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O-Zone: Long live the king

JACKSONVILLE – Fear not, loyal readers (and he knows who he is) …

The Jaguars' 2018 organized team activities begin Tuesday. There will be football topics to discuss, and perchance the discussion of those topics will move us a few steps past Website Anger and Change is Evil and ease us back once again into the realm of all things NFL and Jaguars.


Or perhaps not.

Let's get to it, but first let's take a moment's pause to acknowledge our first ad of the day …

Gary from St. Augustine, FL

Wow, Zone. You called it on the first ad of the day again. That's the second time in three days. You really have an eye for this.

I am the king of all funk.

Jay from Jacksonville

Hey. So, you probably have gotten this or some form of this question before. But I haven't seen it, so here we go. What in your opinion is the most important thing for us to do to keep from being like so many of the "second-year-slump" teams who have a great season then fail to reach .500 the next year? I mean, we have plenty of talent, obviously, but it just seems to be the trend.

I don't know if I'd call slipping after a successful season a trend. Some teams do it, but there also have been a lot of teams that become consistent playoff contenders. One thing that helps teams avoid slips is remaining healthy and therefore having key players available. The Dallas Cowboys had a 13-3 season in 2016 and slipped last season; running back Ezekiel Elliott missing significant time in 2017 because of suspensions certainly attributed to that. Good teams usually need many key players. Generally speaking, though, to be successful next season the Jaguars must do the things they did to be successful last season: play elite defense, run well more often than not, stay healthy, make key plays late in games, win field position. Those things are basic, but not easy. If the Jaguars do them more often than not, they will win more often than not. If they don't …

Frankie from Midstate Office Supply

Do you think the Jags partnered with the Vikings in the preseason so Blake could get some pointers from Kirk Cousins? Couldn't hurt, amirite??

No, the Jaguars did not partner with the Vikings in the preseason so that quarterback Blake Bortles could "get some pointers" from Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. That's not how joint practices work. Players from opposing teams do not sit in meetings and make suggestions on their counterparts' game. The Jaguars and Vikings will practice against one another a couple of days in August; the Jaguars' defense will work against the Vikings' defense and vice versa. And even if practices were conducive to pointers – and even if Cousins was inclined to offer them – I don't know much Bortles would gain from the experience. Cousins is a good player. I don't know that his quarterbacking knowledge is the end-all.

Adam from Jacksonville

Hey buddy.

Shut up.

Rod from Jacksonville

Hey Mr. O how come you're so cool?

It's a burden someone must bear. It might as well be me.

Jonathan from Palmetto, FL

The site is free but the site makes ad money. You make money. The IT guys make money. The franchise makes money from purchases. Let's not pretend this "free" website is done from the bottom of everyone's heart.

No one ever said this website is done from the bottom of anyone's heart. No one pretended it and no one implied it. And ads are supposed to make money. So are the IT guys. So is the franchise. So am I. This is our profession. None of which changes the fact that this website is free. But whatever … this is an awesome hill on which to stand. Good choice, Jonathan. Keep fighting the good fight.

Lee from Ormond Beach, FL

When will fans get off Bortles' back? The only franchise quarterback in my opinion that the jags ever had was Mark Brunell, get over it and give the man your support.

One fer Bortles. And one fer Brunell – fer old times' sake.

John from Lake Asbury

John-O, many here are griping about the website redesign. At first I wasn't too enthused about it, but then I thought about where I read the O-Zone. Which is at work. On company time. On a company computer. And the white font on a black background of the old site stood out like a sore thumb when someone snuck up into my cubicle to peek over my shoulder to see if I was once again wasting company time. This white background makes it much easier to make it look like I am feverishly reading important company documents, while I'm actually reading about hate and discontent in the zone. Here's one for the new site and cunningly wasting time at work!

Weird. I act like I'm doing something productive when I write this thing, too. Irony can be pretty ironic.

Tim from Fernandina Beach, F:

John: Not sure I like the new format. "It's change....and we fear change"

There's a legitimate reason you fear change. Change is evil and is never a good thing. I kid sometimes here in the O-Zone. You might think I'm kidding here. Maybe I am. Or maybe I'm not. But I'm not. This time. Maybe. Or maybe I am.

Warlord from Yorktown, VA

Thinking ahead to the final roster, do you think three quarterbacks plus Tommy B can remain intact? That would seem weirder than picking 29th.

Yes, I think it's possible to keep three quarterbacks – Blake Bortles, Cody Kessler and Tanner Lee – and fullback Tommy Bohanon.

Keith from Binghamton, NY

Can you see a scenario where Donte Moncrief does not make the team? I don't think he is a shoe-in.

You are incorrect. The Jaguars signed Moncrief to a free-agent deal worth nearly $10 million om March 4. He has the potential when healthy to be a very good wide receiver.

Ian from Jacksonville

Where do you rank Keenan McCardell as an all-time Jag? He was a great player, and now is a great coach. My fondest memory is when I was lucky enough to procure Club Seats on the 50 directly behind the Jags' bench for a Monday Night Football game against the Miami Dolphins. I watched Keenan lobby a coach, Brunell, and then-Head Coach Tom Coughlin saying "I got that mother$&@$!". Then wins the game with the prettiest post corner you've ever seen.

I would rank Keenan McCardell as second among all-time Jaguars receivers only behind Jimmy Smith. I also believe McCardell is one of the best players ever to play for the franchise. He deserves to be in the Pride of the Jaguars and it's my hope that his time for that honor is approaching fast.

Joel from Jacksonville

Reading the various comments and questions about the new site (including my own) I think I heard that the NFL had input, and this is a more "standardized" format for phone apps. Does in concern you that at some point, people other than the Jaguars are going to start to control the actual content? (other than the ads)

No. Standardizing the format is a completely different thing than standardizing content. The NFL has been talking about standardizing formatting and technology almost since I can remember. I rarely if ever have heard talk of standardizing the content. It wouldn't make sense.

Chris from Mandarin

I want my money back John. This free website just isn't what I'm used to. I don't like the color scheme … Give me a break dude. Seriously? One fer worrying about things that actually matter! We're coming up on Memorial Day next week. That's worth caring about. Go Jags.

There's nothing wrong with complaining about a website. It's pretty harmless and not unexpected considering people's aversion to change. Complaining about won't keep people from considering Memorial Day important – and I expect readers of this column and website to have no trouble acknowledging Memorial Day. These are good people with good values, their choice of website reading notwithstanding.

Biff from Jacksonville

Isn't everyone missing the forest for the trees? It's not about the aesthetics, it's about the Being behind the aesthetics. Frankly Scarlet, I don't give two bits about how the site looks, all I care about is the guy answering the questions. Wait. They didn't change the "O" of O-Zone did they?

I do a great job. Just ask me.

Josh from South Texas

What the? Don't like this new format. Hard to navigate. I know it's free, but if a change is going to be made, it should be for a better outcome. This is not it.

One not fer …

Jimmy from Jacksonville

Ha, ha, ha. … I can't stop laughing Zone... Did Alan from Mandarin this week smugly write he has better things to do with his time while also expressing his frustration at not being able to find the comments section? Too funny.

Hardee, har, har, har … I am the king of all funk. #Smuglife

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