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Big Cat Country Q&A: Who needs to step up in the second half of the season?

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NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans Shanna Lockwood-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s answer some questions ahead of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ bye week!

Caleb from Jacksonville, FL

Q: How do you expect the return of Dede Westbrook to affect the passing game? Is 10-6 a realistic expectation?

A: We actually wrote about that here but the short of it is that the team will take more deep shots and that will help the run game immensely. I think 10-6 is a fine expectation at this point with how well the defense is playing coupled with opposing teams on the schedule getting the injury bug.

Nick from Cooper City, FL

Q: What do we do with T.J. Yeldon going forward?

A: Look for him to be involved in the passing game a little more. While he was impressive against the Indianapolis Colts, let’s pump the brakes a bit. He’s always been impressive against them. Going into the game he was averaging more than five yards a carry on them.

Hayden from Katy, TX

Q: So are y’all still gonna continue the hate towards Dante Fowler?

A: What hate? We’ve done nothing but praise him #onhere. We said he had the play of the week against the Houston Texans here, repeated voted him as one of the most impactful players in more games than not in our postgame recaps, and more. He’s turned into a productive player who can get double-digit sacks this year. He has improved greatly — one of the more dramatic improvements on the team. He’s good.

Trav from Jacksonville, FL

Q: Outside of Blake Bortles, who do you think needs to step it up for the second half of the season?

A: Good question. The interior defensive linemen need to be better at stopping the run. Abry Jones and Malik Jackson have been underwhelming in that department. That needs to be fixed. I’d also like to see Chris Ivory as a better spell for Leonard Fournette and for one of the running backs to step up in the passing game. The receivers need to be more consistent as well. Allen Hurns is flying under the radar in terms of productivity and I want him to be better specifically.

Gabe from Washington D.C.

Q: Let’s say we sign Colin Kaepernick today. He has almost two weeks to prepare for the Cincinnati Bengals. How much better than Blake Bortles is he at that point, and how much better would be be in December or January?

A: With two weeks of practice, Kaepernick is probably more of a net negative on this team than Bortles. Signing him now would be an asinine move that would damage this team’s chances at the playoffs this year. You can’t move on from the quarterback midseason and expect to keep this team on track. Next offseason however... nah, it won’t happen.

Carlton from Lake Mary, FL

Q: I know it might be a little early for this, but do you see the Jaguars getting a game flexed to prime time since we've been keeping pace to fight for the AFC South title?

A: Week 17 in Nashville.

Logan from Green Cove Springs, FL

Q: What's this team's record with Gus Bradley still at the helm? Or better yet, how improved is this team with Doug running things now? It seems crazy to me to think he spent so long with the organization and could have been the head coach this whole time.

A: Could have been? There is no more damning evidence it was Gus who was holding us back the most. This team is probably 2-5 with Gus as head coach and fired this week during the bye.

Ronald from Sanford, FL

Q: When Brandon Linder comes back, should the Jaguars play him at center or move him to guard with Tyler Shatley playing well the last few weeks?

A: You keep Brandon Linder at the position you paid him all that money to play.