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O-Zone: A long process

Posted Sep 12, 2013

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it . . .

Greg from Section 122 and Jacksonville :
If Chad Henne comes out the next two weeks and puts up a strong performance in both games, what does Gus Bradley do? If Blaine Gabbert was struggling in the first game and Henne is obviously performing better at this moment how do you justify putting Gabbert back in? Best chance to win and all.
John: That will be a dilemma. I’ve said several times this week that I believe Henne will have to play very, very well to be named the permanent starter. If the Jaguars win twice, beating Seattle and Oakland, in the next two weeks with Henne playing efficiently and the Jaguars’ performing well offensively it will be awfully hard to keep him out of the lineup. That seems like a long shot based on how the players around Gabbert performed Sunday. If the Jaguars perform as poorly offensive as they did Sunday, Gabbert certainly will start when healthy. It likely will be somewhere in between, and I suspect Gabbert will be the starter when he’s healthy. Stay tuned.
Chris from Jacksonville Beach:
Thank you for your assessment of the offensive line play. I knew I wasn't imagining the interior being pushed back. Can you see a guard or center being drafted in the first or second round next year?
John: No. Absolutely not. If the Jaguars don’t finish in the top half of the NFL this season, they likely will have two of the top 48 selections in the draft next April. With needs in a lot of places on the roster, it’s unlikely they would address the interior of the offensive line so early – though it’s not unlikely that they would address it later in the draft.
Kris from Escanab, MI:
It’s 2 a.m. I'm on the Jags’ site typing a question to you. #Moodachay
John: Actually, considering the state of O-Zone emailers right now, that may be a #shadricksighting.
Dave from Jacksonville:
This had to be one of the toughest weeks for you John. I don't think the Jags are as bad as they looked Sunday. Keep your chin up. Better days are ahead. Moodachay
John: This is hard for people to understand, but my chin doesn’t go down and my weeks aren’t bad when I get emails such as the ones I got this week. I understand that fans are upset and I understand that some people take frustrations out by emailing. That’s fine, but that doesn’t wreck me emotionally. I am perfectly capable of being emotionally wrecked without the O-Zone.
Marcus from Jacksonville:
I heard a famous former Jaguar say today that Blaine Gabbert played the best of any offensive player on Sunday. Do you agree or disagree?
John: It was a pretty low bar, and I don’t know if “best” describes anyone’s efforts on offense Sunday. Had Gabbert played better, a few of the receivers – Cecil Shorts III, particularly might have played better, too – but sure, Gabbert probably played as well as anyone.
Dane from Jacksonville:
If we're going to throw around the term "excuse," then yeah, I'd say a broken thumb and a deep hand laceration could both be considered "excuses." Good grief, what more is the guy supposed to do than play through pain and obvious injury?
John: I have no idea.
Kevin from Jacksonville:
I just wished they acted like they cared. It’s like they have no passion. They do know that they are pro football players, right?
John: They care. They don’t have to “act” for that to be true, and you’re right – it is pro football. Theatrics don’t win games.
Rich from Little Rock, AR:
Wondering how the players picked up off of waivers on September 1 are doing. The tight ends look promising. D.J. Williams was an award-winning tight end coming out of college and was caught up in a juggernaut at Green Bay. Also the linebackers look good also. Comments?
John: I’d say all seven of the players acquired off waivers September 1 have a chance to stick this season. I’d expect tight end Clay Harbor to have a bigger role this weekend, and I’d expect Stephen Burton to have a real chance to stick with this team and develop in the long term. J.T. Thomas already has made a special teams impact, so those are the three who have stood out thus far.
James from Section 236:
I understand this is Gus's first year as a head coach and he has no responsibility for what has happened in the past, but when a coach tries to find positives such as "we competed," that rubs Jags fans the wrong way. We have heard three years’ worth of positives in a sea of absurdity. Why can't coaches just come out and say "WE STUNK. We coached poorly we played poorly and that is not acceptable?" Fans would appreciate that. The canned excuses are already old. Sorry, Gus.
John: No need to apologize. But remember: while Bradley as head coach absolutely has a responsibility to speak to the fans, his first priority is always to do whatever he thinks is best for the team. There likely will be a time when Bradley “tells it like it is” in a press conference, but to think that he’s going to publicly say “We stunk” after the first game of what the team sees as an extended process . . . no, that’s not happening.
Talha from Piscataway, NJ:
Seriously, what happened to Robinson? I thought the plan was to use him way more often than we did against the Chiefs? Is that going to change at Oakland?
John: I would guess Robinson gets used a lot more as the season goes on. The Chiefs’ defensive front dominated the Jaguars’ front to the point where nothing in the running game got going, and Robinson never got a chance to get started, either. That will change. He’ll be more involved. As much as people want to view one game and project the results and approach over an entire season, game plans and approaches change week-to-week.
Jason from Falling Waters, WV:
Guy kept an extra bill that the cashier mistakenly included in their change. #ShadrickSightings
John: Yes. Yes.
Desiree from Burlington, Vermont:
While I was disappointed with the performance on the field Sunday, I have to say that the Jaguars' organization really goes all out for the fans on game day. I traveled from Burlington, Vermont for my first Jaguars home game and was pleasantly surprised by all that was offered for fans, and for free! Thank you for a great game day experience Jacksonville!
John: The people who work in game-day operations and fan experience do an off-the-charts job, and have for the past two seasons. They work tirelessly during the season. I don’t envy or understand them.
Kelton from Boise, ID:
With the first pick in the 2014 NFL Draft the Jacksonville Jaguars select......
John: Way to think on it, Kelton.
Randy from Oxford, PA:
What does it take to get the Tebow supporters to clam up? The "best" coach in football, Bill Belichick, has deemed Tebow to be unworthy of a roster spot on an NFL team. Who else needs to say it?
John: Tebow supports have every right to speak as loudly and as long as they like. That doesn’t mean the Jaguars are going to sign him, and it doesn’t mean any other team will, either, but they certainly have the right to speak.
Fred from Waycross, GA:
Wow! That is a really deep cut on Blaine Gabbert's hand. I didn't think it was that bad at first.
John: Yes, it is.
Marcus from Jacksonville:
Blaine Gabbert's longest drive of the game was eight plays for 26 yards. Chad Henne's only drive was 13 plays for 77 yards. I'm just sayin'
John: Chad Henne came into the game on the final series after Gabbert was injured. The Jaguars were on the Chiefs’ 34-yard-line at the time. The Jaguars drove to the Chiefs 3-yard line and did not score.
Bucky from Jacksonville:
How can you say Blaine Gabbert will be an elite QB? He has clearly shown that he's more worried about the pass rush and getting hit than standing in there and making a play. Check your head, John. This isn’t Pop Warner football. BG gets paid to make plays. Taking hits is part of the game. You all can say he didn’t have time but I was at the game like so many before and he did have time on most occasions. There are plenty of quarterbacks across the NFL this past weekend that made big plays with the same time to throw. Since I'm not one of your buddies, I'm sure I won’t get a response.
John: “Buddies.” Like I have friends.
Chad from Liberty City:
Why would the Jags not hirer Tebow? It would make since to me.
John: It wood?
Joe from Boone, BC:
Dave Caldwell knows how to cut and add players, but does he know how to build a team? A team needs time together--to work, to succeed, to fail, to trust each other. Does Caldwell understand this?
John: He does. He also understands this is a process that isn’t completed after one game.

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