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O-Zone: Time for work

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Gary from St. Augustine, FL

So, Boselli gets in just to get passed over again – and Fred doesn't even get it. BS, Zone.

You're referencing Thursday's announcement that former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli has been named a modern-era finalist for the 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class – and that former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor was not a finalist. That's indeed correct. As far as your assessment, I don't believe Boselli will be passed over this time. I believe this will be the year he is enshrined, and we'll have a lot more time to discuss that in the five or so weeks before the '22 class is announced on Thursday February 10. As far as Taylor not being among Thursday's 15 finalists …you're right, it's a major omission. It's the third time Taylor has been a semifinalist and not made the final 15. My hope is that – as was the case when Boselli first started getting discussed for the Hall – voters over time get a better feel for Taylor's career and get this corrected. There's plenty of time for that to happen, and I believe there's a chance it will happen, but it's disappointing. I feel for Taylor. It's just wrong.

Paul from Washington, D.C.

Why shouldn't the Jaguars focus on rebuilding the offensive line? Let left tackle Cam Robinson walk, get a compensatory pick, take a left tackle, let Walker Little play right tackle, let Jawaan Taylor play right guard, draft a center, let Brandon Linder play left guard. Could that be worse?

There's a perception that the Jaguars' offensive line is awful. This is not a correct perception. It's not as good as would be ideal. It's not dominant. It needs to improve for the Jaguars to be a postseason contender. That improvement needs to include some turnover. But can the Jaguars' offensive line be worse? Absolutely. And one thought on your proposal: Linder is a center. He's a good center. If he's going to be on your starting offensive line, he's almost certainly going to play center.

Joe from Fleming Island

Mr. Zone. Any idea what the final score the Patriots will decide on?


_Fred from Wadesboro, NC          _

I know you've stated Trevor should play the last two games. I agree with the general principle. However, given that half our team likely has only been with us a few days (thanks again COVID), shouldn't we perhaps reconsider? The risk appears to exceed the benefit given the circumstances.

I think the Jaguars should start Lawrence Sunday. I think the circumstances of the game should be monitored closely to ensure he is not at undue risk of injury.

Scott from Daytona Beach, FL

I think it's funny when I saw Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nate Hackett's name in the mix for a possible interview for the Jaguars' head-coaching position. Just a few years back everyone wanted him fired around here. Look what Aaron Rodgers has done for his status now.

It's always coaching in the NFL.

Jeremy from Gilbert, AZ

I'm losing faith Trevor is the guy. I've seen poor and late decision-making, inaccurate throws, no zip on the ball and not one memorable throw I can recall. What am I missing? If we haven't seen it, is it there?

I think we're watching different players. I've seen a player who is struggling and has been inaccurate at times? I've seen a player probably being asked to do too much in difficult circumstances without much at receiver to complement him. But no zip? No memorable throws? I haven't seen that.

_Crash from Westside     _

Barmaid! More Guinness to drown my sorrows!

I'd click on that.

Chubs from Gatortown

Is this the worst you have seen a No. 1 pick at quarterback play during their first season?

The way I watch a player on a team I cover is vastly different from the way I watch a player on another team. I never have covered another No. 1-drafted quarterback as a rookie. Lawrence is not having the worst rookie season of any No. 1-drafted quarterback, though a case can be made he is playing for one of the worst teams of any player to have been in that situation.

David from Orlando, FL

Zone – Just remember, when you think things can't get any worse, Sbarros can make it better!

Good eye.

Jeremy from Wise, VA

Let me ask a serious question. I am assuming you are fan of the Jags and not just a writer for the team. As both a fan AND a writer who has to read the emails you receive daily from frustrated fans (me sometimes) and write about the struggles of the team, is it difficult to stay positive?

I follow the team and hope the Jaguars win because I would love to see the fans of this team happy. They're great, loyal fans and deserve it. I also know well and respect many of the people who run and work for the organization and would enjoy seeing the countless hours, weeks, months and years they invest reap rewards. I am not a fan because when writing, analyzing and covering a team a level of objectivity is needed. Is it difficult to stay positive? I suppose, but that doesn't come into play all that much when doing the job. I cover the team, write the stories, talk about the events that go on around the team and discuss the issues with fans. It's more fun when the Jaguars win because people are happier. It's not as fun when they lose because people are unhappier. But I enjoy the job either way. The fans of this team are good people – and often pretty damned humorous – and I am fortunate that many read and at least pretend to respect the work I do. I appreciate that and it makes it easy to stay comparatively positive.

Gary from Centerville, Ohio

Between injuries, Covid and not being very good, this Sunday could get ugly. Which, of course, means we will pull off the biggest upset of the weekend/lol.

Never say never, I guess.

Mark from Daphne, AL

I understand the angst over retaining General Manager Trent Baalke and I don't have any particular attachment to him myself, but brilliant idea by the hardcore fans to start a grassroots campaign on Twitter mocking the owner as a cartoon clown. Great idea to insult the one person trying to keep the team in Jax and a surefire way to motivate him to listen to you going forward. I would not be surprised to find that this ends up being a straw that breaks the camel's back kind of thing for Khan and leads to a very unpleasant result. Your thoughts?

Jaguars Owner Shad Khan is committed to Jacksonville for the long-term. A grassroots Twitter campaign borne of frustration and conducted because those participating desperately love the franchise – and want the best for this team – isn't going to change that commitment.

Mark from Archer

John, I know winning is important but at this point in the season now I hope the Jags do not win just so they can have the first pick and either grab the best player in the draft or trade out of it to gain more picks. I just imagine defensive end/linebacker Allen getting to play with the top defensive end in the draft and imagine the havoc they should be able to cause.

I doubt there's much reason to worry. The Jaguars play the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts in the final two games, two teams playing for playoff spots and positioning. Nothing has happened in recent weeks to make anyone think the Jaguars can play well enough to beat those teams – with or without the recent COVID-19 happenings. Here's hoping I'm wrong. Weird things happen sometimes.

Chad from Nassauville

I am going to enjoy the last two games this season. Not because the games will be good, but because I can't wrap my head around what happens after. Who stays? Who goes? Up to four offensive linemen ... how does that get replaced in one year? With a new coach and no pass rush, are we a 3-4 base defense next year? How do we re-tool that? No receivers. No healthy backs. Nothing inspiring in the defensive backfield. We are going to need a great coach, some really smart draft and free-agent decisions and more luck than we've had in the history of the franchise to be relevant next year. But like every offseason, I am perfectly willing to drink the kool-aid. Happy new year O! Here's to winning another offseason!!

There's a lot of work to do.

James from Salt Lake City via Jagsonville

O-man. You used to be pretty optimistic when you wrote about the Jaguars. Now it seems that you have become as pessimistic as the rest of us. Have a great New Year and keep up the good work.

There's a lot of work to do.