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Special Edition: Ask Jeff

Join Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Ryan from Jacksonville: :
No question, just pass on to Vic that he's in my family's prayers. I didn't even care to watch the game once I heard the news. Vic is part of the whole game day experience.

Vic: I will pass on your prayers. Vic is part of my gameday experience as well and I missed him dearly. Vic is doing well and he is into a speedy recovery and he told me that he has some very cute nurses taking care of him.

Ken from London, KY:
Aside from the obvious of the Jaguars winning, what else would need to happen for the Jaguars to slide into the playoffs?

Vic: A lot of things have to happen, but as we said the last few weeks, and it hasn't happened, is the Jaguars need to win. For all the diehard fans out there, here are the scenarios for the sixth and final playoff spot, courtesy of Ryan Robinson: Case 1: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Bengals beat the Jets, and Chiefs beat the Broncos, and Patriots beat the Texans, and Dolphins beat the Steelers. Case 2: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Bengals beat the Jets, and Raiders beat the Ravens, and Patriots beat the Texans, and Dolphins beat the Steelers. Case 3: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Chiefs beat the Broncos, and Raiders beat the Ravens, and Patriots beat the Texans, and Dolphins beat the Steelers. Case 4: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Bengals beat the Jets, and Chiefs beat the Broncos, and Raiders beat the Ravens, and Patriots beat the Texans. Case 5: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Bengals beat the Jets, and Chiefs beat the Broncos, and Raiders beat the Ravens, and Dolphins beat the Steelers. Believe it or not, the Jaguars could get the five seed if this happens: Jaguars beat the Browns, and Bengals beat the Jets, and Chiefs beat the Broncos, and Raiders beat the Ravens, and Patriots beat the Texans, and Dolphins beat the Steelers.

Damien from Jacksonville:
Can you please explain the rules for the play clock and why sometimes it is 25 seconds, sometimes 40 and sometimes 60? Thanks.

Vic: 60? No such thing. (A little Vic-ism there). The play clock is set to 25 seconds when the clock is stopped at the end of the previous play and the ball is reset. The clock is set to 40 seconds when the ball is kept in play and the clock is not stopped.

Bryson from Atlantic Beach, FL:
As a former player, how would you feel if, during an undefeated season, your coach asked you and the rest of the starters to pack it in during a competitive, close ballgame?

Vic: Bryson, I wouldn't feel very good about it. I know what you're talking about is what happened to the Colts yesterday. Peyton sure did a lot of stuttering in answering the questions after the game yesterday. Colts fans have reason to be upset after seeing that take place at home. When you have the opportunity to go for "football immortality," why would you pass on that opportunity?

Jody from Pace, FL:
First of all, I hope Vic is OK. If he's reading this, "Get well soon." Secondly, Jeff, what is the focus for the next game, do you play all your best guys to get to 8-8 or do you start second-tier guys to get a read on who can perform in a game situation? I know you play to win the game, but doesn't playing other talent allow you to play to win next year with more confidence?

Vic: Jody, good question, but the reality of it is that the Jaguars ARE playing their younger and inexperienced talent because that's exactly what makes up their roster, for the most part. For example, in the game against the Patriots the two backup offensive linemen were Jordan Black (six years) and Kynan Forney (nine years). But by all means, you always play to win a game. And certainly having a win in the last week of the season to get your record to .500 would do wonders for a team heading into the offseason.

Ray from Jax Beach, Fl: :
What is your opinion of what the Jaguars need to address most in next year's draft?... Also, what is your most memorable memory from your playing career?

Vic: Without question, the Jaguars need to address the ability to affect the passer in next year's draft. Pass-rushers don't come along very often in free agency. You can certainly get some second-tier pass-rushers in free agency but the top-end ones don't come along very often. In the draft, you're obviously not guaranteed they're going to be a top-end pass-rusher because the draft is always a crapshoot. But by far, the number one thing that the Jaguars have to address in the offseason, through the draft, through free-agency, whatever, is the ability to affect the pass rusher. Two memories: One, beating Buffalo in the 1996 playoffs and coming back to the impromptu response of the fans as we arrived back at the airport, seeing Airport Road lined from the airport all the way back to I-95. The second one was the response after the Denver game the following week when we flew over the stadium and did a fly-by in a 737 jet. That was cool.

Sonny from Jacksonville:
Does a quarterback get a lesser shot of success by going to a team that's worse off? Ex: How much better would Matt Stafford be if he were playing for the Colts?

Vic: Did you happen to see Curtis Painter play when Peyton Manning left the ballgame? Look at it this way; how much better off would the Lions be if they had Peyton Manning? It is a quarterback league.

Jonathan from FSU:
Looking back at the offseason, it won't be yesterday's loss or the 41-0 loss in Seattle that will haunt this team the most. It will be the 14-10 loss to Miami. Do you agree?

Vic: To me, any game that you play that you have an opportunity to stay in the driver's seat in the playoff race, or keep your hopes alive, is one that you look back on with regret. So you can take Miami, Indianapolis, New England, any of those three. Jonathan, let me add to that because you used the word "haunt." I don't think anything that this team has done this year will "haunt" them into the offseason. With a young roster on the rise, I am encouraged. You hope it makes them hungry for future success when given the opportunity again.

Jeremy from Jacksonville:
I always hear about how rookies are just starting to learn their position in the NFL, or even in college. I have always thought that this was kind of odd, especially since a lot of NFL rookies have played 4 years of high school and 4 years of college. What is it that these rookies have to learn? Is there a physical maturity aspect to their development also? Since you are a former NFL player, I was hoping you could clear up whether rookies need to learn a new system, learn more about their position, or just get stronger and quicker. Thanks!

Vic: I remember when I was a rookie back in 1989 and walking into the locker room and being greeted by an offensive guard by the name of Dan Alexander, who was old enough to be my dad, seriously. Hell, I just started shaving a few years before. Football IQ and physical prowess are things that take time to develop. I was doing addition and subtraction and Dan was already working on quantum physics, if you know what I mean.

Michael from Orlando, FL:
Jeff, I've always appreciated your ability to diagnose film and player development, so I'd really love to hear what you think of our two rookie OTs' progression over this season and what you predict for their future, both good and bad. Thanks for taking the time to answer questions today. It'll be a real treat to read the column.

Vic: The future is bright for them both. Individually, I love the way Eben Britton has a fire to the way he plays the game and in particular the way he run blocks. He has some progress to make as a pass-protector but he's well on his way and will be a good one. The left tackle, Eugene Monroe, even though he went to my fine University of Virginia, has more progress to make as his the expectations are higher being the first-round pick. Clearly, he is athletically talented. This is a game that's played by men that want to put food on their table. I want to see more of his physical power displayed in the run game and a better finish. The experience they have both received will pay dividends sooner rather than later.

Ken from Jacksonville:
Why should a team lose one of their two challenges when the call is reversed (their challenge correct)? I don't think a team should be penalized because the officials got it wrong and had to be corrected. Any chance of seeing this type of change in the future?

Vic: I like your thinking. I think anytime a call is corrected it is good for the game. I also like the idea of a "strategy" behind using them and also the human element of officiating. It is working and wouldn't want to see the game slowed down too much with too many challenges. Remember that if you get two challenges that turn out to be successful that an additional one is awarded.

Eric from Ponte Vedra, FL:
How do you go from one extreme to another – talking football throughout the week and then spending Saturday morning talking outdoors?

Vic: Easy, they are my true passions, plain and simple.

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