JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …
Gary from St. Augustine, FL
The NFL has given Cleveland and Kansas City the draft. What gives? I thought Shad Khan wanted this event for Jacksonville? #norespect
The NFL indeed on Wednesday awarded the draft to Cleveland and Kansas City in 2021 and 2023, respectively. Las Vegas already was scheduled to host the 2020 draft, and the league has yet to decide on the site for 2022. As far as Jaguars Owner Shad Khan wanting the draft for Jacksonville … yes, he has expressed that desire. But that was before Dallas, Philadelphia and Nashville in recent years turned the event into a mega-celebration on a grand scale. That growth almost certainly has made it unrealistic for the draft to be held at TIAA Bank Field and Daily’s Place with the current setup around those facilities. Now, if the city and team execute the existing plans for the areas surrounding the ‘Bank and Daily’s Place, then Jacksonville hosting the draft becomes a very real possibility. In fact, I would be surprised if Jacksonville didn’t host the event if the plans for development in the area become a reality. But given the current infrastructure? No.
Scott from Jacksonville
Have you ever yelled Duval?
No, but I’ve smiled a lot hearing other people yell it.
Big on Blake from Philly
I fundamentally disagree with your assessment of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick. The clearly more elite talent is Bill Belichick. The early Patriots teams were such team-centric, well-coached squads that the quarterback needed to just follow instructions and not mess up. The schemes run both on offense and defense always keep New England at a competitive advantage to their opposition. Anyone doing the same job for 20-plus years will always be better than a counterpart with superior talent and one year of experience because they have seen it all. It may even be argued that Drew Bledsoe, Matt Cassell, Jimmy Garoppolo or even Jacoby Brissett has the tools to learn the coach’s system and thrive early enough to get the same opportunities for success. I agree an elite quarterback gives teams better chances, but Brady is still not the best quarterback in the league; if he were to test his game in any other franchise, results would definitely vary. Unfortunately, we’ll never know the true answer to this debate because No. 12 will do anything to prevent a younger successor from taking over. So one fer Belichick I suppose.
I don’t spend much energy on questions about players or coaches getting credit or blame, just as I don’t spend much energy arguing about greatest coaches or greatest players at certain positions. Football is too much of a team game to make these questions answerable, which is why the Brady-Belichick conversation tends to take on a chicken-egg feel. Which came first? Chicken or the egg? We’ll never know, and we’ll never know who should get more “credit” for the Patriots’ success over the past two decades. I will say my original thought on this topic remains the same – that much of the reason the Patriots and Belichick have looked so smart so often for two decades is the presence of Brady at quarterback. When you have that position solved and it’s playing at a generational level, it makes so many other decisions so much easier.
Jim from Jagsonville
For the record I never suggested moving a quarterback to tight end, I asked about moving BB5 to tight end ...
Trey from Orange Park, FL
The good: Combine drills now will be in prime time (long overdue). The bad: The combine will remain in Indy. A move from Indy is long overdue, don’t you think?
The league on Wednesday announced the drills from the NFL Scouting Combine indeed will be aired in prime time on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. I’m ambivalent on that topic. If fans enjoy combine drills and want them on at night, then so be it. As for the combine remaining in Indy, the league indeed voted on Wednesday to keep it there through 2020 with a series of annual options after that. It seems more likely each year that the combine eventually will move. That would be unfortunate. The combine runs smoothly in Indianapolis – with centrally located hotels, medical facilities and meeting facilities. The medical examinations are the most important part of the combine, and I’ve never talked to a medical person or football person who wants the combine moved. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Perhaps it will sooner or later. But it won’t be a positive.
Joe from San Antonio, TX
The appeal of trading away Jalen Ramsey to some fans is just bizarre to me. Other than certain circumstances that don't apply to the Jags, you only trade away elite players who are still ascending when you are in a rebuild. The Chicago Bears and Dallas Cowboys traded away first-round picks and made the playoffs. The Raiders traded away elite players and had a top 5 draft pick.
Trading Ramsey became “a thing” last November when there was a report that other teams believed the Jaguars would consider trading Ramsey. Coupled with Ramsey’s comments to some national magazines last summer, that report seemed to create a narrative that Ramsey was a problem player – and that the Jaguars were looking to trade Ramsey and/or that Ramsey wanted to be traded. Because people tend to believe what they want to believe – as opposed to believing the truth – people tend to believe Ramsey being traded is a strong possibility. This is an admittedly long way of saying this: The Jaguars aren’t looking to trade Ramsey and Ramsey isn’t trying to be traded. This isn’t a thing. It’s just not.
Alejandro from Ciudad de Mexico
In 2007, we underestimated the value and the growing process of a safety and used a rookie (Reggie Nelson) instead a good veteran (Deon Grant) without any Plan B to support Nelson (without cap problems). The result was a good team that couldn't stop Tom Brady in playoffs. Now, we are in the same situation and with Telvin Smith giving us cap relief ... have we learned the lesson?
The Jaguars like their safety situation as it stands. I expect they will monitor it closely in training camp and preseason. If they like the situation less at that point, they can address it during or after preseason. Stay tuned.
Keith from Jacksonville and Section 436 Since 1995
How did LF 27 look in first day of OTAs? I know there's no pads and hitting, but physically, did he look like he trained in WY as he said he did?
Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette looked very good on Day 1 or 2019 organized team activities. He looked fit and quick. It’s worth noting that he looked very good during the offseason and training camp last season, too. Fournette this offseason has done what is expected to do, and he appears to have worked diligently. The true test is how he will play in the 2019 season, but for now he appears to be doing what’s necessary – and that’s all he can do at this point.
Bruce from Green Cove Springs, FL
Given the level of hero worship, I’m starting to think that if Johnathan Cyprien and Gene Frenette ever teamed up, they would conquer the world.
Longtime Florida Times-Union sports columnist and Northeast Florida cultural icon Eugene P. “Gene” Frenette doesn’t need help to conquer the world.
Robert from Moorpark, CA
You may have answered this recently, but it's my first time back to the O-Zone. How is Cam Robinson progressing after an ACL tear? Is he projected to start Week 1? It felt like that's when the season started to roll downhill even though we managed to fend off the Patriots.
Robinson attended Day 1 of 2019 OTAs and remained on the side, which means he’s pretty much where he would be expected to be a little more than eight months after sustaining a torn anterior cruciate ligament. I expect Robinson – like wide receiver Marqise Lee – to be brought along slowly and monitored carefully during the rest of the offseason and into training camp because that’s the normal protocol with players returning from ACL tears. There hasn’t been a detailed update on Robinson or Lee, and I wouldn’t expect one for a while because that’s not typically what the Jaguars do with injuries in the offseason.
Jerell from Columbia, SC
John after looking at the schedule and the team the jags have assembled I really believe that this team can go 16-0 yes you read me correctly 16-0! The key to this happening is winning week one and going 1-0, after that the league will get steam rolled by Nick and the crew! Don’t@ me either. GO JAGS!!!!!
You go, girl.
Stu from Wrestlingworth, UK
Hey O Zone - just wanted to say to Ian from Leeds, I’m with you brother - I’ll be shouting Duval as loud as possible come the game this year in Wembley, see you there!
And you go, too. Girl.