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Big Cat Country Q&A: What’s up with Laviska Shenault’s inconsistent production?

Arizona Cardinals v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

It’s Friday and you know what that means! It’s time to answer some Jacksonville Jaguars questions!

Today we’re talking about Laviska Shenault’s usage, getting ready for the Seattle Seahawks, an improved run game, and more.

Jim from Kingsland, GA

Q: Why is Laviska Shenault not making major progress as a pass receiver? He shows flashes but then disappears.

A: This is an interesting question. Laviska certainly has had an up-and-down type of year — ping-pong’ing between getting six or seven catches and then the next week being lucky to get one. Heck, he even finished a game with multiple catches and negative yards. It’s got to be frustrating. I think it’s as simple as this team just doesn’t know how to use him, especially with D.J. Chark gone for the year.

Look at this quote from Urban Meyer just a few days ago. He specifically points to Laviska’s move as being detrimental to his usage and caused by Chark’s absence. I think we can chalk his early-season underwhelming production up to it being... well... early in the season. This new (and young) group of wide receivers needed time to find their footing, as did new offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. But now that Chark is out, they have to put Laviska in a new position that isn’t necessarily taking full advantage of his skill set.

Make no mistake — Laviska is a talented receiver. This is not on him. This is on the coaching staff that 1) isn’t putting him in the best position and 2) is being forced to not put him in the best position because of injuries.

Kyle from Stafford, TX

Q: Our offense is looking better each week and Nevin Lawson should be starting at nickel. Could we upset the Buffalo Bills?

A: Our offense is looking better each week in no small part to Urban Meyer and Darrell Bevell leaning on James Robinson as their bell-cow back. They quit beating around the bush with the Carlos Hyde reps and let the best running back on their roster find a rhythm through the entire course of the game. What a concept!

And not to take anything away from Nevin Lawson, but this group of cornerbacks is below average right now, so anything he can do to contribute is welcome. He’s had one good game. Let’s see how he does with more opportunities after the bye week.

As far as the Buffalo Bills... no, I don’t think an upset is in the cards. Sorry, Kyle.

Gary from Belfast, Northern Ireland

Q: What do the Jaguars need to work on over the the next two weeks to be ready for the Seattle Seahawks?

A: Man coverage. I have a bad feeling about Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf, man. Even with Geno Smith under center.

Michael from Saskatoon, Canada

Q: Can someone please explain to me the Andrew Wingard over Andre Cisco decision? I would understand if we were consistently winning or Wingard was playing at a high level, but at this point I do not understand the decision. I mean even if Cisco was the same level or worse it still makes sense to throw him out there and see what he can do. Can you please explain the decision to me and help it make sense?

A: It’s simple — Urban Meyer and Joe Cullen aren’t convinced that Cisco is ready from what they’ve seen in practice. If Wingard were a disaster, then you play the second-round pick. Easy decision. But Wingard has been good (or not bad) enough to start.

Wesley from Tulsa, OK

Q: What is the Jaguars’ most Impressive position group and what is the most unimpressive heading into the bye week?

A: Impressive would be quarterback. Unimpressive would be secondary.

Keith from Jacksonville, FL

Q: So Instead of 0-17, are we looking at 1-16?

A: I think we win a couple more. Trevor Lawrence is playing incredibly well for a young rookie. Let’s say 4-13.

Xavier from Jacksonville, FL

Q: Do the Jaguars make a trade before the trade deadline?

A: No, I don’t think so.

Ryan from St. Augustine, FL

Q: Should we trade for a wide receiver like Allen Robinson or Odell Beckham, Jr.?

A: I wouldn’t trade for Beckham, but I’d love to have a guy like Robinson in my top-four. He’s looked a bit sluggish this season, which is understandable for a guy who has been dealt a pretty crappy quarterback hand up until this season. But I think we’re seeing the kind of offense Urban Meyer wants to run and what’s best for Trevor Lawrence — vertical, down the field, tough catches over the middle. At this point in both their careers, Robinson does that better than Beckham.

That’s what Robinson was forced to do with mediocre-at-best quarterback play in his first go-around in Jacksonville. Now he’d have a bonafide top-tier quarterback (or at least a guy making his way there) who is seeing the field and making better throws than any guy he’s played with.

Adam from Cortez, CO

Q: When do we get our next win?

A: November 14th against the Indianapolis Colts.