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O-Zone: Party time

JACKSONVILLE – Uniform talk continues to dominate. When is the draft again?

Let's get to it . . .

Blues Man from Palatka, FL:
As an executive manager, the most difficult concept for people to adapt to is "change." Those that accept it and embrace it, move on with vigor and excitement. I love the uniforms and the helmets!! Now, the draft!! Great things are happening for our future.
John: This is an exciting week around EverBank Field. Yes, there are pockets of people not thrilled with the change in uniforms – and there are some bigger pockets still unsure about that ol' "newfangled" helmet. That's the smaller picture. The bigger picture is that this feels like the beginning of something around this franchise. Over time, my guess is people will look back on this time and remember that more than any particular uniform detail they're having trouble accepting.
Rob in Section 205:
The uniforms are OK, but those helmets looks like they were painted in my garage.
John: They weren't.
Daniel from Gainesville, FL:
I believe it was you who said something about the full effect of the new uniforms, especially the helmets, will look at its best with 11 men together on the field. I noticed how sick they looked from the side shot of the six guys standing on stage. I can't wait to see a whole sideline of guys in those unis. I think you're right about that being the best part that we'll have to wait for.
John: I did say that. I haven't played that thought up a whole lot, because it's hard to say for sure. It seems like this uniform will be best appreciated when there are a group of them on the field together. We shall see.
David from Dumpsville:
Not to be too much of a downer, but could you please instruct all of the negative folks who cry and wail about all the stuff Jaguars are doing wrong to spend some of that energy improving their own miserable, pathetic lives. They (not to mention the rest of us) would be much better off for it.
John: Looks like David needs something to eat and maybe a nice nap. I know that sounds good to me.
Ray from Jacksonville:
It does not matter what I think. I will gladly defer marketing and, thus, uniform design, decisions to a man who has a boat for sale for about $100 million. Give the man a chance.
John: It absolutely matters what you and other fans think. No one around the Jaguars, particularly Shad Khan, would say different. At the same time, when dealing with public opinion, it's impossible to please everyone. What Shad Khan and others in leadership positions is try to have a vision for what people will like over the long-term. There always is going to be pushback with change, but the guess here is that those who dislike the change now will adjust over time. And yeah, the $100 million boat would suggest that he knows a little something about what people will buy.
Greg from Jacksonville and Section 147:
At 60, I'm a traditionalist that doesn't like change. I grew up with the Browns. That said, I can live with the uniforms and I think the helmet will grow on me like the logo change has. Now can we get Jaxson de Ville to modernize his outfit a little?
John: Never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever mess with Jaxson de Ville.
Dan from Row 242 Row N:
Reporting for duty, O-Man. With all the talk of the right tackle, I have started to warm to the idea. Caldwell stated that a right tackle would improve the run game, the pass game, and the defense by keeping the offense on the field. What is also interesting is many times teams line up their elite pass rushers vs. a team's right tackle. Are the days of the road grading RT gone?
John: They're not gone, but we may be seeing a shift in emphasis. David Caldwell talked this week about the need to have your right tackle and left tackle interchangeable. If that becomes the trend, then it's indeed a major change. It would be good for tackles, though. It would mean 64 tackles making protect-the-passer money rather than 32.
Don't want to be a hater from Jacksonville:
The helmets...awful. There, another voice and vote for reason!
John: OK.
Steve from Jupiter, FL:
I just wanted to add that I like the uniforms as well. Go Jags!!
John: OK.
Chris from Gainesville, FL:
Hey O-man, are you dodging my question about Tyrann Mathieu because you don't want to post anything that would tip off the other teams as to the Jags intentions or are you just too busy with all the HATERS of the new uniforms? Haters gonna hate, but a Honey Badger don't care.
John: I'm not dodging anything. There's a limit to how much insight anyone can have into any specific player going to a specific team later in the draft. The Jaguars might very well draft Tyrann Mathieu in a later round or they might not. Haters can do whatever, but there are many, many players on every draft board. If it falls in such a way where Mathieu is available at a spot at which he is perceived to have good value, then they probably take him; if not, they won't.
Kyle from DC:
Wouldn't it be a tad underwhelming to have a massive draft party at EverBank Field and then we draft a RT?
John: That matters not one bit. At least it better not.
Michael from New Orleans, LA:
It's odd to see everyone so excited about which 2013 draft pick will make the most impact on this year's team. Especially at pass rusher, as they usually take two or three years to really learn the position. I know this will be unpopular to say, but it's Gene's picks from last year that will make the "jump" and probably have the biggest impact on this year's team. Quarterback aside, who do you see making the "jump?" Branch or Blackmon?
John: I think you'll probably see a combination of last year's draft picks and this year's improve, but you're right that that '12 class is critical. I don't know that Blackmon has to make a huge "jump." For him, it's about continuing the second-half improvement he showed last season. I think you're going to see a jump from Andre Branch. The coaches like his potential and he didn't contribute much last year, so it stands to reason he can improve pretty significantly.
Keith from Palatka, FL:
Did anyone catch the kid that tried to spray paint the black helmets gold?
John: OK, now that is funny.
Brian from Jacksonville and Section 230:
John, I dig the new uniforms. I'm still making up my mind about the helmet, but the uniforms themselves look awesome. On there was a lot of talk about bringing the Oregon style to the NFL with the new Jaguars uniforms. Do you foresee the Jaguars introducing new alternate uniform styles as commonly as the Ducks seem to do?
John: No. The NFL doesn't allow teams the constant, turnstile-type change you see from Oregon. The league believes in having 32 identifiable teams. There won't be another uniform change for at least five years.
Keith from Jacksonville and Section 436:
Any chance Chance Warmack falls to #33? Can you imagine getting the best tackle AND the best guard?
John: No.
Sean from Harrisburg, PA:
I read a blog from Paul Lukas of Uniwatch on Jaguars Update last week and he said that the new uniforms would have the player's last name on the front of the jersey under the shield patch to mimic a military uniform however I did not see this on the jersey. Was this a false report or did the team tinker this idea and why did they not do it? Sounded cool to me.
John: I don't know if that concept was ever part of the design process. I know that the prototype I saw at NIKE headquarters two weeks ago was the same as was unveiled Tuesday.
Phil from Jacksonville:
This is what I hear when everyone complains about trying to make changes: I will not like them at the facility. I will not like them on TV. I will not like them on the field. I wish these changes were repealed. The new uniforms do not please. Why did Shad Kahn move my cheese? I think the helmets are ugly. They're so much better in black you see. These changes, I hate all of them. I do not like them Shad-I-Am.
John: Did you say something about cheese?
Michael from Jacksonville:
Will you be signing autographs at the draft party?
John: Probably not. I will be on Jaguars This Week radio from 7-8, and then will be heavily involved with the coverage on pretty steadily after that through the night. Once again, just like in high school, Johnny misses the party. At least this time I was invited.

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