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O-Zone: Not likely at all

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get do it …

Michael from Orange Park, FL

How can you be so confident the Jaguars won't take pass rusher in the draft? It's clearly a need and [Jaguars Head] Coach Doug [Pederson] even said they have to improve it.

I don't know that I'm all that confident the Jaguars won't take pass rusher in Round 1 of the 2023 NFL Draft – though I will be surprised if they go that route. It just seems like offensive line, cornerback or tight end are more likely selections than pass rusher based on the quality of player who could be available at No. 24 and the Jaguars' pre-draft needs. While teams do their best to not draft for solely for need, general and long-term need often comes into play. My sense is there will be quality long-term prospects at the positions above when the Jaguars select – and that those players could fit with long-term need and positional value at the selection. I absolutely could be wrong. Despite the months analysts spend projecting draft selections, once the draft begins it depends on who is available at the time of the selection. If General Manager Trent Baalke likes a pass rusher at No. 24, could he take that player? Absolutely.

Ryan from Oceanway

Oh, High and Mighty KOAF, are we going to lose the compensatory selections picks we were going to get from right tackle Jawaan Taylor and outside linebacker Arden Key leaving by these four people we have signed? Not sure how that works and need the benefit of your wisdom. Thanks.

Compensatory draft selections are awarded based on gains and losses in unrestricted free agency from the previous offseason. They're decided from a formula of salary, playing time and postseason awards. While circumstances could change the specific round, losing Taylor and Key will outweigh whatever second- and third-tier free agents the Jaguars sign. Not only are Taylor and Key higher-dollar free agents, projected playing time also favors the Jaguars in the compensatory formula.

Daniel from Jersey City, NJ

O-man, at my age, I'll be able to sleep in spite of the excitement, and I'm okay with that.

You're your own man, strong and noble. No one would deny that.

KC from Orlando, FL

It's nice to see a familiar name coming back in Josh Wells, but my memory is a bit fuzzy. Where along the o-line does he play? Keep it funky.

Wells, who played for the Jaguars from 2014-2018 after originally signing with the team as a collegiate free agent following the 2014 NFL Draft, re-signed with the Jaguars Tuesday after four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He plays mostly offensive tackle and likely will be the swing tackle behind Cam Robinson and Walker Little.

Chris from Fleming Island

So, the prevailing wisdom is to keep six (or eight) defensive linemen so they can rotate and stay "fresh", but the same five offensive linemen play the whole game. Don't they need to "stay fresh" like the defensive linemen, or are they just tougher?

No. Offensive linemen aren't tougher than defensive linemen. It takes more energy to rush the passer than it does to pass protect. A lot more. So, you rotate defensive linemen and not offensive linemen.

David from Orlando, FL

O-Zone. Remember, in January last year, it was being reported that that then-Buccaneers offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich was seriously being considered for the Jaguars' head coach position? It was reported that Leftwich wouldn't consider the position unless Trent Baalke was fired and he could bring in his own general manager – believed to be Adrian Wilson. Considering Doug Pederson turned out to be the perfect head coach, it may have been important than we know that Jaguars Owner Shad Khan's belief in general manager never wavered.


Jonny from DUVALL!!!!!

Another "one fer Coughlin" would be his success in the draft. I mean, wasn't he basically the general manager as well as head coach in the 1990s? This guy drafted left tackle Tony Boselli, running back James Stewart, linebacker Kevin Hardy, defensive end Tony Brackens, running back Fred Taylor, safety Donovin Darius, center Brad Meester, defensive tackle Marcus Stroud, quarterback David Garrard and defensive tackle Big John Henderson all in an eight-year span. When he gets into the ring make sure they use all caps.

When Tom Coughlin served as head coach from the Jaguars' 1993 inception through 2002, he indeed essentially also was general manager. It was a tremendous amount of power for a first-time NFL head coach – and it's extremely unlikely a first-team NFL head coach would be given that much power in today's NFL. Coughlin's decisions in the draft weren't perfect. There were misses during that time, perhaps most notably wide receiver R. Jay Soward in 2000. And Coughlin wasn't nearly as good a general manager as he was a head coach. But make no mistake: He was an extremely good head coach. His teams were always well prepared and disciplined. Players certainly complained about his tactics while they played for him. Most of those same players later said they never felt more prepared for games than when played for Coughlin – and most would have gone back and played for him again. Yes, he shaped those early teams. Yes, he drafted multiple front-line players who were key to their success. I don't know what size lettering will be used when he's inducted into the Pride of the Jaguars, but I fully expect he will be there. And deservedly so.

Paul from Lake City

New theory: what if Gary from St Augustine is the Loyal Reader?

He's his own man – strong and noble – though some might deny that.

David from Oviedo, FL

Zone – What's going on with the rise of Florida Gator quarterback Anthony Richardson? Some draft analysts currently have him mocked in the Top 10. I understand he has prototypical size (6'4", 231lbs), but when I watched him play, he fails the eye test. When I talked to my Gator friends, they also have no idea why he is rated so high. OK, but what do the numbers tell us? Well, he barely played in 2020 or 2021, then last year, he threw 17 touchdowns to nine interceptions for 2,549 yards with a 53.8 percent completion percentage. I've said it before and I'll say it again, if he couldn't put up the big numbers against college-level talent, what makes you think he can succeed in the NFL? If he ends up in the AFC South, then we'll all have a front row seat to see how this all plays out.

Richardson's rise is about athletic ability and potential. He scares general managers for the reasons you cite. When I watched him at Florida, he didn't seem to play like a player who could win from the pocket. Quarterbacks who have trouble winning from the pocket scare general managers.

Josh from Atlanta, GA

This Tom Coughlin discussion is headache inducing. Give up people, he's getting in. I'm with you and zero reason he shouldn't.

Josh has a headache and is "all in."

Joe from Jacksonville

Hi, John. Hope all is well and thank you for the streak. I know you are not a Ravens insider, but I wanted to know your take on the whole Lamar Jackson contract situation from afar? How do the Jaguars avoid that looming situation with quarterback Trevor Lawrence? And for a player of that caliber, if he were to produce as he has this season, why wouldn't one play out their contract, hit FA, and wait for the next team to offer somewhere $400-500 million guaranteed? Thanks.

My thoughts on Jackson's situation indeed lack any insider's knowledge. My view from afar is that the Ravens were in a difficult situation with Jackson's second contract. First, he wanted his entire contract guaranteed – something NFL teams resist. Second, while Jackson indeed has played at a high level during his NFL career, he hasn't finished either of the last two seasons – and considering how much he depends upon mobility to succeed, it's fair for the Ravens to be concerned about that moving forward. Remember: Players usually don't get more durable or more mobile as they age. And because there are legitimate questions about how effective Jackson will be as his mobility lessens, it's understandable the Ravens would resist guaranteeing huge money at the end of a long-term contract. The Jaguars can avoid the situation with Lawrence by committing to him for the long-term with a fair contract that is at the top of the market – and by having open communication with Lawrence and his reputation throughout the process. That's how most of the long-term quarterback megadeals get done.

Bob from Sumter, SC

I just read that Mr. Khan's net worth rose from $7.6 to $12.1 billion this past year. Now is the time to tell him you are feeling disrespected and want a raise – and incentives for free Sbarro slices.

I'm neither strong nor noble. I won't be doing that.