JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Scott from Jacksonville Beach
The Jaguars cut Nathan Rourke? Help me understand.
The Jaguars reportedly will waive rookie quarterback Nathan Rourke, a move that was reported by Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network Monday and that can become official Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. when teams must reduce rosters to 53 players. The news surprised many fans and angered others, with Rourke – who played the past two seasons with the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League – having impressed at times during the 2023 preseason. What prompted this move? A couple of factors. One is that the Jaguars like veteran C.J. Beathard's experience, knowledge of the offense and decision-making. That made the decision to keep Beathard as the backup to starter Trevor Lawrence an easy one. With the Jaguars wanting to keep players at deep positions such as wide receiver and offensive line, they believed they couldn't afford the luxury of keeping a third quarterback. The thought here is there is a decent chance Rourke will clear waivers. If that happens, he absolutely could be on the practice squad.
Sweet T's Husband from DUVAL
No question, just prayers to the families affected by the senseless tragedy from Saturday that happened prior to the game. My daughter attends Edward Waters College, but thankfully she was not there when the events occurred. Glad Jaguars Owner Shad Khan came out and said what he did. There's just too much hate and not enough love in this world. That's all.
I have little-to-nothing to add regarding Saturday's tragic shooting near downtown Jacksonville. It's appalling, senseless and gutting. "There's too much hate and not enough love in this world" couldn't be more fitting. I'm not vain enough to think that my words in this space could add much to the conversation and confess I'm ill-equipped to try to make sense of such things. What causes people to choose violence over peace and take the lives of the innocent I'll just never understand.
Sean from Jacksonville
Ooooo ... James Robinson and Dan Arnold are available. You know where I'm headed with this...
Not really. The Jaguars are deep and good at running back and tight end. Acquiring those two former players isn't necessary at either position.
Michael from Orange Park, FL
Do you remember that time when someone emailed you and said they would laugh at you if C.J. Beathard got traded because you downplayed Nathan Rourke's play in the preseason? Some people in that situation might have gloated and said told you so.
We talk a lot here in the O-Zone about being nice. Saying "I told you so" isn't being nice.
Woody from Dunlap
KOAF: In your August 26 response to "Tom from Charlottesville," you indicated the team could have: 53 players on the active list, 16 players on the practice squad another 21 "under contract - injured reserve, etc", for a total of 90. Am intrigued by what restrictions the league places on the "21" players. Can the Jaguars sign a contract with a healthy player to be one of these 21 players?
No. Those players are on injured reserve, the Physically Unable to Perform list or some sort of suspended list.
Sad Sam from Happy Valley
I know a lot about football, but readily admit you know more. Did you gain this knowledge from books such as Football for Dummies, or other sources?
I have covered the NFL for 29 seasons.
Daniel from Geneva, Switzerland
O-man, I don't want to get ahead off myself, but is Bigsby standing out like a young F. Taylor?
Jaguars rookie running back Tank Bigsby has looked very, very good during the 2023 preseason. He actually has looked better in his first training camp and preseason than former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor, who struggled early in his 1998 rookie season before excelling immediately upon entering the lineup after an injury to veteran James Stewart. There are similarities between Taylor and Bigsby in terms of ability to jump cut and change direction quickly, and in terms of vision and power with quick acceleration. One difference: Bigsby doesn't have Taylor's pure breakaway speed. That's not an insult; Taylor's high-end speed was outrageous considering his size, miss-ability and power. Bottom line: While it's unfair to compare Bigsby as a rookie to one of the best running backs of his era, he has been very good and looks like he can be special. I think he could add a significant wrinkle to this 2023 Jaguars offense. It should be fun to watch.
Tom from Jax
Nathan Rourke and D'Ernest Johnson deserve to be the twos. Rourke won't last if not on active roster. Are the coaches looking at something else?
Rourke won't be the Jaguars' backup quarterback and Johnson won't be the backup running back. Rourke won't be the backup because Jaguars coaches trust Beathard's experience and knowledge of the offense. Johnson won't be the backup because Bigsby has played well enough in preseason to deserve to be the backup.
Donut from Saint Johns
After reading some of the questions and responses about the third quarterback rule, a thought popped into my mind. Similar to the reason the rule came about, I can envision teams carrying the third quarterback during playoff clinching time or the playoffs, but not necessarily during the regular season. Thoughts?
Geoffrey from Orlando, FL
They have to make room for Cooks, right?
The Jaguars absolutely would like to keep wide receiver Elijah Cooks on the 53-player roster. They also would like to keep Seth Williams, Jaray Jenkins, Jacob Harris and Kevin Austin Jr. It's a deep position. There are roster limits. You can't keep everyone.
Al from Orange Park, FL
I've heard that teams can "protect" four players on their practice squad. How does that work? Can they go directly to protected? Or do they have to clear waivers first?
They must clear waivers first.
John from Jacksonville
Hi, KOAGF. We are now celebrating another milestone not to be thought of again until next August. Preseason games. With this said, is there any value in having consistency across the league with all teams playing their starters for x number of quarters per preseason game? This would allow a better sample of competition as opposed to random approaches all over the place.
There might be value in it, but I can't imagine it happening. The NFL can force teams to play preseason games. I can't see owners ever approving a rule mandating what players have to play in those games and for how long.
KC from Orlando, FL
KOAF it's sad to read of Miller's injury. What impressed you most of his performance in training camp, and what can we expect as far as recovery from his type of injury?
Jaguars rookie inside linebacker Ventrell Miller will miss the 2023 season with an Achilles injury. What was most impressive wasn't so much anything athletically as much as his instincts and nose for the ball. Miller had two sacks in the preseason, and that mirrored how he played in practice. He's not so much a "workout guy" or a "combine guy" as much as he's a football player. Here's hoping he recovers for the 2024 season.
Brian from Round Rock, Texas
Do we really have to do the "we need to start fast" storyline again? Give me the team that finishes strong versus the team that starts fast every single time. Quarterbacks are paid to win games in the fourth quarter, not getting a first-drive touchdown.
The need-to-start-fast is an important storyline. Quarterbacks may be paid to win games in the fourth quarter, but if the Jaguars can play more consistently throughout games – including at the start – they won't have to play on such a narrow margin so often late.
Judson from Jax Beach
Zonestradamus, Can you tell me why the team with the most points at the end of the game is considered the winner? I can't wait to read this answer.
I laughed a bit at this.
Robert from Moorpark, CA
Safe to say Luke Farrell is No. 2 tight end? I think with using the second-round draft pick on Brenton Strange, he'd be the guy but maybe he's not ready. I thought Farrell played well in the passing game, knowing he's a good blocker.
Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson likes to use a variety of tight ends, wide receivers and running backs in interchangeable roles in the passing game. That includes using tight ends extensively enough – and in enough multiple tight end sets – that I'm not sure it's accurate to say either Farrell or Strange is the "No. 2 tight end." They're both important and will play big roles.
Steve from Shreveport, LA
I normally hate "Gary from St Augustine." But I laughed out loud at his question/comment. But then I really hated myself for laughing at it. I don't see you making the "final 53" either, but you don't suck.
What's a "Gary from St. Augustine?"