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O-Zone Late Night: Bears 41, Jaguars 17

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. (10) catches a pass in the end zone for a touchdown defended by Chicago Bears defensive back Xavier Crawford during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020, in Jacksonville, Fla. Bears won 41-17. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)

JACKSONVILLE – That was weird. Really weird.

How else to describe an afternoon in which many fans of the home team just couldn't find it in them to root for their team to win?

But while a weird afternoon at TIAA Bank Field featured yet another one-sided – and ugly – Jaguars loss, the reality is few fans and observers will remember many details about the Chicago Bears' 41-17 victory Sunday. Instead, they'll remember what happened a short time later.

Less than a half hour after the Jaguars' franchise-record 14th consecutive loss became official, the New York Jets finished their second consecutive victory. This one came 23-16 over the Cleveland Browns – and notably for the Jaguars secured them the No. 1 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft.

This will mark the first time in franchise history the Jaguars have entered the offseason with the No. 1 overall selection. And yes, it almost certainly means the chance to select Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence.

So, yeah … it was a weird day at the 'Bank, one in which some fans cheered against the Jaguars and one in which they kept an eye on another game in another city. But when it was over, something memorable happened that could change the franchise moving forward.

Let's get to it …

Bobby from Summerville, SC

Hi KOAF: Now that the Jags have secured the No. 1 overall pick how certain are you that they will draft Trevor Lawrence?

This is impossible to know for absolute certain because the Jaguars don't have a general manager in place. It's possible they will have a new head coach and coaching staff next offseason. Until those positions are finalized, you never absolutely know what decisions will be made. But it would be shocking at this point if the Jaguars didn't select Lawrence.

Chris from Roseville, CA

Any chance Mr. Kahn had a little talk with Marrone? "Sit Robinson and start Glennon?" Either way, it worked!

No. Jaguars Owner Shad Khan did not tell Head Coach Doug Marrone to sit rookie running back James Robinson or to start Mike Glennon at quarterback Sunday. Robinson didn't play because he had an ankle injury – and because at 1-13 it likely didn't make sense to play a promising young player with an injury. Whatever Marrone's future he is going to put the best interest of players first in that scenario. And he played Glennon because it's the belief of Jaguars coaches that Glennon gave them the best chance to win ahead of Gardner Minshew II.

Mike from Atlanta, GA

Why wouldn't Trevor Lawrence want to come and hand the ball off to a Top 5 running back and throw to those receivers?

I suspect he will.

Jeremy from Jacksonville

If I understand things correctly, which I think I do since I am a regular reader and I indeed know who I am, the Jaguars will get the number one pick no matter what now with the Jets win today! Do I have that right, Mr. O?


_Matt from Bradford     _

OK. Someone should tell them they can stop tanking now this is pathetic.

They Jaguars didn't tank. Not at the start of the season. Not in September, October or November. Not now. They tried. But what was on the field for the first 10-to-12 weeks of the season wasn't quite good enough. Now, it's not close – particularly on defense and at quarterback.

Steve from Sunroom Couch

Dear John, This quarterback play is just what the fans wanted.

I suppose.

Jim from Jagsonville

I'm having these weird sensations... do I cheer for this defense? Or when the Bears score? I simply don't know anymore... Go Jaguars!!!

This was the always-awaited, oft-nonsensical, sometimes-pertinent First Email of the Game – and I got more than a few of these Sunday. It was a weird day, with many fans understandably wanting the Jaguars to lose but (just as understandably) feeling weird on some level – despite the obvious pull of wanting the Jaguars to have a chance at the No. 1 overall selection in 2021 NFL Draft. These are weird times for Jaguars fans. When they're over, let's hope they needn't experience them again for a long time.

Scott from Gilbert, AZ

Hey, Zone. Can we talk about how the national sportswriters that had the Jags 32 in their pre-season rankings don't know as much about roster talent as the folks locally, and how there is no way the Jags would be the worst team in the league this year with an opportunity for the first overall pick in 2021?

I guess you just did.

Tommy from Fernandina Beach

O, Marrone just proved in this game why he needs to go too!! Bad choice with the QB, bad coaching decision before the half. The team is a reflection of the HC. Dumb!!

Wow. You're right, Tommy. Marrone and the staff absolutely were at fault Sunday. There was just a ton of high-end talent – particularly on defense – being misused out there. You nailed it.

Daniel from Jersey City

O-Man, is it possible for your inbox to be any happier after a loss?


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