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JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Mason from Jacksonville

I heard an NFL coach once say, "If you don't practice, you don't play." From my observation as an amateur, Lawrence was hurt but playing with no or little practice. Would this be the reason why he didn't play well in his last five starts? Does this observation have merit? No sarcasm, genuinely asking.

It's a very fair question. And we'll certainly spend much of the 2024 offseason analyzing Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence – and understandably so. While Lawrence indeed struggled in his last five games, the thought here is it's not fair to analyze those struggles in a vacuum and simply shout "HE'S NOT A GENERATIONAL QUARTERBACK." And injuries must be a part of a fair assessment. He played perhaps his best three games of the season against the Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans and Cincinnati Bengals in November. The Jaguars won the first two games and were in position to win against Cincinnati before Lawrence sustained a high-ankle sprain. He then played through three injuries – ankle, concussion, shoulder – in his final five games. He was limited or did not practice most weeks during that span. Was it the injuries that caused the struggles? Was it the lack of practice? The thought here is it's a little of both along with a bunch of other factors, as is often the case in the NFL. But yes … the observation has merit. No doubt.

Donut from Saint Johns, FL

I get that the defense couldn't seem to make the tackles they needed, but thinking back to the collapse, it coincides to Kirk's injury. He went out in the Cincy game that the Jags lost in OT and we know what they did since then. Is it possible that Kirk is Trevor's security blanket? Without him, the timing just isn't the same with the rest of the receivers.

Wide receiver Christian Kirk indeed is critical to the Jaguars' offense. His connection with Lawrence is special. Lawrence's trust in him matters very much in critical situations. Think of all the third-down plays Kirk converted in the past two seasons. Lawrence's injuries hurt the Jaguars' offense in the last five games of the season. Kirk being out perhaps hurt close to as much.

Steve from Antioch, TN

  1. Pete from New York is on to something. Why stop with former Seattle Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll when we should hire former Tennessee Titans Head Coach Mike Vrabel and Billy the Belly from New England (former New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick) as assistant coaches? I'm sure top coaches want to spend their days off at Jax Beach.

Shad Khan … hire this man!

Tristian from Crystal River

The devoted fanbase seems widely against Press Taylor as the offensive play-caller. Yet Doug remains steadfast in his support of him. Where's the disconnect? What aren't the rest of us seeing? I'm pretty certain the Jags were at the top of the league at scoring no points from the one-yard line. Despite having a quarterback who ought to be way above average at getting it on a sneak. Who should I blame?

First, I don't know that the Jaguars' struggles in short-yardage have as much to do with play-calling as they do with the interior offensive line. When you can't get people blocked, the specific of a play don't matter that much. Also: I don't know that Lawrence "ought to be way above average" at quarterback sneaks; Lawrence, while athletic, isn't particularly powerful in the lower body compared to a quarterback such as Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts – and it's that power that assists quarterbacks when sneaking. As for who fans should blame … I learned long ago I have no control over such things. The disconnect here? I suppose it's that fans fail to realize that Head Coach Doug Pederson monitored the offense on a weekly/daily/hourly basis this season. If he had a problem with how offensive coordinator Press Taylor was running it, he would have changed how Taylor was running it during the season. He would have started calling plays. He would have made adjustments during meetings. The two are in lockstep and Pederson doesn't think Taylor did a bad job. Why would he change this?

Al from Orange Park, FL

This thought doesn't really cheer me up much, but the fans of 31 teams are disappointed every year.....

The NFL is difficult. It's set up that way. Only one team wins the Super Bowl. If you have a season such as the Jaguars had in 2022 – a season in which you exceed expectations and provide excitement and hope along the way – your fans can come away feeling a little better than usual. In most cases, if you don't win the Super Bowl, everything sucks. For Jaguars fans these days, everything sucks.

Dave from Jacksonville

I along with the vast majority of Jags fans, media, and neutral observers agree with you that the offensive line (especially the interior) must improve. However, it seems that Doug defends center Luke Fortner and the line at every opportunity. Indeed, he blamed the O-line struggles on injuries and lack of continuity on the left side. This to me is very concerning. Does our coaching staff not see what the rest of us see? Please explain this disconnect.

Please explain what Pederson would gain by criticizing players or position groups publicly during the season, or immediately after the season.

Alan from Ellington, CT

If a player plays most of the season but gets hurt the week before the playoffs and his team is in the playoffs does he get paid for the playoff game if he sits due to injury?

Players get paid their salaries for the regular season. They are compensated in the postseason by bonuses. Players who play the regular season but are injured in the postseason typically receive full postseason bonuses.

Chevin from Jacksonville

I understand NFL teams do not draft for perceived needs, but the Jaguars seem really set up at almost all positions save for interior offensive line and interior defensive line. I realize it's early and the season just ended on an extremely sour note, but would your assessment be that these position groups should be and will be a primary focus this offseason?

I expect offensive line, particularly interior offensive line, to be a major area of focus for the Jaguars this offseason. I don't expect that to be the only area of focus.

Jaginator from JACKSONVILLE

I know it does little good to rehash such things, but Trevor's attempt to reach it over the goal line was very poor decision-making on his part. I'm not saying this merely because it didn't work. I'm saying it because the ball was actually spotted just outside the one-yard line. Those kinda quick-reach-over plays typically only work when you're, like, a half yard away from the goal (or less).

Lawrence's decision-making and awareness from this view for the most part have improved over the last two seasons. I thought he was making significant improvement and playing well in this front much of the season, particularly in November before his high-ankle sprain. He wasn't nearly as good after that. The decision to reach on fourth-and-goal Sunday against the Tennessee Titans indeed wasn't good. It's also true that the Titans got really good penetration over the center that accentuated that poor decision. But Lawrence must keep getting more "football intelligent." That's absolutely true.

Sal from Austin, TX

Maybe Pederson is a streaky coach. Maybe it's his temperament. You know how he's kind of laid back. Maybe when things are rolling, he knows how to not mess with it, but when things go south he's like, "chill, trust the process, be the ball..." I mean, the Philadelphia Eagles got hot at the right time and won a Super Bowl, then two years later he was out. He comes to Jacksonville and has a slow start, gets hot, makes the playoffs, and wins a playoff game. Year 2: Jaggies start 8-3, get cold, and lose 5 of their last 6.


Sam from Orlando, FL

Lots of noise on the World Wide Web that our cap situation is a mess. Is this true? I thought we were set up with an eye to the future and managing the cap properly?

The Jaguars will have to part ways with multiple veterans this offseason to manage their salary cap. Most of the moves were anticipated when the contracts were signed. Maneuvering to manage the cap is reality for most NFL teams that aren't in a rebuild.

Michael from Savannah, GA

I don't have a question, I just wanted to apologize for not doing my part. I didn't wear my Jaguars shirt when they played the Titans. I was painting a bookshelf and I didn't want to get it dirty. I'm not going to let the team down again like that next season.

Be better.