JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Mary Anne from Jacksonville
How do you think it looks to all the rookies coming in when they realize that most-if-not-all Jags players are gone by choice or by trade before their first contract is up? Just wondering what your take is on this?
I'm not sure your question reflects the entire story – though many fans do share your perception. To be fair, draft selections such as center Brandon Linder, linebacker Telvin Smith, wide receiver Marqise Lee, linebacker Myles Jack and quarterback Blake Bortles have re-signed second contracts with the Jaguars in recent seasons – so I don't know if it's true that most-if-not alI Jaguars players are gone before their first contract expires. It seems the perception that Jaguars players don't want to re-sign with the team has been created mostly by cornerback Jalen Ramsey and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue. Ramsey was traded because he wanted a trade, and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue appears to want a trade. Whether that's a disturbing trend depends largely upon how you feel about the players' reasoning for discontent. I'm not particularly bothered by the Jaguars trading Ramsey because my sense is he will find something about which to be discontented wherever he plays. As far as Ngakoue … the Jaguars tried to pay him last offseason and they stopped short of paying him elite defensive-end money. The Jaguars set a limit on what they thought he was worth and he apparently didn't like their cutoff point. Either way, I don't get the impression the current group of young Jaguars players is particularly concerned one way or the other about the contract situations of those two players. That's not saying they wanted them gone, but I also don't get the idea it's a major issue. Maybe I'm wrong. That happens.
Tom from Shanghai, China
As a Washington fan growing up, what's your take on the Redskins name? Seems pretty untenable to me in the current climate, especially as FedEx and Nike have threatened to hit them in the pocket.
With the team issuing a statement Friday that the name will be reviewed, it seems inevitable it will be changed. Like many others, I thought little about the name when following the team while growing up. I no longer have much attachment to the franchise except that it is a source of fond memories – largely involving my father, with whom I bonded while watching the team. But it's time for the name to change. Past time, actually.
Don from Marshall, NC
Don't 16 game checks say I love you enough? Ngakoue needs to finish what he started. I mean he could be up on the wall with a start like he has had. The best thing he could do is bet on himself and sign that tender. He is a very important player to this team. He has earned the right to be a leader and his leadership going forward will be key to his success. Fire your agent. You do not need him to sign a tender. All of your fans and you will not stick it out one more season? Your team needs you! Go Jaguars!
Bob from Sumter, SC
Just a hunch but I don't see Ngakoue playing again for the Jaguars. I think they will end up having to trade him midseason for a Day Two pick to a team that wants to win now and is willing to gamble they can sign him long-term.
Maybe. We'll see.
KC from Orlando, FL
KOAF - assuming that Ngakoue gets the tag this year and doesn't play and next year as well – and that we are unable to find a suitable trade deal (plus not picking up as many free agents) – what level of a compensatory pick would we get for him in two years?
Probably a third-round selection.
Shawn from Fort Bragg, NC
If Yan signs the tag and there is no season, does he still get paid? Also: if there is no season does this count as Year 1 of the tag for Yan? If he doesn't sign and there is no season does it still count as Year 1 for the tag?
You're asking about hypothetical scenarios. This is understandable and they're fair questions, but the NFL currently is planning to play a 2020 season. My impression is that it's possible no players will be paid if there's no season. I would assume that would mean it would not toward players' accrued seasons in free-agency and time-served formulas. I also assume a lot of the issues in your question could be negotiated between the NFL and the NFL Players Association in the still-unlikely event there is no 2020 season.
Josh from Atlanta, GA
Do you believe that if Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew II had the exact same season, statistically and record wise, with another team such as the, say, New England Patriots, there would be a much different buzz around him? Obviously inside the Jaguars' locker room and fan base there is a lot of excitement for his potential. Outside of that, the league and media pretty much unanimously ignored his season. If he did all of what he did in New England or Pittsburgh, I believe he would be a major talking point all offseason about his potential to be the second coming. Obviously, our 2019 record and market size play a factor, but it seems a little extreme in this case.
Pittsburgh and New England are two of the most-popular, successful teams in the NFL – so a player for those franchises is naturally going to get more notoriety than a player for a franchise such as the Jaguars that has struggled in recent seasons. Minshew was a sixth-round selection and he's not a prototype. He played for a team that finished 6-10. He had flashes where he looked good, but he also was inconsistent enough for there to be legitimate questions about his future. When you combine those factors, it's understandable that he's somewhat overlooked. And I do expect it will take a while to convince the Minshew "haters" not to hate, but that's OK. The nice thing about the NFL is the "popularity-contest" stuff doesn't matter. It's what you do on the field.
Sam from Orlando, FL
Celebrating while down does seem a bit silly. But I learned a while ago, the player celebrating could have hit a bonus in his contract with that sack, interception, touchdown, catch, etc. If I'm down 41-9 and a tackle I made triggered a million-dollar bonus, I'm celebrating like I just won four Super Bowls.
Geoffrey from Orlando, FL
I remember when former Jaguars Head Coach Jack Del Rio would rock the sideline suit complete with teal tie. It was epic and the epitome of class. Head Coach Doug Marrone in a sideline suit? Something tells me the last time he was it a suit was his own wedding. I feel like the typical coaching attire is right in his wheelhouse.
Mike from Atlanta, GA
I used to bring up Rod Woodson a lot to people back when he and Deion Sanders played. Rod had a longer career and was a really good safety later on. I do remember watching former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor burn Woodson for something like a 90-yard touchdown catch. Sanders didn't change the game the way that Mel Blount changed it in that the league had to create new rules for him. Deion did change the game while he was on the field in that I never saw before or after him a quarterback just surrender a side of the field. I've never seen quarterbacks not even look. There were a lot of times I saw quarterbacks not even glance at his side.
Sanders was great and perhaps we're talking semantics here, but there's a difference between being great and changing the game. Former New York Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor was great and people said at the time he played he changed the game, but there really weren't a flurry of linebackers in his wake who played similarly and caused defensive coordinators to change defenses to play the way the Giants did when Taylor was in his prime. Ditto Sanders. He was great and dynamic, but few players can duplicate his coverage ability so he didn't really change the game – though he absolutely caused coordinators and quarterbacks to play differently when he played. I suppose in that respect, it's difficult if not impossible for anyone other than perhaps quarterbacks to change the game. In that sense, the mobile quarterbacks who extend plays with athleticism and therefore place enormous pressure on coordinators and defenses? Players such as Cam Newtown? Deshaun Watson? Patrick Mahomes? Perhaps Lamar Jackson? They're changing the game.
Stu from Wrestlingworth
Hey, KOAF: Some thoughts on what the "J.P." in J.P. Shadrick could stand for ... 1) Just Perfect, 2) Jokingly Provocative, 3) Jubilantly Paralytic (after a heavy night out), 4) Joyfully Pompous …
We really need football in the fall.