Let's get to it . . . Richard from Tampa, FL:
I believe our next draft pick is crucial to our development as a team. It stands to reason we will not have a draft pick this high for a long time. Let's assume we pick in the Top 10. Early mock drafts have two quarterbacks, three wide receivers, one cover corner and four offensive and defensive linemen. If all options available would it be better to take the wide receiver early or draft one of the genetic freaks on the offensive or defensive line because you don't usually get to draft them out of the Top 10? We could even trade down, get a solid pick in the first round and maybe fill an additional spot with two picks in the second round. If you were Gene and all possibilities are available which do you take as the best option to improve or team?
John: I take the best player. What I mean by that is if there is a player available to you that is clearly better than anyone else, then you take him. If all else is equal and you believe one of the wide receivers is going to be a long-term player of significant impact, then you take him. But you're right: if the Jaguars are selecting in the Top 10, they need to get a long-term, high level core player. You can't miss in the Top 10. If you do, you'll be picking there again soon.
Jason from Black and Teal Town:
I tend to think that general managers should have two goals in mind. One, hit on your first-round picks because they are the foundation of the team. Two, have a good batting average, meaning hit about a .400 or .500. You can't be perfect, but getting two-to-three starters or major contributors per draft is ideal. GM Gene says he follows a base hit strategy and just wants to get on base. I agree.
John: I do, too. The best general managers hit somewhere in the high .500s and if you do that and hit in the first round, you're going to be a post-season contender. That's the job of a GM.
Josh from Jacksonville:
Hopefully, third time will do the trick. Do you think the Jaguars should use more of the Wildcat offense? It has provided a few sparks when the team needed it, and could be a short-term option to get some points on the board.
John: There's a reason I overlooked the question twice. Not that it wasn't a good question. I'm not a Wildcat guy, or really a fan of gimmicky offense or defense. Line up, call good, smart plays, identify the opponent's weakness and execute the play. Do that and you can play good offense.
Roger from Jacksonville:
Through Week 9 of this NFL season, the Jaguars opponents so far are a combined 41-25, and the Jaguars have only faced one team, Carolina, with a losing record. Half of their opponents either lead or are tied for the lead of their division. We may have a poor record against that schedule, but we're not alone. Not many other teams are beating them, either.
John: All true, and without question the Jaguars could be 4-4 or better with an easier schedule. Unfortunately, this is the NFL and you play who you play. The reality is the Jaguars have no one to blame but themselves. They had a real chance to be 4-4 or 5-3 at the break and left games on the field.
Kevin from Jacksonville:
If you have to use the term, 'but' in order to convince someone to sign a player, you probably shouldn't sign the player. Also, it's hilarious how people are blaming Gene for injuries, when they want us to sign Mr. Owens who is 38 with a one year old knee.
John: Irony can be pretty ironic.
Marlin from Middleburg, FL:
Not only does TO look good without a shirt. He can also come in, bring in the media circus that always surrounds him, run his mouth and verbally abuse our developing quarterback. Who wouldn't want that?
John: I can think of one team. Actually, I can think of 32.
Michael from Fruit Cove, FL:
I think people are over reacting to our record this year. Fans find huge issues with our offensive line and receivers when these are truthfully very small problems. If we had a decent punter to start the year, we would be right in the hunt for the division. That is how small the difference between winning and losing is in this league.
John: The offensive line issue is indeed a pretty small one, which is to say the unit for the most part has played well considering the circumstance. The wide receiver issue? Well, that's a little bigger and needs to get fixed. And it will.
Andy from St. Augustine, FL:
You "see my lips moving but keep hearing I liked how he looked without a shirt"? So when presented with facts and logic, you reply with an attempt at sarcasm and humor? (I actually did laugh a little). I honestly don't care if someone looks like Haystacks Calhoun - if he can actually run routes and catch the ball I'm a proponent of signing him (although the whole shirtless thing is when I knew we had a future pro-bowler with Pot Roast - have you seen him without his shirt?)
John: I respond with attempts at sarcasm and humor in many situations. In this case, it was when reason had failed.
David from Jacksonville:
I don't know how you do it. These same questions and complaints about receivers, the o-line, etc. even annoy me, and I just read the column. Is that all you get and so there are no other options to pick from or do you just post these because they are the overwhelming majority? Hang in there O-Man!
John: I try to mix it up the best I can to answer the questions that seem to be most on the minds of the readers – and to provide the most entertaining read every day. A lot of people ask about the receivers and the offensive line every day, so there still seems to be a lot of desire to know what's going on.
Aaron from Chehalis, WA:
Let's say a player with the ball is running down the sideline and jumps into the air, flies for five or six yards, and lands out of bounds. Is the ball down where the ball crossed the line out of bounds or where the player landed?
John: The ball is down where he crossed the line out of bounds.
Walter from Orange Park, FL:
I was shocked that the Jaguars did not pursue Brandon Lloyd, and even more so when I found out what the asking price was. Seeing as how he has been successful in St. Louis, the huge struggles of our WR corps, and the low-end draft pick that it cost, do you think it is safe to say that they may have missed out on an opportunity to improve the team with little risk associated with the move?
John: Never a consideration. Lloyd is in his ninth season and has been with numerous NFL teams. None ever has tried to re-sign him. There are reasons he was available and the Jaguars didn't want to pursue him for those reasons.
John from Jacksonville:
In regards to Marcedes Lewis (and anyone else who is proven in the NFL), I'm going to go out on a limb to say that a person is not allowed to "struggle" when getting a huge bonus and making a multi-million dollar salary. You aren't allowed to have a stretch of several games and just say "I'm working on it", "gonna get better", or "I need to step it up". You need to solve it and solve it now. Anything else is not acceptable.
John: I'm not sure what "allowed to struggle" means. He's not trying to struggle. He's trying to play well. He hasn't casually said he's going to get better and he has given no indication he's not taking it seriously. He has struggled. He hasn't played well. It has been acknowledged and he's going to try not to struggle anymore. He's not getting a pass and he certainly isn't saying it's acceptable. The only choice would be to bench him or release him, neither of which will or should happen.
Frank from Fernandina Beach, FL:
We're into Colts week and I have to put it out there. Right now they are in the prime spot for the No. 1 overall pick, and assuming all the prognosticators are right, the prized Andrew Luck. Should I as a Jaguar fan root for the Colts to miraculously pull off their first win of the year against our beloved big cats and get them out of No. 1? Short-term pain of the loss pales in comparison to twelve years of Andrew Luck guiding the hated ponies. The Jags might need to make a business decision and lie down a week or two this year for the good of the future.
John: Root for the Jaguars. You root for your team to win. They will be trying to win, and there will be no laying down. Players and coaches don't play and coach to draft a player who is in college now. Some players make it in the NFL and some don't, but teams don't play one year with the idea of getting someone to play next year.
Jeff from Jacksonville Beach, FL:
I saw that a couple kickers were questionable going into this weekend's game. And it got me wondering: is there a limit on how long a player must be on a roster before he is allowed to play in a game?
John: There is not, as long as the player is on the active roster prior to the 4 pm deadline the day before, or in the case of a weekday or Saturday night game on the day of the game.
Josiah from Fargo, ND:
How often do you get questions from people that live in North Dakota?
John: One time too many.
Root for your team to win
Let's get to it . . . Richard from Tampa, FL: