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O-Zone: Green with envy

Posted Jul 29, 2014

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Greg from Section 122 and Jacksonville:
Not to play the spoiler, but let's keep perspective. The new toys in the stadium are great, but they mean little if our team still stinks. The luster of the Cowboys’ new stadium did not make them a better team. Point is, I would rather see improvement in the team than focusing on distracting the fans with all these toys. Watching your team get beat by 20 points from a pool doesn't make it any easier.
John: Your email would have merit if it didn’t miss the point pretty much entirely. There’s not one person around the Jaguars who ever has said or thought that the new “toys” in the stadium were a substitute for winning, and the stadium upgrades were in no way meant as a distraction. The stadium upgrades were designed to enhance the fan experience and to provide a means to increase local revenue. That, in turn, can further stabilize the franchise in Jacksonville, which the team is trying to do as it focuses on improving on the field. The latter is more difficult and often takes more time than the former. But upgrading the stadium doesn’t delay or distract from the task of improving the roster. Different people are in charge of the tasks, and rest assured: no one around the Jaguars doesn’t want to see improvement of the team. That’s the priority and the Jaguars’ football people right up the ladder to Shad Khan work toward the objective daily.
Fred from Naples, FL:
As much as has been said about the Jaguars being snackbitten at the wide receiver position, the opposite can be said about their history at the kicker position. We have been extremely fortunate to have outstanding placekicker after outstanding placekicker. I understand Scobee's leg is as strong as ever in training camp. In your opinion, is Josh the best kicker in team history over Mike Hollis?
John: Now that I’ve seen it, I’m absolutely stunned that snackbitten isn’t already a word that means something. I also regret not having been the one to made it up. And yeah, I’d probably have to take Scobee over Hollis.
JD from Duval, FL:
I've lived in Jacksonville for a long time and the general sentiment of the city is unlike anything I've felt before. Khan and the Jags are playing a key leadership role in our progress; Saturday night epitomized that. We're on the cusp of being great, Johnny O. So proud to be #DTWD
John: #DTWD
Champ from Tampa, FL:
I watched the practice and wasn't overly impressed. Pieces that the fans are expected to be excited about looked mediocre. Clemons was a no-show, Denard had several drops, the first-team O-line looked dismal and Ziggy was nonexistent. On the other hand, the secondary looked better, LaRoy Reynolds continues to impress me a lot, and Allen Robinson looks very good. Am I wrong in what I saw?
John: I wouldn’t worry much about Chris Clemons in a Day Four training camp practice. He’s a veteran pass rusher, and you would rather have him effective during the season than wearing himself out on July 28. I didn’t notice Denard Robinson struggling on Monday, but I’ve said throughout the offseason the offensive line will take time to develop cohesion. That’s the nature of an offensive line with new pieces. Yes, the secondary and LaRoy Reynolds look good and I continue to be impressed with Allen Robinson.
Mike from East Moline, IL:
The right time to listen to The Clash is all of the time. London Calling is one of the best albums ever. In fact, I'm convinced playing The Clash, Dropkick Murphys, Joy Division, and Iggy Pop on game day needs to start happening. #PlayAwesomerMusic@theBank
John: #DTWD
Michael from jackson de ville, FL:
Dear God, John. The day they got rid of Sweet Home Alabama was a great day for all Jags fans. Last I checked we don't live in Alabama, and Skynyrd is not even close to the best band out of Jax. One fer no more Skynyrd! (One for Dropkick Murphy's)
John: I can understand the logic of someone not wanting Sweet Home Alabama played. I cannot understand the logic of someone who believes Skynyrd is not “even close” to the best band out of Jacksonville, and I sincerely hope I never understand that logic.
Gamble from Washington, DC:
Since we dropped the Skynyrd ("I've been to Alabama people, ain't a whole lot to see"), can we finally get some Molly Hatchet? I'm thinking their medieval album cover dude would look killer on the boards.
John: Running, running from the noose …
Austin from Atlanta, GA:
How impressive is Abry Jones looking? I hear nothing but positives coming about him, and as a UGA fan also, it makes me very happy. I know Gus likes his flexibility to play multiple positions, but what position do you think he is best suited for?
John: He has looked fine, though the Jaguars aren’t yet in pads. When Roy Miller isn’t available, Jones is typically with the first team in Miller’s nose-tackle, run-oriented spot. The Jaguars like him there, though as you mentioned his biggest valuable is the flexibility to play multiple positions along the front.
Tom from Jacksonville:
Would you tell Blake to keep his tongue in when he throws so he doesn't bite it off when he gets hit in the chin? We would hate to lose him for something like that.
John: Sure. We usually have breakfast Thursdays to go over topics like this.
Tudor from St. Augustine, FL:
I went to Mile High for the AFC Championship Game and the seats are no better. That stadium was built six years after EverBank Field. Who cares about the seats? You should be on your feet the whole time hollerin' for the Jags anyways!
John: Yeah, sometimes we’re guilty of nitpicking here in the O-Zone. This may have been such an occasion.
Steve from Jacksonville:
If you see Shad around the office, tell him thanks for me (and probably about a million other people), would ya?
John: I get a lot of emails like this, and I have tried to deliver. Problem is, whenever I approach Shad with this, a Jaguars security team whisks me away quickly to a backdoor whispering, “Your code still works … that can change.”
James from Westside:
If Henne plays good this season and merits a starting position next season it would most likely be on another team. Would Henne settle for a backup role to Bortles because of his age? Or do you think he would try the free-agent market 2016?
John: This is a question that’s impossible to answer because it depends largely on how Henne plays this season. If he plays well enough to change his market value, then he may sign somewhere as a starter. If not, he likely would be open to remaining with the Jaguars. Stay tuned.
Brian from Atlanta, GA:
How are LaRoy Reynolds and Winston Guy looking so far?
John: Good.
Stone on Trent, England:
I know they both played it down afterward but I thought it was great to see an aggressive Tyson Alualu. Is he a guy who knows his future is on the line? Does this motivate and inspire him to be the player we hoped he would be this season?
John: Let’s not make Sunday afternoon into something it wasn’t. Yes, Alualu and Clay Harbor had a skirmish following a play, but I can’t describe it as a signal that Alualu is playing harder this season or that he is playing with more intensity than in the past. That would imply that he hasn’t played hard or with intensity before. The man never has missed a game in four NFL seasons, and played through a significant knee situation to do it. He is playing hard and with intensity thus far in camp, but that really never hasn’t been the case.
Ronne from Section 148:
In response to Tom from Charleston, SC., JSO does not allow police officers to smoke cigarettes, which are legal in all 50 states. Just because it is legal does not mean that the employer can't take issue with its employees partaking.
John: Correct.
Tom from Jacksonville:
Two and a half years ago many fans were concerned about a new owner. Today, I don't think any of us would trade Shad Khan for any other owner. Gotta love an owner who can rock a PONYTAIL with style during the Mega Event. The ponytail makes it official he is a ROCK STAR. Can we expect you to sport a pony tail to get in step with the boss?
John: I last sported a ponytail in 1996. The Jaguars made a run to the AFC Championship Game during the ponytail’s heyday, but before this thread gets started, just stop, please … it ain’t coming back. As good as it looked – think Fabio (or maybe that’s the biceps) – the time has passed. Shad Khan can pull it off. The O-Zone can only look on with envy.

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