Let's get to it . . . Stephen from Clermont, FL:
It was great to hear Sims-Walker say in his interview that the wide receivers' job is to make the quarterback's job easier. Also that it's the wide receivers job to get separation. Just something about those words that is comforting.
John: I'll be more comfortable when I see separation than when I read about it.
Sammie from Apopka, FL:
You've been rather supportive of the front office, and I think for good reason. This team seems to be on the right track, despite the poor record. Nothing however is perfect, is it? Surely even a well-run front office makes mistakes. From where you sit, what criticisms of Smith & Co. do you feel are valid? Where, if anywhere, do you think this regime has made missteps?
John: My approach to analyzing a front-office is based on the truth that even the best general managers miss on players, particularly outside the first round. It's a percentage game and the key is to have the right approach long-term. The Jaguars have selected three players in the first round under Gene Smith: offensive tackle Eugene Monroe, defensive tackle Tyson Alualu and quarterback Blaine Gabbert. To me, that's the right approach. Have they had some missteps? Yes, some players haven't worked out, but you go through the drafts of any team and players don't work out. I'd say Monroe needs to be more consistent and has yet to show he's a franchise left tackle, but Alualu is the real thing and so far, Gabbert looks like he's developing and potentially an elite player. The reality is the teams with big-time quarterbacks tend to have rosters that look a lot better than those that don't. If Gabbert develops into the player the Jaguars believe he'll be, you'll be amazed at how good the Jaguars' roster looks. If anything, I was nervous about the Jaguars' spending in free agency this past off-season. I believe it's best to build through the draft. As it turned out, the free-agent spending on defense has improved the unit dramatically. I don't believe the small-school criticisms valid, but I do believe generally speaking, small-school players need a year before playing in the NFL, so to expect Cecil Shorts and Will Rackley to play at a high level immediately in retrospect may have been what you call a misstep.
Jose from Madrid, Spain:
Does this happen often? A team letting a contract run out so the player is a free agent and signs for another team, because the expected compensatory pick will be higher than the one they were getting offered on a trade?
John: It could happen in theory, but it usually doesn't. The reason is there is no hard, set formula for compensatory selections, so it's very hard to predict just what will come your way.
Robert from Orlando:
"They'd understand, and praise him for a great offense and for restructuring and solidifying a roster that was once in shambles." I don't recall those rosters in shambles ever starting out 1-5 John.
John: No, they didn't. They also never developed into a solid enough structure to win a division and go deep in the playoffs, either. That's the goal. Sometimes it takes a building process to get there.
Joey from Hays, KS:
Are you really getting a lot of pro T.O. questions? I don't want the Jags to sign a 38-year-old, injured diva has been. Am I crazy?
John: You're not crazy. I wouldn't worry about that.
Sean from Ponte Vedra, FL:
I don't know about you but I like the Sims-Walker signing for next season and it gets me really excited about the team, especially if you draft a wide receiver. You would have Blackmon/Jeffery at No. 1, then Sims-Walker at No. 2 where he should be, and then Mike Thomas in the slot where he is best fit to play.
John: It remains to be seen exactly how Sims-Walker fits into the future plans, but I do believe the Jaguars will go receiver early in the draft next year. If Sims-Walker performs at a high level, your scenario is one that could work out. We'll see.
Ryan from Delray Beach, FL:
So the Packers' wide receivers have to give every other wide receiver on the team a $100 Best Buy gift card every time they drop the ball. Why don't the Jaguars start doing this? Or something similar?
John: Even NFL money only goes so far.
Clay from Tousey:
I do not understand a comment like, "They didn't address (the WR position) in free agency last season because there was no one available worth the price." If you're dying of thirst, water is worth a lot to you, and more to you than other people. Are the Jaguars not clearly in that shape at WR this season?
John: If you're dying of thirst, you also have a tendency to hallucinate, run into mirages and drink sand (or so I learned from Bugs Bunny). You don't want to do that.
James from West Liberty, KY:
I hate to sound pessimistic, or a "Negative Nancy", and I'm hoping the Jag's can get Hot and make the playoffs, but I don't know if its me or not but it seems as though some fans seem that "wining 4 out of 5 division games and 3 or 4 other games" is simple. I as badly as the next fan want the Jag's to make it to the playoffs and still are only 2 games out of the division lead but can we wait on this kind of talk until we actually Win a game? I feel like Jim Mora; "Playoffs?! Talking about playoffs?! Don't talk about playoffs! I'm just hoping we can win a game"! Sorry John if I am being too negative. Keep up the good work!
John: I think it's fair to put the post-season talk on hold until the Jaguars win again.
John from Jacksonville:
I know it's early in the season but should the Jag fans be pulling for the Texans or the Titans this Sunday? My philosophy is to pull for the weaker team to win to help keep the division up for grabs. Who do you consider the stronger team at this time (and your prediction down the stretch) that we most need to be concerned with if we are to rebound and make a run at the division title?
John: I still think the Texans are stronger, so in your situation, pull for Tennessee. That's the answer to your question, but as far as standings watching, I'm going to pass until I watch the Jaguars win a game or two.
Kevin from Jacksonville:
Here is something everyone needs to think about. How scary would the Jaguars be if Blaine Gabbert became a little more accurate, M. Lewis and the WR's catch the ball, offensive line gets a little more consistent, and maybe the defensive gets one-two more turnovers a game? I don't think it's a stretch to think the Jaguars aren't as bad as the record is saying. A late season surge isn't out of the question. What's your opinion?
John: I think if all of those things happen the Jaguars would be a very good team.
Alex from McLean, VA:
I was shocked to learn recently that there are 14 teams that have never won a Super Bowl. There are some storied franchises on that list such as the Vikings and Eagles. That's 44 years and no SB for them. Do people around here realize how much patience may be needed before we get a winner?
John: It's very hard to win a Super Bowl. There is a one in 32 chance every year. It's also very hard to win a conference title and winning a division ain't that easy, either. If you get one or two in a 30-year period, that's outstanding success. That said, I don't expect people to be patient. They shouldn't be. Fans should always want to win.
Greg from Carlsbad, CA:
Those who can, coach; those who can't call in to Jaguars This Week. Those who can, GM; those who can't write in to the O-Zone. I'd be shocked, shocked I tell you, if any of the complainers could organize a practice, much less develop a game plan or build a roster. And how'd you let that guy get away with "Post that!?"
John: Sometimes pucks get past the goalie.
Paul from Jacksonville:
I am curious about the character quality of drafting. If a player has one bad incident, such as a DUI, but he learns from it and does not do it again, does that player qualify as a player the Jaguars might draft?
John: One bad incident isn't likely to take a player off the Jaguars' board. Usually, such a thing would be seen as a red flag. The Jaguars' scouting department investigates and researches these players' meticulously. You look for a pattern to develop a picture of a player. By draft day, there's usually not much doubt if an instance is a one-time thing or part of a pattern.
Justin from Columbus, OH:
I keep looking at this season and thinking "at least we haven't lost every game." But, looking back it seems like we played the Titans like we have played every other team this season. I think we were fortunate that Tennessee seemed to be still trying to figure themselves out in Week 1 or we could be 0-6.
John: The little lights are not twinkling.
Put the talk on hold
Let's get to it . . . Stephen from Clermont, FL: