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O-Zone: Time for a change

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Sascha from Cologne, Germany

Hey, John. I think the Jags have no chance to trade down. Even if the 2022 quarterback class were loaded with talents (which seems not the case), every other team knows the Jags have their franchise quarterback, so they will not draft a quarterback no matter how good he is, right?

The Jaguars indeed appear unlikely to be able to trade the No. 1 overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft at this point, but that's because of the draft prospects more than the Jaguars' quarterback situation. There indeed appear no quarterbacks worthy of the No. 1 overall selection. There also seem no position players "elite" enough to inspire a team to trade. If there were such a player – quarterback or otherwise – a team likely would make the trade. That's not because of who is on the Jaguars' roster. A team would theoretically make the trade to prevent another team from getting their coveted player as much as – if not more than – from a fear the Jaguars would take the player.

Glenn from Parkton, NC

John, I just finished Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson's book, and re-watched the 2019 Eagles' "All or Nothing." What a guy. Then it hit me … is this really the first head coach this team has ever hired who walked into the building with a winning record as an NFL head coach?!? Not saying it's THE reason, but suddenly … the last couple of decades make a lot more sense to me.

Hiring an NFL head coach with a winning record isn't as common as you think – and it's hardly a guarantee of future success. Remember: Most NFL head coaches don't get fired for winning. Remember, too: Mike Mularkey and Doug Marrone had been NFL head coaches with some success before being hired to the position by the Jaguars. They didn't have Super Bowl title on the resume as Pederson did. But that's rare.

Chris from San Diego, CA

Jags trade Trevor to the Giants for picks 5 & 7. Draft the top two WRs -- Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson -- and trade back into the bottom of the 1st for Jameson Williams or take the best available WR in the 2nd round. Sign Jimmy G. to a front-loaded deal so the team can bail early if needed. An average but competent QB + 3 top WRs + Robinson/Etienne = playoffs


Rob from Ponte Vedra, FL

If our front office is too frugal to get a deal done with Chark, can we really trust them to win a bidding war for one of the best available free-agent receivers? You are saying they should only pay Chark if the price makes sense, but the price for the best free agent is not going to match their production either. We are going to have to overpay. Especially as a struggling franchise, you have to outbid other teams. You have to overpay your pending free agents just the same as you overpay ones coming from other teams. It is our biggest position of need and what is needed to support our young quarterback. Either you are committed enough to improve the team to put your money where your mouth is or you aren't. It does not appear that this team is as committed to improving the receiver position as they say they are. I have zero confidence we retain Chark and zero confidence we get any of the top three-or-four receivers available in free agency. Time for the Jags to show us their commitment level.

If the Jaguars do not retain wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., I would expect them to sign another free agent wide receiver the coming week or so. If that happens, I would expect them to have determined that the free-agent wide receiver is a better projected value/risk for the money. I would not necessarily expect all Jaguars fans to agree with that decision.

Al from Orange Park, FL

If the team and Cam Robinson enter into a long-term deal, would the franchise tag be available again? Or was that the one and only shot for the year?

Teams can use either the franchise or transition tag once per offseason. The Jaguars placed the franchise tag on left tackle Cam Robinson this week and therefore could not use it again – even if they sign Robinson to a long-term deal.

Claudio from Barcelona, Spain

Hi Zone! In the Chark's renegotiation discussion, to me, there is one key: Whether or not you can get a better wide receiver than Chark for the money he and his agents demand. It only will be too much money if you can get a superior free agent for the price. If you can't: you have to pay the man.


_Red from O-Zone Comments Section      _

Given the oft-stated emphasis to re-sign drafted players to second contracts why are we not hearing any news regarding extensions for defensive lineman Taven Bryan, Chark and offensive lineman Will Richardson?

It would be surprising if the Jaguars re-signed Bryan, and a lot less surprising if they re-signed Chark or Richardson.


The Jags should talk to the offensive tackles from Georgia who practiced against Travon Walker every week and shut down Michigan edge defender Aidan Hutchinson in the Orange Bowl. Walker will be a better pro than college player. They should draft him first. Also, pick up George Pickens in Round 2. He has all the wide receiver skills.


Seamus from Sioux Falls, SD

Wait, wait, wait … if BaalDerson is a best-player-available couple, then how does placing the tag on Robinson have ANY effect on draft plans? I believe you recently said, in answering a Zone question, that with BAP philosophy, you take the best available player regardless? If so, wouldn't the tag instead tip their hand on who the Jags *actually* have as the best available players on the War Room Draft Board?

Need and best available player are great conceptual ways to discuss the NFL draft. They are outstanding guideposts to explaining draft philosophy. The reality is no team operates in a laboratory when drafting, and it's rare to throw players on a board and have clear differences in grades between all players. Franchises usually have prospects clustered. When on the clock, teams typically choose from a group of players they have as the best available at the time of their selection – and at that point, need is understandably part of the equation.

Doug from Jacksonville, FL

I agree with all the North Florida and South Georgia football fans that don't want the kid from Michigan because he didn't do squat against Georgia in the College Football Playoff. That said, the Georgia defensive lineman isn't worth squat either after seeing the SEC Championship game ... wait: I just saw who won the National Championship – never mind the SEC Championship where they got schooled. Just pay attention to the one game. Is there a way we could just draft all Georgia kids?

Good eye.

Jordan from Mandarin

If the best player in the draft is Kyle Hamilton, then we should draft him. I know it won't play well on draft night but if he's an All-Pro, then it's the right choice. I know safety isn't the value people want at number 1 but isn't getting a great player the true value?

Many draft analysts consider Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton the best player in the 2022 NFL Draft. There are analysts who believe he is one of a very few players in the draft who are special in terms of their position. There are also those who wonder if he is a great positional fit at safety in the NFL. There are also concerns about his speed. And, yes … safety is not considered a position of high enough value to typically be considered No. 1 overall.

Tim from Fernandina Beach, FL

John: Bucky Brooks' analysis of Trevor Lawrence was that he struggled in an ill-suited offense for his talents. What type of offense due you think his talents are best suited?

From speaking with Jaguars/NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks on this subject, he believes the Jaguars should use an offense more suited to take advantage of Lawrence's mobility. This doesn't necessarily mean going exclusively to a run-pass-option scheme with Lawrence exposing himself to contact on every series as much as it means putting Lawrence in situations in which he can more easily run when the opportunity arises. This makes sense and I would expect Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson to move the offense in that direction.

Brian from Round Rock, Texas

We have to be in a position where our players want to re-sign with the team. There is a lot going on our side to get players resigned: No Florida income tax, the player is settled in the community, Florida is a great place to live, no uncertainty of change in environment. This should lead to a high percentage of players that you want resigning. Every year it feels players can't wait to leave. Doesn't that have to change now?