JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Jaginator from (formerly of) Section 124
Can we please stop with the "he's a billionaire so he must be really smart at everything" shtick? I have no doubt Khan's a fairly smart guy. That doesn't necessarily mean he knows how best to run an NFL franchise. Jimmy Haslam is the billionaire owner in Cleveland – and he's doing a terrible job of it. Daniel Snyder is the billionaire owner in Washington – and he has run that franchise into the ground. Detroit is owned by THE FORDS, and they still can't figure out how to put a product on the field that isn't pathetic. Billionaires are very good … at making money. That doesn't necessarily mean they're any good at creating a winning NFL franchise.
Jaguars Owner Shad Khan's not a "fairly smart" guy. He's phenomenally intelligent and you need spend but a few minutes around him to realize it's no fluke he has been so successful. But no … being successful in business doesn't automatically mean being good at fielding a winning NFL team. This has long since been established. Building a winning team is about finding the right football people, letting them do their jobs and hoping you made the right decision. There is a lot of good fortune involved with this, and people often confuse fortunate owners with great owners. The other key, of course, is finding the right quarterback – something far more important and harder than anything else when it comes to running an NFL team. Khan hasn't found the ideal combination of coach, quarterback and leadership yet. He believes General Manager David Caldwell and Head Coach Doug Marrone can still be parts of that right combination. We'll see if he's right. Either way, losing doesn't make Khan a bad owner. It doesn't mean he doesn't care about winning. It just means the Jaguars haven't yet hit on their winning formula. Or their quarterback.
Greg from Section 122 and Jacksonville
The continued narrative that somehow Jacksonville would not know how to get along without Shad Khan and the Jags is humorous. You said we are lucky to have him as an owner and you don't know if the Jaguars would be here if he didn't own the team. The NFL is coming to realize the desire for cities to have an NFL franchise is diminishing quickly. Where exactly would they move the team? Everywhere that is plausible has had an NFL franchise and it didn't work, so I think Shad needs Jacksonville as much as we need him. This narrative that we should be eternally grateful for them blessing us with a franchise gets stale when the franchise does nothing but continually disappoint with promised result they continually fail to deliver on. Don't get me wrong: I love my team but the constant message we should be counting our blessings for having the Jags loses its meaning when they are doing nothing but losing games.
No one said Jacksonville wouldn't know how to get along without Khan and the Jaguars. But I did say the city – particularly its football-loving fans – are lucky to have Khan as an owner of the Jaguars, and this is true. I also said I don't know if the Jaguars would be in Jacksonville if Khan hadn't purchased the team, and I absolutely believe this is the case. But you're right: There's no reason to be argumentative. Khan is good for the Jacksonville Jaguars and the city. It doesn't mean fans should be satisfied not winning, but it's absolutely the case.
Ronnie from Jacksonville
Since it's not accurate to say former Executive Vice President of Football Operations Tom Coughlin was responsible for all that went wrong around the team the last two seasons, and Khan clearly believes that Caldwell and Marrone can lead a successful team without Coughlin involved in the power structure, can you remind us all why Coughlin was hired in the first place?
To run football operations.
Nick from Palatka, FL
Z: Does the $18 million the Jags saved on Yannick in 2019 factor into them paying him more in 2020 and beyond? (or is this a naive and clueless question)
(This are no naïve or clueless questions; only bad senior writers). What defensive end Yannick Ngakoue didn't earn in 2019 won't be a factor for the Jaguars in the upcoming negotiations – nor should it be.
Mark from Orange Park, FL
One thing the injuries accomplished this past season was to help identify potential depth for the team in 2020. Your thoughts?
Yes. The Jaguars got a good look at players such as middle linebacker Donald Payne and linebacker Austin Calitro this past season, both of whom could be solid reserves next season. Perhaps a player such as Seth DeValve could make sense as veteran depth at tight end. Beyond that … well, the Jaguars need to improve their depth Head Coach Doug Marrone was transparent about that last training camp, and you have to imagine it will be a major offseason focus.
Thomasville from Lawrenceville, GA
Let's say Tua is available at 9. Would you take him?
I haven't done a deep dive into the 2020 NFL Draft yet, but assuming Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa – who declared for the draft Monday – is a legitimate Top 10, franchise guy … then yes.
Mike from Section 238
The NFL is all about finding your opponent's weakness and pounding away at it. Cornerback Jalen Ramsey was able to force his way out of town with years left on his contract in part by holding out and being a public nuisance. Hang on to your seat, because I think agents are going to use that threat against us often in the next few years. Isn't it very likely to come into play if we use the tag on Yannick?
It's possible, but remember: not everyone is wired the same. And not every NFL player behaves as former Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey behaves.
Noel from St. Augustine, FL
Is it odd that Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew II had better stats than Kyler Murray or Daniel Jones, but nobody is questioning if either of them will be the starting quarterback next season? I can't figure out the standard or rules being applied to Gardner or why they are different.
This is a fair point, and it certainly stems from Minshew being drafted far later than Murray or Jones. Had Minshew been a first-round selection, he obviously would get far more benefit of the doubt than he does as a sixth-round selection. Part of the hesitancy to call Minshew the absolute starter also stems from him struggling in a major throughout most of his last five starts. He had a very good game against Indianapolis in the regular-season finale, and a very good quarter in a victory over Oakland. Beyond that, he didn't play well during that span. The same is true of the Jaguars' offense. And Minshew does have traits – such as not working the middle of the field enough and running quickly under pressure – that he must change. But remember this, too: Had Minshew been a first-round selection, he likely would have been criticized far more harshly during the stretch in which he struggled. I believe Minshew will have a chance to be the Jaguars' quarterback next season. I believe he probably will enter the offseason as the starter. I don't think the Jaguars will take a first-round quarterback, so I believe Minshew probably will be the quarterback next season. Where this goes from there, we'll see.
Bruce from Green Cove Springs, FL
It's probably too early to play the "what if" game, but still … if Tom Brady doesn't return to the New England Patriots and enters the free agent market, could that affect the marketability of Nick Foles?
Jackson from St. Augustine, FL
Do you see the Jaguars possibly drafting a defensive back, preferably corner, with either of the first rounders?
My guess is the Jaguars will select an offensive or defensive lineman with at least one of their two first-round selections in the 2020 NFL Draft, and they could possibly use both selections on linemen. But it wouldn't be at all surprising if they used one of the selections on a cornerback.
Otto from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
John, I agree with your thoughts on the No. 9 and 20 selection in the NFL Draft. Two big boys, especially a run-stuffer on defense. The only exception would be if Jerry Jeudy is available. That guy is special. Go Jags!!
Alabama wide receiver Jerry Jeudy has been mocked to the Jaguars in a lot of mock drafts. If he's special enough to merit not selecting offensive or defensive line, then the Jaguars indeed could select him.
Zac from Itasca
I wasn't a reader until this season (I needed guidance on what was going to happen after Foles got injured and came running. KOAF, were they nicer to you on here back in 2017? Because … yikes.
Readers weren't nice in 2017. Best as I recall, I sucked then, too.