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O-Zone: Memorable evenings

Posted Apr 24, 2014

JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it …

Chuck from Ponte Vedra, FL:
Do you think we are looking for an experienced quarterback as a backup? If Henne were to be injured our season might well end up in the toilet. We've already done the rookie-quarterback thing and it wasn't good for him or us.
John: No. I think the Jaguars will draft a couple of quarterbacks in the 2014 NFL Draft, though I don’t know in what round that will occur. I think the better of those two quarterbacks will back up Henne to start the season. I think the other drafted quarterback well may be the third-team quarterback. That’s what I think on April 24. I may think differently after the draft.
Ron from Guttenberg, IA:
I'd like to thank Chip Kelly for applying for the Eagles job, which had been reportedly led by Bradley. Isn't it safe to say that if Kelly didn't apply for the job, the Eagles would have him and the Jags would've went in another direction? Though it's only been one season, it's safe to say Gus Bradley fits well in Jacksonville (i.e., his infectious personality rallies the team and excites the fans). Here's a shout-out for Coach Kelly: Chip, thank you for your last-second decision.
John: Hey, one fer Chip!
Mike from Julington Creek, FL:
When should we get the ruling on Blackmon and would that make it easier or harder to take wide receiver at No. 3?
John: It is unknown when the Jaguars will hear news regarding Justin Blackmon because that is and will remain a league matter. Whether or not the Jaguars hear anything before the draft – and whatever it is they do hear – won’t influence the decision at No. 3.
Patrick from Jacksonville:
Looking over his body of work, do you consider Anquan Boldin a Hall of Fame player?
John: No, but I’d love to have him on my team.
Nick from Jacksonville:
I would hope that this close to the draft, David Caldwell has watched all the film he needs to. I would have expected him to be mocking the draft until the actual thing. A lot of crazy things can happen May 8-10, he needs to be ready for any situation.
John: The thought that he may need to have a plan to deal with many, many draft-day scenarios may have crossed David Caldwell’s mind. It stands to reason it might have, after all, seeing as how he’s not an intern. But if it will put your mind at ease, I’ll run it past him.
Peter from Wuhan, China:
When scouting, do teams watch every snap of a player's college career? Does it vary player to player, team to team?
John: Personnel officials generally do not watch every snap of every player’s career. Time does not permit it. If teams are targeting a player, they try to watch a reflective portion of a player’s final couple of seasons. If they are really targeting a player and are trying to answer a specific question, they may watch close to every play of a player’s final season or two.
Rod from Jacksonville:
You joking or what?
John: No. OK, yes.
Jaguarrior from Jacksonville:
With so many juniors declaring for this year's draft, how significantly does that impact next year's draft? Do you expect the senior class next year to be noticeably weak as a result?
John: I wouldn’t expect next year’s class to be as deep as this year’s, particularly at the wide receiver position, where juniors declared in droves for this year’s draft. I wouldn’t expect a huge drop-off at the top. While there won’t be as many seniors, there are usually enough underclassmen to make the top of the first round attractive.
Bob from Castle Harbor:
If Clowney were to start his first year in the NFL would he be double teamed right away?
John: Probably not at first, but if he earned it, he would be double-teamed pretty quickly.
Taylor from Section 140:
The Jags are in a tricky place. I don't think they're going to find a trade partner to get out of No. 3. I don't think they'll spend the No. 3 pick on a quarterback, and I think all the quarterbacks are going to go in the first few picks on Day 2, leaving the Jags with limited options. In 2010, Denver had to trade their second-, third-, and fourth-round picks to trade back into the first round. While I don't think Caldwell would trade that many picks to get back into the late first round to nab a quarterback before Day 2, what combination of picks do you think is enough for the Jags to get back into the bottom of Round 1?
John: I don’t know that the Jaguars’ situation is quite as dire as you believe, and I think they’ll have a chance at a trade in the first round. But for the sake of discussion, a third-round selection and a late-round selection would probably get them back into the lower part of the first round. And a third-rounder might be even enough by itself.
Peter from Maribor, Slovenia:
Hearing the news about Russell Allen you start to think about important things in your life. So take Josh Scobee, J.P. Shadrick and Tony Boselli out for a dinner and tell them what they mean to you.
John: I did that once. Look where it got us.
Kamel from San Francisco, CA:
Given that the NFL from a business perspective has always been top-notch at maximizing revenue and capitalizing on fan interest, why not wait until after the draft to release the schedule? Wouldn't it make more sense to wait to see where some of the high-buzz prospects such as Johnny Manziel end up and choosing the prime-time schedule accordingly, perhaps?
John: While the NFL indeed is masterful at creating and maintaining year-round interest – often seemingly from nowhere – the league already has this issue handled. It has had the ability for several years now to “flex” attractive games into prime-time slots, something that can be done this season beginning in Week 5. If a player such as Manziel is playing well enough to generate buzz, there’s a way to get him onto prime time.
George from Lakewood:
O, What regular-season Jaguars game are you looking forward to most?
John: All of them!
Ross from Atlanta, GA:
I'm not sure if Atlanta giving up the farm for Julio Jones was a factor in last season’s record, but will Atlanta be less prone to trade up and give away more of their future? Or are they far enough removed from that draft to not matter?
John: If they believe it factored into last season’s drop-off it certainly could play a role in any decision on whether or not to trade up. While many believe the Falcons would be a candidate to move up, an argument also could be made that they’re at a stage in their franchise’s development where they to add more than just one player. They will be a fascinating storyline on May 8.
Bo from Dresden, NC:
Do you think that there is a player on the Jags draft board that we would not make a deal if he fell to us?
John: Try again, Bo.
Scott from Gilbert, AZ:
Denver had the second overall pick in 2011, and went to the playoffs. Washington had the second overall pick in 2012, and went to the playoffs. Jacksonville had the second overall pick in 2013, and went 4-12. Is it just me that doesn’t think it’s not as fun to talk about the theoretical benefits of establishing a culture in hopes of building a sustainable winner at cocktail parties? I realize Josh McDaniel and Mike Shanahan took a lot of heat for their quarterback drafting decisions those years, but the fact remains that both were first-year head coaches that recognized a need at that position the day they walked through the door, pulled the trigger with conviction, and were winners that season as the result. Here’s hoping the Jags can identify a guy we can win with, whether that be for the indefinite future, or even just this year; as drafting number two overall three years in a row would not be good.
John: Hmm. Denver selected linebacker Von Miller No. 2 overall in 2011. They made the playoffs that year under in Head Coach John Fox’s first season, with McDaniels having been fired with the 2010 season, his second season with the team. Mike Shanahan was in his third season as the Redskins’ head coach in 2012, the year they drafted Robert Griffin III No. 2 overall. As for what seems to be your main point, I get that talking about establishing a culture may not be fun at cocktail parties, but it might be noted that neither McDaniels or Shanahan coaches the teams we’re discussing anymore, so the jury is still out regarding which path is the right one when it comes to sustainable winning.
Dude from Jacksonville:
Have you ever partied so hard you woke up the next day and couldn't even remember your own name?
John: I’m afraid you have the wrong number. I’ll connect you to J.P. Shadrick.

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