JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Tom from Leicester, England
I've just got a feeling about this weekend. The defense has shown that it can be more than just complementary, and the offensive potential is definitely there. When this team clicks, and it will, it's going to be pretty special to watch.
I expect there will be moments in the 2023 season when the Jaguars' offense and defense both play well with the team special to watch on those days. There might be quite a few of these days. I also expect there will be games when one or the other side of the ball struggles and the team still finds a way to win those days. They also likely will lose a couple of those games. I expect the aforementioned "inconsistency" because it's hard to be good on both sides of the ball every week in the NFL, and because this team is still developing. I expected the Jaguars to win 11 or 12 games this season and I still expect that through two weeks of the regular season. I never expected them to start the season as a powerhouse, elite team. They weren't that at the end of the 2022 season, so it stood to reason they would need to develop this season to reach that level. I expected them to develop toward that level as the season continues. But it was always going to take time to reach that level. The story of this season will be whether that happens.
Bob from Bobsville
How do you decide if your quarterback is worth a "megadeal?" J.J. Watt said the other day that the value of Brock Purdy went beyond his play on the field. His being on a rookie contact at less than a million a year was giving the San Francisco 49ers a ton of cap space to bring in great players around him, which they have done. I understand the model is great quarterbacks (with corresponding huge contract) with a few key pieces and the rest good drafts on rookie contracts. My question is how good does your quarterback have to be to make this work? Clearly, some quarterbacks (Patric Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, for example) make this work, but it seems lots of teams in a search for such a quarterback are paying way too much for good -- maybe very good – quarterbacks not at the level they can carry a team like these few guys can. In this case it seems they would be better not paying big dollars that adversely impacts the rest of the roster. Soo, how do you know a quarterback is good enough to warrant this pay, and what do you think Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence needs to do to show he is one of these guys?
You know it when you see it. You also know it when a quarterback shows a knack for the big play in the big moment, and the ability to make players around him better. He needs to have the it factor of quarterbacks such as Aaron Rodgers in his prime, Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals now (when healthy), Mahomes and to perhaps a slightly lesser extent Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills. The dilemmas of this are many, primarily that you usually must pay a quarterback the "megadeal" before he has shown beyond a shadow of a doubt that he can indeed lift players around him and win with a handful of elite players and a slew of good(ish) guys. What does a general manager and coach do in that situation? Project, pay the quarterback hold their collective breaths a little bit and support that player as much as possible. What does Lawrence need to do to show he is one of those guys? Keep getting better and progressing. He's not there yet. He has the ability. That's another story of this season.
David from Maplewood, NJ
John. Sometimes the bear casually picks through the garbage and goes on his or her merry way. I know this from personal experience.
Brad from Orange Park, FL
If your overall record is what wins your division, aren't non-division games equally as important to win? I mean, division record is a tie-breaker, I think. But, just sayin'.
All games are important in the NFL, but winning division games is important for head-to-head tiebreakers and division tiebreakers. If you have a head-to-head sweep over a team and tie for first place, you win the division. If you have a better record in the division than a team and tie for first, you win the division. Plus. If you win a division game, you not only win but give the other team a loss. Think of it this way: The Jaguars won the AFC South by two games last season and swept the Tennessee Titans. Had either of those games gone the other way, the Titans would have won the division. With so many divisions decided by a game or two, division games matter. A lot.
Brendan from Yulee, FL
My guess is right tackle Anton Harrison struggles for two more weeks and then gets benched for Walker Little when left tackle Cam Robinson comes back.
I doubt it, but OK.
Pookie from Panda City
Imagine, if you will, these two players through two games this season: Player One has 457 passing yards, a 63 percent completion percentage on 73 attempts and two touchdowns with one interception. Player Two has 626 passing yards, a 63.7 percent completion percentage on 91 attempts, and two touchdowns with zero interceptions. If you had to guess which one was our franchise quarterback with 36 games under his belt, and which one was a rookie we're facing this weekend who's played only those two games, would the similarity in stats concern you at all? (Trevor is Player One and C.J. Stroud is Player Two, by the way.) Statistically, C.J. Stroud is better than Trevor this year.
No, they would not concern me. Statistics are nice. They are not the end-all when evaluating NFL quarterbacks. They are particularly not the end-all in September.
Hermun from Live Oak
O Koaf. I believe Ted from Duuuuvall had a great idea, only call the plays that work. I say we expand that to the draft. Only draft the players that are good and not busts. Man, football is easy.
Chris from Jacksonville
JO: Why do you and numerous others refer to B. Bartch as playing right guard? If I am not mistaken, he plays left guard.
Ben Bartch is a left guard and Brandon Scherff plays right guard. If I said or wrote otherwise, that was incorrect. I am good. I am the King of All Funk. Alas, I am not perfect.
Boxcutter Bill from Mass
We are still ascending.
That's the hope.
Brian from ROUND ROCK
Is the offense guilty of reading their "press clippings" and getting a little too high on themselves? Did the loss to the Kansas City Chiefs cure them? They know they have done NOTHING, right?
It's Week 3. The Jaguars had ups and downs offensively last season. They will have ups and downs this season. They had an OK game offensively in Week 1 against a Colts defense playing very well early in the season and a really bad game offensively in Week 2 against a Chiefs defense playing really well early in the season. This is the NFL.
Curtis from Shack Outside La Grange
I literally laughed out loud at Ted From Duuuval's analysis of play calling. "Only call good plays." Hire that man, he's a genius.
He's a pistol, that one.
Cliff from Everywhere with helicopter
The Jaguars weren't going 17-0. Now, if they don't put at least 30 on the Texans at Everbank Stadium on Sunday, then it becomes a bit more concerning. Oh, and win too. That's important.
If the Jaguars win 28-10 Sunday, that doesn't raise concerns. It's important they win. This is the sort of game you win if you're going to control the division.
Zac from Austin, Tejas
You can't call dropkick pass plays if your quarterback doesn't have enough time to drop back.
OK. I think.
Mark from Orange Park, FL
Did we not draft Tank Bigsby for short-yardage situations? He wasn't a healthy scratch versus the Chiefs. There were certainly situations that he could have been used in. What gives?
The Jaguars did select running back Tank Bigsby in the 2023 NFL Draft in part because he can run with power in short-yardage situations. That doesn't mean they are going to run him in every short-yardage situation. This is a diverse offense with many options at all skill positions. Not every player is going to be featured – or even get an opportunity – in every game.
Scott from Jacksonville
Steve's suggestion that fans submit play calls assumes that everyone that has $50-100 extra per game to throw away on play call submissions are all "brilliant readers." I don't think that's correct.
What's a "brilliant reader?"