JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
James from Jacksonville
I have been saying for years that our offensive line is suspect and needs to be upgraded. So far this offseason, we have tagged one and signed a new guard that should be an improvement. But with Ben Bartch coming in at the other guard and Tyler Shatley coming in as center, I still feel like we have not upgraded our offensive line. Unless we are able to draft some quality offensive line assistance, I fear that the line will still be a weak spot for the team and we need to do everything we can to protect quarterback Trevor Lawrence. My question, do you feel the offensive line is improving? Or are we still just saying that they are better than most people think? I know that the team has a lot of needs, but I fear that if we don't work on the offensive line more, we may be disappointed.
This drifts back to the much-discussed, little-accepted reality that the Jaguars' current decision-makers – much like the team's decision-makers in recent years – feel better about the team's offensive line than fans/observers do. This stems from an NFL reality that most fan bases criticize their offensive line because it's the one position group in football that is essentially judged only on mistakes. Still, the Jaguars indeed have addressed the offensive line this offseason – and I expect unrestricted free agent signee Brandon Scherff to be a significant upgrade at offensive guard. I don't know that we know who's starting at left guard; Ben Bartch, Walker Little or Jawaan Taylor remain possibilities. So does a drafted player. A drafted player also shouldn't yet be ruled out at center. The Jaguars have a chance to improve this position from within, and I don't sense they're necessarily done addressing it from the outside.
Royce from Jacksonville
Mr. O., with Hutchinson being considered a safe and polished pick at his position, does that mean his impact will be seen right out the gate?
As a potential No. 1 overall selection, Michigan edge defender Aidan Hutchinson should be good and ready to start immediately. As an edge defender, his statistics may depend on factors outside his control – opportunity, double teams, etc. – but he should be effective.
_Nicholas from Fort Hood, TX _
For overtime forget "two-point conversions attempts" or "kicking field goals." Let's have them do the Oklahoma Drill. Whoever wins the coin toss can select offense or defense and the best three out of five wins the game.
The problem with ideas like this is someone might actually take them seriously.
Rob from Green Cove Springs, FL
If you were the general manager, would you consider trading back into the first round to take Treylon Burks? I honestly wouldn't have a problem with the pick if the Jags took him No. 1 overall.
Burks, a wide receiver from Arkansas, has impressive size and appears capable of developing into a No. 1 wide receiver in the NFL. He's sort of a prototype for what the league seeks at the position – and he certainly appears worthy of a first-round selection. He's not a perfect prospect; if he were, he would be a consensus Top 10 selection. So, yes … he's just the sort of receiver you select in Round 1 – and even trade into the round to select.
Michael from Columbus, Ohio
Mr. O., Will fans down there in Jacksonville ever understand and embrace the reality of home games in London! Jaguars home games in London are a long-term win-win for everyone! Long-term financial stability is important! The reality is no Jaguars home games in London may eventually mean no Jaguars in small-market Jacksonville! Will fans in Duuval understand that the Jacksonville-London connection isn't just about X's and O's but $'s?
I expect there always will be fans in Jacksonville who don't like the idea of the Jaguars playing a home game in London.
Daniel from Jersey City, NJ
O-man, how ya' doin?
Joe from Hall of fame City, OH
Hey Mr. O. How 'bout that? Our Jaguars are going to have training camp on your old stomping grounds. It might boost you who even more than it already is. Hell, their very own inside guy. Enjoy it
The Jaguars indeed will hold 2022 Training Camp at Episcopal High School, which indeed is my alma mater. I am proud to have graduated from Episcopal. I remember my time there fondly. It is up for debate if the feeling is mutual. I sense perhaps not.
Unhipcat from Carlsbad, ca
Hi, John. To settle the overtime conundrum, every player on each team must attempt a field goal from the yard line of his choosing. The ref adds up all the yard lines of the successful attempts, and that team wins. That would be exciting, huh? Anyway, can you run that by Shad or Tony, see what they think?
Shad and Tony Khan … hire this man! Or not! Actually not!
Crash from JAX
O Man! How do the players feel about overtime? I bet most say scrap it during the regular season.
Most players with whom I've discussed this don't like ties. I doubt many would want to eliminate regular-season overtime.
Doug from Jacksonville, FL
O, Man. I am not the only one who knows how to use Google, so I don't know if I will be the lucky one to make it to print, but 16.4 percent of All-Pro offensive lineman were first-round draft picks. I was going to see how many were second-round draft picks, but I didn't want to wear out my Googling machine. I can tell you 100 percent of the Jaguars in the Hall of Fame are first round Offensive lineman.
I'm all in with your approach of sort of wishing you knew something then not really feeling like doing a little more to learn it. May it serve you well. Or not.
Steve from Wallingford, CT
I googled it for you, John: Three of the five first-team All-Pros were drafted in the first round. Second team All-Pros were two of five being first rounders. What I find more interesting is that four of the five first teamers are 30 or older.
Steve, meet Doug. Doug, meet Steve.
David from Oviedo, FL
KOAF – Back on 5/2/18, I sent you the following question: Johnny-O, why is Taven Bryan's lack of production in college not part of the conversation? He played on a mediocre football team and couldn't make the starting lineup until his final season; when given the chance, he didn't blow anybody's socks off and registered just 37 total tackles and four measly sacks. So, if he wasn't so dominant in college, what makes coaches think he can excel at the next level? I bring this up because I have the same concerns with Georgia defensive lineman Travon Walker, who has recently been gaining momentum as possibly the Jaguars selection at No. 1. Last year, Travon Walker had 37 total tackles and 6 sacks, and – like Taven –increased his stock, running around in his underwear, with his measurables at the NFL combine. In other words, the dude is a workout wonder, don't talk to me about upside, show me the numbers … where's the production?
Steve from Nashville, TN
Ed Reed, Bob Sanders and Troy Polamalu were household names back in the day at the safety position. Now, I cannot name you a safety on another team. Has the value and use of the position changed or I am not paying attention?
The mid 2000s or so, because of the players you name, were something of a golden era of the safety position. Add Brian Dawkins to that mix, too. This era isn't as golden. I don't know that the value has changed, but an argument could be made that NFL rules have made the position significantly more difficult.
Scott from Gilbert, AZ
Zone, are there any indications that the team is actively working with Cam Robinson's representatives on a long-term deal now to make the No. 1 overall selection with greater positional certainty moving forward? Or, do you get the impression this is more of a prove-it year for Cam, with no further contract discussions until after the season? If the latter is the case, have you heard any rumblings surrounding the greater likelihood of there being a franchise level left tackle or stud defensive end in the 7-10 range where we'll be selecting next year? Theoretically, if Hutchinson and Alabama offensive tackle Evan Neal are graded equally, which position will be better represented in the '23 draft?
The Jaguars want to sign left tackle Cam Robinson to a long-term extension. This has been stated publicly. I do not get the impression the Jaguars are considering this a "prove-it" year for Robinson.
Mikee who likee football Saint Augustine
As one who rates a person's intelligence on sarcasm and quick repartee, you have earned the highest marks. I'll put in a good word for you at the next Mensa meeting.
I don't understand the question.