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O-Zone: The right combination

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Jeremy from Wise, VA

I think the future can be bright for the Jags, just counting what is on the roster at this moment. We have some solid, young foundation pieces that – if they continue to grow – will lead this team back to relevance: running back James Robinson, wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr., wide receiver Collin Johnson, defensive end Josh Allen, defensive end K'Lavon Chaisson, linebacker Myles Jack, linebacker Joe Schobert, cornerback CJ Henderson, cornerback Tre Herndon, safety Daniel Thomas, safety Andrew Wingard and punter Logan Cooke (I am sure I missed some). That is quite a few names. I hope they take this team upward and I look forward to seeing what the future holds, not just with them, but more players on the way and new leadership. Go Jags!

I might substitute a handful of offensive linemen for a player or two who appear later on your list. I don't know that Wingard, for example, is a core piece for the Jaguars moving forward – and I wouldn't be in a hurry to break up the offensive line, particularly the interior players. Still, your overall point is a good one. This roster is not bereft of talent. It needs a quarterback and a tight end in a big way, and it may need a left tackle and perhaps another offensive lineman depending on the events of the coming offseason. It needs to be stouter on the defensive front and it may need a playmaker at safety – and perhaps somewhere at corner. It also needs some players to mature from potentially good players to reliable playmakers who can perform at big moments. But there are more good, young players with potential than many believe. A quarterback is the next step. And a defensive tackle. But mainly quarterback.

Sam from Winter Park, FL

If anyone out there thinks Lot J isn't needed … I took a couple of my buddies to their first Jags game in Jacksonville. I gave them the "scenic" Downtown tour." "Depressing. Yikes. Sketchy. Why is everything dilapidated?" are just some of the PG things they said to describe what they saw.

I live minutes from downtown Jacksonville. I love downtown Jacksonville. I wouldn't want to live anywhere else. To think that improvements aren't needed is incorrect.

Red from the O-Zone Comments Section

We havin' fun yet?

You have no idea.

AJ from Jacksonville

To quote you here: "The Jaguars have had one good season under Owner Shad Khan and the eight others have not been good enough. He already has started the process of major change with the recent firing of General Manager David Caldwell and it's quite possible much more change is pending come season's end." This statement truly shows exactly how much he thought about this last season at the end when he could've fired Caldwell and Head Coach Doug Marrone then. It's just another wasted year in the books for the NFL's bottom dweller that is this team. What I can't figure out is why Khan would keep both of these chuckleheads with losing records?

The statement you quoted doesn't show what you said it showed at all, although it certainly shows your opinion of Khan's actions late last season. It has been well-documented that Khan kept Caldwell and Marrone for this season because he wanted to give the duo a chance to work as a duo after the departure of Executive Vice President of Football Operations Tom Coughlin. Judging by the 2020 season's record, it could be judged a mistake and Khan now has moved on from Caldwell. Time will tell what happens with Marrone. Either way, the statement in no way showed that Khan didn't think about the decision extensively late last season.

Pat from Duval

Working at a sports bar means that every other commercial and highlight is either Derrick Henry or Christian McCaffery manhandling the Jags. I'm sick and tired of it.


John from Ponte Vedra Beach

I went back and looked at the starting line-up for the 1999 Jaguars and compared it to the current roster. I am not certain a single player on the roster today would have been a starter for the Jaguars in 1999. Maybe Myles Jack, but no one else. A franchise quarterback is needed, but to think that will automatically make this team a championship contender is way off the mark.

A franchise quarterback probably would not make the Jaguars an immediate contender. But it would be a hell of a first step.

Don from Marshall, NC

You're not going to find too many general managers who would not want Marrone as their head coach. He has worked his tail off and you can see the improvements of a young team. I hope he stays, but if not, the next guy has got a great base to work with. Go Jaguars!


Robert from Middleburg, FL

Well, yes, but the quarterback that gives us that "best" chance to win shouldn't be changing every time wind changes direction. That just reeks of an inability to evaluate what you're working with.

It really doesn't reek of that, particularly not when the three quarterbacks give you essentially the same chance.

Tex from Texas

You're a joke.

I'm not laughing.

Marcus from Jacksonville

Over the years, certain positions have gone from being "premier" to being less important. The running back position comes to mind. With the changes to the rules over the last 10 years or so, and the likely changes that will occur over the next 10, do you ever foresee a day when premier defensive positions are no longer considered as important? Do think there will be a day when pass rusher will be like running back, where you can find good ones in the third round and wouldn't dare spend a top 10 pick unless he was a generational talent?

No. I believe pass rushers always will be highly valued because you have to be able to pressure the passer to win in the NFL. It's probably second in importance only to having an elite quarterback. That always has been the case, and it's even more so in the modern era.

Chris from Mandarin

Do you personally think an NFL franchise will call Jacksonville home in 2030? I'm not interested in hypothetical scenarios or caveats. Based on what you have observed as a journalist, do you think the team will still be here 10 years from now?


The real jt

Fort Worth, TX

I've been a Jags fan for life, and will stay so, no matter how consistently painful it remains. My friends make fun of my loyalty, but it's impossible to shake. It's a little like coming back to read more of your Krimma, "It's always coaching," Maylock daily bit – even though your snarkiness is mostly annoying. But it's time Shad honors the faith so many have placed in him and the hope so many in this city have steadily demonstrated to his team. As much as I respect the job Doug & Co. have done with this decent –yet awfully young – cast, it is time to find a new coach and a new culture for this brand. The more I watch Doug's calls and interviews, the more I respect his approach to the game and to life. He's simply a very good dude. But even good dudes can remain just OK coaches. It's official: we've tried his approach, and it's clear it's time to overhaul every thought, mindset and routine the Jags have. Coaching is indeed not the only variable that matters. But coaching does matter. If Doug is replaced in the offseason, do you like the list with NFL experience (Cowher, Eberflus, Daboll) or think it's time to try to pull a spark out of the college coaching ranks (Elliot, Fitzgerald, Riley) and dramatically shake up the culture in 904?

Marrone's a good NFL head coach. We honestly don't know how good he is, was or could have been because he never has had a front-line quarterback. I expect there's a good chance Marrone won't return next season. That's not because of his ability. Rather, it's because a new general manager usually wants his own guy. I've never been one to worry about "types" of coaches because picking the "type of coach" – one with NFL experience or a college hotshot or a quarterback whisperer – doesn't increase of decrease your chances of winning. Think of it: the last four Super Bowl coaches have been a mix of "types" – Bill Belichick, Andy Reid, Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan. I would expect the next head coach to have an offensive mindset with a reputation for working with quarterbacks because that's a prevailing trend in the NFL – and because the quarterback position has been subpar for too long around here. Beyond that, the background doesn't matter as much as the ability. As far as your feelings about me, remember: It's rare to find someone who's right all the time AND awesome. You have found that here. When you weary of the snarkiness, just remind yourself of that. You'll get through it.