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O-Zone: Reasonably put

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it … Brian from New Hampshire:
Two things I took away from the scrimmage: Our defense looks ready to take another step and the offense may be inconsistent at times, but it looks like it has a chance to score more often this year. For Year Three of a major rebuild, I'd say the team is right where it should be right now. I could see the team going 6-10 or 7-9. In your opinion is that enough to keep Caldwell and Bradley here?
John: It sounds as if you saw the same scrimmage Saturday night at EverBank Field as I did. The defense indeed looked good, and although an elite pass rusher may be lacking without Dante Fowler Jr. on the field, it does appear the unit could be improved against the run and in the secondary. While the offense struggled early, it's hardly insignificant that Blake Bortles found Julius Thomas and Allen Robinson for touchdowns. If that trio can help this team improve in the red zone, that's a major step forward. As far as what it will take to "keep Caldwell and Bradley here," we've discussed this ad nauseam in recent months and weeks, but I'll say it again: if the Jaguars show improvement in terms of record and competitiveness, then they're going in the right direction. I don't think a change will be made if the team is going in the right direction.
Marty from Jacksonville:
Hey, John, how does this GPS tracking of players work? Do they wear a small device or something? Are the results automatically recorded somewhere?
John: Yes, the players wear a small device under their pads. The results are automatically recorded somewhere on the interweb. It's a cool thing, that interweb.
Fuad from Jacksonville:
During the scrimmage, when the first team went out for the first time, Denard Robinson was the running back and a lot of people around me were confused as to why T.J. Yeldon didn't get the start. I know that Bradley never announced the starter but I still expected Yeldon to start. Was this a surprise to you?
John: Not really. It's probably not accurate right now to say any Jaguars running back is the "starter," per se. I've said before there's a good chance Denard Robinson starts the regular-season opener, but if that happens, that doesn't at all mean he would get the majority of the carries in that game or early in the season. No matter who starts, I'd expect the carries to be relatively split early in the season and for Yeldon to increasingly move to the forefront as the No. 1 running back.
Hunter from Orlando, FL:
Greg Olsen said Bortles needs to eliminate the "dips in his progressions." What's he talkin' bout?
John: This is in reference to something Jaguars offensive coordinator Greg Olson said Friday when meeting with local media. What Olson actually said was that he told Bortles "we need to eliminate the dips in your progression." He was talking about a conversation he had with Bortles immediately upon taking the job in January and what he meant was getting Bortles' progress more consistent – with fewer ups and downs. Bortles so far in offseason and training camp has been significantly more consistent than last offseason or regular season, which is one of the reasons the Jaguars have liked Bortles' training camp and offseason a lot.
Shaun from Jacksonville:
The starting offensive line and offense looks putrid. Where is this improvement you speak of?
John: You're referencing the scrimmage Saturday, and I did get a few emails like this. I guess the only answer is I watched the whole scrimmage, not just the first two series. And yes, after the first two series, I absolutely saw improvement. The line isn't going to be perfect overnight, and it may struggle at times early in the season. It may struggle at various times throughout the season. In fact, I expect it will. I don't expect the line to be perfect. But it will be improved. As for the offense overall … again, try to remember where this unit is coming from last season. There's a long way to go and this isn't going to be a 30-point-a-game offense overnight, but if you didn't see Julius Thomas and Allen Robinson catch touchdowns … well, if you didn't see that then maybe I could see how you would call it "putrid."
David from Gainesville, FL:
So ... Jason Myers … 60 yards. Not bad, eh?
John: Jason Myers indeed has looked very, very good in training camp. And he looked good in the scrimmage. This is a competition. It will be interesting to see how real it gets.
Pete from Lee Center, NY:
John, there was talk during the scrimmage about a kicker battle between Josh Scobee and Jason Myers. This is the first I am hearing about it. Is it real, and if so could/would they keep a kicker on the practice squad? Myers does appear to have some distance.
John: When it comes to kicker competitions, there isn't much to discuss until you start seeing the competitors do real things in real situations. Myers on Saturday looked really good in the scrimmage. That counts as real. If that keeps happening, then it's absolutely a competition. As for your question, sure you can keep a kicker on the practice squad. You can also lose a kicker or any player there, so if you like a guy enough, you want him on the active roster.
Austin from Athens, GA:
Our first-team defense looks ... ferocious.
John: The Jaguars' defense does look good. The reality with a scrimmage is if one side of the ball looks great, great, great, then that means the other side of the ball looks less than great, great, great. The defense looked really good early in the scrimmage Saturday and the guess here is that's indicative of this defense early in the season. It appears to be very strong, particularly on the strong side with Jared Odrick and Dan Skuta. Aaron Colvin also looked good. There was a lot on which to build on Saturday. It's early. Let's see where it goes.
Jimmy from Jacksonville:
Wow! I was very impressed with Julius Thomas during the scrimmage. Even though there are plenty of 6-5/6-6 tight ends in the NFL, what specific attributes does Julius Thomas have that make him an elite mismatch TE?
John: Speed. Athleticism. Quickness. Good hands.
Herbert from MidState Office Supply Accountz Receevable:
Henne looked real good in the scrimmage. Any chance he gets some time with the ones or will they hand the job to Bortles again this year?
John: I get questions like this sometimes.
Nathan from York, England:
How does Corey Grant look in camp? He's got serious speed but do you think that will transfer into impact on the field now and in the future?
John: Grant has shown serious speed in practice – and he showed it in the scrimmage Saturday. I think we'll start seeing how it translates on kickoff returns in the preseason. He'll either shine brightly then or not, and that will probably dictate whether or not he's on the roster. My guess is he'll shine and that he will be around. We'll see.
Cooper from Cincinnati, OH:
Do you think there is a possibility of Abry Jones starting over Roy Miller?
John: Anything's possible, but this is doubtful. Jones almost certainly will be on the team, but barring injury – or Miller having unforeseen problems returning from knee surgery early in the offseason – Miller will be the Jaguars' starting nose tackle.
Daniel from Jersey City, NJ:
O'man, have you ever thought of doing an O-Zone scrimmage where we ask you questions and you answer them in preparation for the season?
John: I thought I sort of did this every day. For like, four years.
Travis from Athens, GA:
Just wanted to say thanks for the hard work the Jaguars media team does. The online presentation of last night scrimmage was great. Thanks to all of you.
John: I thank you. The supporting cast thanks you. But again – and most importantly, of course – I thank you.
Chris from San Marco:
"That's because all Hurns does is show up every day, do the right things, make plays and produce." You know, Allen Robinson seems to go about his business the same way. Hurns should be enough removed from his undrafted status to get more consideration for stories. All I'm trying to say is we want more.
John: I wrote on Allen Hurns early in the offseason and again in organized team activities. He's a good guy and a good player. We'll keep writing about him and talking about him here on That's what we do.
Ryan from Jacksonville:
I can't help but feel better about this year after the scrimmage. I'm not saying we'll go undefeated and win it all, I'm just saying that out of the 19 games we'll play I don't see a team that can beat us.
John: I think that's a very reasonable perspective.

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