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O-Zone: Us against them

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Kenneth from St. Augustine, FL

Do we keep Marcell Dareus and Malik Jackson? One of them or none at the end of the season? Taven Bryan should fit right in. Your thoughts, O ...

My thought is while this is a question people want answered RIGHT NOW, we won’t have a clear idea of how the Jaguars will structure the 2019 roster and their 2019 salary cap until closer to the 2019 offseason. A look at several reputable cap-oriented websites – spotrac.com and overthecap.com – indeed clearly shows it’s unlikely the Jaguars will be able to keep all of the well-known veterans on the roster. The contracts of players such as safety Barry Church, right tackle Jermey Parnell and defensive tackle Marcell Dareus – as well as defensive end Calais Campbell and a few others – are structured in such a way that the players can be released without dramatic cap implications following the 2019 season. The Jaguars structured the contracts with such moves in mind, knowing that considering the price and talent level of the free agents signed in 2016 and 2017 they could not keep all those players for the duration of their contracts. The plan called for drafting well and developing, then releasing veteran players and replacing them with the drafted/developed players. Defensive end/tackle Taven Bryan is a perfect example of this approach – provided he develops well. Here’s the thing about the answer: we just don’t know which players will be released after the season. Some of this will depend on how young players develop. Some will depend on how veterans play this season. My guess is Church, Parnell and Dareus possibly could be released. But that’s way premature. Unfortunately for fans who want to know RIGHT NOW, this answer will have to wait. The good news? The Jaguars have a lot of good young players and a lot of veterans. They can withstand departures and still compete.

Bill from Folkston, GA

There is a thing called beating a dead horse. Please stop about Jean or start losing some readers.

The formula for this forum is simple. Readers write questions. I answer them. It has been the same for more than seven years and hasn’t changed. I doubt it will.

Billy from the Beach

Zone, I really like Lags’ Summer School pieces. I would like to see one of you in the press box. How do you lay out your computer, notebook, phone, roster and where does the popcorn and drinks go? Do you alternate snacks between your devices? Do you load the box on the left side, with M&Ms? How much do you infringe on the guy next to you, for you ever get called for encroachment? Do you tweet with your left/right? What happens if the person next to you grabs your pretzel by mistake? I think that would be quite a diagram for us all to see.

I keep my computer in front of me. What’s a notebook? I keep my phone in my hand so I can scroll through Facebook and Snapchat. What’s an alternate snack? What’s a roster? I don’t eat popcorn during games. The drinks go in my tummy wummy; where else? I don’t eat M&Ms during games because teams hardly ever give them away free. People try to sit as far away from me as possible. I don’t think I need to explain why, particularly after this answer.

Kyle from Pensacola

RE: Dave from Orlando; ASJ's first five years in the league were extremely limited by personal conduct and quarterback play. Not to mention, the Bucs and Jets just weren't very good. Oh also I like to stir the pot so #fansincedayone

Stirring the pot is cool. A lot of people like it. As far as Jaguars tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins, his production in his first few NFL seasons indeed has caused many Jaguars fans/observers to wonder at his potential. Remember: it’s not always possible to get impact free agents skimming the top of the free-agent lists and signing the most obvious player at each position. The Jaguars were successful taking that route in recent offseasons with players such as defensive end Calais Campbell, defensive tackle Malik Jackson, cornerback A.J. Bouye and other such players but sometimes there aren’t obvious premium players available in free agency at positions you need – and sometimes the obvious premium players don’t work in your cap situation even when available. When that’s the case, teams must scout and look for the less obvious player – i.e., a player who hasn’t lived up to his potential for one reason or the other but who is still capable of producing. Everything about Seferian-Jenkins – from his draft status to his size/speed to how he looked in offseason on-field activities – indicates he might be such a player. Will that be the case? Tune in this fall.

Robert from Ponte Vedra, FL

Do you think there is any chance we would want to sign Demarco Murray?

No. Not that Murray wasn’t a very good running back in his prime, but he retired from the NFL this week. The Jaguars like their running back situation – and if they do find they need an additional reserve at the position because of injury, there’s little reason they can’t find one on the market when needed. Running back is one of the easier positions to fill at a moment’s notice because offenses are comparatively easy to pick up at that position. I expect that would be the route rather than a high-profile aging player.

Justin from Down the Hall

O!!!! O!???? Where did you go!!! Streak broken? So, so sad.

Wait … what?

Justin from Down the Hall

Oh, never mind. I found them ... the new ones are just not in their normal place right below this form.

Whew.

Brian from Baltimore, MD

Can't wait to hear your excuses now. There was a point where the O-Zone was actually good. No matter the time of day you could check in and get your football fix. Well that's not the case no more, no matter how much you push the blame.

Wait? You once thought the O-Zone was good?

Zach from Abingdon, MD

The Titans O-Zone seems to be working fine.

Well, goody for the Titans’ O-Zone.

Steven from Section 1114 and Jacksonville

Is there really a possibility of our team playing four home games in London soon? If that is true, this 15-plus-year season-ticket holder will not be renewing. I am sure I am not the only one to feel this way. I know [Jaguars Owner Shad Khan] has said this team will stay in Jacksonville, but these stories should have died out long ago if it were true. Guess this season-ticket holder may be saving some money in the future because I will not support my "home" team that only plays four games in Duval ...

Many people feel as you do, and many people have expressed as much since prominent sports radio host Dan Patrick mentioned this – four home games in London – as a possibility early this week. There have been so many such reports like this for so many years that I honestly have difficulty keeping track of them, and I heard nothing in Patrick’s report that gives it much more credibility than years and years of reports about relocation and other markets and a multitude of other rumors connecting the Jaguars with other cities. Here’s what I know: Khan has done nothing in seven and a half years to make me doubt his commitment to Jacksonville. He also has continually expressed a desire and commitment to grow the Jaguars internationally with London as a base for that. That has meant a regular-season home game in London since 2013. Is a bigger international presence possible? Yes. Will it be anywhere near as extreme as four home games away from Jacksonville anytime in the remotely near future? That would surprise me quite a lot.

Joy from Section 103

The boss man bought a hotel in Canada. OMG. He must be moving the team.

This.

Scott from Medford, NJ

No question. How about one fer Jim Kelly? His ESPY presentation and speech was one for the ages.

One fer Jim Kelly. Absolutely.

Julio from Southern Cal

O, I am not a big fan of the Duval chant since I am not a residence of Duval. Besides moving there, any suggestions?

My best suggestion is to get a better understanding of what the Duval chant is all about. It’s not about where you live. It’s not about where the fans chanting it live. It’s about the Jaguars being from a unique place in Northeast Florida, a place where the same us-against-them mentality prevails that symbolizes the us-against-them mentality of the Jaguars – and the us-against-them mentality of Jaguars fans. People from St. John’s and Clay County and countless other surrounding areas chant “Duval,” understanding it has little to do with location and much more to do with the feeling. They seem to enjoy it. One reason is it’s fun to say. So, say it: “Duuuuuuuuuvallll ….” See? It’s cool. It’s fun. People like it. Even people not from, you know... Duval.

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