JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it...
Aaron from Kenley, NC:
I’m surprised at the lack of concern for Justin Blackmon
. I know he has plenty of time to rehab and come back, but was this a serious injury? Could it lag into Week 5, 6, 7 or all season? We really need this kid to step up in a big way along with Cecil Shorts III
John: I haven’t sensed a lack of concern from anyone regarding Blackmon’s injury. It’s the offseason, and because of that, most players and media aren’t at the facility. Therefore, there hasn’t been the barrage of stories there might have been had the surgery taken place during organized team activities or during a minicamp. That may have helped create something of a perception that there wasn’t concern. Also, Blackmon won’t play until Week 5 because of his suspension, so he has three months to recover. I haven’t gotten any sense that the issue will linger beyond that.
Patrick from Merced where the Coffee Brews, CA:
I still don't like the gold helmets . . . That is all.
John: The Jaguars don’t have gold helmets.
John from Elizabeth City, NC:
I keep hearing people ask about the Oklahoma Drill. So, I answer with this: maybe we should go back to "chopping wood” – such great decisions . . . we played such great football during those years. I mean, heck: people want Sims-Walker back. Maybe we should go get that whole roster back – and Del Rio while we're at it, the bad GM's and all those winning seasons!
John: I’m reminded of a time a teacher told me I had great passion. I was in the fifth grade, was talking about George Allen’s Washington Redskins, and she hadn’t the foggiest idea of what I was talking about. But I yammered on with conviction that far exceeded the importance of my subject matter. In retrospect, she probably just wanted me to put away the Prolog magazine I kept bringing to class. Come to think of it, this teacher also correctly predicted I had a very bleak, disappointing future. But, hey, you just keep doing what you’re doing. I’m *sure* things will work out for you.
Ed from Ponte Vedra, FL:
I started the "Move Them Chains" in my section and they will drag me out dead before I quit doing it. It originally started closer to the end zone and slowly spread. When we get a little better than 2-14, there will be nothing to be embarrassed about.
John: I’m reminded of a time a teacher told me I had great passion . . . ah, forget it.
Austin from the ATL:
I cannot believe that this is still a topic. I had the distinct pleasure of going to a Ravens game last year, and noticed that they have their own "move the chains" chant. Last I recalled they won the Super Bowl. Glad we could put that to bed.
John: Moodachay, moodachay, moodachay!!!!!
Tudor from St. Augustine, FL:
I believe Tim's point is that when getting a first down has become such a glorious achievement that it warrants a chant, our team is pretty sad indeed. Which coincidentally correlates pretty well with 5-11 and 2-14. It's like having a party thrown for you every time you successfully brush your teeth.
John: I don’t think that was Tim’s point. Many NFL teams have in-game traditions or rituals that seem silly to some people – possibly even to themselves. I have heard multiple teams’ fans chant something after each first down. Some teams’ fans are really creative and chant, “first down . . .” upon the occurrence. I assume the Jaguars’ fans would chant, “Move the chains,” whether the team got five first downs in a game or 35, so it really has nothing to do with it being a glorious achievement or with the state of the team in recent seasons. Incidentally, don’t knock having a party thrown for you every time you successfully brush your teeth. My wife and son congratulate me each time I floss. I don’t find it condescending, and it actually makes me feel pretty darned good about my dental hygiene.
Eric from Jacksonville:
(THAT IS NOT A REQUEST FOR A RAISE, BY THE WAY). Is Khan getting on to you about your not-so-subtle raise requests?
John: Thus far, there is strikingly little evidence to suggest he is aware of the issue.
Greg from Section 122 and Jacksonville:
Do you see the new "crown-of-the-helmet" rule as a further means by which the NFL is putting more emphasis on the passing game? It has been said many times this is passing league and I just don't see how running backs are going to be as effective if they can't put the head down and charge through guys. I still remember that image when MJD knocked Shawn Merriman on his backside from sheer force. Won't see that again, I bet.
John: The crown-of-the-helmet rule is about player safety, and the intent is to protect running backs from themselves as much as anything. I don’t believe its intent, stated or otherwise, has anything to do with promoting passing. NFL players are elite-level athletes capable of many things. One of those things is adapting to new rules. Running backs will learn to use – and in many cases, continue using – their shoulders to lead, and in time, I don’t believe the rule will hurt the game.
John from Jacksonville:
Our preseason opener here in Jacksonville against the Dolphins is only one month away. What percent of our team's offense and defense play packages do you think we will see in this game? Anything key regarding the installed offense and defense that we will or won't see early on in the preseason? Thank you.
We will see 17.4 percent of the offense and 14.3 percent – no, 14.5 percent – of the defense in the preseason opener. I’m sketchy after that. On a serious note, I don’t suspect the Jaguars will do things much differently in the preseason than most teams, which means I don’t expect they will reveal much more than the basics of their offense and defense. We’ll get a clearer idea of the approaches on each side of the ball, certainly. Offensively, for instance, we can get a clearer idea of how the offensive line is adapting to the zone-blocking scheme and about just how up-tempo the offense will be under Jedd Fisch. Defensively, we’ll get an idea about how the defensive line is shaking out and just how aggressively the secondary will play. As far as exotic uses of say, Denard Robinson
, or blitz packages, that’s likely not something the Jaguars will reveal in preseason.
Jared from Downtown O-Town:
I get it. It seems like most don't . . .but I get it.
John: Yes, I know. We have a connection.
Scott from Chelsea, NY:
What's the difference between a naked bootleg and a rollout?
John: A naked bootleg is when a quarterback rolls one direction or the other without protection – hence, the “naked” part of the definition. It usually follows a fake to the running back, with the hope that that fake will draw the defense that direction and reduce the risk of a hit on the quarterback. A rollout doesn’t need to be done after a fake and can involve offensive linemen or other offensive players rolling in that direction to provide protection.
Chris from Callahan, FL:
No question. Just wanted to say I enjoy the hell out of the O-Zone and the job you do.
John: I enjoy the hell out of your emails.
Brooks from West Palm Beach:
Great and Honorable Oehser, sorry for asking a football-related question during the dead period, but here it goes . . . I understand that, in a zone-blocking scheme, linemen block a particular gap, as opposed to a particular defender, but can you outline some of the other differences between the two schemes? Are zone linemen usually smaller and quicker and will this affect the type of linemen the Jags seek (and retain) in the future? What type of running attack is usually implemented with a zone scheme? What are the pros/cons to using a zone scheme?
You have the basics correct. Zone linemen usually are smaller and quicker, with the emphasis on athleticism and quickness/speed as opposed to massive size. Footwork is important, as well as the ability to establish correct angles on run plays. Communication also is important because linemen are asked to work together in double teams rather than simply “blocking the guy in front of them.” Over time, certainly the use of the scheme would dictate who the Jaguars would try to get to play in the scheme, though players such as Uche Nwaneri
and Eugene Monroe
, for example, certainly fit the zone-blocking approach. Simply put, the running style in your prototypical zone-blocking offense is a one-cut, downhill style to enable running backs to take advantage of holes created by the movement of the offensive and defensive lines. The main pro would be that you can often create an effective running attack with smaller-than-normal offensive linemen. A possible con is that lacking big offensive linemen could hurt in power-running, short-yardage situations. That’s in theory.
Section 132 from Jacksonville:
JP Shadrick's story is quite interesting John. Now, tell us your story!
John: Me? I’m just a normal guy trying to get by. #Moodachay.