"Ask Vic" will publish on M-W-F through the football season.
Dave from Madison, WI
I’m happy for the win but also feel a little guilty because of the hands-to-the-face penalties. Help me come to terms with this win, Vic. How bad were those two calls?
Here's what bothers me the most: Officials are supposed to call them as they see them. Well, how could they have seen it if it didn't happen? What those two bad calls tell me is the officials are looking for violations. Instead of just watching the action, they're imagining the action. Monday night's crew "saw" violations that didn't occur but completely missed an obvious 13-men-in-the-formation violation; too many rules, too many penalties. The league is ruining the game for a lot of fans. For the first time in my life, I find myself wanting to not watch. It's almost as though I know what's going to happen: One team will get a big lead, the other will make a furious passes-only rally at the end, and an officiating controversy will be the topic of the week. By the way, if the league really cares about player safety, it needs to get rid of the onside kick. That play in Sunday night's game was chilling.
Chris from Lexington, KY
Chris to refs: The face is the front of the head. It's the thing that can eat and watch TV at the same time.
Comedy is the best cure for angst.
Stephen from Menominee, MI
I'm outraged, angered, incensed, infuriated, offended, affronted ... I'm displeased, if you will. I need a Tylenol, a Jack Daniels, full consistency and a new thesaurus. I need heads to roll, skulls to brandish, goats to scape. I want all these things and I want them now, or so help me! Is there no one to ally my despair?
I just bang my head against the wall. You know why? Because it feels so good when I stop.
Matt from Newport News, VA
We've heard a lot about Aaron Jones this season, but what do you think of Jamaal Williams as a back, especially after his performance on Monday night?
Williams is the pounder, Jones is the change-of-pace back. McCarthy had Jones cast accurately. He just needed a pounder. Williams is emerging in that role.
Casey from York, PA
And there are your unjustified hands-to-the-face penalties.
We just talked about this. Sometimes this column is spooky.
Rich from Apple Valley, MN
If the facemask is not removed from the helmet, football will not survive. Thoughts?
If there were no facemasks, Tracy Walker wouldn't have attempted to make that interception and there would've been no controversial penalty. The action wouldn't be as intense but the game wouldn't be as dangerous or its future threatened. Tommy McDonald is in the Hall of Fame but he couldn't play in today's game. What does that say about the role the facemask is playing in today's game?
Tony from Colorado Springs, CO
Start the bidding at two number ones? Looks like GM Vic was spot on with Ramsey going to the Rams for two ones and a four.
This trade will launch the Jaguars to greatness.
Jim from New Berlin, WI
If a player causes helmet-to-helmet contact, he should face immediate ejection and loss of pay for that fraction of the game, even if the contact was incidental. Time to clean up the game; too much liability.
That approach isn't the cure. The league is trying too hard to clean up the game and that's why we're all suffering this weekly officiating angst. The game can't be cleaned up by penalties, fines and suspensions; they just worsen the problem. Don't try to change the culture, change the game. In my mind, there are only two ways to cure what the league is trying to fix by calling penalties: Take off the facemask or slow down the game. More penalties are not the answer. The league is obsessed with eliminating helmet-to-helmet contact, but the problem has never been worse. I can't remember a time in the '70's players were knocked unconscious on consecutive weekends. Vic to league: It's not working; do something else.
Samantha from Marion, IA
What did you think of Booger McFarland’s comments about the hands to the face calls at the end of the Packers-Lions game? I couldn’t help but feel the announcers need to stop opining so much and just commentate on the game action.
Booger won my respect on Monday night. He had the courage to tell it like it is, and he did so with passion and resolve. He called out the league. In my mind, Booger said "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore." Good for him! I loved the way he got in John Parry's face. Parry immediately sprang to the defense of the calls but Booger would have none of it. Booger was speaking to all of the NFL officials and to the league when he ripped those calls, and he was also speaking for all of us. He backed Parry down and I loved it. I can't think of another broadcaster who would've done what Booger did. He was pure truth and I applaud his performance. By the way, how about his "Wanda" call and explanation? Great stuff, Booger.
Max from Milwaukee, WI
Ugly game for officiating. What would you say to Lions fans?
I would say this to all fans: If football is causing you unhappiness, and these officiating gaffes are doing that to millions of Americans, then step away from the game for awhile. Don't let something as meaningless as a football game cause you despair. It's just a football game. Don't make it your problem, make it the NFL's problem.
Offense, defense rankings
Here are the Week 7 "Ask Vic" all-important power rankings:
1. Patriots -- At Jets could be interesting.
2. 49ers -- Likely to remain undefeated through October.
3. Saints -- Strong coaching job by Payton.
4. Seahawks -- Wilson leading resurgence.
5. Packers -- It's all going their way.
6. Vikings -- Cousins on fire!
7. Ravens -- Jackson makes them unique.
8. Colts -- Big game against Texans coming up.
9. Texans -- Finally!
10. Eagles -- Best in the NFC East.
11. Chiefs -- Defense is bathroom tissue.
12. Panthers -- How far can Allen take them?
13. Rams -- Can McVay right the ship?
14. Bills -- Bye followed by Dolphins.
15. Bears -- Season might be on the line vs. Saints.
*16. Lions -- They were robbed.
17. Raiders -- At Packers and then at Texans.
18. Cowboys -- Must-win game vs. Eagles.
19. Browns -- Did they pick the wrong quarterback?
20. Steelers -- Watt, Bush young stars.
21. Jaguars -- Surely they'll beat the Bengals.
22. Broncos -- Beginning to play Fangio football.
23. Titans -- Enough is enough.
24. Chargers -- A very sad display.
25. Bucs -- Winston's time might be nearing an end.
26. Giants -- Jones vs. Murray.
27. Cardinals -- Not awful.
28. Jets -- Darnold brings them to life.
29. Falcons -- Inexplicably bad.
30. Washington -- Waiting for the season to end.
31. Bengals -- Trade everybody.
32. Dolphins -- Played hard in narrow loss.
*Were cheated in one game.