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O-Zone: Just keep going

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Greg from Palatka, FL

KOAF, you have stated several times that the Jaguars want to have a strong running game to protect Trevor Lawrence from having to carry the offense. I thought Trevor was supposed to be better than Joe Burrow or Justin Herbert, just to name a couple who were thrown into the fray. I'm all in favor of a strong running game, but I say if Trevor is as advertised, the Jags' best chance to succeed is to turn him loose. I can't wait to see what he can do. I understand there will be growing pains, but please don't make Trevor Lawrence a game manager. Let him use all his God-given talents to win football games for us! Go Jags!

There will be plenty of time to see what Lawrence can do. There also will be plenty of opportunities for him to perform and make plays as a rookie. But the Jaguars' approach correctly will not be to simply "turn him loose to see what he can do." Their approach is to strengthen the team around him and not have him carry the team. Remember: the quarterbacks you mentioned – Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals and Justin Herbert of the Los Angeles Chargers – indeed were very productive as rookies last season. They showed a lot of flashes. They did well enough that they appear to be franchise quarterbacks moving forward. But they also went a combined 8-16-1 as starters last season. The Jaguars want Lawrence to develop and win at the same time. A strong running game and allowing him not to have to be The One and Only as a rookie is the best path toward that.

Adrian from El Paso, TX

Not one to gripe about media coverage usually, but why is Trevor Lawrence not getting the same or more media coverage as other quarterbacks? I mean I get that he's the surefire No. 1 quarterback, but geez … it's almost blatantly obvious that he's not in media coverage compared to others.

I honestly don't know what sort of "coverage" Lawrence is getting or not getting. I know we talk about him a lot on Jaguars Media. I hear a lot about him locally. And I don't get the sense national media are ignoring him. If he's not being discussed as much as other young quarterbacks, perhaps one reason is there was and remains little mystery around Lawrence. There was an assumption for a long time that he would be the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft and an assumption that he will succeed. There is less assumption around the other rookie quarterbacks and therefore more to discuss. That doesn't guarantee Lawrence's success, but it perhaps explains why he isn't discussed as much as the others. If that's the case.

Captain Bob from Jax by choice

I think we need a new rule – no not a game rule, a scheduling rule. No team needs five primetime games (five did). Plus, no team should get less than two. I get that the money/interest is in the big/better markets, but the smaller/less successful markets need the money and the hype more! The NFL talks parity, where is it in scheduling? One suggestion for when to schedule the smaller markets primetime games is earlier in the season when everyone is hungry for football and no crucial games are yet on the horizon. What say you, O?

I say people can talk about this all they want, but the reality remains that the league and television networks don't schedule games to promote franchises. They schedule them based on what they believe people want to see. The league and the television partners are interested in placing games on national television that will be well-viewed and create advertising revenue. I get no sense that this will change.

Matt from Houston, TX

Overall, I liked our draft this year. The only "meh" for me was cornerback Tyson Campbell with the No. 33 overall selection. I understand that every team has different measurables they look for in a player, but there was SO much talent at 33 (Trevon Moehrig in particular) Christian Barmore, Rondale Moore, Elijah Moore, etc., that I can't help but feel like it was an early reach ... much like the consensus with Alex Leatherwood. Were you surprised they passed on Moehrig? I like Andre Cisco a lot, and am glad Jags got a talented safety, but that 33rd pick has been bothering me...*twitch*

I've learned in 27 years covering the NFL Draft to not be surprised by much; I've learned that how experts and analysts see individual players has so little to do with how individual teams see those same players that it's pointless to project much past the Top 10 or so in a draft. Teams enter drafts with projections and plans to select an entire class based on their values, etc. In the case of the Jaguars, for example, they had value on Campbell and the cornerback position that merited selecting him there – and that made it make sense to wait on a position such as safety and Cisco at No. 65 overall.

John from Ponte Vedra Beach

Signing Tebow to the 90-player roster will not be near as stupid as drafting Matt Jones in the first round and trying to turn him into a wide receiver.

John apparently was not all-in in 2005.

Gero from Wenden, Germany

Hello, John. Let's assume Tim Tebow makes the 53-man roster. Do you think Meyer would use Tebow's experience as a quarterback to confuse opponents by having Lawrence throw reverse passes to him, which he would throw to receivers as a "quarterback" instead of acting as a tight end? Why do you assume that C.J. Beathard is on the roster as a backup to Lawrence and not Gardner Minshew II or Jake Luton? Minshew has two years' experience and Luton has one year experience at the position and they know the team. With a slightly improved offensive line, new coaches and coordinators – and a possible franchise quarterback for the next decade – both players can only benefit and have better opportunities than Beathard, right? What are your thoughts on this?

Two questions, two thoughts. One: I suppose Tebow could throw a reverse pass or two, though I imagine the Jaguars will stick with the more-boring approach of having their starting quarterback throw most of the passes. As far as why I believe Beathard will be the backup, it's fairly simple and I'll repeat what I wrote a day or so ago. The Jaguars signed Beathard as an unrestricted free agent in the offseason. They did this with Luton and Minshew on the roster, so presumably they wanted more at the quarterback position. I expect that will mean Beathard as the backup. Maybe that's wrong. We'll see.

Marty from Jacksonville

_John, About players "breaking" contracts … An NFL contract allows a player to decide not to play. He just doesn't get paid if he doesn't play. A contract basically says, "If you play, you will only play for us, and if you play, we will pay you some set amount." So a player has not broken his contract if he decides to sit out, any more than a team breaks a contract if they decide to cut him before his contract is up. _


Doug from Jax Beach

John, why are there so many people so upset about Tebow? If the Jags give him a chance, that's all it is. If he happens to make the team, which is unlikely, then the Jags coaches will be convinced that Tebow can help the team win better than all the guys that get cut. It's really that simple. And if he does make the team, it probably wouldn't be just Tebow's ability to play tight end. It might also be his competitiveness, his leadership, his work ethic and his ability to help change the culture of a team that has had a lot of trouble winning.


Steve from Nashville, TN

In the many years of the O-Zone have you ever publicly said you were not going to cover a topic anymore because it had already been answered ad nauseum and there was nothing else of value you could add?

No. People ask questions because they want an answer. If you've read enough about a topic, you can scroll down.