JaguarMaven Week 15 Mailbag: What Should Happen at QB, and How Much of a Rebuild is This?
Each week following a Jacksonville Jaguars game, JaguarMaven will take Jacksonville Jaguars-related questions from our readers across social media and answer them in a question-and-answer format, giving readers a chance to have their voices heard.
Question from @davis_specer: Which TE prospects should the Jaguars be looking at this off-season? Is it possible or worth it to bring back Marcedes?
I’ll start by answering the second part of your question – no, I don’t see Marcedes as a viable option at this stage of his career.
The 2020 class of tight ends isn’t the strongest it’s been in recent years, but there are some that would be an instant upgrade, however. Vanderbilt’s Jared Pinkney and Missouri’s Albert Okwuegbunam are two players that could be targeted in the second and third round, respectively. Both players are dynamic talents thatwill be red zone nightmares at the next level, and can be moved around formations.
Question from @ryaneatscake: If Tua and Derrick are available when the Jaguars pick, who are you taking and why?
For me, it’s Derrick Brown, and it’s not particularly close; Quarterback is further down the list in terms of roster needs.
Over the past 4 games, the Jaguars have surrendered an average of 37 points. They been gashed against the run and have failed to generate much of a push up front. That’s where Brown comes in. The Auburn defensive tackle is among the top players in the entire draft, providing sound run defense and collapsing the pocket from the inside. Paired with Josh Allen, he would give the Jaguars two legitimate, blue-chip talents on the defensive line.
Question from @BrianBCC1: If we accept the qualifier of “rebuild”, even in its softest form, how many years do see it taking to make this team competitive enough to be playoff caliber, or is there enough talent that coaching can extract player quality?
I think it will take two years. Assuming the team decides to move on from Doug Marrone – and potentially Tom Coughlin – whoever comes in to replace them will begin to mold the team in their vision, but won’t be able to accomplish a thorough roster rehaul in one offseason. They have plenty of talent to work with already in-house, but it will presumably be up to a new coaching staff to get them to realize that talent.
Question from @yousailor2: Why does it seem like Minshew doesn’t target the middle of the field very often?
I think it stems from a lack of familiarity (and trust) with the revolving door of middling talent at the tight end position. The Jaguars have the least imposing tight end room in the entire NFL, which severely hinders a young quarterback, as they are often looked to as security blankets over the middle.
Question from @jmbagay: Would you rather hire someone with experience (like Ron Rivera) or hire a rising prospect (like Byron Leftwich) for the next head coach of the Jaguars?
While Rivera will almost certainly be a head coach again in 2020, the Jaguars will be better served avoiding the retread route, and hiring a successful offensive coordinator, such as Kansas City’s Eric Bieniemy, or dipping into the college ranks with Matt Rhule or Lincoln Riley. Fresh voices, ideas, and concepts are needed when the franchise becomes stagnant.
Question from @sherbert_cs: Who do you see as a good replacement to lead the front office?
I really like Trent Kirchner, currently the Co-Director of Player Personnel in Seattle. He interviewed for the 49ers and Colts vacancy back in 2017, and has been a prominent figure in identifying talent for one of the most consistent teams in the NFL. Seattle has a history of developing home grown talent and discovering late-round gems.
Question from @Ryoung2596: Lately we have been rotating Wingard out with Gilchrist, against Oak do you think we mix it up? I understand ST is important, but with our lack of saftey depth, why are we paying Cody Davis so much if he can't play defense? McCray would get situational snaps.
I think Wingard is a player the team really likes as a third safety candidate in 2020. He has had his share of lapses in coverage, but the Wyoming alum is sharp-minded and plays the game with reckless abandon; his energy radiates throughout the secondary.
Davis is a specialty player -- a very good one, at that – but he is a perfect example of someone who can be replaced by a late-round pick or a gritty undrafted free agent. He is a limited player, albeit a fearless and intelligent one, but he will likely never be more than a sparingly used role player on defense.
Question from @Orc0909: Where do you start with building this team back up? Offensive line? Defensive Interior? Secondary?
For me, it always begins in the trenches. It doesn’t matter how many weapons you have if the offensive line can’t protect the quarterback, just like it won’t make a difference if you have the top secondary in football if the defensive line can’t get home.
Question from @dospoy: Every fan I have heard from wants the entire coaching staff gone, starting with Wash and including Marrone, but also wants TC/DC gone. Realistically, what are the odds Shad brings back TC/DC? If they dont change, then our team philosophy wont change. We need fresh/new ideas.
I agree completely; without a fresh outlook, it’s hard to see the philosophy changing. It also seems as though the front office and the coaching staff aren’t on the same page, and that isn’t conducive to building a winner. This is why I feel strongly that Shad will part ways with Tom Coughlin and Dave Caldwell
Question from @ChevyJas: With a new regime likely coming in, would u see a QB in play for our top 10 pick? And do u see them packaging both to move for Tua if he's their guy, assuming he's healthy?
For a top-10 pick? I don’t see it. There are just far too many more pressing needs up and down the roster to take a quarterback that early. Now, if they aren’t encouraged by what they see from Minshew over the next few weeks and want to push him in training camp, I could see them spending a third-fourth round pick on a signal caller if they fall in love with one during the pre-draft process.