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Thoughts about the schedule

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

Kyle from Murrieta, CA:
I have watched Crabtree highlights a lot the last few days. I feel that if we were able to trade out of the eight spot and drop down 10 spots or so he would be a good fit, screw or no screw. What do you think?

Vic: It's all about the screw.

Michael from Jacksonville:
I know it's about four months away, but do you have any word on this year's "Ask Vic" golf tournament?

Vic: The tournament is usually scheduled for the day before the Jaguars' preseason home opener, which is scheduled this year for Saturday, Aug. 22. Once the draft is over, we'll start checking on course availability.

Ryan from Sparks, NV:
In your opinion, are there some positions that do not warrant top-10 money, regardless of the skill of the player?

Vic: Guard is traditionally a position that is considered unworthy of top-10 money, but if the guard is John Hannah, the thinking immediately changes. Dominant players are always worth the money, regardless of position. You rank the players and if a guy is ranked in your top 10, then that's what you're gonna pay.

Thomas from Jacksonville:
I've been discussing the draft with people and my take is the Jags can hopefully trade back and get some more picks and take Hakeem Nicks. I feel he is more polished than the others and could contribute now. What's your take?

Vic: My take is that he showed up at a workout recently overweight, on the slow side and showing the body type of a running back, not a wide receiver. He has great hands and ball skills, but he hurt himself in that workout.

Carl from Jacksonville:
Will Derek Landri have a breakout season this year? I really like this guy.

Vic: Everybody likes a Derek Landri because he's a player with whom fans can identify. Why? Because he's not an overwhelming physical specimen. Landri is successful because he's instinctive and hard-working; hey, aren't we all, huh? Landri isn't the kind of player who has a breakout season. He's the kind of player who is dependable and productive week in and week out, year in and year out and then, in the end, you look back and say, "That guy was a darn good football player." He reminds me of another undersized defensive tackle I covered, a guy named Gary Dunn.

Daniel from Stuart, FL:
My girlfriend says your opinion means nothing.

Vic: Marry her.

Mike from Dale City, VA:
Should we draft a hybrid defensive end and turn our defense into a 3-4, like the Ravens, Steelers, Colts and Patriots?

Vic: I'm tellin' you, it's not that easy. You don't just line up three guys with a hand down and four guys standing and call it a 3-4. It's more sophisticated than that. By the way, the Colts don't play a 3-4.

Jason from Orange Park, FL:
Tony from Pittsburgh asked you about Ernie Davis. I, too, have recently watched "The Express." Was Davis drafted before the advent of the NFL combine? If so, was his case one of the reasons the NFL moved to having a centralized system of team doctors being able to check players before drafting and signing them to contracts?

Vic: Before the combine? Ernie Davis was drafted before Blesto. Davis was drafted 20 years before the scouting combine was even a thought. No, he was not the impetus to the combine idea. When Davis was drafted, a lot of teams were still picking out of "Street and Smith's."

Billy from Melbourne, FL:
I look at this schedule and I like it. Seattle, St. Louis and Kansas City in the middle and finishing strong with New England and Cleveland. I like our chances if we can finish strong within our division. Your thoughts?

Vic: Liking it would not be an apt description of my view of the schedule. My view would be: It is what it is; let's go. As Chuck Noll used to say, "We don't always like the cards we're dealt, but we never, ever complain about them." This schedule challenges a team considered to be in rebuilding to rebuild real quick. Everything has to be advanced. OTA's can't be treated casually. The strength and conditioning program may need to move onto the heavier weights a little sooner than planned. Vince Manuwai needs to rehab his knee faster. I'm speaking figuratively, of course, but do you understand what I'm saying? The great thing about this schedule is that it challenges the Jaguars to hurry up and get good. I guess that's a good thing. Hey, it may turn out that way. The team that won last season's Super Bowl played one of the most brutal schedules in NFL history and a lot of people didn't think they'd win nine games when the schedule was announced at this time last year. There's only one way to look at this schedule: It is what it is; let's go.

Logan from Jacksonville:
I am wondering what you think of my idea. All right, if we really want to get someone good at wide receiver, we should get Harrison or Holt. So if we get one of those two, then I think we should give our first-round pick to the 49ers for Patrick Willis because he is just a beast. Or take a tackle or Jasper Brinkley in the second round. If we don't, then we should get Maclin in the first.

Vic: Sounds good to me.

Troy from Murrieta, CA:
Hopefully, you aren't getting a bunch of whining about the schedule. Yes, the beginning looks tough, as well as the cold-weather games at the end, however, they have a bye week during week seven before they play the Titans, no back-to-back road games until the last two weeks, three straight home games at one point, the Colts have to travel to Jax on a short week, and they get extra rest before they go to New England. Looks pretty good, and if they can get off to a decent start, things would be looking nice.

Vic: What are your thoughts on the economy?

Andrew from Hockley, TX:
Wow! This is a great schedule. Finally, we get to play in the snow late in the year, and twice. Those games will surely reinstate the toughness required to win in this league. Win those two and your arrow is pointing up. Vic, this is great and you get Gillette pretzels for Christmas.

Vic: That's the good part: giant pretzels and Fred for the holidays.

Mark from Jacksonville:
In the airline industry we have some very high-tech tools to maximize schedule profitability while factoring an unreal amount of constraints. I assume there are some parallels with the NFL schedule. Does the league apply scheduling technology as well or is it more of a manual process?

Vic: I think what they do now is they ask the TV networks what they want, and then they fill in the gaps. In the old days, the intent was to promote parity and help sell tickets, so there was extra care in getting teams with ticket sales problems off to good starts. They did that by scheduling the strong teams against the strong teams and the weak teams against the weak teams early in the season. For example, in the mid-1970's, if the Steelers and Raiders faced each other in week one, then at least both of them weren't going to be leading their divisions in week two.

Todd from Jacksonville:
Would 3-3 at the bye week be considered success for a team in the Jaguars' position?

Vic: I'll take 3-3 right now and move right into the bye week.

Al from Fruit Cove, FL:
On ESPN this morning, McShay suggested the Jets should trade their first round pick (17) and their second and fourth-round picks to the Jaguars, in order to take Mark Sanchez, assuming Sanchez is available when the Jags go on the clock at pick eight. I'm betting you would make that deal in a heartbeat. Am I right?

Vic: I'd try to squeeze a little more out of them for the pick, but I wouldn't squeeze real hard, if you know what I mean. Yeah, I'd take it and grab another doughnut before I have to pick at 17. I like extra picks. I like lots of extra picks. That's how a team gets good.

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