JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it...
Carter from St. Augustine, FL:
This is really more of a statement than a question, but I find it noteworthy that both Allen Hurns and Allen Robinson are on track for more than 1,200 yards receiving. Of course, yards mean nothing if they don't translate into points – and points mean nothing if they don't translate into wins. But this is not the same offense as last year. Blake Bortles has a touchdown:interception ratio of 2:1 and T.J. Yeldon has shown flashes. Time for this offense to take off.
John: I probably haven't emphasized Hurns/Robinson enough here in the O-Zone – partially, I suppose, because it's difficult to emphasize positives when a team is 1-3. There also has been an understandable focus on second-half issues and red-zone struggles, particularly this week. But yes, Hurns/Robinson in their second seasons very definitely look like young, ascending receivers – and if you dig through the win-loss record and second-half issues, there are a lot of things about Bortles to like right now. It's not enough to be winning consistently yet, but it's looking better than it did. That's a start.
Tim from St. Petersburg, FL:
John: Please help me understand quarterback hits-to-head rules? On Chris Clemons' rush Sunday, Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck ducked his head to avoid the sack. Clemons grabbed what would have been his waist or shoulders and gets called. Blake Bortles had a similar type play that didn't get called. What gives?
John: Excellent question … excellent, excellent question.
Gamble from Washington, D.C.:
Winston has been throwing the ball to opposing teams -- so can the defensive line pressure him more than Hasselbeck?
John: I'm never sure how to answer questions asking to predict the future, but yeah, pressuring Winston is key. Thus far this season, the Jaguars have struggled to create pressure with four down linemen, so unless that changes I imagine they will need to get creative to bring pressure. I also imagine they will do this, and when they do, they will be pretty effective. They also could feel more comfortable blitzing Winston than Hasselbeck, the latter of whom has seen many more looks in the NFL than the former.
DUVAL DOOM from Section 217:
"Do you ever go off Hacker or Prosser style?" Hahaha hahahahahahahahahahahaha hahahahahahahahahahahaha hahahahahahahahahahahaha. Oh man. Whew. I assure you, the day you start sounding like either of those fools is the day most of us stop reading. Whew. Hahaha, Hacker or Prosser style.
John: Let me make one thing perfectly clear: I have known Prosser a long time … more than two decades – and I have known Hacker a while, too. I like both very much and consider them friends. We all have our styles. I don't want to be them and they don't want to be me. Actually, I take that back: Hacker probably does want to be me.
Frank from Knoxville, TN:
Enough crying and complaining about things that have gone wrong. I see a team that has been competitive in three of four games, which is a vast improvement from the last two years. All that while missing several significant contributors, especially the stud tight end the offense was being built around and the stud pass-rusher the defense was counting on. It seems like you've been poo-pooing not having Julius Thomas. I think his injury has cost us at least a game this year and his return could be the juice the offense needs. I can't wait for next week to see how he changes the way defenses are playing the receivers.
John: Heh, heh … you said "poo poo."
Jeremy from Jacksonville:
I really think Ryan Davis is a much better pass-rush option – especially at the LEO position or possible increase of rotation at tackle. Either way or both is better than not recognizing the ability to get in the backfield as often as this guy. I know he plays special teams, but if he can create that much production on limited duty on defense, why not … say … maybe cut the older guy that costs more and produces less and fill that with a four-core special teams guy that can fill the void on that side of the ball? Or keep both and have Clemons on special teams and third down with Davis? What would you do, O?
John: It seems you're suggesting the Jaguars have Ryan Davis play more of Chris Clemons' role and have Clemons released or play a diminished role. This isn't going to happen, nor should it. Davis a very good interior/third-down rusher and is very effective in his role. Clemons is the starter because he gets good pressure on third down and also because he is better in the first- and second-down situations. This I imagine will continue to irritate people, but it's going to stay that way.
Bryan from Jacksonville:
I see that you are using the word "perhaps" often in your answers. I read that word and cannot think that you are only making an inference. I also understand that the inferences are based on your background knowledge and clues that you see, but could your inferences be wrong?
John: Perhaps you're right. What are you inferring?
David from Orlando, FL:
Mr. O, it's unfortunate that Dante Fowler Jr., tore his ACL, but I don't think "the lost year" should count as a year of service. When he comes back, he should owe us four years, not three. We would just pay him the average of his rookie salary to recoup that year. Is this not a reasonable offer?
John: Reasonable or unreasonable, none of what you suggest is remotely allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Ed from Ponte Vedra, FL:
Your patience in selling patience is outstanding; you need to ask for a raise in case things get worse, like a loss to Tampa.
John: People ask questions. I answer them best I can. Whether the Jaguars win or lose Sunday, I anticipate taking pretty much the same approach.
Tom from Virginia Beach, VA:
Halftime adjustments are not being discussed on this site! Are the Jags not making adjustments to counter what the opposition is changing? Are the coaches not anticipating changes by the defense? Are the Jags making the wrong adjustments? Your thoughts?
John: Halftime adjustments are being discussed; there's just not a tremendous amount to say. First, the concept itself is a touch overrated. Not nearly as much "adjusting" goes on at halftime as fans believe or as commentators like to discuss. Now, there are things from one half to the next that change such as what offensive and defensive coordinators emphasize. But those go on through the game with perhaps a few more decided upon in the few minutes that halftime provides. All of that said, there has been offensive drop off three times this season – in Weeks 1, 2 and 4. So, what is it? Mostly execution, with a touch of late-game conservatism tossed in. Take this past Sunday's loss to the Colts: the offense produced 11 first downs after halftime and drove past midfield six times. Something went right on the early part of the drives before penalties, incomplete passes and mistakes stalled them. Better execution will go a long way toward solving a lot of things.
Terry from Chester:
O–Man, two words: growing pains … They hurt more when you are closer to the goal.
Justin from Madisonville, LA:
I sent a question a couple weeks ago about the rumors of the Jags moving to St. Louis and got no response. Now with Shad talking about a "Plan C" could it be the Jags replacing the Rams in St. Louis?
John: No. Khan at an NFL Owners Meetings this week made reference to a "Plan C" in regards to the NFL's plans in Los Angeles. Because it was Khan speaking, it caused a ripple among some fans about the plan possibly involving the Jaguars. That's not what this is. Here's how the NFL Owners Meetings work, and this is something I can discuss because goodness knows I have burned off enough life hours attending them: reporters stand in lobbies and wait for owners to walk through hallways. When owners walk through those hallways, the ones who are willing to talk are mobbed by reporters. Those reporters then ask the mobbed owner about "hot issues" of the meetings. The "hot issue" right now is Los Angeles; Khan spoke about it. That does not mean he was talking about Jacksonville or St. Louis or anything involving the Jaguars. It means he was answering a question about something being discussed within the league.
Four-putt from Jacksonville :
This "culture" of losing needs to stop. We've all had enough of it. Just win the daggum game. I don't want to hear about our youth, injuries, missed whatever's. Stop it! Win the daggum game! Man, this gets old!!!
John: Yes, it does.
Ryan from Apopka, FL:
Looking ahead with our schedule we have two very winnable games coming up and then Buffalo in London. If we can get to the bye week at 3-4, I think most people would say that was a good first half of the season. Let's get this train going on the right track on Sunday! #DTWD
O-Zone: Train, train...
JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it...
Carter from St. Augustine, FL: