I am a believer that it can only get better from here. We went 2-14 in 2012, but most games the scores were close. In my opinion, there were only 3, possibly 4 games where the score represents a blow out. Personally, I count a game as a blow out if the winning team wins by 20+ points. Week two against the Houston Texans, Week Five against the Chicago Bears, and Week Fifteen against the Miami Dolphins.
Now, fast forward into early February. We have our new General Manager in David Caldwell. Then, a few days later, got our new Head Coach in former Seattle Seahawks Defensive Coordinator Gus Bradley. Then, two days later, Bradley hires Bob Babich to be the new Defensive Coordinator, a move that didn't bode well with a lot people here on BCC. Then we brought in Jedd Fisch to be the new Offensive Coordinator. Now, we have the coaching staff almost completely in place, last I heard here on BCC, with the exception of the TE Coach and the Running Back Coach.
During that same period, we learned that Bradley wants to bring his defensive scheme to Jacksonville. We also learned from New GM David Caldwell that we will, in fact, draft based on need this year. Caldwell also informed us at his first Press Conference that he "Can't imagine a scenario where Tim Tebow is a Jaguar", a move that I support. Should Caldwell have said this to the media?, yes and no. Yes because it ends all of the "Tebow to Jax" hype before it has a chance to really begin and no because he is not allowed to talk about players from another team. I see it as a rookie mistake, plus he was asked the question and he answered it.
Now, I suppose Bradley is working on finishing the Coaching Staff hires and and evaluating the roster with Caldwell, while also meeting with players to get to know them as a person, since the front office can not talk to players about football for the most part until April.
We will also be getting new uniforms in April and possibly a new logo, whether it is just tweaked or is completely different, if it is to be changed at all, we do not know right now.
The Combine is coming up so we will have a better idea as to who the Jaguars are interested in.
Then it will be on to Free Agency. Caldwell has told us that he wants to "build through the draft", so we will not be too active in Free Agency. We will probably resign a couple of our own Free Agents, most likely OLB Daryl Smith, FB Greg Jones, and CB Derek Cox, although I am skeptical as to if Cox would be worth giving another contract to, since he is injury prone. I do expect to sign maybe three players in Free Agency, certainly NE Patriots RT Sebastian Volimer tops the list, with both Steelers RB Jonathan Dwyer and CB Will Allen round off that list, but other candidates for RB/CB are: Reggie Bush and the Dolphins 6'3' CB.
We now know that MJD "had a broken bone in his foot" and that he will not hold out again this year, which was feared by a lot of us Jag fans, including myself.
Bradley will likely change practices for the better, we need to do better in practice so that we can execute more plays properly on game day.
Then we have the 2013 NFL Draft. I expect this to be our best draft in recent years since Caldwell does a god job evaluating talent. I can see us drafting Lotuelei out of Utah to solidify the interior of the D-Line. I don't want to take a risk on Sheldon Richardson, he is compared to Tyson Alualu and I don't want a player who is compared to Alualu, he is a bust in my opinion. I can also see a CB in the second round to replace Cox, an OLB to take over the starting job from Russell Allen, who is a pretty good back up and special teamer, but not good enough to be the the starter. I expect this in the third round. Fourth round I wouldn't mind getting Travis Kelce. TE is not as big of a need as other positions, but when a play maker like Kelce falls to you in the fourth round and it is a position that can use an upgrade, all the more reason to draft him. Round five I can see DE Devin Taylor. Round Six I can see RB/FB Zach Line to eventually replace Greg Jones as the primary FB, who will also provide the ability to take hand offs and catch out of the backfield. In the seventh round, I can see WR Rodney Smith fitting in nicely. Smith is 6'6" and would be a perfect Red zone target, plus Jerry Sullivan would have a decent WR to develop as his own project.
In UDFA, I'd like to see us sign WR Anthony Amos, a QB or two, and RB Kerwynn Williams, who can also help us on Special Teams.
I believe we won't see much of an improvement record wise in 2013, I'm going to guesstimate a record of 6-10, which would have us still in the top ten in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Whatever we do this off season will affect our team for years to come. It may not be very pretty on the field next year, but we "JUST NEED TO GET BETTER".