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O-Zone: Soon enough

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …


IYHO, which QBs, RBs and WRs do you think will make the final roster?

Best guess, and this is very much only a guess: Quarterbacks Trevor Lawrence, C.J. Beathard and Gardner Minshew II; running backs James Robinson, Carlos Hyde, Travis Etienne Jr. and Devine Ozigbo; wide receivers DJ Chark Jr., Marvin Jones Jr., Laviska Shenault Jr., Phillip Dorsett II, Laquon Treadwell and Jamal Agnew. Remember, too: With 16 practice-squad players, and with veterans now allowed on the practice squad, the "53-man roster" is not necessarily the end-all measuring point anymore. And it sure doesn't mean released/waived players are done with the Jaguars. Many players who don't make the "53" will be on the Jaguars' roster on and off throughout the season. Either way, those are my best guesses. And they're only guesses.

David from Oviedo, FL

KOAF. The devil sent me to ask a question. If Tim Tebow was asked to run the Wildcat formation from the two-yard line or catch a five-yard touchdown, he would've done it and we would all be sick with Tebow fever. Instead, he's asked to block in traffic, struggles and is cut. God works in mysterious ways.

Tebow was playing tight end for the Jaguars. You couldn't ask him not to block in traffic. And had Jaguars Head Coach Urban Meyer thought for a fraction of a second that Tebow could be as effective as you indicate throwing a two-yard touchdown – or catching a five-yard touchdown pass – from any formation, do we really believe he would not have installed that formation? And given Tebow a chance to do those things? Tebow is 34. He was making a very difficult transition. The transition was too difficult. This isn't a knock on Tebow or what he has accomplished in his career – and his life. It's just reality.

James from Jacksonville

I don't care what anyone says, your team's ones should not be thrown around by the opposition's twos in preseason or practice. For the last few years, the team's offensive line has not played up to expectations of a starting NFL offensive line. When do you think they will start to do something to fix the problem?

When they believe it's necessary.

Jim from Middleburg, FL

Dear, John. We draft the quarterback of the century with an offensive line that is, well … offensive.

The Jaguars' offensive line must play better than it did against Cleveland last Saturday in the preseason opener. It also must play better than it did last season. The offensive line is not "offensive." It's not terrible. That's an overreaction.

Mustard Man from Duval Gold

General Zonio: Gardner is shifty, creative, intelligent but he doesn't have the elite pocket presence or vision or arm of a No. 1 one pick, gold-standard quarterback. Everything this team does should be about ensuring the success of Trevor. We all love Gardner the man and the player, but he's not Drew Brees or even Eli Manning. He gave us hope after Nick Foles went down and had his chance last year – and he's confident enough to put up a show now, but there's no fight. There is no drama here other than a training camp story line, and those that think otherwise are delusional. It's probably in the team's best interest for him to be second- or third-string quarterback as long as competition is healthy and I wish him only the best after he leaves. Some of us wanted BB5 to be the guy because he's also a solid dude, but sometimes it's better to move on when we may have the real deal. I drink the Kool-Aid yearly and I want to enjoy this year, but by the grace of my peach cobbler and the Good Lord, we want the 10-to-15 year thing.


David from Orlando, FL

KOAF - The Jaguars' run defense was stellar in the first preseason game … or was it? My eyes told me that the Jags' defense was crowding the line of scrimmage, essentially outnumbering the offensive line. On a few occasions, the Browns quarterback would dink one over the line and there was wide open field. One broken tackle and it's an explosive play for the offense. It seems like a recipe for disaster. I'll feel better about our run defense when the front three of four stop the run without so much help. Any truth to this observation?

The Jaguars indeed were overloading the line of scrimmage Saturday in a Preseason Week 1 loss to the Cleveland Browns. There was an emphasis on stopping the run in that game – and the Jaguars were effective doing that Saturday. That approach won't necessarily work all the time – and yes, there are times teams must manage run defense without stacking the box. You have to start somewhere. That's where the Jaguars started.

Jared from O-Town

Hey, John. Do either of your friends ever write in questions to the O-Zone? If so, do you answer them or would you consider that a violation of your journalistic integrity?

Neither of my friends know how to write.

Joe from Ponte Vedra, FL

What's the deal with the vomiting defensive linemen in the recent preseason game...?

I didn't research this. I assume the player's stomach bothered him to the point that he vomited. Football players vomiting on the field is not unusual. It's not something all do all the time, fortunately. But it is not a new thing.

Theodore Roosevelt from New York City

My comment on Tim Tebow: It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.


JT from Palm Coast, FL

John, I'm curious about what's going to happen when Lawrence has the normal up-and-down season all rookie quarterbacks except Andrew Luck have? If people are already concerned that he might not live up to the hype now after a few snaps, then how will they react when he throws a couple picks and losses a few games? I can't allow myself to get too high or too low after one damn preseason game. This team is a work in progress. Keyword: progress. As long as we show some signs of life during the season then it's all good. People expect Super Bowl after going 1-15? Trevor is the future, and he will be the best quarterback the Jags ever had (sorry to Mark Brunell).

I can't pretend to know the future, but I am at least somewhat confident fans will react to Lawrence's inevitable rough game(s) with scorn, discontent and panic. Fans fan. It's what they do.

Jonathan Jacksonville (retired in Idaho)

Call me crazy (I could be, but would I even know?) but I am pretty sure Lawrence started last week. When Minshew actually starts a game then we should complain, am I right? Now if you'll excuse me I have to go catch my shadow.

Get it.

Steve from Nashville, TN

I do not agree with considering Saturday's game versus the Browns as Trevor Lawrence's first NFL game or any rookie's first game. It is a glorified timed practice where they keep score and adjudicate league game rules. Typically pitted against players with uneven skill and experience levels with a few periods of competitiveness. The September season opener against the Texans could possibly be Trevor's first NFL game.

While it's fascinating to know your opinion, Lawrence indeed had his first live repetitions against an opposing team against the Browns Saturday. This meant he was playing an opponent without a red practice jersey designed to keep defenders from hitting him. It meant opponents were free to sack him. And those opponents were typically faster, bigger and stronger than the ones he faced in college. So, no … it wasn't a regular-season game. And yes, it will be tougher in the regular season. But it was different and more of a test than practice.

Sean from Jacksonville

At what point will the team reach the point of diminishing returns by not having named a QB1? Not having your top QB practice with the ones during every practice can't possibly be a fantastic idea at this point in the preseason. And, yes, I know it is just the preseason, 'tis why I asked at what point...

Relatively soon.