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One man can set the tone

Join Jaguars Inside Report Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

David from Oviedo, FL:
I was disappointed in Jacksonville's overall lack of support of the Jaguars during these lean times. What if things got so bad that Wayne Weaver wanted to move the team. Is there anything to keep him from moving?

Vic: Yes, a long-term stadium lease.

Jason from Norman, OK:
Thanks for your great insight. I enjoy your articles more than any other writer. Here's a simple question for you. Are players required to wear knee pads anymore? I noticed very few wearing them, or if they are, they're very thin pads.

Vic: A helmet is the only piece of equipment that is required to be worn. Obviously, players have reduced the amount of equipment they wear, for the sake of the lighter, faster feeling that's produced. The NFL strongly encourages the use of knee pads, thigh pads, hip pads, etc., but the league does not mandate their use. In the days of roll-blocks and low-tackling, players didn't dare go without their hip pads and thigh pads, but the game is played much higher than it once was.

Jim from Jacksonville, FL:
I am a big fan of Brunell and would hate to see him go, but the $4 million in cap room may be too much for the new management to pass up. Does Mark have anything in his contract limiting who he can be traded to?

Vic: No.

David from Port Orange, FL:
All the sports "experts" say "finesse" teams lose to teams that are "physical." My question is: How can one guy make a team "physical," and what does it take to be "physical" (like the Steelers and Titans)?

Vic: One guy can do it, especially if his name is Joe Greene, Lawrence Taylor, etc. Not only does he add muscle, he brings an aggressive spirit to his team's locker room. Teammates feed off that kind of player. He brings out the "man" in all of them by setting a tone of physical play. I've covered plenty of games when the "finesse" team won, but, yes, "physical" teams are generally regarded to be more successful, especially in the postseason when the weather is cold and the game is played at its most intense level. How do you become a "physical" team? By placing a strong emphasis on blocking and tackling, and it begins in training camp. Teams that turn their training camps into "passing camps" will never be physical because they immediately set a tone for finesse. Draft the run-and-hit guys, then promote it in training camp. That's what teams such as the Steelers and Titans do.

Clay from Jacksonville:
Giving the team's current status, how many years would be a realistic goal for our new coach to get us back to the playoffs?

Vic: Two years would be an aggressive expectation.

Don from Jacksonville:
Why, in your opinion, has Frank Beamer, the Virginia Tech coach, never been offered an NFL coaching job? He completely turned that program around and moved them into the big-time, as well as finding Michael Vick.

Vic: I know of at least one instance that Frank Beamer was contacted by an NFL team interested in him as a head coach, and Beamer turned them down without even playing them along so he could hold Virginia Tech up for a better contract. That information was never revealed, but I know it to be absolute fact. Beamer is a great coach; maybe the best coach in America. Fortunately for Virginia Tech, their program was so low when they hired Beamer that they didn't panic when Beamer turned in losing records his first few years on the job.

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