JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it...
Chris from Jacksonville:
Is it just me, or was Carson Palmer taking a couple of shots at us with his comments about expecting the stadium to be empty and how he loves playing on the road in loud environments and making it quieter? I know that we're not an elite team, but he does realize that he is Carson Palmer, right?
John: I have no idea what Palmer’s intentions were when he spoke onthe conference call with Jacksonville media Wednesday. A lot of times players get on those calls and just sort of say what comes to mind without being overly informed, which may have been what happened in this case. He did speak about the crowd in Jacksonville and how he expects a lack of energy Sunday, and how that could make it a different playing experience. Whatever. Anyone who has been in EverBank Field knows it’s an energetic place. Now, has it been as loud and raucous in the last season and a half as it could have been? No, because the Jaguars haven’t played well at home during that time. That’s a huge reason Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley has emphasized wanting to play better at home this week; he knows the team needs to get back to EverBank being a big edge. As for him realizing who he is, Palmer is a fine NFL quarterback and I’m certain he knows this.
Josh from Lynchburg, VA:
Could you explain that "defensive holding" penalty on Mincey? I didn't see anything in the replay that looked like a hold; in fact it looked like if anything, he was held himself.
You’re referring to a holding penalty called on Jaguars defensive lineman Jeremy Mincey
with about four and a half minutes remaining Sunday. It came on second-and-7 from the Jaguars 40-yard line and gave the Titans a first down. And you’re right, Mincey didn’t hold on the play and in fact may have been held. Jaguars defensive end Jason Babin
, though, did hold Chris Johnson a couple of yards from Mincey, a play that might be described as a darned fine tackle. It was also the right play on Babin’s part, because it kept Johnson from getting free for a long gain.
Andy from St. Augustine, FL:
There can be only one!
John: Are you sure?
Dan from Jacksonville:
Do you hang out with Shadrick, Boselli, or Lageman outside of work? I know you guys are secret best friends...
John: They do hang out as a threesome. None of them answer my texts since last December, the day – or evening, actually – of the infamous Produce Aisle Incident.
Chris from Jacksonville:
One of the Councilmen that voted against the new video boards said he was worried about the Jaguars building a new stadium near the World Golf Village. Do you have any thoughts on that?
John: I think people sometimes worry about things that aren’t worth worrying about.
Carter from Jacksonville:
Why haven't we seen or heard much of Justin Forsett
? I expected him to be a nice complement in our running game.
The Jaguars did, too. As offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch explained Thursday, it has been more circumstance than anything else that has led to his lack of opportunity. When the Jaguars signed Forsett last offseason, the coaching staff didn’t know what it had in Jordan Todman
and the team hadn’t yet selected Denard Robinson
in the draft. Forsett then missed the entire preseason. Robinson, Todman and Maurice Jones-Drew
have gotten their share of touches, and there hasn’t been a whole lot left over for Forsett.
Wallace from Jacksonville:
To build off your answer about the NFL's tiebreaker rule for determining draft order, just how does the NFL determine strength of schedule? Is it as simple as tallying up the total win-loss record for all 16 opponents at year’s end or does it involve looking at each opponent's record at the time the Jaguars played them?
John: It’s based on record at end of season.
Steve from Elk River, MN:
I am very happy Poz was recognized as AFC Defensive Player of the Week. However, it looks like he is a step slower than the tight ends and running backs he is expected to defend in pass coverage. But, this seems to be a league-wide problem. If you watched the Broncos/Ravens game in Week One, Daryl Smith was chasing tight ends to the goal line all night.
John: I get this question a lot about Posluszny. Is he as fast as a safety or corner, or as good in coverage? No. Is he good in coverage for a linebacker who is as valuable as he is to his team in other areas? Yes. Linebackers get beat by tight ends and running backs. Wide receivers beat defensive backs. It’s difficult for any defensive players to lock down offensive players throughout entire games. It’s a big reason why games aren’t shutouts.
Robert from Fernandina Beach, FL:
On a punt, a defender trying to "down the ball" at the opponents’ one-yard line keeps the ball in the field of play by batting it backward. The defender is in air when he touches the ball, but his foot lands in the end zone … Opponents get the ball on the one or twenty?
John: At the one. It’s not a touchback unless the defender touches the ball when some part of his body is touching the end zone, or if he touches the ball having jumped from a point in the end zone.
Walter from Yulee, FL:
Why did the Titans start Jake Locker over Ryan Fitzpatrick? It looked to me like the Jags played well against the run early because they had zero concern of Locker beating them through the air. That all changed when Fitzpatrick came in and started doing just that. The Jags made the plays needed to win the game, but it is possible the Titans may have coached themselves out of the playoffs with that decision. Can you think of any justification for that decision?
John: The justification was that Locker was the team’s starting quarterback, and it wasn’t as if this was a real discussion or controversy leading into the game. Locker was the Titans’ starting quarterback until he got hurt Sunday, and actually had played pretty well this season. The Titans’ results had been significantly better with him playing than otherwise.
Kevin from Jacksonville:
With Henne and Gabbert being equally bad, would a part of the coaching staff's reasoning to go with Henne be he is willing to throw the ball downfield more, and by doing so, give better chances for evaluation and development of a young receiving corps?
John: The coaches believe Henne gives the team the best chance to win right now. It doesn’t go much deeper than that.
John from Jacksonville:
The Jaguars are too slow again. Ed Reed went to the Jets. Does the GM watch a little NFL channel or ESPN?
John: I think in this case, he may have just turned on the tape.
Roger from Jacksonville:
Average home attendance for Jaguars in 2013: 59,553. Average home attendance for Cardinals: 60,635. One thousand people sure change the atmosphere, don't they, Carson?
Ryan from Clyde, OH:
I know everybody loves the hype of Johnny Manziel, but I can't help but notice how consistent Bridgewater's been playing. His style of play most reflects what you want in an NFL quarterback. He might not be the flashy pick, but, boy, do I think he would be a good fit in Jacksonville.
John: I’ve been answering a lot of Johnny Manziel questions in the O-Zone for the simple reason that I have been receiving a lot of Johnny Manziel questions. Me answering them is not meant to be a hint about who the Jaguars may or may not like in the draft – or even as a hint that the Jaguars are going to draft a quarterback in the first round come May. The draft is six months away and there are countless hours, days and weeks of postseason roster analysis and roster-management strategy to be hashed out before we reach that point. That’s why the answers are pretty vague and speculative at this point. But you asked about Bridgewater, so I’ll answer that you’re right – he does fit the NFL quarterback mold more than Manziel, which is one of many reasons he figures to be selected very early in the draft. By someone.
Jody from Fort Pierce, FL:
So how does Dwayne Bowe get to play this weekend? Why isn't he suspended like Blackmon or Reynolds?
John: Bowe has a court appearance in this matter in mid-December. The league typically doesn’t take action in these situations until after the matter has been decided in court.
John from Jacksonville:
How do you manage to have such self-control from some questions? So many questions can warrant even more sarcastic, insulting comebacks but you do a good job of holding back. Be honest, do you sometimes want to unleash and show an unfiltered "HBO" version of putting people in their place??
John: No. I love all of my readers, and actually around EverBank, I am generally known for my personable nature, self-control and high tolerance for others.