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O-Zone: Weekly cycle

LONDON – Let's get to it …

Dave from Jacksonville

Zone, is it the fans' fault? What do we keep getting wrong? We see greatness, but witness disaster. Are we just the most gullible lot ever? Only Charlie Brown gets the football yanked from him more than a Jags fan. We are a very close second. Now the team gets two weeks of vacation abroad to fix whatever they could not get right the first time here and we fans must pick up the pieces, again. What have we done wrong, again?

I don't know what "two weeks vacation" means when a team is playing regular season games – and when they are practicing and preparing as they would for normal games. That's what the Jaguars will be doing in London the next 10 days. I do know that frustration is understandable and expected; this is not what Jaguars fans expected so far. I don't know the fans' role in picking up the pieces. The fans have never done anything wrong in this. The NFL is hard. The Jaguars haven't been good enough in a long time. I can't speak for other seasons because past seasons don't matter when trying to explain to people what's going on with this Jaguars team. They played poorly in Week 3 against the Houston Texans. It was a bad game. It doesn't mean there will be more bad games. Stay tuned. Or get some rest. Maybe the latter in this case.

Nick from Annapolis, MD

The Jaguars have spent so much equity in defensive line and pass rushers. We haven't had one develop into a truly disruptive player in the defensive line since … Marcus Stroud and John Henderson? It seems actually impossible to be this bad at drafting defensive lineman. The Eagles got Jalen Carter at Pick No. 9. T.J. Watt was Pick No. 30. J.J. Watt was Pick No. 11. Aaron Donald was Pick No. 13. It's not like players aren't available where we've been picking, we're just not picking 'em.

Jalen Carter wasn't available when the Jaguars were selecting in the 2023 NFL Draft. Aside from that … fair. For the most part. The Jaguars missed on a lot of players in a lot of drafts and for a long-time pass rushers were among the positions they missed.

Brendan from Yulee, FL

Last Sunday, EverBank Stadium looked empty. The Sunday before, it looked like a Chiefs home game. The local Floridians are smart enough to watch the Jags lose while enjoying the AC comfortably in their homes. Just put a damned roof on the stadium, more people would show up.

Heat and direct sun are huge issues for EverBank Stadium and have been for a long time. The Jaguars' proposed "Stadium of the Future" addresses these issues. That's pretty much the idea.

Nick from London, England

Feels like the Houston disaster means only 2-0 in London will do now, whereas if arriving on the back of a win maybe 1-1 would have been acceptable?

I don't know what's acceptable in this situation. I suppose that sort of thing is up to the beholder. A 1-1 record in London the next two weeks would leave the Jaguars 2-3 after five games. That's not what the Jaguars wanted, but it sure doesn't end the season.

Jerell from Columbia, SC

Do you think this team can get to seven-to-eight wins? I would consider that a good year after seeing what they are right now.

I think the Jaguars will win more than eight games this season. They have had a difficult start. They had a particularly difficult Week 3. If they play poorly the next two weeks, I will consider seven-to-eight victories a good season.

TB from Tampa, FL

Since Trent Baalke was the general manager during the first and only year of Urban Meyer and has been the general manager for the Doug Pederson Era in Jacksonville, at what point will Trent Baalke be held responsible for not only the success of the team, but specifically the failure of the team during this period of time?

I expect Baalke will be "held responsible" the same way all coaches and general managers will be held responsible, with the owner assessing the success of the team with an eye on circumstances and consideration of the long term. The Jaguars had a disastrous season with Head Coach Urban Meyer in Baalke's first season in 2021 and a successful season in his second season with Pederson as head coach in 2022. They're 1-2 in 2023 with a victory over the 2-1 Indianapolis Colts, a narrow loss to the Kansas City Chiefs and a bad loss to the Texans. It's Week 4.

Al from Orange Park, FL

You still believe that the Jags are an 11-to-12 win team? That means a five-to-six loss team. They already have two with games remaining against the Buffalo Bills, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans (twice), Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens. I don't doubt that they can win any one of those games on any given Sunday, but to reach 11-12 wins looks pretty daunting at this point.


Rich from Dacula, GA

In the words of a very good coach, "What the hell is going on out there?" The game is changing and last year is history, is our coach not changing and the league caught up with us?

The Jaguars are 1-2 this season. They lost one of those games to the defending Super Bowl champions, a game they had a chance to tie twice in the fourth quarter. The league isn't "catching up with Pederson." There's no negligence in coaching. It's also Week 4.

NT from South Carolina

Does everyone know this is the same team we loved last year? The coaches are pressing the team to push through adversity. How about the fans push through and see it's only Week 4. We are 12 inches (combined) from being 2-1. How about we just cheer this team on and know that they will turn the corner. Our season usually starts in London anyway.

Perhaps NT is related to Don because PT remains "all in."

Scott from Jax to Rehoboth Beach, DE

O-MAN? Remember that one time when the Jags used the 2022 #1 overall pick on Travon Walker and Detroit took Aidan Hutchinson at #2? Out of the 2, who do you think has performed up to their draft stock expectations so far?

I've unsurprisingly received multiple emails along these lines, with many focused on the Jaguars selecting Walker No. 1 overall in the 2022 NFL Draft and the Detroit Lions selecting Hutchinson No. 2 overall. I understand this is a topic these days, particularly because Hutchinson currently is a more effective pass rusher than Walker. I don't know how often to address it or how many ways to address it without being unnecessarily repetitive. Hutchinson is a very good pass rusher. Walker is a very good player in a lot of areas – particularly against the run – and he must continue to improve as a pass rusher. Would the Jaguars' pass rush be better had they selected Hutchinson? So far. Probably. In the future? We'll see.

Marji from DeLand, FL

Tayvis … two-good looking, successful and wealthy 33-year olds who have – most likely – biological clocks ticking like time bombs. And Taylor, being so massively famous, and who has paps stalking her as if she's Lady Di, is going to garner media attention no matter whoever she's with and wherever she goes. This has the attention of a Marilyn Monroe/Joe DiMaggio courtship. The media attention will die down some once Taylor resumes her tour, November 9th, in Argentina, and Kelce is home trying to win games in USA. Are you finding fans bummed and bored by this?

I don't know about the fans being bored and bummed …

Brian from Round Rock, Texas

I have zero expectation that we will win this week because the coach and the quarterback seem to be in denial and think that pressing is the issue. The issue is mindset. Like some of the other players said in interviews, grind and expect a struggle and a fight. Expect to need to earn every single inch. Fight and fight and fight. This offense thinks it's great and thinks the solution is to relax? Is that really what they think will work?

Doug Pederson has won a Super Bowl and coached two teams to four NFL postseason appearances. He and Lawrence are around the team daily and living the situation. But you're probably correct and they're probably wrong. The odds certainly favor you.

Andrew from Halifax

Hey O, weird question - after a loss your inbox is typically very negative but then takes on a more positive spin mid-late week with fans looking forward to the next game w/ cautious optimism. Are you filtering messages that way on purpose or is that just how fans fan?

Fans fan. That's how they fan. It's what they do.