JACKSONVILLE – Let’s get to it . . .
Charles from Bangalore, India:
John, you pointed out that Manziel has some flaws that concern scouts. You said: “He leaves the pocket without pressure in many, many situations and he misses certain reads at the line of scrimmage that should be second-nature.” Unlike, say, a lifelong fundamental that is probably incurable, like Tebow and his strange throwing mechanics, aren’t the concerns about Manziel relatively easy to remedy by some time and coaching in the big league? Or on the other hand, does he leave the pocket without pressure because of his height, sort of a reflex to get some vision downfield and clearance to throw the ball? Are the two flaws you mentioned fixable or not?
John: In theory, anything that’s not physical and unchangeable is “fixable.” Manziel theoretically could start staying in the pocket because that’s what you have to do in the NFL – and certainly most players improve reading defenses and making proper reads with experience. It’s hard to say why Manziel plays as he does; quite likely it’s because he has been successful with the style and if something works, it’s human nature to stick with it. Will he adapt in the NFL? If we knew that, then there wouldn’t be much debate and we’d know with a lot more certainty where Manziel might be drafted.
James from Atlantic Beach, FL:
I can take the ads or leave them. The important thing that not everyone seems to get is that ads pay for this website. Meaning, we don't have to pay for it. If occasionally sitting through an ad that I don't care for is all it takes to keep this site free, then bring on the ads.
John: Hey, one for common sense!
Jason from Navarre, FL and Section 204:
Johnny O, Khan has a vision and it is awesome to watch it become reality. The next few years are going to be epic. Two things: 1) DC needs to wear a Jags cap, 2) Don't mess with the tall drink of water. Just saying...
John: Well, as long as you’re just saying … but yes, it has been intriguing to see Khan’s vision begin to come to fruition. We are starting to see tangible signs in the stadium – locker room, training facilities, videoboards – etc., and while those are more controllable than the football side, we’re seeing it there, too. As for your “things,” cut Caldwell some slack on the cap. He’s a fashionable guy and everyone has his or her “fashion thing.” Where the tall drink of water is concerned, I’m afraid I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Austin from Atlanta, GA:
I read somewhere that Jags fans were not happy at the way we were portrayed in the movie “Draft Day.” I think the opposite. We were not ready to pull the trigger on a potential quarterback, and so we trade back to get more picks. Nothing wrong with that, right?
John: Sure, why not?
Otto from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL:
The new scoreboards and the surrounding areas will be magnificent. Is there any way the tarps in the sections of the upper deck can be gone also? They look horrible and kid nobody. Caldwell and Bradley are on the right track and winning will put fans in the seats.
John: The tarps never have been about “kidding” anyone, Otto. They’ve been about giving the stadium a capacity that’s more fitting for the team’s market size – and more in line with the capacity of other NFL stadiums. There will be far fewer tarps this year than in recent years, and as for eliminating them completely … in time, Otto … in time.
Trey from Jacksonville:
So can you in confidence say that the signing of Red Bryant
is laying the groundwork of Alualu's release? Just curious. I thought everyone said he was a good player.
John: No, I can't say that in confidence.
Keisha from Annandale, VA:
Your response to "Rick from Callaway" assumed all NFL draft analysts are male. I won't pretend to be offended as I know you did not mean any harm. The Jags are trying to build a positive cultural change - let's include the ladies in that. :)
John: I’m glad you’re not offended, but fear not: I can rub enough people the wrong way on an individual basis that I don’t need to do so in large groups.
Nick from Jacksonville Beach:
It seems as though my questionss have a tendency to get answered if I write that I'm from Jacksonville Beach, and not Jax Beach. Is this due to the nature of the questions, and on the days I'm lazy there just happens to be a lot of really good football questions? Or do you just hate when people use improper punctuation that much?
John: Its because of the punctuation
Doug from Jacksonville:
Last year the pundits and prognosticators were made to look out of touch with their quarterback rankings and no quarterback going early. This year it seems they are trying to make up for that going the other direction. I have seen two different mock drafts with the Jags getting Bridgewater....at 39. The prognosticators will have Seattle and Broncos in the Super Bowl next year, and Manning as MVP. Hardly ever do you see real thought and analysis. I understand it is for fun, but c'mon!
John: You see real analysis if you read the right people and if you listen to the right people. Last year, for example, many, many football people were saying there might not be a quarterback selected in the first round – and that Geno Smith almost certainly wouldn’t be. There actually was a lot of accuracy on that front. This year, it’s not just “pundits;” a lot of football people are wondering if any of the quarterbacks will go early. It’s impossible to know for sure before the draft because it takes one team – not a consensus – to draft a player, but the pundits who are questioning this quarterback class aren’t all making things up. People who make these decisions for teams are questioning, too.
Tom from Williamsburg, VA:
Congratulations on 1,000 consecutive days of O-Zones. I know I missed it by a couple of days but they are really appreciated by us out-of-towners. Keep up the good work.
John: You didn't miss it. We're at 988. Or so.
Jack from Fernandina Beach, FL:
Explain purpose of futures contracts?
John: An argument could be made that you could work in a “please” now and then, but sure, I’ll explain. A futures contract essentially is a minimum contract that teams to use to sign players each offseason. It may be best to think of it as a tool to ensure teams can stock their roster in the offseason without worrying about losing players who will be fighting for roster spots to other teams. Futures contracts are often used to sign players who were on practice squads the previous season or who were not in the league the previous season. There’s an advantage for players, too; being signed allows the players to spend the offseason working out and training with a team, as well as practicing and participating in meetings, thereby giving the player a better a chance to make the team.
George from Jacksonville:
The Jags have shown they place a high value on the center position … very close to the value of a left tackle based upon what they were willing to pay Mack. While I don't think they would take a center at the third pick, how high do you think a center could be drafted?
John: Perhaps the second round, but far more likely in the third, fourth or fifth rounds.
Charles from Midlothian, VA:
RE: Wallace on Mettenberger, forgive me, but wasn't a certain Dan Marino a quarterback with a big arm that was a statue in the pocket and played on bad knees..? Just sayin…
John: I’m not ready to compare Mettenberger with Dan Marino. For one thing, Marino absolutely was considered a top-tier quarterback prospect and it was an unfounded marijuana report that caused him to slip down draft boards in 1983. Marino also had otherworldly pocket presence and arm strength, and I don’t know that Mettenberger belongs in the otherworldly category. That said, his arm strength and size are things many quarterbacks don’t have and they make it a lot easier to play the position. And the NFL historically will fight for the chance to give players with those attributes every chance to prove they shouldn’t be in the league.
Tuck from Nashville, TN:
Hey John, I hate that mock drafts have us taking Manziel to energize the city. I'm energized already. I like our free-agent signings and am amped about the team. One for energized.
John: I don’t doubt that Manziel will generate excitement and interest wherever he is drafted. I can say with certainty that if the Jaguars do happen to draft Johnny Manziel, generating excitement and interest won’t be even close to the primary reason. Or even on the list, for that matter.
Todd from Stuttgart, Germany:
Nothing against the guy since I've never seen him play, but I just don't understand the Matt Scott
infatuation and the number of questions he garners. My mind is blown.
John: It's quite a phenomenon.
Joe from Jacksonville:
You can't have everything John. Where would you put it?
John: Out back.