"Ask Vic" will publish on Monday and Thursday through the offseason.
Ben from Alameda, CA
The Titans extended Tannehill, $118 million over four years. How does a QB you don't trust to throw a lot get that kind of money?
When I saw the deal, Blake Bortles immediately came to mind. It's not that I think the Titans were a fluke last season, it's that they might be making the mistake of thinking they've arrived, which is the mistake the 2018 Jaguars made. It's a ridiculous contract that'll pay Tannehill salaries of $24.5 million and $29 million in years two and three of the deal, and is likely to guarantee that money before the Titans can get out of the contract. The Titans immediately become a candidate for my disappointment team of the year.
Alex from Orlando, VA
Vic, did the Jags make the right decision to trade Calais Campbell for a fifth-round pick?
The Jaguars are in full rebuild mode and I like getting picks for players I either don't want or will be too old to be of value when the rebuild is complete. I'm OK with the deal. It gives the Jaguars more draft capital and, at this point, I think they've got the picks to do something very dramatic. Here's what concerns me: If rebuilding means extended losing, will the accompanying empty seats further cast doubt on the Jaguars' future in Jacksonville?
Scott from Hamlin, NY
Who got the better deal for Foles?
It amazes me the Jaguars were able to dump Foles' contract on the Bears. It's a game-changing trade for the Jaguars' salary cap and it allows them to consider all options at quarterback and proceed with a rebuild dedicated to young talent and the wealth of draft capital the Jaguars have to acquire that talent. The Bears? They're collecting broken pieces.
Randy from Medicine Hat, AB
When did your family first purchase a color TV set? What was the first televised football game you saw in color?
It wasn't until the late '60's and it had to have been at a friend's house because my parents didn't own a color TV until after I left for college. We had an old black and white Magnavox in the basement, which had become somewhat my personal hideaway for watching sports.
Patrick from Indianapolis, IN
Vic, what does the Packers' relatively cautious/quiet approach to free agency thus far tell you (if anything) about the team's plans, what they think of their roster, how they view their Aaron Rodgers window, etc.?
At this point, it tells me the Packers aren't willing to wreck their salary cap to go all in on the Rodgers window, and they believe they can address their needs in the draft and what remains of free agency. That opinion could change dramatically with a couple of pricey free-agent signings, but that's the way I'm reading it as it stands right now.
Dan from Waupun, WI
Do you have a vaccine for Bill O'Brien?
Why does he need a vaccine? He doesn't appear to be suffering from wide receiver fever.
Steve from Burlington, VT
Isn't QB, WR, WR again and WR yet again the premium positions in Green Bay?
Fever! in the morning, fever all through the night.
Tony from Burbank, CA
The Vikings traded Stefon Diggs and a seventh-round pick to the Bills for a first, fifth, sixth and 2021 fourth. I think the Vikings did very well for a position that's a dime a dozen. What do you think?
I feel sad for the Bills. The Vikings? It could be a game-changer for them.
Griff from Ashwaubenon, WI
What’s your assessment of free agency leaguewide so far?
A lot of real money and salary cap space was wasted on marginal talent. Regret will dominate.
Casey from York, PA
Is Christian Kirksey a run-and-hit piece the Packers defense is missing?
Your expectations are too high. I think he should be viewed as a player who's being given a chance to prove he can avoid injury and fill a role. The Packers signed him to a nothing contract that can be exited without a whimper. Kirksey is a value signing with almost downside risk.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
What are your thoughts on the Packers signing Rick Wagner?
Coach Noll said you don't build from the waiver wire. Using that logic, I think it's sensible to say you don't win your division title by signing rejects from the other teams in the division, but these are different times. I'm going to use Wagner (cut by the Lions) and Jimmy Graham (signed by the Bears after being cut by the Packers) to provide an answer that can be applied to all such players: Find in them a role they can perform and for which you have need, and then sign them to a contract that reflects the value of that role. The Packers have done that with Wagner.
Kyle from Wallingford, PA
Do you hear a train in the distance heading to Green Bay?
No. As I've written, the "train" is all about contract restructuring because it's difficult to wreck the future without restructuring contracts and pushing out money. Will the Packers restructure contracts to make a splash in free agency? So far, they appear to be taking the frugal route.
Amit from LaCrosse, WI
You mentioned covering the Steelers for 23 years and then you moved to Jacksonville to cover the Jaguars. Afterwards, you moved to cover the Packers. Can I ask why you switched to covering different teams? What were the circumstances that made you move from the Steelers to the Jaguars and then finally to Green Bay before you decided to retire?
Warren Buffett said if you're Bobby Fischer, you only ever play chess for money.
Roger from Auburn, CA
Vic, it looks like the Packers settled for lower priced/lower grade free agents at both the offensive tackle and linebacker positions. What does this tell you about the Packers' direction at this point?
It appears the Packers have returned to their true DNA. Wagner and Kirksey were released by their teams prior to the start of free agency, and that means neither player will count against the Packers in comp pick consideration.
Chris from Cincinnati, OH
With Brady apparently headed to Tampa, this feels more like Unitas going to the Chargers than Montana going to the Chiefs. Your thoughts?
I don't agree. Tom Brady is going to a Bucs team that can become the new power in the NFC South. I don't know how much Brady has left in the tank, but his coach is an astute offensive mind and I have no doubt he has a plan for getting the most out of what Brady has left. If anything, Brady going to the Bucs reminds me of Favre going to the Vikings.
Will from Julian, CA
What do the Bears/Giants see in Jimmy Graham/Blake Martinez the Packers don't? Aren't they saying they don't think the Packers used them properly and they will?
Or it says the Bears and Giants have spent their money unwisely. Free agency is often a trap for fools. We shall see.
Mark from Madison, WI
Would you be willing to write more columns during these peculiar times?
I hadn't planned on it, but these are extraordinary times and I'm getting a lot of emails from readers who are seeking entertainment in a sportsless culture. I'll consider expanding the column.