Let's get to it . . . Kristi from St. Augustine, FL:
I was impressed with the press interview with offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski. He stated that you "either dish it out in this league or take it." I like that attitude. Your thoughts, Mr. O?
John: I liked better that he talked of balance on offense, and I liked that when I talked to defensive coordinators and head coaches at the Senior Bowl about Bratkowski this past week they talked about his ability to mix the run with a vertical passing game. You have to be able to have balance these days, and to work with available talent, and Bratkowski's reputation is that he can do both.
Nathan from Springville, UT:
How about an update on Rashad Jennings? I remember seeing more than just flashes last preseason, and am excited to see him get back in the offense.
John: All reports are that Jennings has healed nicely from his preseason knee injury, and that he will be ready for training camp. That's certainly something the Jaguars want. His absence hurt the team's depth at the position and also took away a viable option in the passing game.
Desmond from Spring Hill, FL:
Have you heard anything about how Indianapolis is doing as far as hosting a Super Bowl?
John: I have not, but I anticipate that the city will be a very good Super Bowl host with the possible exception of the weather. Indianapolis has a downtown that's especially friendly to big events and the city has hosted many Final Fours and Big 10 basketball tournaments. The Super Bowl obviously is a much bigger proposition than those two events, but Indianapolis – much like Jacksonville, in my experience – does a good job hosting such things.
Neil from Washington, DC:
Do you think the Jaguars will ever land a Thanksgiving Day game?
John: Eventually, yes. It won't be a home game unless it's in prime-time because the Lions and Cowboys play host to the traditional afternoon Thanksgiving games. But the NFL in recent seasons has added a Thursday night Thanksgiving game that it airs in prime-time on NFL Network. As the Jaguars' profile increases – which seems very possible under new owner Shahid Khan – a prime-time Thanksgiving game seems like a very good possibility.
Trent from Fernandina Beach, FL:
After watching Tom Coughlin earn a second Super Bowl appearance with the Giants, I keep asking myself why he left Jacksonville. This considering all of the great players that he brought here during his reign and the great kind of coach he is. I would appreciate it if you could explain this to me.
John: After four playoff appearances from 1996-1999, the Jaguars did not make the playoffs from 2000-2002. At that point, then-owner Wayne Weaver fired Coughlin, who had had head coach and general manager responsibilities since the team's 1995 inception. Shortly before the sale of the team to Shahid Khan became final last month, Weaver told jaguars.com perhaps his greatest regret as owner was firing Coughlin and not trying to have him stay on as head coach without the GM responsibilities. Coughlin is indeed a very good head coach and in light of his success with the Giants it's easy to look back and regret the move, but at the time it seemed to many the correct one.
Gigantor from Jacksonville:
Would you agree that Belichick is onto something with his mostly two TE offense? Not any tight ends, but big, athletic ones who can actually catch. I feel tight end can cause the biggest potential for mismatch. In a base defense, linebackers likely cannot keep up with a good tight end and in nickel, cornerbacks are likely too small to matchup.
John: Big, athletic tight ends who actually can catch aren't always easy to find, but I agree with you about the benefits of a two tight-end offense. The Colts for many years early in Peyton Manning's career utilized the formation often, and they continued to use Dallas Clark effectively through 2010. The Colts used Clark effectively enough that by 2010 he and Reggie Wayne were the focal points of the passing offense. The theory was exactly what you say – that a good tight end causes match-up problems with linebackers or with safeties that can be impossible sometimes to defend.
Bo from Dresden, NC:
Why did the Jags have to go out of town for coaching hires? With all the experts that know about players, scouting and play calling we should have been able to fill out the staff locally!
John: Bo, I hate to say it, but you make a darned good point.
Alton from Mahboulah, Kuwait:
Why did the Jaguars let Jeremy Mincey become a free agent? Now I'm reading reports that Del Rio is going to try and get him (Mincey) to Denver!
John: They let him get this close to free agency because it is fairly common these days for good players to get this close to free agency. Also, although Mincey is a good player, he is not a game-changing pass-rusher. So, I anticipate there may be a disconnect between what he wants and what the Jaguars want to pay. That doesn't mean Mincey won't be re-signed, but it may mean there's going to be some negotiation as Mincey ponders checking the market and the Jaguars determine what exactly to offer. As far as Del Rio's move to Denver influencing Mincey, I don't see it. Mincey is very close with Jaguars defensive line coach Joe Cullen and defensive coordinator Mel Tucker. That doesn't mean he'll re-sign, but my guess is his relationship with those two would outweigh Del Rio's presence in Denver.
Manuel from Jacksonville and Section 215:
As an unbiased Jags fan I can tell you stats this year support Ray Rice as an overall better player than our MJD. Rush/Rcv TDs: RR 15, MJD 12; 40 yds rushes: RR 5 MJD 3; fumbles lost (rush/rcv): RR 2 MJD 5; rcvg yds: RR 704, MJD 374. Even at total yards rushing, MJD got 1,606 yds b/c he rushed 52 more times. Probably the media members that have RR higher than MJD have looked at this kind of stats analysis. Am I missing something?
John: Although it's indeed close, I'd still consider Jones-Drew the better player. In fairness to Jones-Drew, the Ravens were a far better team with a more effective passing offense than the Jaguars, whereas Jones-Drew had to do pretty close to everything himself this past season. As far as your final question, it would be nice to say the media analyzed the stats as you did. Probably, it was just because the Ravens have been in the playoffs and on television more.
Kenny from San Diego, CA:
Do you expect many of the Jags UFA's to be resigned before free agency starts, and if so, is there a specific time frame you expect it to happen (besides between now and then)?
John: I do expect many of the UFAs to be re-signed, with most getting signed in the days leading to the opening of free agency March 13. It almost certainly won't happen in the next week or so, because although the Jaguars' pro personnel staff has done its work to determine who it would like to keep, the new coaching staff still must work through that process. That process will begin in earnest Monday.
Jody from Fort Pierce, FL:
Why are these fans messing with my brah-dha Tyson Alualu. He is in a Jaguars uniform, he is a Jaguar get behind the team already people. I swear some of these fans must sit at home cheering on other teams or something. What say you Oh-mahn? Explain their thinking to me.
John: Fans are fans. The reason to not mess with Alualu isn't that he's in a Jaguars uniform as much as he is a good player who is a reason the Jaguars improved defensively last season. I get that because he was selected four positions ahead of Jason Pierre-Paul there is going to be criticism, but Alualu has helped the Jaguars during his time here, and as he gets healthier and as the team begins to win, I expect that criticism to fade.
Keith from Deleon Springs, FL:
It wasn't that long ago that hiring one man to be the coach and GM was all the rage. I think Bill Parcells started the trend. What happened? Was it results or guys getting burned out that ended the fad?
John: It was a combination of both. Mostly, it was the gradual realization that the NFL is a full-time year-round sport and that coach and general manager each was essentially a year-round job. Teams also began consistently winning Super Bowl with a coach and general manager, and in a copycat league winning begets imitators.
Stan from Bakersfield, CA:
In response to the questions about the certain national sports media site, I look at most of the graphics they show about the NFL and chuckle to myself as I change the channel.
John: But they are pretty graphics.
See the pretty graphics
Let's get to it . . . Kristi from St. Augustine, FL: