JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Andrew from Charlottetown
With an ascending T-Law and a heads-up match against the division leader for which the Jags are only two games behind ... color my optimism unbridled!!! Based on the shaky landscape of the AFC South, are ya saying there is a chance?
Enough has happened in Jaguars Land since a 24-21 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals last Thursday that it would be understandable if people lost sight of your points – that the AFC South remains very much winnable for any team, and that rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars are playing better in recent weeks than they did in Weeks 1 and 2. The Jaguars were really close to beating the Bengals – close enough to merit optimism. And yes … a victory over the Tennessee Titans Sunday in Jacksonville would move them to within a game of first place in the division. Still, I don't want to be disingenuous or spew unrealistic optimism; the Jaguars have lost 19 consecutive games, so they need more than one narrow loss to start thinking they're going to contend for a division title. So, is there a chance? Sure, but the Jaguars still must get a lot better in more than a few areas for that chance to be realistic.
Shack outside La Grange, TX
Pretty sure I saw CJ Henderson playing for the Carolina Panthers against the Dallas Cowboys. Did he get Jalen Ramsey to lay hands on him for that miracle cure? Pathetic.
You seem to be implying that former Jaguars cornerback CJ Henderson acted injured as a way of forcing his way out of Jacksonville. While I don't pretend to know Henderson's off-field issues, I never got the sense he had an agenda to get out of Jacksonville. I did get a feeling this regime felt it was time to move on from him after just 11 games played with the organization. Can a strong argument be made that the number of early-drafted cornerbacks playing for other organizations is too high? Absolutely. You can't expect be an elite organization without production from first-round equity. As for former Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey laying hands or seeking miracle cures, he's a really talented guy – and we indeed have learned from experience that magical cures are prominently among them.
JT from Palm Coast, FL
There are a lot of defensive players coming out in this next draft and some big-time potential free agents as well. This defense could get better in a year if this front office is smart (yet to be determined). We can't keep missing on guys, John.
George from Harrisburg, PA
John, I don't think it's out of the realm of possibility that if the Jaguars somehow get to eight wins that would win the division.
The AFC South right now is struggling – with the Titans leading at 2-2, the Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts both at 1-3 and the Jaguars at 0-4. But though the Titans have struggled to start the season, remember: while they lost in overtime to the 1-3 New York Jets Sunday, they did so without go-to wide receivers A.J. Brown and Julio Jones. The Titans are a substantially different offense – and team – when that duo plays. I expect the Titans ultimately will win nine or 10 games this season and win the division. As far as the Jaguars getting to eight victories this season … well, that would mean going 8-6 the rest of the season. Anything's possible, but with the Jaguars' schedule – and with their decidedly slim margin for error – that would be an accomplishment of significant proportion.
David from Broward County, FL
I don't care about the Friday night pictures and video from a bar in Ohio with Urban Meyer. I do care very much that Meyer didn't fly home with his young team after a heartbreaking and devastating loss. This is troubling. This is not what anyone wants to see from their rookie head coach. Tell why I am wrong.
One thing to remember is that a Thursday game in the NFL is very different than a Sunday game. Players and coaches typically have Friday and Saturday off as essentially a "mini-bye" week following a Thursday game, so the next-day responsibilities and urgency for coaches and players aren't the same as after a Sunday game. And because it's relatively unusual to have a situation where the coach would want to stay – i.e., having family in a city in which a Thursday game was played – the opportunity for such a happening is pretty rare. Still, I don't recall being around a franchise where the head coach hasn't flown back with the team after a game. That doesn't mean I'm recalling correctly, but it's unusual.
Mike from Atlanta, GA
How is the development of Josh Allen and K'Lavon Chaisson going? They need more pressure than they are getting. Is this also possibly circumstances where no team has had to play much from behind? Also when will we see Jordan Smith on the field?
Allen and Chaisson – the Jaguars' edge defenders – both need to play better, though Allen in particular has not played poorly. I don't get the idea Smith is ready yet. He was drafted as a project and projects often take longer to develop than four games.
Armand from Jacksonville
With Chark out who do you see picking up his reps?
I doubt the Jaguars realistically can make up for the loss of wide receiver DJ Chark Jr. As was the case with running back Travis Etienne Jr., Chark's skillset is different enough from the other players at his position on the roster that it's tough to replace what he brings. I expect the Jaguars to use Jamal Agnew more in the offense than as been the case – and keep an eye on wide receiver Tyron Johnson. He has big-time speed – and Meyer loves speed.
KC from Orlando, FL
KOAF, with Chark's injury and need for recovery, do you think the need/prioritization for a new No. 1 WR in the next draft took a huge leap up? It feels like we have not had a real money WR since Allen Robinson.
I think the Jaguars are reaching the point that a No. 1, difference-making receiver will be a priority. Chark's injury doesn't have that much to do with that thought.
Bradley from Sparks, NV
Herbert, Burrow or Lawrence if given the choice to start your expansion franchise?
Right now? I would take Justin Herbert of the Los Angeles Chargers, then Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals and then Lawrence because the first two are further along the path that all three are traveling. That doesn't mean Herbert or Burrow will finish their careers as better players; there is every chance Lawrence will be the best of the three. But I believe the path for all three is elite status, and I'm conservative by nature. I would take the players further down the path.
JR from The Squatchlands
I was watching highlights from the Jets game and noticed former Jaguars wide receiver Keelan Cole making a few big-time plays and it got me thinking: If you took all the former Jaguars currently playing for other teams and put them all on the same team, they would probably beat the current Jaguars team. That is an unfortunate reality.
That feels extreme, because a team of former Jaguars players wouldn't have much of an offensive line – -- and it wouldn't be particularly strong at quarterback. But are there too many good former Jaguars players contributing around the NFL? Yes, that's fair.
Dave from Orange Park, FL
John-O, with the Titans coming to town, would it make sense to switch to a 4-3 base defense this week? It's been obvious the 3-4 isn't working yet. Myles Jack has been terrible as an inside backer in the 3-4, you can't generate a pass rush when your best defensive end is dropping into coverage eight times a game, and until someone can pressure the QB our DBs are going to get picked apart.
You don't switch defensive philosophies midseason because you tailor your personnel – and your offseason moves – around the scheme. But I do expect you'll see a different version of the 3-4 than you have seen so far this season. The Jaguars almost certainly will emphasize heavier packages designed to stop heavy-run offenses Sunday as compared to packages designed to stop more pass-oriented offenses.
Josh from Lakewood
What if – hear me out – instead of a metaphorical rock, we got a really big real rock and put it in the locker room? We could give the players a pickaxe they could swing at it.
That would be silly. Who would do such a thing?