position will entail.
Pat from Jacksonville:
Dean from Rochester, NY, had some issues with the DUVAL chant and how outsiders would feel about it. Simply, it's an inside thing special to the Jags. A lot of teams in different leagues have chants that make no sense to anyone but the supporters who came up with it. Should we cater to the folks who don't frequent games who haven't grown attached to our customs or adapt our culture to people who wouldn't come to EverBank unless their team is playing? I say we continue with DUUUUUUUUVAL and let the other fans figure out their own way. What say you, O-man?
John: I say, "Yeah," but whatever I say ain't going to influence this one way or the other.
Ben from Jacksonville:
As for the AFC South being wide open, I agree. However, it was only three or four years ago the NFC West was the laughingstock of the league! Jacksonville, Houston and Tennessee have just hired new coaches (like that division) so I see this definitely as a wide-open division but one that can get very competitive very soon!
John: The AFC South is still a division largely looking for an identity, which is often the case when only one team has an established quarterback. The Colts have Andrew Luck and the other teams' quarterback situations are decidedly less certain. As that changes, so, too, will the identity of the division.
Charlie from Jacksonville:
Wanted to respond to Dean from NY. Jacksonville does not just almost consume all of Duval County; Jacksonville and Duval County are legally one in the same. It's a unique situation; we are the only consolidated City/County government in Florida and it's not all that common nationally. That's part of what makes Duuuuuuuuvalllllllllll work so well.
John: Yes, but honestly, I think most of it is it's just really fun to say, "Duuuuuuuuuuvaaalll!"
Brent from Jacksonville:
What would happen if a high-drafted rookie got hurt during rookie minicamp prior to signing their contract? Say a blown knee or something. Are they protected or screwed?
John: Players in that situation get what is known as standard injury protection. It essentially ensures a player will get paid what his contract likely would have been in the event of a career-ending injury.
Tim from Jacksonville and Section 213:
I've lived here for 40 years and I love all those beautiful fans who are enthusiastic and cheer. Whatever the words are doesn't matter. Anything cheered by many Jaguars fans in unison is enough to make me smile no matter how dumb it is. One of the best cheers in the league is J-E-T-S … Jets-Jets-Jets. I hate the Jets but their cheer is awesome. So many of their fans participate in it that it becomes a very powerful thing. When it comes to cheers, it seems that quantity is more important than quality.
Adam from New York, NY:
Any chance Storm Johnson goes on the practice squad? Or is it too risky given that someone could snatch him up?
John: He could, but there's no reason right now to think he doesn't have a chance to be on the 53-man roster. But whoever goes on the practice squad, it's probably not worth it as a fan to fret too, too much. If a team puts a player on the practice squad they're generally not losing massive amounts of sleep over whether or not they'll lose him.
Kent from Jacksonville:
To everyone who wants to question the whole "Duval" thing we do here: it's not a "thing" as much as a state of mind. It's a mentality where we may not be the biggest city, or have the coolest nickname for our team, but, dang it, this town is home and this team is our team. Jump on the bandwagon or don't, just stop over thinking it.
John: At this point, I think "overthinking it" is a very good description.
James from Jacksonville:
Is there a reason why the Jags have not signed our #1 pick?
John: The only reason is there is no hurry to do this. There are details in any contract that must be worked through, and there will come a time – almost certainly sooner rather than later – when the Jaguars and quarterback Blake Bortles will do that. There's no hurry. It almost certainly won't happen this weekend or Monday with the holiday, but I doubt it will be long after that.
Dean from Rochester, NY:
It's like I'm a celebrity now. To bring the counterpoints in Friday's O-Zone full circle, the fans have a chip on their shoulder due to rough seasons, and they chant Duvaaaal, just like the Saints, who had a down couple of decades, wore bags over their heads, etc. The whole "Who Dat?" came from their team finally making strides, beating other teams, and becoming a legitimate contender. It was a mocking of those who had held the Saints in low regard for so long by basically saying "who is that that just beat your team?" = "Who Dat?" So, yes, "Who Dat" has a meaning. Duval is a county. I do like the ring of Duval Dimwits proposed by Jim. The ringing of the bell, however, is cool.
John: Hey, everyone! It's Dean.
JB from Jacksonville:
Seriously, what more do you want in a reliable, versatile rotational DT/DE like Alualu? One does not simply "find" a player like him, if he leaves. Do you see Gus/Dave retaining Alualu?
John: Yes, at least for this season.
Mitch from Fleming Island, FL:
Pretty simple solution to the people who dislike the DUUUUVAL stuff. Create a Jags support group, aggressively promote it, grow the fan base, be completely unwavering in support of all things Jags and then come up with whatever chant/saying/whatever you want. No one is stopping the DUUUVAL haters from doing it, and honestly, we'd all love and welcome more never ending support of the Jags from everyone.
John: It's about time to start wrapping up this Duval Debate, though it may be a slow weaning process. And probably the best thing for everyone to realize is there's no thought of anyone stopping anyone from saying, Duuuuvvaall at games.
Ryan from Duuuuuuuuvvvvaaaaaaal:
#Moodachay. That is all.
John: Well, maybe not "all."
O-Zone: End game
DUVAL – Let's get to it …
John from Jacksonville: