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Big Cat Country Q&A: Has Dawuane Smoot done enough to earn a new contract?

Jacksonville Jaguars v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

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Let’s answer some Jacksonville Jaguars questions ahead of our Week 15 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens!

Today we’re talking about what to root for this weekend, Dawuane Smoot, and more.

Diz from Frisco, TX

Q: Should I be rooting for the Jags to keep it close in this one and that Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue have good games whilst waxing nostalgic on their contributions to that wonderful 2017 season?

A: You should do whatever makes you happy on Sunday, Diz. Close game? Go for it. Blowout loss? Sure. Big games from former Jaguars players? Have a blast. I would only caution you that losing is the only thing that’s potentially helpful for this team moving into their next rebuild. A meaningless win this week — or in any of the team’s final three games — will only make things more difficult for the next general manager.

Blaine from Farmington, ME

Q: Is Doug Marrone going to stick around at head coach despite three straight losing seasons?

A: He might. Myles Jack went to bat for him yesterday, same as other players. I like Doug Marrone. I think he’s great for the team. But his insistence on keeping defensive coordinator Todd Wash for as long as he’s here is a big red flag for me. Just go all the way if you’re gonna clean house, you know?

Thomas from Copenhagen, Denmark

Q: If you could steal a non-quarterback from each AFC South team, who’d you pick?

A: For the Houston Texans? Zach Cunningham. For the Indianapolis Colts? Quenton Nelson. For the Tennessee Titans? Kevin Byard or Malcolm Butler.

Jim from Lyndhurst, OH

Q: As I read more mock drafts, there seems to be a slight debate brewing for the No. 2 pick. Given that this is where we are likely to pick, I must ask — Justin Fields or Zach Wilson and how close is it?

A: It’s Justin Fields. It’s always been Justin Fields. And it always will be Justin Fields. Zach Wilson could turn out to be great, but Fields is clearly a tier above him.

Jim from Kingsland, GA

Q: With the article this week naming the players considered to be “good “ and inferring that the rest are poor players, that begs the question, how many “good” players does a team need?

A: Uh, that’s not what that article was supposed to mean. When I said there were only a handful of players I’d consider “locks” to be part of the next long-term rebuild, I meant those are the cream of the crop on this roster. There are otherwise decent, productive players I didn’t mention. Dawuane Smoot is one. Josh Allen is another. Laviska Shenault is a third. Just because a player isn’t good doesn’t mean they’re bad. It just means they’re not at the top of the page. As far as how many “good” players a team needs, that depends on your quarterback. If he’s really good, you need fewer. If he’s not, you need a lot more — and even then it might not get you a title.

Trent from Atlanta, GA

Q: Do you think Dawaune Smoot has done enough as a rotational pass rusher to earn another contract?

A: Yes. I would love to see the team re-sign him and for him to continue where he left off at the end of this season into 2021. He leads the team with 4.5 sacks, 14 quarterback hits, and is tied for second with five tackles for a loss. That’s with limited snaps. If he had one or two good edge rushers ahead of him and still had that sort of production he’d absolutely be worth keeping around.

Jake from Baltimore, MD

Q: Is there a non-zero chance that Zach Wilson is the pick at No. 2 overall, or should I preorder my Justin Fields jersey already? And in which color?

A: I think Justin Fields is absolutely the No. 2 overall pick in the spring. The only question is if it’s the Jaguars making that pick.

Ben from Post, TX

Q: Next year, we play the AFC East, NFC West, and the loser of the Broncos vs. Chargers game in their Week 16 matchup. That’s excruciatingly brutal.

A: We’re the Jaguars. We should be used to playing teams better than us by now.