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O-Zone: Keep dancing

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Bradley from Sparks, NV

I'm 100 percent positive that Andy Reid of the Kansas City Chiefs, Sean McVay of the Los Angeles Rams and Kyle Shanahan of the San Francisco 49ers are consensus Top 5 NFL head coaches and it's largely due to the fact they are elite play-callers. Pederson in my opinion is one of the very, very few coaches on that rare level. I believe it's as much a natural talent as a learned one. If you have Patrick Mahomes on your team, you don't start Jake Luton. McVay and Shanahan have assistant head coaches to help manage game situations and Reid does this thing called multi-tasking. Didn't Pederson call every play the year his team won the Super Bowl?

Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson indeed was the primary play-caller when the Philadelphia Eagles won the Super Bowl following the 2017 season, but I disagree with your premise at least a bit. While McVay, Shanahan and Reid indeed rank among the NFL's best head coaches, they hold that status because they are first-rate leaders, organizers and tone-setters for their organization. Those traits mark the most-successful head coaches and those traits are why Pederson has been successful as an NFL head coach – first with the Eagles and now with the Jaguars. Remember, too: Play-calling, while important, is not near the end-all issue media and fans believe. We as NFL followers tend to elevate its importance and tend to praise a play-caller following success while criticizing a play-caller if a side of the ball is unsuccessful. The reality is fans and observers can't tell the difference in play-callers and tend to dramatically overplay the issue. Witness the 2022 Jaguars, when Pederson called plays in the first halves of games and offensive coordinator Press Taylor called plays in the second halves. Pederson widely was praised after that season, with few – if any – outside the organization knowing who called plays when. I'm not naïve enough to think that this explanation will keep this from being an issue as the 2024 season approaches. I have been around Pederson enough to expect him to continue having Taylor call plays because he believes it's best for the team.

Jason from Jacksonville

I'm curious, how many O-Zone questions do you receive in a day? I'm pretty certain it ebbs and flows and you probably receive more questions during the season and events like the draft.

I don't count O-Zone questions. I would guestimate I receiver two hundred or more(ish) in the day or so after most games, maybe more – though the number sometimes is smaller if it's late in the season and the team is struggling. It indeed will dwindle into the teens(ish) or twenties during the dead zone. Give or take(ish).

Jerry from Italia, FL

Zone, if I remember correctly – which chances are I don't – when you started "The Streak" you stated that you would continue the O-Zone until the Jaguars won the Super Bowl. It looks like you have 223 more consecutive O-Zones to write. The good news is you'll break the streak of that old tree what's his name wrote about.

I am the king of all funk.

Marc from Oceanway

Since you covered both, how would you rank Edgerrin James as a running back versus Fred Taylor? Is James more deserving of being in the Hall of Fame than Fred Taylor?

I covered James from 2001-2005 as a member of the Indianapolis Colts after covering Taylor with the Jaguars from 1998-2000. James' elusiveness and physicality made him special, and remember: James won the NFL rushing titles in his first two seasons – 1999-2000 and was averaging 100 yards per game through six games in 2001 when he sustained a torn anterior cruciate ligament. James also rushed for more than 1,500 yards four times in his career, including twice after his ACL injury. That said, Taylor's combination of power/speed/strength was special and his career average of 4.6 yards per carry is a special statistic that can't be overlooked. Give me Taylor in this discussion, if just barely. Is James more deserving of being in the Hall of Fame than Taylor? Not from this view, though he definitely is deserving.

Don from Marshall, NC

The one thing about the Jaguars is the loyal pocket of fans all over the world who support the team. The fact that Jacksonville is a military town and has a large following in the UK helps. If the Jaguars win the Superbowl, they will have a turbo-charged fan base. Go Jaguars!

When it comes to believing in the Jaguars and the fan base, Don – like most Jaguars fans – remains "all in."

Joe from Jacksonville

Your friend Mike Bianchi has relentlessly ripped the franchise from his mom's couch in Orlando during his storied career, so here's a refrain from a former fantastic BCC writer regarding Bianchi's OWN words about a former Jags WR struggling with personal issues: "bemoan the fact that an NFL franchise will give chances to 'drunks, druggies and delinquents but not Tim Tebow.' " He's a hack for page views. I'm really sorry you associate with that. It denigrates the quality of the O-Zone. Just in case you were wondering why Jacksonville media readers don't care for him.

I wasn't wondering, but OK.

Deane from Daytona Beach, FL

Yo O-Zone!!! Being that it is the dreaded Dead Zone, I thought you might be able to shed some light on how one gets selected then inducted into the Mascot Hall of Fame? Don't get me wrong, I think Jaxson de Ville totally deserves it, but what is the criteria for selection? Is it overall speed on an ATV entering the stadium? His total disregard for his safety just to entertain and rally a DUUUVAL yell? Is it the intense heat Jaxson suffers in this stifling heat and humidity on gamedays? Is it his antics behind the goal posts that lead to missed kicks? What says you O-Zone???

I don't know the answer to this question. I don't particularly anticipate being able to answer this question.

Bradford from Orange Park, FL

I just caught up on fully reading the past two columns. "A break from the act" due to Mrs. O., you say? I think she and Mrs. B. are on the same page.

I am the king all funk. I also can wear thin quickly.

Eric from Jacksonville

How do you think Devin Lloyd's continued development will fare under new defensive coaches and scheme?

I think linebacker Devin Lloyd is a central storyline to the Jaguars' defense – and their season – in 2024. The No. 27 overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, Lloyd in two seasons has been good at times. He also has been really good at times. He also has been inconsistent. Can defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen "unlock" Lloyd's potential by simplifying the scheme and Lloyd's role in it? Can he thrive pursuing the ball and displaying athleticism? That's the idea. That's the hope. Stay tuned.

Pedal Bin from Farnborough, Hampshire, UK

Oh Mighty 'O' / King of All Funk, just tell Mario from Hannover to go on Google Maps and search "The Slab, Jacksonville." It will show you where the Bold City Brigade meet up before the game. They certainly looked after me when I came across The Pond and I am sure they will look after Mario, too.

Good advice.

Eric from Jacksonville Beach

I have to say I'm more excited than I "should" be coming off the finish to last season the further we separate from it and the closer we get to the new season. This offseason saw us extend inside linebacker Foye Oluokun, sign some great free agents in key areas, put out what most would say is a very solid draft, re-sign edge Josh Allen and quarterback Trevor Lawrence – and even see the approval for the stadium. Am I just drinking the Kool-Aid or has it felt like this offseason has been more eventful, and hopefully successful, than most? I know only time will tell on that but sure feels that way!

This has been a good offseason. There's every reason to be optimistic. This feels like a team that – provided it can remain healthy – should be improved in some key areas. This isn't Kool-Aid. That's real. It guarantees nothing, but it's real.

Craig from Halifax, NS. Canada

Does the team have a Dietician that travels with them and what type of foods do they eat prior to a game?

Yes. Healthy ones.

Chris from Sec 437

If the Stadium of the Future is supposed to bring in more revenue with the upgraded premium seating, why is there still a need to play an annual London game?

Because the team and the City of Jacksonville benefit from the international presence of the Jaguars playing an annual game there.

Adam from Round Here

So Zone, I listened to you and "Danced" now I'm on the couch with a pulled hammy. Thanks a lot Zone!

My job is to field questions and answer them to the best of my ability. My job is not to know your limitations.