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Please, I'm begging

Join senior editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Will from Chicago, IL:
Gee, Vic, your Thanksgiving shout to the "Ask Vic" family touched me so much that I shed a tear. I think I'll continue to write questions and wait patiently for an answer so here's one. I think Greg Jones plays pretty well at halfback. Do you think the Jaguars may go for a fullback in the draft on the first day?

Vic: No, Greg Jones is their fullback.

Bubba from Kingsland, GA:
Do you like hunting? I really like your column and I am giving you permission to hunt on my land north of Savannah. There's deer, turtles and rabbits and all sorts of little critters.

Vic: You don't own a golf course, do you?

Rob from Green Cove Springs, FL:
I'm thankful for "Ask Vic." Reading your column has become a daily tradition for me. Keep up the good work. You mentioned that the "Ask Vic" family continues to grow. Could you give us specifics? Is it a clear enough trend to be indicative of passion for the Jags taking root in Jacksonville?

Vic: I think the increase in e-mails I receive is a constant indicator of the growth of the Jaguars' fan base. That's all it can be. Why would anyone go to unless they were a Jaguars fan? Success is happening. The roots of the franchise are spreading wider and deeper every year.

Peter from Toronto, Canada:
When a player steps out of bounds, is the ball spotted where he stepped out or where the ball was when he stepped out?

Vic: It's the ball.

David from Jacksonville:
You keep talking about how the Jags will face a test against the Cardinals defense, but what do you see happening on the other side of the ball?

Vic: It's not the Cardinals defense that concerns me; it's the Cardinals pass-offense, which is number three in the league and has two big-time receivers in Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin. Kurt Warner is a streaky passer and if he gets hot, look out. Defensively, the Cardinals are without Bert Berry and they're 18th against the run, 23rd against the pass and 26th overall. If there's a player on their defense who can cause a problem, it's safety Adrian Wilson. He can be a disruptive force; he has five sacks. In my opinion, the feature attraction of this game is the Jaguars' number one-ranked pass-defense against the Cardinals' passing game. That matchup will probably tell the tale.

William from Jacksonville:
Fifteen years ago, if someone had told you that you would be covering an NFL team in Jacksonville and blogging would be part of the job, how would you have replied?

Vic: Yeah, isn't this something? Go back to 30 years ago. We were carrying little portable typewriters with us; ones that would fit on the tray tables of airplanes. Progress is an amazing thing. When I started doing this, reporters were still using carbon paper in their typewriters so one copy of the story could go to the typesetter and the writer could keep the other. Now the IT boys are greasing the wheels for this blogging idea. I've seen the home page prototype for what we're going to do and it's impressive. I think readers are really going to enjoy it and I think we might even launch the concept as early as the Cleveland game.

Lou from Jacksonville:
I am an alumnus of Penn State who attended the university during the Franco Harris, Lydell Mitchell and John Cappelletti years. Do you believe we'll ever again see a head coach have the longevity Joe Paterno has had at Penn State and where do you rank him historically among college coaches?

Vic: His historical significance and rank are obvious. Your question about longevity is what's worthy of debate. We are rapidly approaching a day when we will be without historical perspective within the coaching ranks. Our impatience for winning and our anger for losing have severely damaged the coaching profession. Where are the icons? Where are the Brown's and Lombardi's and Shula's and Landry's and Noll's? Chuck Noll was 1-13 and lost 13 straight in his rookie season as head coach. He didn't have a winning season until his fourth year. Landry was 0-11-1, 4-9-1, 5-8-1, 4-10, 5-8-1 and 7-7 before he had a winning season. In today's game, neither Landry nor Noll would've made it past year three, yet, they went on to win six Super Bowls combined. Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden and a few other such long-term coaches are the last dinosaurs. What will we do for historical perspective when they become extinct?

Mitchell from Palatka, FL:
I am out here in Iraq and I am the only person in my Marine unit who is a Jaguar fan. It seems like Jaguars fans are the outcasts of the NFL. Every week they play, I shut more and more people up. Do you think it's like that for the players, too? I mean, does playing on a small-market team get players less respect?

Vic: Forget about that stupid stuff and just make sure you concentrate completely on what you're doing over there because we want you to come home safe. That's what's important to me.

Robert from Russellville, AR:
As a rabid Arkansas Razorback fan, and now a Jaguars fan (Matt Jones fan), why is this gifted athlete not touching the ball 10-15 times per game?

Vic: This message is for all of the good people of Arkansas: Please stop. I am begging you. I understand that Matt Jones is the only reason you have interest in the Jaguars, but the Jaguars were not formed for the purpose of making Jones an All-Pro. As a player in whom the Jaguars have committed a significant slice of the team's future, Jones will be given every opportunity to become this team's pass-receiving star, and he has clearly taken steps in that direction recently. Your e-mails, however, suggest that whatever the Jaguars do with Jones it's not good enough. I want so badly to like you, but your obsession with your idol has become so annoying that I have to find a way to ignore it. What more is there to say about the kid? He's catching touchdowns. He's learning how to play the game. He's making rapid advancements. I really think it's time to balance your obsession by becoming a little more concerned about your beloved Razorbacks.

Eric from Jacksonville:
In his rookie season, Rashean Mathis was originally going to play free safety. What caused Jack Del Rio to play him at cornerback?

Vic: Cornerback is a premium position. You don't play a guy with Rashean Mathis' abilities at safety.

Tim from Fond du Lac, WI:
The Jaguars only had one prime-time football game this year and it wasn't even on Monday night. Will the Jags finally get some more publicity and primetime games?

Vic: I expect the Jaguars will get significantly more prime-time and high-profile games next season, and then we're going to find out just how tough it is to play those games. You don't sneak up on anybody on Monday night, and then you find yourself playing on six days rest. There are a lot of positives that go with playing at one o'clock every Sunday, such as a consistent sleeping schedule. If you wanna win, the schedule the Jaguars have this year is just right.

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