"Ask Vic" is published on M-W-F through the regular season.
Scott from Hamlin, NY
Aaron Rodgers fails to put the games away, yet, again. In the process, he saves the Bengals two timeouts.
You're nitpicking. Rodgers played well and made the one more play at crunch time that needed to be made.
Brad from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, I’m watching growth but it’s hard. When your best player touches the ball five times in the second half, then isn’t even on the field for the most important drive of the game, someone has to answer for that. Then, saying your quarterback "isn’t quite comfortable" with the QB sneak, and for the QB to then say he’s got no problem with it? Is this the losing of the locker room?
Don't worry about losing the locker room. That's a minor detail. Brad, the Jaguars have lost 20 games in a row. What would it hurt to lose that locker room? The issue is knowing what has to be done to fix that franchise. Shad Khan hasn't been able to do it. Khan can't fix the problem because he is the problem. That's the overwhelming issue. I have it on good information Khan has $50 million invested in executive salaries on the football side of the franchise, and not even a man of Khan's wealth swallows that pill gracefully, but even that is a minor issue compared to the lack of football acumen and leadership in that franchise. Who can be trusted to craft a recovery plan? Maybe Khan needs to turn to the league office for advice.
Tim from Denver, CO
The Browns defense forced a team to score. I am at a loss for words. We are beyond basketball on turf. This is ludicrous.
Take a knee at the one and let it all ride on a kick on a day of missed kicks, or score and play defense? It remains an intriguing question. Coach Noll wouldn't even take a safety when it was clearly the right thing to do. He said he just couldn't force himself to score points for the other team.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
What changed for Roethlisberger?
He was sacked one time and he got balance in the running game. The combination allowed him to find open receivers. Roethlisberger and Najee Harris were the stars of the game for the Steelers. It sure wasn't the defense, which nearly blew a three-touchdown lead in the fourth quarter. As I wrote last week, Harris has to lead any rally the Steelers make. It begins with the run in Pittsburgh. It especially has to be that way when your quarterback is 39 and lacks the ability to extend plays, as he once did.
Will from Salt Lake, UT
I've heard rumors of Rodgers going to the Steelers after he and Mike Tomlin exchanged smiles last week. For fun, what would it take for Rodgers to go to the Steelers?
The Steelers don't need to replace one 39-year-old quarterback with another one. The Steelers need to find a young quarterback around whom they can build their teams of the future.
Fabio from London, UK
Putting aside Crosby’s drama, a good win and an uplifting performance from defense in crunch moments. However, should we be concerned about the constant softness in conceding touchdowns in the red zone?
You shouldn't be concerned with anything right now. The Packers will breeze to the division title. Concern begins in December. That's when the Packers need to be playing their best football so they can be a hot team for the playoffs. This whole season is about the postseason. The regular season is a warmup. You know that.
Min-shik from Seoul, South Korea
Now Rodgers has a national commercial poking fun at his Jeopardy flirtation. Where does the passive aggressiveness end with this man?
It's professional football; it's about the money.
Travis from McCordsville, IN
Stokes had a tough rookie matchup with Chase today. What did you see between those two?
Stokes is a press man coverage corner. It invites the deep ball and at his tender age he needs help over the top; with Alexander out both corners need help over the top. Yeah, that's cover two and it requires being able to stop the run with seven, but I think that's the way it has to be for now.
Dan from Ormond Beach, FL
You seem to have some strong feelings as to who would potentially be a good leader for the Jaguars. Would Byron Leftwich be on your short list?
Byron was mistreated by Jaguars fans when he was the team's quarterback. They mocked everything about him, from the way he threw the ball to the way he talked. He wouldn't be a good fit to coach the Jaguars because I fear he'd get the same treatment again. He can do better and he deserves better.
Ed from Danvers, MA
Shad Khan admitted 5-6 years ago he didn't know what he was doing and had ceded too much of the team's operation to others. He then wisely hired a knowledgeable NFL veteran in Tom Coughlin to run the team. Didn't Coughlin then destroy that developing 2017 powerhouse team and GM David Caldwell along with it? What went wrong there?
Whoa! Powerhouse team? It was a fluke. As for having hired Coughlin, I wanted to believe Tom would somehow be different, but deep down I knew it wouldn't end well. "Tom is as he's always been. What did Shad Khan think he was hiring? As a manager of personnel, Tom always had a tendency to be impulsive," I wrote in December of 2019. "Tom is an incurable now person and I think that's an acceptable personality trait for a coach, but not for a director of personnel, especially in the salary cap era. Khan should've hired Tom to be the coach and given him a GM who would help manage Tom's passion and drive. He needed someone to tell him no."
Mike from McFarland, WI
If the Packers make it to the postseason and I'm the opposing coach, I'd dare the Packers to run it on every play. There's no way Aaron's ego could be held in check for an entire game to not throw it.
That's how the Titans beat the Jaguars in the 1999 AFC title game. The Jaguars were gashing the Titans with the run, but the Titans kept playing pass and then Mark Brunell threw an interception when the Jaguars were on the doorstep of blowing the Titans out, and the Jaguars' lead and resolve began to unravel. They played right into the Titans' game plan. I remember heading downstairs in the final moments of the game and hearing then Titans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams gleefully proclaim he knew the Jaguars wouldn't stick to the run. Fourteen years later, former Jaguars defensive lineman Renaldo Wynn said the Jaguars lost that game because Williams knew the Jaguars' game plan and had their playbook. Wynn claims Williams made that boast when Wynn played for Williams in Washington. Having covered Williams when he was the Jaguars' defensive coordinator, I can see him making that boast ambiguously. It was the same boast I heard him make in the final moments of that game. Did he physically have the Jaguars' game plan, or was he merely celebrating himself. Williams was very self-promotional. It got him a head job.
Jack from Jacksonville, FL
If the Jaguars were 2-2 instead of 0-4, would anybody be talking about Urban Meyer?
When a coach stays behind following a heartbreaking, devastating defeat for an R&R pinch and tickle weekend, and gets caught on video doing it, it's going to be news. Why are you not angry?
Josh from Severna Park, MD
Vic, I’ve got a lot of anger right now.
Eric from Hudson, WI
Super smart GM Vic wanted to trade Rodgers for draft picks before the year started. The Packers are now 4-1. Does super smart GM Vic care to guess what their record would be without Rodgers?
I was willing to commit this season to rebuilding, in exchange for a cap cleansing and a haul of draft picks that would launch the Packers into the next era of Packers football more quickly and painlessly than I would otherwise expect. I think I made that clear. At no time did I suggest a change at quarterback would make the Packers a better team this season.
Oliver from Aarhus, Denmark
I have a funny feeling you despise the Chiefs' pre-snap shenanigans, or is it just win, baby?
Soft as a baby's bottom.
Ben from Alameda, CA
What did you think of Burrow's 70-yard touchdown pass? The announcers talked about how great of a connection he has with his receiver, and that it was a great pass. My eyes said it was lucky the ball wasn't knocked away or intercepted. I am confused. Is it just my Packers bias?
Was it lucky for the Packers the 49ers left 37 seconds on the clock? That Chase Claypool wasn't running those two go routes instead of JuJu Smith-Schuster or that the Steelers were flagged for offside on the blocked kick? That the Bengals also missed kicks? The Packers are locked in a run of luck. Be thankful.
Kape from London, UK
Is crying in a press conference an emotional trigger for the team to step up? Or would players consider it a weakness?
The players might rally around that kind of display, but it's not an example of the kind of stable personality I've come to associate with strong leadership. I would've felt uncomfortable covering that press conference. I acknowledge the possibility I am emotionally damaged.