"Ask Vic" will publish on M-W-F during the football season.
Luke from Chippewa Falls, WI
Drop the Packers to 12, just under the real contenders. It’s symbolic of who this team is.
Doug from Union Grove, WI
The 49ers defensive front is reaping the benefits of those lowly years and high draft picks.
They did it right. They got the big guys.
Mike from Minneapolis, MN
Ugly game all around. Is it time to start looking for options other than King? He seems to be the primary coverage corner on almost all of these never-ending big plays.
I don't know what the coverage assignments were, but tight ends are usually a safety's responsibility. I saw Savage up near the line of scrimmage. Maybe that was the problem. That's just a guess.
Jerry from Savannah, GA
Vic, it seems the abundance of flags is supposedly related to player safety. What do you think?
That's the consensus opinion, but in some ways I think the game looks more dangerous than ever. I think it's because the players are so upright their vulnerability has been heightened. The penalties made last night's game difficult to watch. I just wanted it to end so I could go to bed.
Tyler from Pierre, SD
You saw this coming.
I suspected the Packers would be blindsided by the 49ers' speed. It's good for the Packers to have played this game. They'll know what to expect the next time they play the 49ers. The Packers will be better the next time.
Roger from Auburn, CA
I guess that answers the question of whether the Packers were just pretenders?
That's silly talk. The Packers have a cupcake finishing schedule, other than for the game in Minnesota. I think there's a strong chance the Packers will claim homefield advantage. If they do, they'll be the favorite to win the NFC.
Joe from Green Bay, WI
I can’t help but wonder what the offensive game plan was vs. the 49ers. Why didn’t we have plays where the ball comes out early? Too many plays where he is waiting for plays to develop against a very talented defensive line.
The plan was to mix run and pass. As for the getting the ball out early, at one point Rodgers had completed 18 passes for 98 yards. That's a little more than five yards per completion. The 49ers were flying up and dropping guys as they caught the ball. Plays weren't the problem, Joe.
Matt from Salt Lake City, UT
What concerns you most if you are the Packers after the 49ers game?
The tackles and the defense. Rodgers was sacked five times and the defense allowed 339 yards in a mere 45 plays. That's 7.5 yards per play to the Packers' 2.8. The league yardage rankings are not misleading. They tell an accurate story of a Packers defense that's soft.
Dustin from Wisconsin
Vic, you hit the nail on the head. Officiating is terrible most of the time, but the players need to be coached better. Their game plan is to cheat.
That's an interesting perspective.
Johnathan from Southern Pines, NC
I liked Tomlin's switch to Duck Hodges. I think he's a better option going forward. What say you? And can the Steelers actually make the playoffs like this?
Be thankful for what you have.
Bob from Mystic (wherever that is)
Williams would play hard down by 100 points. Who did you cover who was the best at giving all the effort in him, even in a hopeless cause?
After a loss to the Raiders in the 1976 AFC title game, Jack Lambert said, "Give me a six pack and 20 minutes and I'll go out and play them again."
Brad from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, it’s disheartening. I don’t quite know what to make of this team. They’re really not good at anything, yet, they have a number of very talented players. How do you press reset, or do you?
Pressing reset is easy to do. You fire everybody and start over. It makes the fans feel good and instantly there's new hope. How's that working for the Jets, Dolphins, Bengals, Bucs, Broncos and Cardinals?
Aiden from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, why are the Jags so bad and how can franchises be so bad for so long?
In the Jaguars' case, they passed on too many quarterbacks.
Mark from Laughlin, NV
Coughlin and the front office destroyed a great team without any sort of cap problems. No train needed for the Jaguars.
That's too harsh. They made one major mistake: not trying to upgrade at quarterback following 2017.
Bill from Hawthorn Woods, IL
Is it time for regime change in Jacksonville?
The Jaguars are 4-7. They were 4-7 in 1996 when they went on a run to the AFC title game. Who knows? If they tank, change will likely happen.
Adam from Wausau, WI
Ratings can’t be good for college football with all these blowouts. Why aren’t low ratings driving college football to change?
It's because the five power conferences won't agree to one ruling body governing them, negotiating for them and requiring them to share the wealth evenly.
Tim from Fernandina Beach, FL
Journalism schools are supposed to emphasize unbiased reporting so the reader/viewer can make their own conclusions. That obviously doesn't exist in political reporting. Have you seen changes in sports journalism toward certain biases as your career progressed?
I don't remember my journalism school emphasizing that charge. "Accuracy, accuracy, accuracy," was the charge in my first news reporting class: One car doesn't hit another, two cars collide. Measured opinion, however, has always been part of good journalism. Some publications lean right, others lean left, but they have to be able to separate themselves from their interests in their news reporting. I think the changes you view as being radical and across the line of good journalism have been driven by cable TV news and the Internet. Cable TV news has taken opinion too far because it's allowed opinion to dominate its news reporting: One car, indeed, has struck another. The Internet is the big change in the "print" media. On the click-bait sites, "AP Stylebook" rules no longer exist. They've been replaced by SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Those sites are easily identified -- a rankings story that takes you to a new page for each place in the rankings is a dead giveaway -- and I steadfastly avoid them. The Internet is the greatest invention of my lifetime, and I think we're learning how to use it responsibly. My advice to you is to identify those sites that only want your click. In any good media, the message should be the priority.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
You often talk about change needed in college football. Give me two changes you would make.
I'd blow up college football's eligibility rules. Hey, making freshman eligible in 1973 is one of the best things to happen to college football in my lifetime. How about these two eligibility changes? 1) Seek an agreement with the NFL that would allow a player to be eligible for the NFL draft at any point in the player's college career; no more waiting three years. 2) A player is eligible to play college football for as long as he wishes, provided he's a full-time student in good academic standing. The first change would help college athletic programs deal with the recent court ruling on athletes selling their names. Jim Harbaugh spoke on the subject recently and I completely agree with his free-to-leave opinion. The second change would help second-tier programs build depth so they might become competitive with top-tier programs. Why should a player who's not NFL caliber, is enrolled in grad school or any additional studies and wants to continue playing college football be denied his wish? Why is it necessary to limit a player to four years of eligibility?