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Undrafted free agency important

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

Andrew from Jacksonville:
Is there any reason the Patriots wouldn't put the franchise tag on Cassel and then evaluate him and Brady in training camp?

Vic: You're playin' chicken. If the Patriots did that, once he signed the franchise tender the Patriots would be on the hook for the money, which was $10.7 million in 2008 and is likely to go up next year. It's a good strategy if you think you can trade him, but you better be sure you can trade him because, if you can't, you would have to pay him. Once he signs the tender, the money is guaranteed.

Steve from Charlotte, NC:
In your response to Russ and Cole yesterday, I noticed some inconsistencies in your assessment of our passing game. On the one hand, you attribute Roethlisberger's completion of eight passes of over 40 yards this year to the quality of his receivers. On the other hand, you state that Garrard completed eight passes of over 40 yards last year. Weren't those eight completions of over 40 yards last year basically to the same group of receivers Garrard is throwing to this year?

Vic: Yeah, but the Jaguars had a strong running game last year and that helped sell play-action, meaning that it caused defenders to bite on the run-fake and allow receivers to get a step on the defenders. The Jags haven't had that strong running game this season and that's compromised the play-action game. Defensive backs are squatting on the Jaguars' receivers. Ben Roethlisberger has had nearly no running game this season. He's doing what he's doing without any play-action benefit. He's had to rely on the deep speed and run-after-the-catch ability of his receivers, and his receivers have those abilities.

Brian from Fruit Cove, FL:
The Jaguars are not surprising you this season?

Vic: Yeah, I'm surprised the Jaguars haven't done better, and I'm surprised the Falcons have done as well as they have, and I'm surprised the Lions haven't won a game, and I'm surprised the country's economy is in collapse and I'm surprised that one of our dogs peed on the kitchen floor last night, but the question wasn't name all the things that surprise me. The question was what team has surprised me the most this season and my answer is that it's a tie between the Titans, Ravens and Steelers. When I answer a question, that's probably my answer. Can we please avoid cross-examination?

Kyle from Orange Park, FL:
In your opinion, who are the top three or four undrafted players in the league right now?

Vic: There are a lot of undrafted players in the league who have made major impacts for their teams. Here are some that come to mind: Montell Owens, Tony Romo, Kurt Warner, Willie Parker, Nate Washington, James Harrison, Joshua Cribbs, Ryan Clark, Rasheed Davis, Jake Delhomme, Kris Dielman, Malcolm Floyd, Brian Finneran, Hank Fraley, Jeff Garcia, Ryan Grant, Adewale Ogunleye and Dominic Rhodes. No personnel department has done its job to its fullest if it doesn't have an undrafted guy on its roster.

Tim from Jacksonville:
Am I alone in thinking that almost all the energizing the Jaguars do at games is annoying and distracting from watching the game? I don't care for all the contests, the loud music, the drum line, the fireworks or articles of clothing being shot out of air cannons. It's all a huge distraction and I think the team ought to do much less of it. All that other stuff is getting in the way of my enjoyment of watching a football game, which is all I'm paying for. Does this make me a bad person?

Vic: No, it just makes you a dull person, as I am, who wants to watch a football game and not be distracted.

Jason from Jacksonville:
Mkristo Bruce; why have we not seen more of him?

Vic: As I see it, there is one of two answers. We haven't seen more of him because: 1.) He's been judged to not be as good as the players in front of him. 2.) He's so good the team doesn't want to take the risk that he'll become injured. Which one do you think it is?

Kevin from Yulee, FL:
What are your thoughts on Georgia RB Knowshon Moreno?

Vic: When he decides to come out, I wanna be first in line.

John from Cincinnati, OH:
What is your opinion of Cincinnati quarterback Tony Pike? He seems to fit the mold of a developmental quarterback for the NFL.

Vic: Developmental? He may fit the mold of a Joe Flacco. I've seen him a few times and he's been eye-popping. He throws like Flacco and moves like Roethlisberger. I only have two concerns: 1.) He's scary skinny. 2.) He may be a one-year wonder and a system quarterback. I'll watch him closely in the Orange Bowl. I'm not ready to anoint him because he may, in fact, be an aberration, but I'm also considering the possibility that he has big-time NFL potential.

Al from Mt. Vernon, NY:
Please explain to me why, with all their problems at WR, there seems to be absolutely no interest in putting Troy Williamson on the field.

Vic: He's on the field every day at practice. That's where players earn playing time on game day.

Derek from Griffith, IN:
Why is it the "Larry Fitzgerald Rule?"

Vic: Fitzgerald is the guy who defined a year at a prep school following high school graduation as a credited year toward NFL draft eligibility.

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