Join Jaguars Inside Report Senior Editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.
Barry from Panama City, FL:
Your site is terrific. My question is about Jeremiah Trotter, who has a lot of signing bonus in the next few years of his contract. Would the Redskins be better off trading him or cutting him, in terms of their salary cap?
Vic: I certainly hope Jeremiah Trotter isn't going to become this year's J.J. Stokes. What is it about Trotter that has everybody so wound up? Is it because he has a cool-sounding name? Here are the salary cap facts about Trotter: He represents $6 million of remaining amortization and has five years remaining on his Redskins contract. His salary for this year is $2.7 million, and his cap hit this year is scheduled to be $3.9 million, of which $1.2 million is bonus amortization. If the Redskins trade Trotter, he would be a $6 million hit this year, or $2.1 million more than his scheduled cap hit. In my opinion, the Redskins' cap can't afford that increase, but, of course, they'd probably just re-structure another player's contract and push the money out. If they cut Trotter now, he would also be a $6 million hit. But if they cut him after June 1, he would be a $1.2 million hit this year (a $2.7 million savings) and a $4.8 million hit in 2005. Remember, what's in the year stays in the year, and what's left goes into next year. That's the rule governing June cuts.
Lawrence from Jacksonville:
Every year, someone tries to develop some new draft theory. When the Ravens and Patriots won their Super Bowls, the thought was you didn't need to draft a QB high to build a good team. When Terrell Davis was running wild, everyone jumped on the theory you don't have to take a RB high to have a good running game. Earlier this spring, people began espousing the theory you should not draft a WR in the top 10. Now DE is the latest target. Can we agree the draft is a hit-or-miss proposition, irrespective of player or team draft position in the first round?
Vic: Sure, it's hit or miss at every position, but some positions carry with them a little more miss potential. Over the last few weeks, I've provided the names of players drafted in the top 15 picks of the last nine years of the draft, which includes the entire history of the Jaguars. I have provided those names at wide receiver, offensive tackle, quarterback, defensive back and defensive end. At those five positions, wide receiver clearly offered the greatest miss percentage, with six of the 19 wide receivers drafted in the top 15 picks qualifying as major busts, and another eight as disappointments. In contrast, of the 15 offensive tackles selected in the top 15 since 1995, Tony Boselli is the only one who isn't a starter in the league today. I understand wide receiver is a significantly more exciting position than offensive tackle, but if I'm a GM and my job is to get my team's money's worth, the hit potential for offensive tackles would cause me to grade that position more favorably than, say, wide receiver.
Chad from Bowling Green, KY:
I was wondering if you are planning on releasing a mock draft on jaguars.com. If so, when will it be released?
Vic: Brian, Jeff and I will do a mock draft on our "Jaguars This Week" show on Wednesday, April 21. We'll provide that mock draft on jaguars.com as we make the picks.
Chris from Jacksonville Beach, FL:
Regarding the draft, I realize we have needs at DE, DB, LB and WR, but if Kellen Winslow somehow fell to number nine, don't you think he would be too good to pass up? And do you think Winslow could play wide receiver in the NFL?
Vic: If Kellen Winslow fell to nine, he would definitely be a top consideration. As far as what position he'd play, I'd have to believe he'd be used as his father was, which is to say as a wide receiver lined up as a tight end. Call it anything you want, but if a tight end can't block, he's not a tight end. The difference with this Winslow is he can block. He's an outstanding talent and his field-stretching ability makes him something more than a tight end. You might say he's a wide receiver who blocks like a tight end, and that's a pretty good combination.
Tremain from Upper Marlboro, MD:
Who was the smallest player ever to be drafted and play in the NFL at any position, as far as height and weight?
Vic: I don't know the forever-and-ever answer to your question, but the smallest guy I can remember during my lifetime is Noland "Super Gnat" Smith, a 5-5, 154-pound kick-returner for Kansas City in the late-'60s. He was a sixth-round pick out of Tennessee State in 1967. I believe Smith was used in the movie, "The Longest Yard."
Mike from Orange Park, FL:
Thanks for the insight on the "average age" question. I am excited about the possibility of Fred Taylor having a "breakout" year; possibly contending for the rushing title. There seems to be many pieces of the puzzle coming together to create an environment conducive to a good running game. What do you think?
Vic: Breakout year? Fred Taylor rushed for 1,572 yards, which was sixth-best in the league last year. It marked the fourth time he's gone over 1,200 yards rushing in a season. Mike, Taylor has already broken out. In fact, it doesn't get much better than the performance he turned in last season, which included 48 pass receptions and 1,942 total yards from scrimmage. I don't understand what people want from this guy. Forget the 2,000-yard stuff. He's not that kind of back.
Sam from West Sacramento, CA:
I've read a couple of recent mock drafts and they got us taking Udeze at number nine. Did he have that good of a workout? Is he a good pick for us over a Mike Williams or Roy Williams?
Vic: Indications are Kenechi Udeze fits right about where the Jaguars will pick. In other words, it's believed he'll be the best player available when it's the Jaguars' turn to pick, and when you factor in the Jaguars' desperate need at defensive end, some might say Udeze would be a "no-brainer" selection. Of course, all of that logic would change dramatically if a, say, Roy Williams, Larry Fitzgerald or Kellen Winslow were available. The bottom line is defensive end is a premium position and you're not going to win in this league without a legitimate pass-rusher. If Udeze is to be the Jaguars' pick, it would make sense.
Keith from Jacksonville:
Your main question for yesterday was about drafting a DE being risk/reward. My question is, what position isn't?
Vic: I wouldn't call safety a risk/reward position. If you draft a safety in the top 10, there better be absolutely no risk he will be anything but a big-time star. Sean Taylor will probably be a top 10 pick. He will become only the second safety selected in the top 15 picks in the 1995-present time frame; the Cowboys selected Roy Williams with the eighth pick two years ago. I'm old-school and one of the rules of old-school football is you don't draft safeties high. You can say the same about guard, center, fullback and tight end. If you're taking one of those guys in the top 10, there can't be any risk.