O-Zone: Fair of the fair

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JACKSONVILLE – Let’s go …

Is it possible that one of the reasons James Robinson hasn’t been used properly for most of this season is because he was the guy behind former Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone? The new staff signed Carlos Hyde and perhaps hoped he was more successful than Robinson.

I have often been asked about this possibility, and it perhaps had merit very early in the season. The Jaguars signed Hyde as an unrestricted free agent during the offseason and selected Travis Etienne Jr. No. 25 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, which felt like stepping into the season. of Robinson being part of a multifaceted room. being the guy. That feeling continued throughout Week 1, when Hyde carried nine times and Robinson five times in a loss to the Houston Texans. But it really didn’t hold up after that, with Robinson becoming more and more the full-back and the offense developing an identity around him – especially in the last three weeks leading up to a goodbye to Week 7. Head coach Urban Meyer spoke often of liking the identity of the offense during this time – and Robinson’s run with quarterback Trevor Lawrence benefiting from that running game was really the identity. That trend changed when Robinson suffered a heel / knee injury against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 8. The injury kept Robinson from playing a game and limited him afterwards. There has been some quirk surrounding his playing time in recent weeks, and the explanations for that playing time haven’t always been clear – but the idea here is if Robinson had been healthy all along. of the season, that would not have become a problem. at all. Does that mean it was handled well? No. But I don’t feel that coaches are currently confused as to who the best running back on the team is.

One thing I would like to see different in the offseason is that the Jaguars don’t get worse when they get better. What I mean is: retain the good players; don’t let wide receiver DJ Chark Jr., left tackle Cam Robinson, etc., come out until you’re absolutely sure you’ve got better players. They have a lot of cap space so there’s no reason we should lose this type of guy and watch them play somewhere else next year. I’ve seen it time and time again, where the team let a player go and never find their replacement.

I would like the Jaguars to keep Robinson and Chark as well. They are capable players and can certainly start for many NFL teams. I would also like to know what they will order in the open market and how the Jaguars plan to use them before determining if it is okay to keep them. While it’s easy to say that the Jaguars have “a lot of ceiling space,” a safe and irresponsible way to suddenly have very little ceiling space is to overpay players who won’t be playing roles that match. their salary. Also, if you’re trying to upgrade the roster, it’s hard to pay players a lot of money and then pay or draft their replacement.

One thing I miss about Urban’s personality is urgency and passion. His body language and his responses to questions make it seem like he takes a low-key approach to managing his team. Is it normal that head coaches are so lax in their management? It’s boring. It’s your team, and it looks like you have no idea what’s going on. I miss the passion of former Jaguar head coaches Gus Bradley and Jack Del Rio. I really felt like the players in their tenure respected them and their training, and therefore played at a high energy level. It’s great Urban manages his stress, but he needs to show a little more urgency.

Meyer often doesn’t seem very interested or passionate at press conferences, but my understanding is not that different from what he was when he was in Florida and the state of Ohio. So I’m not sure if that accurately reflects his personality or his approach. After all, he expresses his passion on the sidelines and I have certainly seen him express it in practice. I’m not intentionally rejecting your theory here. I’m just not convinced that coaches are judged precisely on how they appear in front of the media.

Seamus from Sioux Falls, SD

At the start of the season, I was not for Meyer. However, his approach to driving seems to have successfully changed since the Columbus affair, and I have come to love his straightforward and measured style. I’ll let others scream how good / bad he is, but I know he was once a rookie head coach of an expansion team whose first season was 4-12. I just completed a semi-exhaustive review of the 1995, 1996 and 2021 Jags seasons. The 1995 and 2021 teams look a lot alike, with high turnover rates, a series of “get it right” games against non-playoff teams. and over 80 penalties at this point in the season. What I mean is if this forum existed in 1995, these fans would have asked for the ouster of Tom Coughlin this first season. I recommend everyone to breathe and realize that in a rookie season mistakes will happen. Next year SHOULD be better. Lawrence will be fine. Robinson’s touches will improve. The offensive will improve.

I think the interview with James Robinson has become a lightning rod for fans’ frustration with this organization. He’s a fan favorite, great FA story, plays through pain, hasn’t asked for more money and seems like a really good guy. Yet he doesn’t know what’s going on. The team was not only bad except for a brief period, but seemed to be in disarray all year round. So far, not everything that has made Urban so successful as a college has translated into the NFL.

… And not one for Meyer.

I understand the idea that a quick attack / hurry up could lead to inordinate amounts of three-and-outs. It seems to me that this team that uses a slower / clustered attack also leads to an inordinate number of three-and-outs. What is the downside to trying something different? Heck, how about innovating and inventing something different? Why kick the team for making changes to processes that aren’t working?

I have received several emails regarding this topic. The reality is that the Jaguars have tried the pace and the hurry at times this season. They are also sometimes used offensively for run-pass option and zone reading concepts. They didn’t go all-in for the zone reading because the idea much of the season has been that they didn’t want to overexpose Lawrence to injury and wear and tear as a rookie – and that for his development, it is best to play it mainly from the pocket. It’s hard to do a lot of up-tempo and hurry if you don’t produce some first tries and throw some incompleteness. So you hurry to leave the field. The Jaguars try a lot of things. The things they try don’t work.

Nick from Virginia Beach, Virginia

I am tired. I am bitter. I thought it would finally be different. It’s not. Is it ever going to get better?

Yes. I do not know when. But yes.

John, Detroit looking better than a one-win team lately, and the Jags playing against both the New York Jets and the Houston Texans in the coming weeks; who would you say has the indoor track on the first overall selection for 2022?

I would expect the Jaguars to pick No.1 overall based on the results of the last four games. They trailed in double digits in the first half of all four games and haven’t led in any of those games. The Lions, for their part, won last week and tied the Pittsburgh Steelers in that same four-game span. They also lost by two and three points in their other two games. Maybe that perspective will change. Here’s hoping.

Is the QB free from Meyer’s wonderful motivational strategy yourself if you fumble?

Diego from southern Tierra del Fuego

Wouldn’t it be fair to say that the Jags became the AFC’s Detroit Lions? No hope for the future and mired in mediocrity. A standoff for free agents, poor writing and poor training have ruined this once proud franchise. It all starts at the top and spills out.

Much of the criticism leveled at the Jaguars these days is correct. They are 2-10 and have had a winning season since 2007. There have been far too many cases this season where things don’t go well on and off the field. Until those things change… yes, the reviews are fair. Absoutely. It’s up to the Jaguars to change the story.

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