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Sizing up the wild-card picture

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

Beginning with tonight's show, "Jaguars This Week" will include an "Ask Vic" segment during the 6:30-7 p.m. segment of the two-hour radio show, which begins at six p.m. each Wednesday on WOKV, 690 AM. If you wish to submit an "Ask Vic" e-mail to show, you may do so at

Chris from Ladson, SC:
James from Memphis made me think of that tackle "Big Ben" made after the Bettis fumble during their Super Bowl run. He is a special QB. His last performance against the Jaguars helped convince me how good he really is. I hope/think David can be that kind of QB, that even when the defense does its job well you find a way to make a play.
Vic: David Garrard might be the most athletic quarterback in the league. There's no doubt in my mind that he has the body and physical tools to play running back or linebacker. When he throws an interception, he's not going to shy away from making the tackle. You're right about the Roethlisberger tackle in the 2005 playoff win in Indianapolis. It was the game-saving play. That's what great players do. They make big plays and in whatever capacity they have to make it. The player who sticks out in my mind as the best post-interception tackler of all time is Tony Dorsett. He was an amazing form tackler for an offensive player. He'd hit the interceptor with a perfect shoulders-to-thighs tackle and drop the guy on the spot. Dorsett was more than a great running back. He was a great football player. In my opinion, it's the highest compliment you can pay a player.

Johnny from Jacksonville:
Since the player fines go to NFL Charities, can the player write them off as a tax deduction?
Vic: Yes, he can deduct fines deducted from his paycheck, but he can't deduct wages not paid, as in a suspension without pay.

Ed from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
When and if Matt Jones sits out for three games, who do you think steps in as the go-to guy?
Vic: I'd like to think it would be Jerry Porter. He doesn't appear on the injury report, right?

Paulo from Curitiba, Brazil:
How's the wild-card battle? In your opinion, who are the favorites?
Vic: I think the favorites are in the AFC East because the East teams play the softest schedules in the AFC. I expect the Bills to win the East and that makes, in my opinion, the Patriots and the Jets the favorites to get the two wild cards. The Jaguars are about to enter a favorable five-game stretch. They have to make their move now.

Kevin from Jacksonville:
On "Jaguars Reporters" the other night you mentioned that the Titans will probably get beaten by an opponent that takes away their running game. Why hasn't anyone been successful at this yet?
Vic: The Ravens were. The Ravens shut down the Titans' running game; held the Titans to 47 yards rushing. The Titans won for two reasons: 1.) Their defense kept them in the game. 2.) Kerry Collins got it done with the game on the line.

Miguel from Mexico City, Mexico:
What if you can't wait until the end to ask the tough question? What if your job involves a camera and you have to ask the tough question with the camera still on, or even worse, live?
Vic: And give TV a scoop? No can do, Miguel. I'll find a way.

Jimmy from Savannah, GA:
Do you think the AFC South will have three playoff teams this year?
Vic: No, I don't. At the most, I think the division will get one wild-card team.

Ben from Charleston, WV:
Who should Jags fans be rooting for next Monday, Colts or Titans?
Vic: In my opinion, it would make more sense to root for the Titans. The fewer teams there are in the wild-card race, the better it'll be for the Jaguars.

Tim from St. Louis, MO:
Ward is a dirty player and what goes around will come around. This hit may have been clean, but he is a dirty player.
Vic: That's an interesting perspective: He didn't do anything wrong, but he's guilty.

David from Jacksonville:
How do you think the suspension of Kellen Winslow will affect the Browns' chances in their game against the Jags this Sunday?
Vic: I think it'll galvanize the Browns. I think it'll make the Browns a tougher team to beat. In my opinion, Winslow had become a distraction for the Browns. He had become an impediment to winning.

J.T. from Tempe, AZ:
You used to cover baseball, correct? Who do you like to win the World Series?
Vic: I'll pick the Phillies in seven games. I think it'll be tough for a dome team to play outside at this time of year.

Jon from Jacksonville:
I heard it reported that Hines Ward went for Mike Pete's knees 15 yards from the play, which resulted in Spicer's personal foul for retaliation? This is the incident in which Ward was fined, correct?
Vic: Wrong on both counts. Ward was fined for taunting Rashean Mathis. The hit on Mike Peterson was on the first play of the game, in which Mewelde Moore ran for a sizeable gain. Peterson was trailing the play, about five yards behind the ball when Ward caught him with a right shoulder to Peterson's left shoulder. It was a hit similar to the one on Keith Rivers, except not as forceful. Nothing lower than the two players' shoulders were involved. Spicer took exception to the fact that the hit was unnecessary. The whistle hadn't blown but Moore was about to be shoved out of bounds when Ward hit Peterson. Frankly, it wasn't that big of a hit.

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