JACKSONVILLE – Let's get to it …
Rob from the duuuuuuu
Can you tell us what happened to DaVon? I guess it's none of my business but I'm curious and want to get a sense of how long he will be out. I'm pretty concerned that he will be out and Fatukasi seemingly limited by injury to start the season. Also, is there really nothing to worry about with a player going to a rival this time of year? It must be at least tempting for the Chiefs' defensive coordinator to ask Prince about plays/formations/calls and tendencies, right? Is this a double bonus for Andy in Week 2? I'm starting to get a Patriots vibe about them. Isn't it funny how winning makes people hate you and think you are evil? Hope we get there!
I can't tell you specifically what happened with Jaguars defensive lineman DaVon Hamilton. He is on injured reserve with a non-football back issue and therefore will be out at least the first four weeks of the regular season. He hasn't discussed the issue publicly and the team has announced no details. I don't sense he will be out for the entire season because the team kept him on the active roster for the initial 53-man roster rather than place him on season-ending injured reserve. Regarding defensive lineman Foley Fatukasi, my sense is there's a chance he will play next Sunday in Week 1 against the Indianapolis Colts – though we should have a clearer idea Wednesday. As for tight end Gerrit Prince … there's little reason to worry about a player switching teams. All teams have video on other teams, and the Chiefs and Jaguars run similar enough offenses that there will be limited surprises. Either way, teams watch video and scout enough that they have an idea about tendencies, formations and players. Teams can easily adapt signals at the line of scrimmage to negate any "inside" information an opposing player who recently played for the team might share. I've answered a lot of questions along these lines in three decades around the NFL. I've also heard teams suspect other teams of untoward motives along these lines. I've never covered a game where I thought, "Hey, Team X won because they had a player who used to play for Team Y." Finally (deep breath) … while the Chiefs are really good under Head Coach Andy Reid, I don't find them all that hate-able. He has long since proven he's one of the NFL's best head coaches of all time. With his system in place, and with Patrick Mahomes at quarterback, they'll be difficult to beat for the foreseeable future.
Mike from Nocatee
Hey O, Will our new QB3 be an asset during practice for the Indy game? Being mobile seems like it could help?
I'm sure the Jaguars will have practice squad quarterback Nathan Rourke run during practice as they prepare for the Colts. I don't know that Rourke will be able to mimic Colts quarterback Anthony Richardson. When it comes to mobility, Richardson has special traits. One does not equate to the other in this case.
Nate from St. Pete, FL
Do you know when Fanatics will start selling Baalbek merchandise?
_Ron from Jacksonville _
In response to the question about the number of players active on game day. I grew up in Detroit during the 1950-60. In those days rosters were 35, period. No "taxi squad." No nothing. Linebacker Jim Martin was the kicker, and safety Yale Lary (Hall of Fame) was the punter. Players sometimes played on both sides of the line. Which is better – 35 or 53 or 47 active?
NFL roster sizes have changed through the years, with 33-to-38-player regular-season rosters the norm through the 1950s and early 1960s. I don't know that either number – 35 of 47 – is "better." A roster in the mid-30s worked in the 1950s and 1960s because there were fewer substitutions and the concept of "situational" football wasn't close to being developed. Now, with teams playing different personnel packages based on yardage and distance, it wouldn't be realistic.
Hermun from Live Oak
O Koaf. Similar to the move in 2017 to acquire defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, I predict the Jags will make a move this year for a pass rusher. I'll bet you a beer against a bag of treats for Juno that it happens.
The Jaguars worked in the offseason to have salary cap space to make such a move if needed. If the Jaguars determine that they need a player before the trading deadline, I wouldn't be surprised at all if that happens – be it a pass rusher or another position.
Sean from Oakleaf, FL
With some long-standing geographical based college football conferences and traditional rivalries disintegrating (just for the money), would it not be the right time to discuss realignment in the NFL to try save on jet fuel. I notice the AFC South Indianapolis Colts are located further north than two of the teams in the AFC North. Added up the Colts are 787 miles combined from Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Cincinnati - a 100 miles less than one trip to Jacksonville. How about moving Baltimore to the AFC South and move Indianapolis to the AFC North?
Realignment is a popular topic among fans and observers. It is not a topic that often comes up seriously in NFL circles. The league currently is divided neatly into eight, four-team divisions and the schedule has a comparatively balanced and fair feel. As far as realigning teams within those eight divisions, remember: Such a move must be voted upon by owners. We'll use the division you cited as an example. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals have longstanding rivalries with the Baltimore Ravens. Those owners like that division and have no interest in moving Indianapolis in and Baltimore out. The same is true for traditional divisions such as the AFC West, NFC East and NFC North. The divisions may realign someday. I get no feeling that it's imminent.
Brian from Round Rock, Texas
Did I hear correctly that Josh Pederson made the practice squad? What do they see in him? I don't remember him standing out other than making an emergency special teams long snap. Do they get paid on the practice squad? Do they wish they had Prince on the practice squad instead?
Yes, Pederson signed to the Jaguars' practice squad. They see a player similar to a lot of the other 512ish players on NFL practice squads – a player not quite good enough yet to be on an NFL roster but who could play if needed and could develop. Yes, players get paid on practice squad. The Jaguars indeed wanted tight end Gerrit Prince on the practice squad. He chose to sign with the Chiefs' practice squad. It was not an either-or situation.
Big on Blake from Philly
John, I struggle with loosing sight of the initial roster, but I never lose sight of the final rooster.
Fred from Naples, FL
I think I know the answer to this question but here it is anyway. Any chance the Jags might be looking ahead to the Chiefs game and get blindsided by the Colts next week?
The Jaguars will be favored against the Colts and deservedly so. They could lose because it's the NFL and because weird things happen Week 1. If the Jaguars lose, it won't be because they were "looking ahead."
Esteef from AB
Teams can protect up to four players on the practice squad each week. Do you think the Jags think enough of Nathan Rourke to protect him each week from getting "stolen" from us?
Perhaps. I think the Jaguars would like to keep Rourke. I don't know that they spend every waking hour of every day worried about losing him the way they would, say, the starting quarterback.
The LDO(LAW) from Hilliard
I'm old, and I just had an epiphany. I didn't even know what one was until a year or so ago. Why don't teams free up a roster spot by releasing all backup quarterbacks? THEN (this is where the epiphany comes in) re-sign one (C.J. Beathard, for instance) to the practice squad. Then, in accordance with the new practice squad rules, elevate the back-up QB on game day, thereby freeing up a 53-man roster spot? What say ye, ole' wise one?
A couple of reasons. One is that practice squad players, unless they are among the four players "protected," can sign with other teams. Teams also can only elevate practice squad players three times per season. After that, they must be signed to the 53-player roster.
Joe from Living in St. Johns down by the river
Hey John, I can tell you that Colts fan is excited about AR and their chances at a great season. I visited the Colts mailbag and noted they don't run that during the offseason. This simply highlights your Olympic strength, endurance and commitment to the Jags fanbase, no matter what they say in the comments section. Go Jags!
What's a "comments section?"