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O-Zone: Time misspent

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Toby from Jacksonville

Why does Jaguars General Manager David Caldwell get credit for rookie running back James Robinson? Yes, he traded away veteran running back Leonard Fournette, but the fact of the matter is Robinson at the time of the trade was RB3 or RB4 behind Ryquell Armstead, Devine Ozigbo and Chris Thompson. Robinson literally just fell into the starting spot due to injury. Full credit to Robinson! He has taken the opportunity and (pun not intended) run with it. Caldwell didn't trade Fournette for Robinson to become the starter. Robinson was gifted an opportunity via injury. We are very lucky to have him, but Caldwell is not some magic general manager at knew an undrafted rookie would step in to fix the running back situation after the Fournette departure. Come on, man!!!!

You're passionate about this topic. I know this because you used an exclamation point in one sentence and three in a later sentence. That's passion, my friend! But while you're right that Caldwell isn't a magic general manager, you are wrong about the Robinson situation and how it played out. Robinson indeed became the starter immediately upon Fournette's release in August – and a major reason for the Fournette move was the confidence the team had in Robinson. None of that means the Jaguars have been remotely good enough this season, but that's what happened in that case.

Steve from Duval

What's the point of starting Mike Glennon? It doesn't help us long-term because it takes snaps away from Jake Luton/maybe Gardner Minshew II, which isn't helpful. Possibly we win a game, which doesn't help this team long term because of draft – or short-term because we are playing out the string. I've always doubted that Jaguars Owner Shad Khan would release Head Coach Doug Marrone, but this move shows the writing is on the wall.

The point of the Jaguars starting Mike Glennon at quarterback Sunday is to try to win. That's Head Coach Doug Marrone's job and his only focus -- and no one in his position would do anything differently. I don't know what decision Khan will make after the season regarding Marrone or Caldwell. I do know that Marrone starting Glennon doesn't reveal anything about that decision. I also know that the less people grasp that Marrone is supposed to try to win – and that that's all he's supposed to try to do – the less they understand the NFL and how it really works.

Jimsure from DBS

Big O, let's look on the bright side for a while. 1. We only have to endure six more games. 2. We are almost set with one of the top two draft spots 3. We are estimated to have around $80 million in cap space 4. You will continue to enlighten and amuse us daily. Other than winning a Super Bowl we are going to be in a good spot next year and right now we see only 38 days from 2021. Enjoy it.

There is no brightness. Or bright side. There is no light. Only darkness.

Will from Jacksonville

You mentioned all offseason that right tackle Jawaan Taylor, wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., and defensive end Josh Allen were "core" pieces the team could build around. This year Taylor has regressed or at best stayed the same, Chark has regressed and so has Allen. Are you concerned these players are no longer "core" players? And who would you say the core players are after watching over half this season? For me it is just James Robinson and Myles Jack. Thanks.

I suppose I'm not as quick to say players regressed as you. Chark hasn't been as productive as last season, but that's far more about quarterback play than Chark – and I would be surprised if his level of play doesn't improve as the Jaguars improve at quarterback. Taylor hasn't been as good pass-blocking this season as would be ideal, but I still believe he's a key part of the offensive line moving forward. Allen's sacks numbers haven't approached last season, but with the lack of talent elsewhere on defense and his injury situation I'll wait until next season to say has regressed. My guess is Allen will not only prove to be a core player, but that he will be one of the NFL's better defensive players sooner than later. I agree with you about linebacker Myles Jack and running back James Robinson. Who is the "core?" That's a tough question in a season that has been as much of a mess as this one. I still like the five players we've discussed in this paragraph as key pieces for the future along with cornerback CJ Henderson, wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. – and perhaps guard Andrew Norwell and center Brandon Linder as veterans you want to keep for the foreseeable future. I'm probably missing some players who should be in this conversation. I'll have plenty of time to get it right in the coming weeks because I expect this to be a major – and critical – part of the discussion moving forward.

Neal from New York, NY

Norwell seems to be playing fairly well this season, but I think he has one of the largest contracts for guards in the whole league. Is it likely he gets released this offseason to open up even more cap space?

Stay tuned, but Norwell has played well enough this season that keeping him makes sense.

Josh from Atlanta, GA

What's the offense going to look like with Mike Glennon getting the go at quarterback? Would it make sense to look for Chark getting a lot of targets and James Robinson getting a lot of carries early? Assuming we don't get down big early of course.

I expect a heavy dose of Robinson, with Glennon taking some shots in play-action. That would be ideal as long as the Browns don't take control of the game early. As far as how realistic it is to think the Browns won't take control of the game early considering the Jaguars' defensive injuries …

Scott from Medford, NJ

According to my math last weekend was very good for the Jaguars. Even if they happen to win another game, they will still secure, at worst, the second pick in the 2021 NFL draft.

I was under the impression there would be no math.

John from Cape May Courthouse, MA

In regards to signing left Cam Robinson, if I were I charge, I would franchise tag him and here's why. I plan on being active in free agency in 2021 to help fill holes on the defensive side. Therefore, if I let Cam walk this year I more than likely won't get a compensation pick in 2022. By franchising Cam and with the idea that I won't probably be as active in free agency in 2022, we would more than likely get a comp pick. Also I think Cam and the rest of the offensive line have been fine and are good enough to win with. Also I want continuity upfront protecting our next quarterback. God forbid we have a Bengals situation on our hands

The idea of tagging Robinson makes a lot of sense. The transition tag makes sense, too, because that allows a team to make an offer for Robinson – with the Jaguars then able to determine if they believe Robinson worth the offer. If the Jaguars do believe that, they would be able to match it and retain Robinson. It's a good tool for a team to use with a player whose market value is difficult to determine – and who hasn't yet proven he merits top-of-the-market money. Stay tuned.

The Other Michael from Middleburg, FL

The sad reality is, even though it's a storyline to keep people marginally interested in potentially the worst season in franchise history, it doesn't really matter who the starting quarterback is at this point. None of them are good enough to elevate a bad team.


Eric from Jacksonville

Hi John. I know the rules have made it easier and easier on the offense over time. Like you've said before, it's not that the world has produced more amazing quarterbacks; it's that the system is now more so catered to allowing them to shine. With that in mind, does it become, in theory at least, easier to draft a good signal caller? Not saying elite but someone who can be very good and put us in a position to contend?

I do believe it absolutely has become easier in recent years to draft a quality quarterback and not miss. I also believe the position is comparatively easier to play. Many Jaguars fans will chortle at this – and rightly so, considering the difficulty the team has had finding a quarterback. That doesn't change my belief that finding a functioning quarterback should be a comparatively less-risky proposition this time around.

Gregg from Jax

This town very quickly seems to have #jayglutenintolerence

You put some time and effort into that one. You'll have to live yourself knowing that.