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O-Zone: The tolerant kind

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Chance from Windsor, Canada

How come we didn't see DJ Chark Jr. in the offense Sunday? Isn't he the big-play threat we hoped when we drafted him? Man, did A-Rob look good Sunday night ...

Chark absolutely appears capable of becoming the big-play threat the Jaguars projected when they selected him in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. The Jaguars did not expect him to be that threat – or to be a starter – in Week 1 of his rookie season. I believe Chark will be contributing significantly by season’s end. There’s a long way to go before season’s end.

Hippy from Fleming Island, FL

Two-game lead over the entire division after Week One. I'll take that.

Try again, Hippy.

Eric from Columbus, IN

I never understood the comfort you and others had with the wide-receiver group. After Sunday, does your confidence in them change? Moncrief ... ouch.

Sunday didn’t change my thoughts on the Jaguars’ wide receivers. I never thought of them as a group of elite players, and I still think they’re a group with multiple players who can be productive. The Jaguars’ receivers really aren’t much different than last season. If the running game functions and this team stays in manageable down-and-distance situations, the receivers and passing offense will be fine. If the task is to convert a bunch of third-and-long situations, I don’t feel nearly as confident. Is that the Achilles heel of this offense? Maybe. So, the Jaguars better run well and play good defense more often than not.

Sean from Jacksonville

I wanted to hand out a game ball for Sunday. I looked and looked, but couldn't find a player that deserved it. Sure, there isn’t always someone who is noticeably outstanding, but ... a win is a win when it gets to the end. Did you have a game-ball worthy player?

I might go with safety Barry Church, who was huge on the early red-zone stand and had a pass breakup late. Or nickel corner D.J. Hayden, who had a third-down stop and a pass breakup late. If you look around the defense, there’s really no shortage of candidates.

Kyle from Not Your Beeswax

Where were the two-back sets we were anticipating after the preseason against the Giants? I probably wasn't paying attention.

Teams don’t run every possible package against every team. Rather, they game plan based on the perceived strengths and weaknesses of opponents. Remember, too: Game plans are often based on available personnel. With running back Leonard Fournette out of the game in the second half, the Jaguars were down to two healthy running backs. Running two-back sets in that situation would have put them at greater of being down to one available running back should one have been injured or fatigued.

Jason from Oldsmar

Any win is good in the NFL, especially on the road. Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles did not play well after wide receiver Dede Westbrook dropped that pass – and running back T.J. Yeldon dropped another – early in the game. Seems like when things go well early, Blake has a lot better chance of having a good game. When things go bad early, it's tough for him to battle back and turn things around.

Bortles’ most important trait may be his resiliency. This was evident Sunday when he led back-to-back scoring drives after his first-half interceptions. It’s true he once had difficulty overcoming early adversity. This is no longer a “thing.”

Steven from Duval

Will this display of bad calls be a recurring trend this whole season? It’s not only the bad calls against us but also the ones they missed against the Giants. I get it we are assuming the villain role but makes it hard to watch. Also, is there anything we as fans can do to write in to the league about this?

I didn’t have a sense the officiating Sunday was unusually bad in either team’s favor. I would probably hold off writing the league until there are some better examples. /ducks

Marcus from Jacksonville

That game was close in every statistical category, but one: penalties. I think if the Jags limit the penalties and don’t give the Giants four first downs by penalty, that game isn’t as close as the final score indicates.

This.

Scott from Section 230

O, so many people complained that Bortles’ numbers were earned in garbage time in his second year – and thus, they should be ignored. Now, when Odell Beckham Jr. catches a pass for 11 yards on a third-and-16, that's a bad play by the defense? To me, you can't have it both ways. How many game changing plays did Odell have? I don't remember any. Seems that the defense did OK on that front. I recall one bad play by our D the entire game.

It’s not accurate to say that all of Beckham’s catches Sunday were meaningless. It’s also fair to point out that he forced a couple of big interference penalties that led to a Giants field goal. But it’s equally fair to remember to say that you’re correct: the Jaguars prevented Beckham from making the sort of big plays that change a game. That was a big reason they played so much zone defense. Mission accomplished.

Lynn from Jacksonville

At what point do we stop blaming our offensive players and start looking at the offensive coordinator? Misdirection plays on second-and-3 multiple times? If you scared of your quarterback losing the game, then get a quarterback you trust. To which there were plenty available this offseason. Yes, we won but this roster has the ability to be great and to dominate. And scratch your nose twice if you think this type of play-calling will get a “W” next weekend.

We made it to the Monday following Week 1 before being reminded that it’s always coaching in the NFL. That’s actually longer than some seasons. Also, how Hackett calls plays one week has literally zero to do with how he will call plays the following week. Take a look at the Buffalo and Pittsburgh playoff games from this past January if you’re unclear on this.

Steve from Nashville, TN

Clearly this team needs another few weeks tacked on to training camp and maybe two or three more preseason games to allow the coaching staff to clean up some of this team's glaring weaknesses.

Do you mean this 1-0, first-place team?

Kevin from Jagsonville

“What do you think about your offenses execution during the game?" Reply: "I'm for it."

I appreciate the John McKay reference, but we’re way ahead of ourselves panicking over the offense. The reality of this offense is it’s going to need to run well and stay in manageable down-and-distance situations to thrive. When it doesn’t, it will probably struggle. Untimely penalties won’t be a good thing. The Jaguars had an extreme example of this in a Week 2 loss to Tennessee last season. Jaguars consistently got in third-and-long situations in the second half of that game – and a close game turned into a Tennessee blowout victory. The second half Sunday felt like a version of that. The difference? The down-and-distances weren’t as extreme – and the Jaguars won.

Jason from Da ‘Hass

John, a Jaguars win being deflating to a fan is a great example of how far the team has come in a very short amount of time. My how times have changed.

Truer words …

Braddock from Jacksonville

The option keeper that Blake Bortles ran for the second-longest play of the game was open all day and all of last season. Has anyone asked Head Coach Doug Marrone why that's the first time it’s actually happened? Bortles is great in a roll-out or in space. I'm just curious why it hasn't come up yet.

Your question implies that Bortles never kept the ball on a read-option-type run last season. That’s not the case at all, and in fact Bortles ran the play quite effectively last season for some big plays. There are couple of reasons Bortles doesn’t run more. One is that you don’t want him running all of the time. The physical pounding eventually would negate the benefits. The keeper on the read option also is not always as open as it appears; the quarterback must be very certain it’s open because NFL defenders can react to a run much more quickly than is the case in college. Finally, there is an element of surprise to the successful quarterback keeper. If Bortles ran it more, it wouldn’t be … well, you know.

Mike from Atlanta, GA

It was disturbing how ineffective the offense was without Fournette. This seems like a problem.

The Jaguars’ offense was perfectly capable of moving the ball last season when Fournette wasn’t in the game. They will be able to move the ball going forward.

Damon from America’s Finest City

So many whiners writing in acting like the sky is falling. Especially Logan. Get ahold of yourself, man. We are 1-0. Shut the heck up.

Fair point.

Ed from Ponte Vedra, FL

Wow, cannot believe how many discontent fans wrote and you politely answered to their pitiful complaints. Wow!

I’m widely known for my tolerance of the common people.

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