"Ask Vic" is published on Monday and Thursday through the offseason.
Dru from Lehi, UT
I never liked the Smith and Smith signings only to draft Gary in the first round. Everyone knew at some point Gary would get a shot at the starting role. Well, here we are in year three and Gary needs a chance to start. The Packers will probably cut Preston Smith and eat the dead money for two years. Depending on what happens, it seems like it will be either a waste of a draft pick or money.
The dead money would only be $8 million and would result in an $8 million cap savings. It's a no-big-deal issue either way. I think we need to know what the new defensive coordinator's plans are for Gary before we decide what the Packers should do with Smith.
Justin from Delavan, WI
Could Tomlin fix Haskins?
Tomlin has the esteem and the voice to make a difference in a young man's life and career, and Matt Canada is one heckuva coach. Haskins throws the ball like a god, but something is missing in the rest of his game. I love this signing because there is no risk, only reward, and the reward could be a game-changer for the Steelers.
Roger from Glen Falls, NY
The Jags shed many good players and thus gained draft picks. They will use the picks to draft many good players. Can this strategy be repeated over time? Can it be successful? Just trying to understand.
It's not a strategy as much as it is an option made possible by the combined forces of failure and the inverse-order draft. Bert Bell was a genius.
Mark from United Kingdom
Just read a great article on the Oilers of the late seventies. Can you give me a line on Bum Phillips, Robert Brazile (L.T. before L.T.), Earl Campbell and the Oilers team at that time.
They knocked on the door. The 1978 Steelers-Oilers Luv Ya Blue game is one of the most memorable and intense football games I ever covered. I can still hear the pom-poms swishing.
Joe from Milwaukee, WI
Please describe Earl Campbell's running in as many words as you'd like.
Thundering speed and grace.
Bob from Green Bay, WI
Do you think the Packers should carry three QBs on the roster next season?
Love will make it unnecessary or we'll have our answer on Love.
John from Sioux Falls, SD
Vic, I know this would never happen but wouldn’t all the cap stuff be so much easier if both sides agreed to salary only?
First-year and guaranteed salaries would explode.
Max from Logan, UT
Who would you take between Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson?
If the Jaguars drafted Wilson No. 1 overall, he failed and Lawrence became a star somewhere else, the franchise would have to be moved to London as a means of escape.
Rob from Superior, WI
Maybe it’s time for the Packers to change their core identity and be new again? Pass, pass, pass with the league MVP didn’t get it done at crunch time.
Or they could change their name to the Leopards.
Ben from Vestal, NY
Which tough, talented and approaching long in the tooth lineman would you rather have, Linsley or Watt?
Linsley is the better player, but the Packers have his replacement in Jenkins, which means they can avoid a big cap hit without suffering a performance hit at the position. That's today's game. It's a game of replacement.
Sal from Mullica Hill, NJ
I saw someone compare Urban Meyer to another former Gators coach, Steve Spurrier. Seemed like Spurrier was more of a system coach who couldn't adapt to the NFL game. Is that part of the reason Spurrier struggled in the NFL and is Meyer in danger of having similar problems?
Spurrier was way in over his head. I remember Jim Haslett mocking Spurrier's celebrated "Fun and Gun" scheme with a kind of "Is this all there is?" remark. Spurrier's scheme was laughable and he was lazy, coming to work late and leaving early. His teams were beaten before Sunday because he was out-worked. He brought back Gators stars as though they were going to wave a magic wand and winning would happen. I remember watching Danny Wuerffel throw a series of college-like bubble screens and I felt embarrassment for Spurrier. Then came the duck lips moment and, at that point, it was only a matter of time before Spurrier would go back to college football, where he could fast talk his way through recruiting and schedule a patsy or a bye week ahead of the few tough games on his schedule. I remember doing a conference call with Spurrier before a Washington-Jaguars game. He was talking that college corn pone crap and reporters began walking out of the room. Compare Meyer to Spurrier? I hope not.
Eric from Lansing, MI
Vic, you say "nothing beats young and on the rise." The only two times Green Bay won the Super Bowl in the last 53 years, they were young and on the rise. Isn't that an argument for starting over rather than all in?
I've already lost that argument.
Dave from Chippewa Falls, WI
A question in response to your Monday response on Roethlisberger’s 2021 extreme cap hit (and what happened in Indy with Manning): Why do teams and players agree to have this financial jumping off point in the contract?
It's how teams wind down a quarterback's dead money. The Patriots did it with Brady and now the Steelers are doing it with Roethlisberger.
Scott from Lake Greenwood, SC
You wake up tomorrow morning as GM of the Green Bay Packers, exactly as they sit today. You have full control of players, coaches and cap. All in?
I think it might be the smart thing to do, but it's just not me. Ted Thompson was fond of saying his father was a frugal man. My father bought stick shifts.
Tony from Cary, NC
What would keep the Packers from putting the franchise tag on Aaron Jones and then trading him for a first or second-rounder? This would give the Packers a higher draft pick than they would get in a compensatory pick. It would also give the other team exclusive rights to work out a long-term deal with Jones and not get into a bidding war.
For starters, putting the franchise tag on Jones would require the Packers to cap that amount of money when the league year begins. That's a tall task. No. 2, the Packers couldn't trade Jones unless he signed the tender, and he's not going to sign the tender. No. 3, even if he signed the tender, I doubt you could get a one or two for him, and then you'd be stuck with the franchise tag money guaranteed. Today's game is a game of replacement. Move on.
William from Thornton, CO
In the titles vs. body of work criteria, how would calling the plays fit in? As Starr did?
As Unitas did? As Bradshaw did? It counts.
Samuel from Jacksonville, FL
How would the NFL look if draft order was reversed from best to worst?
The best teams would trade their picks to the worst teams so they could draft quarterbacks. The best teams would use the extra picks to get deeper and better, but the cap would eventually catch up to them. The big difference would be the best teams would stay young longer, which means their time at the top would be extended.