JACKSONVILLE – One more day until Look-Ahead Wednesday.
Let's get to it …
Greg from St Johns, FL
Our QB and coach cannot get on the same page to run a basic goal-line play that EVERY NFL team has in its arsenal. Urban says Trevor is uncomfortable w/the quarterback sneak while the man says he has no problem running the play. Please help me understand?
You're referencing Jaguars Head Coach Urban Meyer saying after Sunday's game that rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence wasn't comfortable running a quarterback sneak, which was why the Jaguars didn't run one on fourth-and-goal from the 1 in the fourth quarter of a 37-19 loss to the Tennessee Titans. Lawrence shortly after Meyer spoke said he indeed was comfortable with a sneak – and that the Jaguars had worked on the play. Meyer on Monday clarified this, saying Jaguars offensive coaches told him on his headset before the play that the Jaguars hadn't practiced a quarterback sneak live – and that Lawrence would have willingly run the play. That's the timeline. Perhaps that breakdown helps you understand, but yes … it was odd one.
Matt from Houston, TX
Was CJ Henderson graded higher than Trevon Diggs? I think it's obvious why I'm asking ...
I assume you're asking because cornerback CJ Henderson was selected No. 9 overall by the Jaguars in the 2020 NFL Draft while Diggs was selected in the second round in the same draft by the Dallas Cowboys – and because Henderson, now with the Carolina Panthers, has been inconsistent while Diggs is playing at a very high level for the Cowboys. Your answer: Yes, Henderson was graded higher than Diggs. Pretty much universally.
Robert from Chicago, IL
O, come on now. I can't understand why you're so easily writing off the decision to not have running back James Robinson in on that final red-zone trip. I'm not even arguing the fourth-down call, or denying the blocking there. But it seems inexcusable to have your best guy on the sidelines for an entire red-zone trip that would have been a pivotal score. Are we to believe Robinson and Carlos Hyde are essentially equal in talent? Is it that Robinson isn't really impacting how teams defend the Jaguars? I just can't picture Derrick Henry being out of the game for an entire red-zone trip, or Alvin Kamara. Sure, James isn't nearly the same as those guys, but is he not far and away the best RB on this team? Are we fans just over valuing/hyping him?
You're correct. When discussing the decision to have Hyde run on fourth-and-1 Sunday, I initially focused only on that play – and on that play, the blocking was such that the back wouldn't have mattered. But should Robinson have been in the game sometime after the Jaguars reached the red zone on that drive? Yes, a case can be made.
Mario from Oviedo, FL
I'm so happy the NHL season starts on Tuesday!
I'm glad someone's happy.
Rich from Dacula, GA
Maybe I'm seeing something that isn't true, but in the intro of the hiring of Meyer, he prided his past of developing a team that plays fast. I may be missing this as what I see is a team that is still trying to figure out who goes where and at a slow pace. Where's the speed or pace? It appears they are more thinking of what they should be doing instead of just playing football. It can't be fun for the players at this stage of the season.
You can't play fast offensively just because you want to play fast. You have to have success, because you can't play fast when you're going three and out – or when you lose yardage and are in bad down and distances. The Jaguars have gotten a little closer to playing fast in recent weeks. If they keep running well on early downs and getting into second-and-manageable situations, they will start looking ever faster.
Greg from Section 122, Jacksonville, FL
Given all the focus on mental health, perhaps Jaguars Owner Shad Khan should invest in another stadium amenity. A grief counseling and support group where fans can get personal care for the overwhelming depression and despair this team causes. I wanna hope every time I enter that stadium but end up walking out frustrated, exhausted and wanted to just cry. It is almost disturbing what us fans do to ourselves every gameday. Tell me how do you remain so detached and emotionless through it all?
Because I'm not a fan. I want the Jaguars to win because I work around the team, I love the city of Jacksonville, I like many of the fans who write every day and care so much, I respect and admire many of my fellow Jaguars employees who work so hard to make this franchise successful and I respect many of the players and coaches who do the same. But a certain amount of detachment in this position is necessary. You can't analyze a game, discuss trends and storylines around a team and write about/discuss that franchise with any level of professionalism if you're throwing your pen or punching holes in walls. I did that with teams when I was younger. I understand the passion of fans. But I can't do that with the Jaguars and come anywhere close to doing the job.
Ryan from Reality
John, stop trying to spin this in some sort of positive light! "They were close in the 4th quarter." "Everyone is working really hard." "The team looked really good for stretches of the game." None of that matters when you lose by THREE scores. That was a bad game. There were bad play calls and there were bad plays being made. This is a bad football team, and at 0-5 no spin can hide that truth.
The Jaguars looked good Sunday for stretches and they were close at times. That's not spin. That the truth. I also have written consistently in the last two or three weeks that close is not good enough in the NFL and that being without a victory stinks. I specifically wrote this in O-Zone Late Night Sunday: "While growth matters, close losses are still losses. It's not enough in the NFL to do what the Jaguars did Sunday – which was to play well enough for a spurt to get in position to kind of get close early in the fourth quarter. Good teams take that situation and pull out a victory. Teams that aren't there yet take that situation and lose. The Jaguars aren't there yet." I'm not going to take every O-Zone question to say over and over, "That was a bad game. This is a bad team." At 0-5, it's obvious they're bad. Good teams win. Bad teams lose. I'm not going to write precisely want you want me to write, Ryan. If you want things written a specific way, start a blog. Or tweet. Or just write letters to yourself. That's what I do when I'm lonely. It helps. Sometimes.
Trent from Independent
O-Zone, Can an argument be made that Urban Meyer, as a rookie NFL head coach, is learning on the job as much as a rookie player would be? If true, how much time does he deserve to get it right?
Yes, that argument can be made. As much as Khan wants to give him.
Bruce from Green Cove Springs, FL
Most of our offensive line could start on many NFL teams. As could our No. 1 running back. And at least one or two of our receivers. And of course, our quarterback. Same might be said of most of our defensive line and several of our linebackers. Can we say the same about our defensive backs? I think not. Kicker? Obviously not. We'll find a kicker, probably this week. But building the defensive backfield will take ... years. The reality is that this team has the heart but not the defensive talent. At this point I'm thinking that two or three wins is optimistic.
I don't know that it must take years to rebuild the defensive backfield. I do think the Jaguars are in a situation in which it will be tough to fill all holes – lockdown corner, No. 1 receiver, enough defensive linemen to have a rotation – in one offseason. Maybe the results of the last 13 games will change those needs. We'll see.
Jeff from Atlantic Beach, FL
Can we stop with the grand conspiracy that Owner Shad Khan and/or the league is purposely sabotaging the Jaguars in order to have them move to another city? If either wanted to move the Jaguars, no conspiracy would be needed; they would just do it. Perhaps this organization is just bad at football.
The sabotage theories are asinine and deserve little discussion. Is the organization "just bad at football?" The Jaguars have lost 20 consecutive games. Until they change that – and until they win consistently, not just a game here or there – it's hard to frame it another way.