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O-Zone: History lesson

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it … Colton from Emporia, KS:
What will the Jags do about Dan Skuta and his recent incident? Who would replace him? Do we cut him? You the man, O.
John: You're referring to a report Monday that Jaguars Otto linebacker Dan Skuta was arrested and charged with first-degree misdemeanor battery following a June 19 incident in Orlando. According to a police report, there was an altercation that "turned physical when Skuta pushed victim's face with an open hand which caused the back of her head to hit a glass window." That's what's out there, as is the Jaguars' official statement: "The Jaguars are aware of the situation involving linebacker Dan Skuta and are currently gathering more information. The team has been in constant communication with Dan through this process in its entirety. No further comment can be made." Skuta's attorney, Mark NeJame, issued a statement Monday saying that "Dan never placed his hands on anyone." The statement also said, "Dan Skuta was arrested for something that simply did not happen and we ask that there be no rush to judgment as Dan is innocent. Erroneous conclusions should not be jumped to." I don't expect any action on this until more is known. Police reports are allegations and charges. Often, they are accurate interpretations of what occurred. Other times, they are not. I don't expect the Jaguars to release Skuta immediately. I expect them to do what they should do in this situation – which is find out the facts and act on them when the facts are learned.
Brian from New Hampshire:
I know we need to wait for all the details, but if it's true Dan Skuta put his hands on a woman he needs to go. Let's be the team to start the example this is not OK ever.
John: Your opening phrase is an operative phrase here: "I know we need to wait for all the details." This will play out over the course of the next few days and weeks.
Tom from Virginia Beach, VA:
With the defensive line becoming faster and more athletic, does this help the offensive line prepare for games? If the offensive line is practicing against one of the best defensive lines isn't it reasonable to assume that they (offensive line) will improve in games?
John: Competition in practice doesn't hurt, though there is a limit to how much live, full-speed work linemen get in practice during an NFL season. The best way for any position group to improve is to improve talent and gain experience. The Jaguars appear to have done both along the offensive line this offseason.
Ed from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
I hear sometimes that a defensive player fits better in a 3-4 versus 4-3 formation and that's why they get traded away. Is there something similar in the offensive line – meaning, a player is mediocre with one team but could excel in another?
John: It happens because sometimes players just fit better with one team – or around another group of players or in another system – than another. It's probably not as common on the offensive line as on defense. For instance, when Sen'Derrick Marks signed with the Jaguars he did so because he believed he would fit the team's three-technique tackle role. Offensively, the difference usually lies in how the team wants to run block. Is it a gap-blocking scheme or more of a zone-blocking scheme? That can be a big difference for a lineman.
Tudor from St. Augustine, FL:
Actually, if the question is, "Do you want the best quarterback right now?" you'd be taking Aaron Rodgers; don't get it twisted.
John: The question/answer to which you're referring was about Blake Bortles and Tom Brady; I wrote that Brady is the better quarterback of the two right now. If the question had referred to the entire league, then, yes … I would have said Rodgers.
Christian from Titusville, FL:
Haven't had a dream in a long time, seems the luck I've had would make a good man turn bad, so please, please, please, let me, let me, let me, let me get what I want this time. #winningseason
John: It wouldn't be the first time, but hey … it would be cool.
Cristiano from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil:
"The league already is having enough trouble figuring out what to do with the Pro Bowl." Bring it to Brazil! For the Jaguars folks, beers on me!
John: My recent answer referred more to the on-field product of the Pro Bowl rather than off-field, but yeah … "a Pro Bowl version of LIVE from Brazil …" I'm in. And yes … you're buying. Obviously.
Blues Man from Georgetown:
OK, I've got to ask you ... What Major League Baseball team do you either follow, or pull for? As an Ohio native, transplanted recently in Florida, I root big-time for the Reds and Indians. What the heck, it's the offseason!
John: I grew up a huge Oakland A's fan. I started following them during the early 1970s glory years when they won World Series titles from 1972-74. Having jumped on that bandwagon at age six, I stayed loyal through some dark times as that team was dismantled, nearly crying – OK, maybe tearing up a touch – when I saw Reggie Jackson hit a grand slam against Oakland at Yankee Stadium in August 1978. I stayed with the A's through the Billy Martin era, and was hardcore through the Bash Brothers era of the early 1990s. I remained a loyal follower until the 1994 strike year. Baseball lost me that year, and I've never regained any serious interest. It's not that I hate the sport; I simply have only so much time to invest in sports and I choose to invest in the NFL, the NBA and NHL playoffs, the NCAA basketball tournament and tennis grand slams – and anytime Roger Federer plays. I also now watch the English Premier League more than I ever imagined I would watch soccer. I watch baseball during the playoffs and World Series to have it on in the background, but can't remember the last time I checked a box score or the standings. If the A's are on in the playoffs, I'll watch, but I no longer pace or react with anger or glee. Ya gotta pick your spots, I guess, and baseball is no longer one of my spots.
Brian from Duval County:
With Jalen Ramsey/Aaron Colvin having the ability to blitz from the slot as well as being a solid tacklers, do you think the Jaguars will have some dime packages in certain situations this season?
John: Yes.
Steve from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
I'm curious about the idea of keeping three quarterbacks rather than risk losing Brandon Allen by placing him on the practice squad. Apart from the idea that having good players on the team always helps, are we trying to keep Allen to eventually replace Chad Henne as the backup? I assume we don't look at him as a Bortles replacement. Of course, after last year we may be thinking any "Allen" is a good football player.
John: Keeping Brandon Allen on the roster isn't a guarantee, and the Jaguars very well could place him on the practice squad. My point in my recent answer was that he has looked good enough so far that doing so might be a greater risk than might have been originally thought. Why would the Jaguars keep him? Absolutely the idea would be to eventually replace Henne as the backup. Henne is a valuable backup, and he almost certainly will be on the roster this season. But he is a $4.75 million salary-cap hit this season. As the Jaguars' roster matures and salaries of young core players increases, a younger backup quarterback with a smaller salary-cap hit would be preferable and Allen looks like he could fill that role.
MrPadre from Kingsland, GA:
If we do end up putting Brandon Allen on the practice squad and another team offers him a contract, we can at that time also offer him a deal, right? I understand at that time the other teams offer may include a better chance of moving up the depth chart, but also by that time Allen will have learned our system and hopefully found some level of comfort with the coaches. I guess it will all depend on how much of a chance of losing him we are comfortable with and if we "need" that 53rd spot on the roster for another position.......right? #DTWD
John: Right. #DTWD
Lol from Jacksonville:
Wouldn't it be hilarious if the NFL was scripted?
John: You're kidding, of course, but the answer is: "Not really," and it actually would be pretty boring. The reason sports compel us is it's a reality show that we see take place before our eyes. It's why legitimate sports leagues long have taken the hardest of hardline stances against anything that sniffs of chipping away at the integrity of the game.
Cliffhanger form Jacksonville:
This doesn't make sense: you wrote about the Jaguars team in the 90's, even though you didn't cover them then.
John: Are you serious, Clark?

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