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O-Zone: Whining ugly

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Jordan from Jacksonville

I recently heard Daniel Jeremiah on local radio say that while Trevor Lawrence may not be generational, he thinks he is an incredible talent and the best prospect since Andrew Luck. He then said he also does not think the gap between Trevor and Zach Wilson is as big as everyone thinks. With Zach Wilson being the overall consensus No. 2 quarterback in the draft, do you think there is any chance he becomes the pick if Urban sees something in his game? Wilson does look dynamic. His release is Marino-like and his ability to make plays on the move is something special. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network is among the most-respected draft analysts – and he's not alone in ranking Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence perhaps a shred of a hair below such all-time elite No. 1 overall quarterbacks such as Andrew Luck, Peyton Manning and John Elway. But remember: Elway/Luck/Manning were pretty much the elite of the elite when it came to can't-miss quarterback prospects. When I watched Luck at Stanford, I thought his ability to read defenses and call the game at the line of scrimmage made him the surest thing I ever had seen in a college quarterback; I just didn't see how he could miss. I haven't quite seen that from Lawrence, but that doesn't remotely mean he can't do those things when asked to do them in the NFL – or that he can't be elite. There's every reason to believe he can. And look: if Lawrence is a hair below Manning, Elway and Luck in the NFL he will be unquestionably one of the league's best quarterbacks – and far and away the best quarterback in Jaguars history. As far as Brigham Young quarterback Zach Wilson … yes, he has some special qualities. And he looks capable of being a very good NFL quarterback. Could Jaguars Head Coach Urban Meyer see something in Wilson that prompts him to take Wilson? Anything is possible. But it seems unlikely. Few in the NFL seem to believe there's the remotest chance the Jaguars won't take Lawrence. But until Meyer or General Manager Trent Baalke says the Jaguars are for sure taking Lawrence nothing is certain. So, you're saying there's a chance…

Greg from Section 122, Jacksonville, FL

If I were to open a business or, say, restaurant downtown, would your expectation be for the city to help fund it? Cause if you simplify it down, that is what these real estate ventures are. The reason the people don't want the city putting their money into this stuff is because of the risk. You weren't here for it but when we hosted the Super Bowl there was another attempt to develop the area in "Lot J." That ended with the city out almost $40 million and not a single shovel hitting the dirt. Perhaps knowing that will give you some context why people oppose risking more of their money in real estate development projects. Let the businessman take the risk and reap the rewards.

No, I wouldn't expect the city to help fund your business or, say, restaurant. Because your restaurant by itself wouldn't reshape downtown – or even make a ripple. Lot J was a project on a larger scale than a restaurant and it involved an NFL owner's broader vision of downtown Jacksonville. I assume your restaurant wouldn't be on that scale. Lot J also was about trying to stabilize the city's NFL team and assure it is financially stable here for the long term. I assume your restaurant wouldn't quite do that, either. Look: I get the debate over this. I get the passion. I get that many people generally dislike the idea of city funds going to stadiums and projects affiliated with professional sports teams. But the area around TIAA Bank Field and the stadium at some point must get improved for the Jaguars to work here long term, and those improvements are going to have to be a public/private partnership. Whatever the nature of the debate, that eventually must happen – and that means the city and taxpayers are going to have some risk and bear some cost.

Charles from Savannah, GA

If I told you a year ago that Bill O'Brien and Doug Marrone will be coaching the Alabama Crimson Tide and that Urban Meyer will be the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars, would you have believed me?

No. Life comes at you fast in the big city.

Sean from Jacksonville

I think Doug Marrone got a great job as the offensive line coach at Alabama. Strong program and it will be good to see him on the sideline next year in, probably, another Top 3 team.

I think so, too.

Dave from Oviedo, FL

Zone - Do you think Joe Schobert will be a starting linebacker for us next year?

This will depend on how the new decision-makers see this, and I admit I don't have a real feel for that yet. Meyer is still compiling a staff, and the team's self-scout process will begin shortly thereafter. Schobert is capable of starting in the middle. Will the team want to upgrade? Stay tuned.

Jim from Neptune Beach, FL

When will we know if former Jaguars left tackle Tony Boselli has made the Hall of Fame this year?

Super Bowl week.

Joshua from Atlanta, GA

If you had an equal grade on a defensive tackle and safety at No. 25 on draft day, which trigger are you pulling? Gotta be a tackle, IMO.

Defensive tackle, without question. If you can't stop the run and disrupt in the middle of the defense it doesn't much matter what you can do on the back end of the defense.

Fred from Naples, FL

Has there been any announcement on who will be coaching wide receivers for the Jaguars next year?

Not yet.

Bill from Jacksonville, FL

Deshaun Watson apparently wants out of Houston after he just signed a new, huge contract. Why wouldn't the Texans simply say, "Look, we love Deshaun and want him here for a long, long time ... but Deshaun's under contract for the next three years and we have two franchise tags we can apply after that. So, for the next five years, Deshaun will play for the Texans or he won't play football. See you at camp." Teams have muscles, why don't they flex them?

Fair point. This is what I thought the Jaguars should have done with cornerback Jalen Ramsey. They decided it was better to get value for the player. There's also the argument in how much a team should bend and shape the franchise for an unhappy player. It's very difficult to do those things when the player is a cornerback or any other position player other than quarterback. But do you bend and shape when it's a quarterback? Well, it's quarterback.

Cristiano from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

"Meyer is a College coach! He won't be successful in the NFL!" "They are not saying they will select Trevor Lawrence! They´ll pick another guy!" "Baalke has a terrible track record. We´re doomed!" Jaguars fans have had their hopes crushed so badly that it seems they just can't see the light at the end of the tunnel without thinking it is a train coming to hit them.


Rusty from New Iberia, LA

Is Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy allowed to be hired while his team is still active in the playoffs?

No. Coaches can interview for positions while their teams are active in the playoffs, but they may not be hired.

Captain Bob from Fernandina Beach, FL

With the Senior Bowl beginning will Coach Meyer and those he has hired be there?

No. Meyer is still working to build and hire his staff. That takes priority for pretty much all new NFL head coaches in their first few weeks on the job, and it's why you rarely see new head coaches or their staffs at the Senior Bowl.

Jason from North Pole, AK

Thank you for linking that Sports Illustrated story on Joe Cullen. It's a great read and he looks to be a fantastic hire!

You're welcome, and it is. And he is.

Jim from Folkston, GA

Every year for as long as you have been writing here Great O, you constantly hear "we get no respect or time in the national media discussion". So what's up with these whiners wanting the Jaguars to announce right now who they are picking first in the draft? I say let the rest of the nation watch and have to wait as the Jaguars get their just due on national TV and use every second up before making the pick. I'll love listening to it!

I get so damned tired of the whiners I can barely see straight. Those guys are the worst. If I had a nickel …