JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Sean from Jacksonville
*YAWN* I suspect that my hibernation is over and football is back in action. Yippee!
The Jaguars' 2023 regular season begins Sunday. They will play the Indianapolis Colts in an AFC South game at Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis at 1 p.m.
Dave from Jacksonville
Zone, is not every game a test in the NFL for a player? I like this test for Travon. If he holds ground, he has the speed and size to keep Richardson in the pocket a hesitant second longer. Rookies don't always do well hesitant or it could always be coaching, right? I'll be watching this for sure.
I suspect you're referencing a recent O-Zone question asking if Sunday's game is a way to measure if Jaguars outside linebacker Travon Walker was worthy of the No. 1 overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft. Colts rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson indeed is dangerous in large part because of his size, speed and mobility. And Walker indeed has the combination of athleticism and physicality to match up well with Richardson. My answer to the aforementioned question was that stopping a player such as Richardson isn't an individual issue as much as a team issue. The Jaguars must tackle well, be disciplined and have multiple defenders aware of Richardson on all plays. He's a threat to run on most plays and one player can't stop him by himself on every play.
John from Section 206
What does the script say?
To watch the game.
Bill from Bostwick
How about the Jaguars bring on board former Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier as a consultant, similar to what the Philadelphia Eagles did with Vic Fangio last season? The last five seasons under Frazier, the Bills finished in the top five in scoring defense and total defense three times. Big companies use consultants all the time in an effort to go from good to great. Fangio was part of the equation in the Eagles success. Why not add Frazier for another set of eyes and perspective and, possibly, give Jacksonville a competitive edge should they make the playoffs and face the Buffalo?
I like and respect Frazier very much. He's an outstanding defensive mind. The Jaguars already have longtime NFL defensive coordinator Bob Sutton as a senior defensive assistant. I have no sense that they feel they need a "consultant" at this time.
Jorge from Barranquilla, Colombia
JO- I'll get Uncle Shad to pay for your copy of Pro Football Focus. Will you post weekly grades for ex-Jags – i.e., offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor, wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., etc?
Toward what end?
Paul from Saint Johns
Does Trevor command a contract worth more than Burrow at year's end?
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow this week agreed to a five-year contract worth a reported $275 million. This was the first offseason Burrow has been eligible to sign a contract extension. Lawrence can sign a contract extension after the 2023 season. If he continues to develop as he did late last season during the 2023 season, I expect him to sign a contract marginally worth more than Burrow. That has been the trend with young, franchise quarterbacks in recent years and there's little reason to think that will change.
Ron from Tallahassee, FL
Will Trevor Lawrence be the first $300 million NFL player? Looking that way after hearing news of the Burrow contract.
Burrow's contract makes his $55 million average the highest in NFL history. I wouldn't be surprised if Lawrence signs a bigger contract than Burrow in terms of yearly average. I have no idea the likely length of the contract.
Tom from Suburban St Johns
Least we forget ... KELCE did not play!!!
I think it's "lest." And OK.
Steve from Hilton Head, SC
John, I guess the Chiefs were looking past the Lions to get to the Jags?
I can't imagine why the Chiefs would be looking past a prime-time regular-season opener against a talented team, but sure …
JJ from Savannah, GA
I'm going to address the elephant in the room since I know it's a sore subject. After watching the Chiefs and Detroit Lions game, one thing is very apparent to me. The Jags clearly missed on not drafting Hutch. I get the whole "give-Walker-time-to-develop argument. Yet, sometimes you just need to look yourself in the mirror and admit you blundered that opportunity. Sometimes even the smartest guy in the room can't see talent when it's right under their nose. John, could you imagine if we had Hutch coming off the edge? You do see him consistently pressuring the quarterback with various moves, right? Also, did you see him make ol' Jawaan touch the earth? Here's one for a classic trying to outsmart your own self.
What "elephant in the room?" This has been discussed ad nauseam here in the O-Zone and by anyone else interested in the Jaguars. Aiden Hutchinson was the No. 2 overall selection in the '22 draft by the Detroit Lions. The Jaguars selected Walker No. 1 in that draft. Some fans wish the Jaguars would have selected Hutchinson – maybe a lot of fans. The Jaguars have no regrets about selecting Walker over Hutchinson. They're different players. Both appear to be good. I get that we'll discuss this forever because it's the nature of the situations and these forums, and that's fine. Maybe there will come a time when it's clear a "mistake" was made. Right now, that's a perception.
David from Green Cove Springs
Will Doug put his friendship with Andy aside next week and tell the officials to watch Taylor for an Illegal formation that wasn't called a single time in the Detroit game? This is a MUST question
Well, if it's a MUST question then I simply MUST answer, MUSTN'T I? I haven't the foggiest idea what the friendship of Jaguars Head Coach Doug Pederson and Kansas City Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid has to do with anything. Coaches who are friends face one another all the time in the NFL. I expect Pederson and the Jaguars will discuss Taylor's quick starts and alignment with officials before the game. Not that that's necessary. Officials study rules a lot. They're aware of them without input from coaches. Remember, too: Taylor has been playing this way throughout his NFL career and officials have watched it. There's a reason they haven't called it before now.
WJ from Somewhere west of the Atlantic
O₃, master of an entire layer of our atmosphere, do you worry that Gary from St. Augustine is peaking too soon? He seems to be in postseason form already.
Gary from St. Augustine knows where to find me.
Sam from Orlando, FL
When a quarterback declines, what tends to go first? His arm? His body or his mind? Is the initial decline as simple as "he can't throw as hard as he used to?"
It's often arm strength and velocity, and it's often a marginal drop. In a game decided on the smallest of margins, a small drop can be a lot.
Don from Marshall NC
I suppose the Colts could rise up and defeat the Mighty Jaguars but, I seriously doubt it. This game will be a bullet line of accomplishments for players on the Jaguars at contract time. Go Jaguars!
When it comes to the Jaguars' chances in the '23 regular-season opener, Don remains "all in."
JT from Palm Coast
The buy-in from the team seems to be something incredibly special. I haven't read or heard anything from anyone on the team that seems to be individualistic. None of the game have been played yet, but this team has a feel of a team that can be special. I'm not sure I've been more optimistic going into a season and I've been a day one fan. This is already fun, John. We deserve this team. Cheers to this year's version of our Jaguars. Let's go kick some ass!
One fer the buy in …
Stan from Jacksonville
The opener is Sunday. Watched multiple show about our Jags on TV and on the "interweb" today. I love this team and I love the whole communications team. You all do a tremendous job and I suspect the entire fan base (perhaps not Gary from St Augustine) appreciates it. Sunday it gets real. Stumbles will come and my patience WILL be tested. Gawd, I love this stuff!!!
… and another fer the buy in.
EJ from Jacksonville
A player signed off a team's practice squad must go on the active roster. Can the player refuse to stay with the team he prefers or is it like the waiver wire?
A player on the practice squad is effectively a free agent, free to sign with any interested team providing that team signs the player to the active roster. The player can choose to stay on his current practice squad, though this decision is rare.
Daniel from Geneva, Switzerland
O-man, how do you balance nap time given the start of the season and our common 1 p.m. game times?
You nap when you can nap. Effort and commitment to the cause mean everything.