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O-Zone: Worth the effort

JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …

Richard from St. Augustine, FL

I was never all in for Calvin Ridley but $50 million GUARANTEED is generational money! Leave him alone. In looking at original trade versus what we are seeing a year later, it seems the trade price was a little steep – especially when the stable was stocked with some stud stallions. I also thought based on his miscues over the past year he did not warrant an $80 million payday, but three teams disagreed with me. As far as going to a division rival … Sure, I don't like it … but, hey, the team from Tennessee offered around $12 million more than the other two teams for his services. The NFL is a business and Calvin Ridley can take his services to the highest bidder and no one should begrudge him for doing it. IMO, I don't think Jags or Calvin Ridley made the wrong decision. I wish him well except for the two Sundays per year he plays the Jags, then I hope he get many targets and under 50 yards and 0 touchdowns.

There remains much O-Zone discussion over the departure of former Jaguars wide receiver Calvin Ridley, who signed with the Tennessee Titans last week as an unrestricted free agent after his only season with the Jaguars. I'll reiterate here what I've said and written previously – that I thought Ridley mattered for the Jaguars this past season. I thought he was an asset more than a liability. I thought there were games the Jaguars won that they would not have won had he not played. I thought it would have been a good move for the Jaguars to retain Ridley. That does not make losing Ridley a franchise-altering tragedy. I think there's absolutely a scenario in which we look back and decide the Jaguars used the resources that would have been used on Ridley wisely in other areas – and that the team is as good or better in his absence. Stay tuned.

Bradley from Sparks, NV

Calvin Ridley seems like an "A" person, but he is a "B" wide receiver and I think General Manager Trent Baalke is right not to overpay, but fans that think Ridley should stay for less money are ridiculous. Do you think Baalke fancies any of those second-round rated receivers to develop or is he content with the room as is?

I think Ridley is a little better than a "B" receiver. I think Baalke is constantly looking to upgrade the roster. The Jaguars can line up and have a good offense with Christian Kirk, Gabe Davis and Zay Jones at wide receiver and Evan Engram at tight end. The offseason has made pretty clear that Baalke would try to upgrade receiver given the opportunity.

Jim from Jacksonville

Any read on center Tyler Shatley and defensive lineman Dawuane Smoot? I think they've played well and would hope to have them back.

Shatley and Smoot have been very good players for a long time for this franchise. I wouldn't expect them to be major priorities this offseason.

Richard from Orange Park, FL

When I think of Ridley's deal he signed from the Titans, I think of the movie Rush Hour when Chris Tucker was like "$50 million, who they think she is, Chelsea Clinton." Except in this case, they got Calvin Ridley for 50 million dollars.

You know what movie I didn't get that a lot of people liked? Ghostbusters (the original, not whatever's going on now). You know what movie was great that not enough people know about? Midnight Run. Why are you unpopular with the Chicago police department?

Brian from Round Rock, Texas

This feels like an organization in free fall. I think at its root is a head coach that lost his team. Also, it appears that this will also be a team with less talent. I am not hopeful for next year. I fully expect a full reset after next season. Thoughts?

My thoughts are that I'm not all that surprised that these are your thoughts.

Chris from Fleming Island, FL

O-ZONE, it looks like the 2015 QB class is flaming out. What are the odds Trevor is the only first round QB from that draft to succeed?

I would be stunned beyond belief if Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence ever is considered the only first-round quarterback from the 2015 NFL Draft to succeed.

Nick from Annapolis, MD

Perhaps Jason from the North Pole shouldn't have used Anton Harrison as the poster child for the "keep your players so you don't have to draft replacements" argument. Jaguars got a player who performed as good, if not better, on a rookie contract. That frees up a lot of cap space to do what they did recently. That's the ideal right? Doesn't always work out that well.

The Jaguars allowed right tackle Jawaan Taylor to sign with the Kansas City Chiefs as an unrestricted free agent last offseason, selecting Anton Harrison No. 27 overall in the 2023 NFL Draft. Harrison played well as a rookie at right tackle and appears to have a chance to be a foundation piece on the offensive line. That's indeed the sort of drafting-to-replace departed players a team must execute consistently to be a long-term contender.

Zach from Jacksonville

A lot of fans up in arms about the cutting of cornerback Darious Williams and safety Rayshawn Jenkins. Understandably so. Rayshawn especially was a memorable guy for the fan base and a leader. I'll never forget being 11 years old when they cut running back Fred Taylor how sad I was. But Maurice Jones-Drew was right around the corner. It's just the nature of the business I suppose.

That it is.

Boxcutter Bill from Mass

How you think Anton Harrison played last year? He seemed to be solid most of the time. I definitely noticed Jawaan Taylor a lot more the year before, mostly because of costly penalties.

Harrison played fine last season, particularly for a rookie. He absolutely played well enough to believe he will continue to develop moving forward.

Bill from Jacksonville, FL

"This offense can be effective with that foursome." Is it better to have a good/great offense, or to "be effective"? Just trying to see something, John.

It's better to be great. It's also necessary sometimes in the NFL to make salary-cap decisions for the short-and-long term. Teams can't always guarantee enough money just to "give players the bag." It's why the salary cap exists.

Doug from Jax Beach

Please enough about Ridley. He's gone. He got paid. If you stop printing the questions, people will stop writing about it (or at lease we won't have to read it). This is the epitome of beating a dead horse.

People ask questions. I answer. That is how this works. There are no "have tos" here.

Bryce from Mandarin, FL

Zone, knowing cornerback Darious Williams would more than likely be a cap casualty this offseason, why was it more important to draft a blocking tight end in a deep and talented cornerback class littered with starting-caliber corners in the second round? If you recall, we could've used help at cornerback last year more so than a third-string tight end, and I think you might be hard pressed to sell us on the notion that blocking tight end will be more important this year than would a starting corner with a year under his belt and some game experience.


Dmiz from Jagsonville

Regarding our stadium situation, it sounds like we are not alone. I just read an article that Kansas City is forcing their citizens to vote on a 3/8 cent sales tax to help pay for an $800 million renovation – and if that vote isn't approved, the owners of the Kansas City Chiefs have threatened to move the team to another city. I guess this is the nature of the NFL; we all have to either accept and pay or let the owners have the rights to their own decisions. I'm not in favor of spending $1(2) billion+++, but the reality is that if Jacksonville doesn't, well this is just the way our world works.

The Chiefs reportedly indeed have asked that taxpayers approve public funds for major renovations to Arrowhead Stadium, with Chiefs President Mark Donovan saying "We would just have to look at all our options" if the funding was not approved. It's 2024 and it's the NFL. This is pretty much how it is.

Sonny from Melbourne

In one of the many articles I read on the Jaguars' transactions, it stated that there were some concerns about backup quarterback C.J. Beathard's health. If that is the case, the trade for quarterback Mac Jones was a good move. Have you heard anything about Beathard's health?

Beathard was on the injury report regularly late last season with a left-shoulder issue.

Matt from Jacksonville

I'm not sure I could get through that many Bullet Bobs in one sitting.

The beauty and the glory are in the trying.