Jeff from Tucson, AZ
Where do you see Daniel Muir fitting in the 3-4, tackle or end?
Muir would seem to project at nose tackle but, in a 3-4, all of the linemen are 4-3 tackles, so it’s possible he could see some time at end, too.
Victor from Huixquilucan, Mexico
So football and golf provide dramatic moments and baseball doesn’t? You must have missed last year's World Series. In baseball you can't kill the clock and finally take a knee. You have to get the outs. The Rangers couldn't and the Cardinals came back in the ninth and 10th innings with only one strike left in the game. Only baseball provides that kind of drama.
Yeah, and you have to cover 162 games and sit through mind-numbing rain delays and pitching changes and meaningless at-bats to get there. Hey, I did it. I would go weeks without have any real meat to put into a story, and the worst part was when the team you were covering was 26 games out of first place and no one was even reading your stuff, and it was only late July. I could get more excitement out of a football training camp practice than I could out of a whole baseball home stand. Oh, and I loved those crowds of 4,000 fans in September to watch the minor-league call-ups play. You can have it.
Shannon from Knoxville, TN
Who's the best interview on the team?
I’m not sure, yet. The Packers locker room is a conservative place. The players guard their commentary. I’ve found Aaron Rodgers to be a candid postgame interview. Listening to him after the game was probably my favorite interview of the week last season. I think Clay Matthews really has something to say. I did a Q&A with him that intrigued me. It made me want to spend more time interviewing him.
Alex from Hammond, IN
Looking back at the winners of the last seven Super Bowls, the Packers, Giants, Steelers, Saints and Colts, it seems to me that each of those teams follows the draft-and-develop strategy. The only significant free-agent signing that comes to mind of those teams is the Saints picking up Drew Brees in 2006. Also, considering the uproar last year when Tom Coughlin led the Giants through a four-game losing streak; there were a significant number of fans calling for Coughlin to be fired. Can we all take a step back and realize that it takes time to craft a champion?
That’s the great thing about being a fan: You don’t have to be right or patient, just passionate.
Rusty from Hickory, NC
As far as the Packers signing Saturday, I think they basically broke even talent-wise, but saved a few million in doing so.
It’s a no-brainer. The Packers set a limit on what they would spend to re-sign Scott Wells. When he found more money in St. Louis, Wells signed with the Rams, which left the Packers needing a veteran replacement that would buy time as they draft and develop a player at the position. The market sets the price for free agents and this market had a pretty nice supply of capable centers in it.
Steve from Hazelwood, MO
I loved Ted Thompson's moves for Saturday and Muir. I also think these moves help the draft stay focused on BAP by removing excessive need factors for these positions. What's your take, Vic?
I think that’s especially true in Saturday’s case. He extinguished immediate need; there’s no reason to reach for a center. I think the Packers would like to be in the position to draft a center and I’d be surprised if they don’t make that happen, but they don’t need to treat it as an emergency.
Jeff from Austin, TX
What is the net difference in letting Wells go and getting Saturday? Is it all about the cap?
The net difference is the Packers got a little older at the position, which means they’ll need to introduce youth to it. That’s a fact of life for draft-and-develop teams. Build through the draft, patch in free agency. I think we’ve established that model. This is no longer a game of maintenance; it’s a game of replacement. The salary cap and unfettered free agency caused that dramatic change.
Mark from Stewartville, MN
Vic, when did you know you wanted to be a sportswriter? How did you get your start and what do you consider your first big assignment?
I played sports, I have limited intelligence, it seemed like a natural progression. The first pro football story I did was a feature on a journeyman guard, a very good football player who once played for the Packers, Bruce “Moose” Van Dyke. It was in the training camp of 1972. I told this story a couple of years ago and a few days later I got an e-mail from Van Dyke, taking credit for having launched my career. I love the old guys and I always will. They really were fun.
Jon from San Diego, CA
Vic, I think it's time to break down and get a Twitter account. I like reading your opinions on things and it would be an easy way for you to tell us what you think as things progress through the day.
I’m thinking about it, but Twitter is a scary thing because once the written word is out there, you can’t take it back, and my first thoughts aren’t always my final thoughts. Yeah, I change my mind; I believe we all have the right to do that. Twitter, however, makes no allowance for it. Twitter is the ultimate gotcha and it’s gotten a lot of its users in trouble for words they’d like to take back but can’t.
Peter from Bucenec, NJ
When do the Packers find out what compensatory picks they get for this year’s draft?
It could happen today. If not today, soon.
Jerry from Des Moines, IA
Vic, in your career, which player or coach was the best interview because he was willing to talk to you and tell you what he really thought?
Joe Greene, Tony Boselli and Fred Taylor are all-time favorites of mine. Those are relationships that were established over several years. You don’t just walk into a locker room and expect everyone to bare their soul to you. The Packers are a storied team with a lot of interesting players. I hope I can establish relationships that will help me give the team’s fans a look inside the locker room.
Dale from Spokane, WA
The Saints got nailed with penalties for “Bountygate.” Why did the Patriots not get anything close to that for “Spygate?” There was no intent to injure with “Spygate,” but they were cheating and winning Super Bowls that way.
That’s a good question. Roger Goodell had only been commissioner for a year when he was confronted by “Spygate.” I can’t help but think the penalties would’ve been more significant had “Spygate” occurred now.
Ryan from Hastings, MN
Vic, you have the easiest job in the world. How do I become an “expert” like you?
That’s the tough part.
Scott from Chicago, IL
It’s amazing what a yes man you are for the Packers. If you can't see this team slipping on defense and at running back, you have blinders on. Every time Thompson blows one in the draft, like Mike Neal, he should sign an offsetting free agent.
Replace affordable draft picks with expensive free agents? Yeah, that’ll work.
Joe from Sitter, SD
With the Redskins giving up so much for RGIII, why would they risk having him work out at all during Pro Day at Baylor? What would they do if he tore up a knee?
He wasn’t working out for the Redskins; he was working out for the Colts, if you know what I mean. We’ve taken for granted that Andrew Luck will go one and RGIII will go two. What if the Colts change their minds?
Chris from Cincinnati, OH
Which addition to the defense do you think would help free up Matthews more, a good pass-rushing 3-4 end or another quick outside linebacker?
Ends are primarily run stuffers and linebackers are pass rushers in a 3-4; Clay Matthews needs a pass-rush complement that’ll take some of the pass-blocking focus away from him.
Matthew from Appleton, WI
Vic, you are at Lambeau every day, I assume, and I want to know how the construction is going and how far they’ve made it on the new giant scoreboards that are scheduled to be done for next season?
Every day, the steel seems to reach a little higher and wider. Mark Murphy has said everything is on schedule. If there’s one thing that’s apparent from the steel structure in the south end zone, it’s that the finished product truly will create a “wall” of sound at that end of the field. Lambeau Field is going to become an intimidating place to play.
Colin from Rapid City, SD
Vic, since Daniel Muir was cut by the Colts, does he still count against our compensatory draft picks for next year?
No, street free agents don’t apply toward compensatory picks consideration.
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