Way, way, way too early

Let's get to it . . . Marcus from Jacksonville:
Do you think it is coincidence that the best Gabbert has looked this year has been when MJD is out or at least limited? Gabbert looked good during the preseason when MJD wasn't playing. He looked good in the first game when Jennings had taken the first-team snaps leading up to the game. And he looked solid in limited time last Sunday when MJD went out with an injury. Do you see any connection? I'm wondering if there might be a power/leadership struggle when MJD is in the game causing Blaine to tighten up. I'm curious to see what the team does over the next few weeks with MJD out.
John: It indeed will be interesting to see how Gabbert does, and while this theory has been kicked around early this week, it may not be time to buy in quite yet. The power-struggle idea doesn't have much merit. I've never sensed that between Gabbert and Jones-Drew. As far as Gabbert's performance without Jones-Drew thus far, defenses aren't as complex in the preseason and they didn't have film on the Jaguars. Plus, it's the preseason. The sample size in the regular season – part of the Minnesota game and a quarter against the Raiders – is pretty small, so it may be too early to draw conclusions. Don't rule it out yet, but we'll get a chance to see in the next few weeks.
Dwayne from Jacksonville:
Jim from Meridian, ID said, "I don't envy you." You replied, "Why in the world would you?" Well, for starters, you get to talk with Boselli.
John: It pretty much begins and ends there.
Steve from Defuniak Springs, FL:
I find myself compelled to read the O-Zone nowadays the same way I was compelled to not turn off the Jerry Springer Show back in the day. Every other question I think, "People who think like that cannot really exist." Statements of, "Bring back Garrard" or "Cut everyone on the team but six people," have the same bizarreness to them as any episode of Springer.
John: It is indeed quite a scene in the Ozone some days. Fans are fun.
Eddie from Jacksonville and Section 104:
In your Ozone Video you said the players and coaches weren't laughing. I agree. I was at dinner with some friends last week before the Oakland game and bumped into Jeremy Mincey. I told him we were season-ticket holders and wished him good luck. I was expecting him to just say hi and move on. The first thing he said was, "I know you guys are disappointed." He apologized. Then he talked with us for about 15 minutes about what was going on with the team. You could tell how much it bothered him that he didn't have any sacks and that we weren't winning the games. These fans can say what they want about the team but no one can say that they don't care.
John: Good stuff. It is difficult sometimes to explain this concept to people. Fans see players who make an unreal amount of money, then see those players not have the success they hope and believe it must be because they don't care. A lot of times this feeling stems from anger and frustration on the part of the fans, and while that's understandable, it's not a true reflection of the players. They care. They want to win. It just doesn't always happen that way.
Kamal from San Francisco, CA:
Can you describe the extent of the interaction with your predecessor that you anticipate to have this Sunday?
John: Me: "Hey." Him: "Hey." Me: "How's it going?" Him: "I love life; it is part of my upbeat nature." Me: "OK." Him: "OK."
Dustin from Jacksonville:
No, John, this team is not "closer than many think to a competitive season." You can get away with that in the offseason when you have access to the team and many of us don't. But the truth is right in front of us. This is a really bad team. We are playing extraordinarily poorly in all three phases of the game. And no, we're not complaining about a touchdown; we're complaining that it was a touchdown in spite of an absolutely horrible throw. We're complaining because to only see a touchdown means you're so overjoyed we actually found the end zone that you're overlooking the fact the quarterback very nearly blew an extremely easy play. You've implored us since the offseason to ignore the national media when they say this team is horrible, because they don't see what you see. Maybe you should ask yourself what they're seeing that you're not. But on the bright side, this team has finally reached FULL CONSISTENCY.
John: Dustin, I'm not trying to "get away" with anything, and I'm honestly too tired to dissect and argue all your points. No one is saying the Jaguars have been good all season, but on the touchdown pass Sunday, Blaine Gabbert stood in the pocket and completed a "TOUCHDOWN" pass, so it seems a bit silly to complain. Quarterbacks miss open receivers all the time. Gabbert made the play in that instance. There will be plenty of opportunities to criticize (there always are in an NFL season), so why criticize that? Now, when I said the team is closer than many think to a competitive season all I meant was this: The Jaguars are 1-5 and have lost two overtime games. That means they are two plays from 3-3. That's how close this league is. I don't believe the Jaguars are a breath away from 6-0, but the facts are that they easily could be 3-3.
Marjorie from Jacksonville:
John, I really enjoyed your fashion show. I jumped out of my chair hollering "Com'on Smoochie! Com'on Smoochie!" Here's Johnny Boo Boo!
John: We shall never speak of this again.
Jack from Jacksonville:
The Jags passing game has been AWOL for awhile. Last season MJD ran for 1400 yards against a stacked box. Barring injury why would this season be any different?
John: Jones-Drew actually ran for more than 1,600 yards against stacked defenses, and you're right, it is curious that there's a difference. But so far this season, the Jaguars haven't been as effective running. The line hasn't been as dominant run blocking as it was at times last season, and at the same time, the Jaguars have been out of games relatively quickly on two or three occasions. That doesn't help your rushing numbers. I spoke with guard Uche Nwaneri about this same topic for today's Fabulous Four, so I won't spoil that, but Nwaneri said no question the running game is something in which the linemen take pride. They feel they should run whatever the circumstance. It will be a focus.
Ken from Vero Beach, FL:
I know you don't want to hear this, but I have the solution for the Jags. Tebow is perfect for this team, hear me out. Tebow has something you can't teach, he feels when he is about to be tackled. He will move around until his receivers get open. These are the things Gabbert . . .
John: You wrote more. Good for you. I stopped reading at, "Hear me out."
Phil from Woodmere, NY:
I commented before the season that in today's NFL running backs have not lost importance. The position is just evolving. It is necessary for the truly elite running backs in the league to be pass blockers and pass catchers as well as great runners (a la Darren Sproles, LeSean McCoy, Arian Foster, Ray Rice, Matt Forte). I suggested that for this reason, Jennings may have more value in the modern NFL than Jones-Drew. Jennings started the preseason and our passing game was efficient. Jennings played extensively last week, and our passing game was efficient (until our quarterback went down). What's it going to take to make everyone realize that Jennings should start? The threat of his pass catching abilities opens up our offense!
John: This is pretty much the same theme as our first question, but with a twist. So, we'll focus on the twist. I agree that Jennings' ability as a pass receiver is intriguing. He has played well in that role in the past, and the Jaguars believed they were hurt last season when they lost that potential weapon. I just don't know that we've seen enough of Jennings yet in this year's regular season to say that the offense will be better with him than with Jones-Drew. It's really a reach. Jennings in the next few weeks will get extensive opportunity to prove your theory right, and it will be interesting to see how he performs. He has the explosive speed and pass-catching ability to be an every-down back – and to be a good one. We'll see in the next month if he can be that guy.
Tom from Melbourne, FL:
Umm.... too early to start talking about the draft?
John: It is if you want me to participate.

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