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O-Zone: Only the lonely

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

JT from Palm Coast, FL

Maybe I am biased, but Tony's speech was one of the best I have ever heard at a HOF induction. He didn't miss a damn thing in that speech. Even shouted out the reporter that "he knows where to find." Glad he is the first Jag to get in. Hope that my personal favorite player Fred Taylor is next.

Former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli on Saturday officially – and once and for all – became the first person associated with the franchise enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I agree that it was among the better Hall speeches I have heard. That has nothing to do with me being (unnecessarily and undeservedly) mentioned and everything to do with Boselli covering in detail his football journey/life journey appropriately, succinctly and emotionally. I wasn't surprised the speech was good. As much as I like to tease Boselli, he is as well-spoken and aware a player as I ever have covered – and I never doubted his speech would reflect that. And as much as I like to tease Boselli, I loved that he finally had his deserved Hall moment. It was long overdue and incredibly well-deserved. He does know where to find me. And now, we'll always know where to find him — in Canton, Ohio, with the other legends of professional football.

Daniel from Jersey City, NJ

O-man, my favorite Boselli memory is a bit foggy, but I remember him chasing down someone from behind down the field and tackling them which was amazing given his size. The play stands out in my memory but I can't remember enough details to locate a clip of it. Any ideas what play that may have been?

You're referencing a game played on November 8, 1998. The Jaguars were playing the Cincinnati Bengals when Bengals cornerback Artrell Hawkins appeared headed for a touchdown with a fumble return, pointing at Jaguars players as he ran. Boselli chased Hawkins down, with the play indeed an example of Boselli's intense desire and passion to win. It also was among the more memorable moments of the Jaguars' early success in the 1990s – and a defining moment of Boselli's career. Boselli, at 6-feet-7, 325 pounds was a prototype – gifted with size, athleticism and agility. But the desire to win and the competitiveness was what drove him – and it's perhaps the biggest reason he was enshrined on Saturday into the Hall of Fame.

JT from Palm Coast, FL

We don't get to say this often, but Saturday was a very proud day to be a Jags fan. So happy for Big Bo and his family. Very well deserved!


Bo from Linwood, NC

With all the hype surrounding Kirk and both Jones receivers, is Laviska Shenault going to be the odd man out?

This will be an intriguing storyline this season, and it remains to be seen exactly how it will play out. The Jaguars' top three receivers currently appear to be Christian Kirk, Marvin Jones Jr. and Zay Jones with Laviska Shenault Jr. as the fourth receiver. That means Kirk/Jones/Jones usually will be the three receivers when the Jaguars are in three-receiver – or "11" – formations. But coaches have been clear that they like Shenault's skill set and want to utilize it extensively this season. That will be as a receiver and it also could be in other creative ways. That might make him a little of an odd man out in terms of the receiving rotation, but he will be involved in the offense.

Levi from Cd'A, Idaho

KOAF, Nephew was born and is a healthy young man. Parents named him Walker. I mean, come on ... too many coincidences here. Are we going undefeated?


Bruce from Green Cove Springs, FL

Hard to understand the gloom and doom after the Hall of Fame game. This was essentially a scrimmage where mostly second- and third-team guys, and the rookies, just line up and try to run the limited playbook that has been installed thus far. Sure, we want to see consistency and at least flashes of good execution. No game planning. No in-depth scouting of the opposing players. Just the basics. By next week, we should expect to see more of the projected starters, additional plays from the continuation of installation and better execution. Only if we see no progress in the next preseason game should we even begin to worry. Am I over-simplifying it, John?

You're not oversimplifying it at all. You in fact are seeing things clearly. No preseason game is great for projecting how a team will fare in the regular season, but the preseason opener is particularly bad for this. Teams don't game plan. They don't scout. They often don't play starters. The main difference between Preseason Week 1 and a practice is players tackle to the ground in a preseason game whereas they don't do that in practice. I don't put much stock in any preseason game, but the preseason opener? Next to nothing, for all the reasons you cite.

Seamus from Sioux Falls, SD

So, is your "OK" response to "Brandon from Clemson, SC" indicative that you, I guess, don't care about the team's "identity?" Or are you trying to be cool for your readers who accuse you of drinking team Kool-Aid and being a fan? I have never understood the thinking from that portion of our fanbase who wants our team colors to be black and white because "it looks sharp." Why not just have the whole league go that way? Green Bay: get rid of that iconic green and yellow! Denver: lose that boring dark blue and orange! Patriots: same, but keep the silver … that looks sharp! Seriously, the Jaguars' colors are and should always be teal with gold! ESPECIALLY for the HOF game preceding inducting our first Hall of Famer who PLAYED IN TEAL & GOLD. It really is important.


Steve from The Hill

The current policy is that no one goes to the ground during practice. Will we start tackling at any time prior to season start? I understand the safety concerns, but tackling is such a big part of the game. Do all teams have that same policy of no tackling during practice? If so, then it will be an even playing field when games start for real, but if the Jags are one of a few with this policy I think we will be at a big disadvantage. What say you?

Teams tackle to the ground in preseason games. They almost never do this in practice, instead simulating tackling as close as possible without actually going to the ground. Pretty much all NFL teams practice this way. Approaching it this way puts the Jaguars at no disadvantage.

Gero from Wenden, Germany

Hello, John. Was there a rule change in the NFL regarding the use of jersey numbers? I noticed that both running back Ryquell Armstead and cornerback Josh Thompson wore the No. 23. Or is it a mistake by the equipment department?

It was not a mistake by the equipment department. The NFL allows teams to have duplicate jersey numbers during the preseason because of increased roster sizes during that time. It is not allowed during the regular season.

Don from Marshall, NC

There is not a quarterback in the NFL that is not going to freak out when he sees this defense. One mistake against Travon Walker or Josh Allen and they might have to bring rakes out to get you off they field. You cannot double up on both of them. Go Jaguars!

Don is "all in."

Vince from Farmington, NM

Mr. O. I hear about the chemistry between quarterback Trevor Lawrence and running back Travis Etienne being good. The last time we had a powerful-and-talented running back duo with Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew, the chemistry between the featured backs was great. They both wanted the ball, but they also wanted each other to succeed. Is there good chemistry between Etienne and James Robinson? Do you feel like they are working together or independently so far? I know it's early for drawing comparisons to one of the greatest running back combinations, but I'm hoping we have the pieces to have another great tandem in the backfield.

Etienne and James Robinson from all appearances get along fine and I've heard nothing to make me believe that's not the case. They mostly have worked separate because of circumstance. The only time they were healthy simultaneously was in the 2021 offseason and early in 2021 training camp. Etienne sustained a Lisfranc injury and missed the entire 2021 season while Robinson has been mostly on the side returning from an Achilles injury that ended is 2022 season in December. If healthy, they indeed could form a very good running-back tandem. And I have no doubt the chemistry between them would be fine.

Scott from Jacksonville

Sounds like you didn't have any friends in college, either.

Good ear.