JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Justin from Jax
Hey, Zone. This isn't to take away from anyone we have on the current coaching staff, because I think Head Coach Urban Meyer put together a pretty decent staff on paper. But if you could bring back one former Jaguars player to coach, who would it be? Bring back Keenan McCardell for the wide receiver gig? Paul Posluszny as linebackers coach? Byron Leftwich for the quarterback coach job? Freddy T for the running back gig?
This isn't something I spend much time pondering, mostly because how good a player might have been on a team – or how beloved a player might have been to a fan base – has little to do with his capabilities as an assistant coach. Former Jaguars wide receiver Keenan McCardell did a nice job as wide receivers coach with the team from 2017-2020 – and I expect he will continue to have a very good NFL coaching career – but I don't know that his Jaguars playing tenure mattered much in that area. I do think former Jaguars linebacker Paul Posluszny would make a good coach, and I feel the same way about former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor. But both of those players must decide if they want to put in the hours, weeks and months necessary to participate in what can be an uncertain and nomadic existence. Of all the former Jaguars players, I supposed I first would hire former quarterback Byron Leftwich as an assistant. He is a first-line offensive coordinator who I expect will get an NFL head-coaching opportunity soon. This has nothing to do with his playing career, but he has proven himself as an NFL assistant.
Dave from Jacksonville
Zone, how can more people not be thankful towards Jalen Ramsey? He provided Jags fan two years of incredible All-Pro level play. It was fun to watch. I am more thankful with what he left us with. Thank you Jalen Ramsey for Trevor Lawrence. Also, thank you Jalen for your replacements, CJ Henderson and Tyson Campbell. Lastly, thank you Jalen for the opportunity to take Travis Etienne Jr, K'Lavon Chaisson and Walker Little because if Jalen didn't take such offense, we Jag fans would not have our next generation. I wish him luck and am thankful for our return on investment.
I think many Jaguars fans are thankful toward former Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey and remember with fondness his time – and level of play – with the team. There are also plenty who understandably didn't like the circumstances under which he left. Ramsey certainly wasn't entirely to blame for that, and he certainly didn't handle the situation as well as possible. Both can be true. As far as thanking Ramsey for the Jaguars' current situation … sure, his departure helped set the stage in at least a few of the ways you cite. Should he be thanked for that? Sure. Why not?
Unhipcat from Carlsbad, CA
Oh, Hi John. if the Jags led the league with 100 player complaints, my bet is 94 of them came from Jalen.
I don't know. Who knows? Maybe.
DC Jag from Alexandria, VA
Hail, KOAF! Please give us a thumbnail sketch of the QB2 battle. Are there elements beyond ability that will factor in the decision, or will it come down to who gives us the best chance to win?
We'll first take rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence out of the equation, though nothing has been determined on that front – and though he and Gardner Minshew II are expected to compete during 2021 Training Camp. The backup role could be intriguing. Minshew has 20 games NFL starting experience and he performed well during offseason practices open to the media. Beathard signed as an unrestricted free agent in the offseason, so many reasoned at the time that he likely would back up Lawrence. He didn't appear to perform as well as Minshew in the offseason, but that observation was based on a few non-padded practiced and therefore is far from a fair "conclusion." Second-year veteran Jake Luton also performed well during the offseason and shouldn't be excluded from the conversation. Thumbnail synopsis entering camp: the quarterback "battle" feels unusually open, and this will be an intriguing area to watch in the coming month.
David from Ada, OK
You've earned my respect. Finding "Rudy" annoying is hilarious, honest and proves your opinions aren't easily swayed by popular opinion. If the readers don't know you're the real deal by now they just aren't paying attention.
I might just be the real deal, proving once again that real isn't always good.
Wase from Westside
How long would an UFA like Robinson have to wait for a second contract? He is now grossly underpaid when compared to Travis Etienne Jr.
NFL teams can renegotiate the rookie contracts of undrafted free agents following their second seasons, so Jaguars running back James Robinson would be eligible for a second contract following the 2021 season.
Steve from Nashville, TN
I was looking at the Week 1 schedule and saw quite a few compelling matchups for the 1 p.m. kickoff that you would normally see in the 4:25 p.m. or SNF, MNF slots. Maybe this is a product of the sometimes-elusive league parity the NFL seeks. This year could be the poster child for "parity?"
I'm really not that big on the parity theory regarding the NFL because it's something of a myth. Parity in the NFL typically goes like this: the 28 or so teams who aren't the two or three worst or best teams are pretty equal, but the top few teams and bottom few teams usually seem far apart. That creates a scenario where many contending teams can lose on a given week during the regular season, but it would still be a surprise if an elite team – barring injury – didn't make a deep playoff run. This theory almost certainly isn't without holes and isn't based on analytics. But yes … the league in 2021 very much seems to have a ton of teams capable of beating a ton of other teams in that middle pack. I would put teams such as the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers above that pack, but beyond that …
Kevin from Jacksonville Beach
John, it was reported that Golden Tate has the Los Angeles Rams as one of four teams he would like to play for. If I were Ramsey, I'd keep an eye on that mysterious back problem if he plays there.
Tom from My Couch on the Mean Streets of Nocatee
I heard that Gene was known as "Lord of the Rings" for his prowess in gymnastics. Can you confirm?
Good eye – and good memory. Longtime Florida Times-Union sports columnist and Northeast Florida cultural icon Eugene P. "Gene" Frenette indeed was long renowned for his gymnastic prowess – particularly on the pommel horse and rings. He no longer competes at an "elite level," but seeing Gene attack the pommel in his iconic skintight Team Gene uniform … well, it's not something you forget.
Ray from Jax
John: I think I know. Bartender asks, "What will you have?" Frenette: "I'll take the strongest IPA you have." Ramsey: "Give me a Shirley Temple, and put 'Feelings' on the sound system." After the Culligan Girl orders a tall drink of water, the bartender turns to the priest, who says, "Nothing for me, I'm just here looking for a miracle to heal Jalen's back."
You could have stopped at "Feelings." Well done.
TBoy from St. Johns (Uptown Fruit Cove)
O-Man: I am not a Gator (War Damned Eagle) with over 88 years of live behind me, but after viewing Chapter 3 of The Hunt, I want to put on the pads and go getum.
Keep at it.
Amanda from Jacksonville
Mr. O ... Amanda here again. You posted a question of mine a few days ago about me asking about why all the angst that some Jags fans have about the media. I said something along the lines of who cares what the media thinks if we win consistently and possibly a Super Bowl? Someone in the comment section said it is because the national media would still "trash Jacksonville even when we win the Super Bowl." Then a very obscure reference from Kung Fu was made as he told me that "grasshopper" would learn. Like I needed to learn anything about this. My question was even validated by the above statement ... thank you by the way for confirming my point. Do you think Trent Dilfer, Jeff Hostetler or Brad Johnson cares one bit that the media slams them for an "undeserved" Lombardi Trophy? Life is short, "O". Why can't we just be thankful that we have an NFL team in our backyard and the possibility of a generational QB in our huddle for many years to come?
Because fans gonna fan, Amanda. And Jaguars fans gonna Jaguars fan in their own way. And thank goodness for them.