clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Thursday Q&A: Dave Caldwell's biggest regret in the NFL Draft

Welcome to Big Cat Country's Thursday Q&A column! We hope you enjoy it.

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

With the dead zone of the 2015 NFL season quickly coming and the Jacksonville Jaguars poised to improve at several key positions (as well as in the win-loss record) we're sure you have questions.

Every Thursday check back and see if your question made it. And if you want to submit a question for next week, ask here!

Bruh Man From The 5th Floor from Jacksonville, FL

Q: Do you think Marqise Lee will make a significant impact on this roster this year? I have faith in Blake Bortles, but not in Lee's health currently.

A: This question depends a lot on the person you ask, as well as your definition of "significant." So, personally, do I think Marqise Lee is going to light it up this year? No. I'd actually argue that Lee is currently the fourth-best receiver on the roster. I tend to agree with your point about Lee's health. It's hard to expect "significant impact" from a speed guy who has spent most of his young career injured. That might not sound fair, and of course, if Lee remains relatively healthy for his second season, this could all change. But as of right now, I don't expect Lee to light the world on fire this season.

Donna from Jacksonville, FL

Q: What are some of the basic teaching mechanics that a young quarterback like Blake Bortles is going through right now? In some sports, throwing motions may require shoulder placement, footwork could mean hips or knees, some issues could have to do with the direction their body is facing, etc... What is Blake working on?

A: Blake is working on his delivery this offseason. Last season, Blake relied too much on his arm to deliver the ball. He was slingin' it, if you will. This offseason, Blake Bortles has worked with QB guru Tom House to build his delivery from the ground up. Everything from Blake's foot placement up through his follow-through are points of emphasis, and the goal now is to make these mechanics second nature. This will give Bortles' throws more zip and put less strain on his arm.

John from Tyler, TX

Q: Which of the Jaguars' three sophomore receivers (Allen Robinson, Marqise Lee, and Allen Hurns) do you guys think retires from the NFL with the best career statistics?

A: Well, retirement is pretty damn far off for these guys. Anything could happen. If I was a good writer, I wouldn't make an effort to speculate on statistical outcomes that are so far away. But that's not the case, so I'll say Allen Robinson. Allen Hurns certainly flashed last season, and there's no doubt he'll grow more comfortable with more experience at the NFL level. Lee displayed a few promising qualities last year in-between injuries that kept his ass grounded on the bench. Allen Robinson, however, seems to enjoy an abundance of receiving traits that are common among the top receivers around the league. He's a breakout player, and I have huge expectations for him as the Jaguars' offense continues to evolve.

Jason from Bluffton, SC

Q: With the Indianapolis Colts bolstering a superb offense, have we done enough on defense to match up with them and was Philip Dorsett a consideration on our draft board?

A: We have done enough on defense to match up with anybody, and I think the Jaguars have demonstrated this as they have taken a step each of the last two seasons. This season, there's no reason to think the defense won't improve again. Of course, there are stronger areas (defensive line) and weaker areas (middle linebacker), and teams like the Colts will do their best to exploit the areas that are weaker. But I'm more concerned with the offense keeping our defense off the field and putting up points. As for who was on our draft board, I actually wasn't in the draft room on draft night. Caldwell wanted me there, but I had prior engagements.

Dennis from Port St. Lucie, FL

Q: Teams with terrible records have turned it around quickly and made the playoffs before. Looking at the Jaguars personnel and coaching changes, it would seem that this team could surprise everyone this year. If all the pieces come together, can you see a possible Wild Card shot?

A: This is hard. Of course I can see a Wild Card shot. Hell, some nights, I have dreams where Dan Marino comes out of retirement, leads the Seahawks to the Super Bowl, and loses to the undefeated Jaguars 62-7. But then I wake up and I write as realistically as I can about how the Jaguars could definitely push for a .500 record this season. All that said, Wild Card is probably a pretty long shot. I'd think seeing the Jaguars listed as "in the hunt" on TV broadcasts later in the season is more realistic, though.

John from Kansas City, MO

Q: Two-part question: 1. Do you ever use your phone as a mirror to check things; like your hair, or your nose, to make sure there's no debris, or do you just take a selfie and check? 2. If you take a selfie, are you worried about those weird nose pics hanging in the cloud somewhere and always auto uploading whenever you do a backup? Bonus question: What is the cloud?

A: This is your brain. This is your brain when Alex Smith is your quarterback.

Dwade from Montgomery, AL

Q: What position other than the LEO position would be the most difficult to be successful in 2015?

A: Linebacker. Outside of Telvin Smith and maybe Dan Skuta, the unit simply lacks the talent to thrive.

Daniel from High Springs, FL

Q: How many new starters do you see?

A: Between seven and nine: Julius Thomas, T.J. Yeldon, Jermey Parnell, Dan Skutta, Davon House, Sergio Brown, and Jared Odrick are the easy ones. A.J. Cann and Stefen Wisniewski will likely start at some points throughout the season.

Jonathan from Montreal, Quebec

Q: What is your opinion on Allen Hurns? Do you think he will still be productive going into this season with the new offense and all?

A: I think Allen Hurns flashed last season, and while I think he'll take a step this year, I don't think he'll make some kind of significant jump to greatness. Hurns will be Hurns. But yes, I do think he'll take advantage of his opportunities in the new offense and I believe his production will at least be close to his production last season.

Jacob from Jacksonville, FL

Q: When is it going to be times to draft a middle linebacker? And when do we make the final judgement on Luke Joeckel?

A: The Jaguars have had a need at inside linebacker each of the last three seasons. I know most are enamored with Paul Posluszny, but he simply has not cut it on the field under the Gus Bradley regime. I will write a post on this soon, but I consider inside linebacker to be the Jaguars greatest current need. As for Joeckel, I am not sure about "final judgement" but this year will go a looooooong way in determining where Joeckel stands with the team.

Zach from Timisoara, Romania

Q: Is Doug Marrone's gap-blocking scheme really an improvement for the offensive line?

A: I think the improvement for the offensive line is going to come more so from the much-needed injection of talent than the scheme itself. Regardless of what scheme you run, you win with talented players. The Jaguars didn't field enough of those on the offensive line last year. They look like they will this year.

Thomas from Fleming Island, FL

Q: David Caldwell looks back at his draft classes and his biggest regret is...?

A: If you asked me this before the Dante Fowler injury, I would say picking him over Vic Beasley. So, yeah, the answer there is still the same.

Maurice from Jacksonville, FL

Q: What's up with Geno Hayes? I know he's not a starter, but I think he would be a good backup for us and we could probably re-sign him for dirt cheap. He knows the system, he's experienced, and I think a backup role would be perfect. Your thoughts?

A: I actually am a fan of Hayes considering what he is valued as, but there have been some reports that his knees are bad and are the ultimate reason he is without a team. If the Jaguars, a team seriously lacking at linebacking depth and who is familiar with Hayes, has yet to show interest in Hayes, some red flags should be raised.

Tom from Parts Unknown

Q: Who do you think you are? And as a followup, where do you get off?

A: Hey, Tom, I know a John from Kansas City that I think you'd like. Want me to set up a play date?