"Ask Vic" will publish on Mondays and Thursdays through the offseason.
Kelvin from Kenilworth, UK
Vic, how is it that once again we see the Patriots prepared to let players walk at the same time many teams seem to be overly concerned at keeping everyone through use of the franchise tag and top-dollar contract extensions. Why is this lesson not learned after nigh on 20 years of New England bucking the trend and being successful?
The Patriots are the best at replacing talent, and this is very definitely a game of replacement. Bill Belichick's true genius is his ability to identify affordable players that can execute specific roles, and then fit those players into a design built around Tom Brady. Why doesn't every team do that? Because they don't have Belichick and Brady. I've been over this a million times. When I covered the Steelers, no player on their Super Bowl XIV championship team had ever played on any team other than the Steelers. Why didn't other teams build a roster the same way? Because they didn't have Chuck Noll, Art Rooney Jr. and the Steelers' commitment to home-grown talent. Just because one team can do it doesn't mean every team can do it. Be creative. Be unique. I'm tired of this obsession with the Patriots. Vic to everyone else: Stop whining and beat them!
John from Fitchburg, WI
"I'll wait for a verdict on this subject. Once the truth is clear, and if it's bad, I won't hold back." Two separate videos with Kraft, and laid out in graphic detail by police reports, aren't enough of a verdict for you? And Jussie is also not guilty? Please stop with the "innocent until proven guilty" that is reserved for the court systems and not people with a brain.
Mike from Fort Wayne, IN
Vic, I was looking at some scouting reports for edge rushers the Packers may be interested in. What does tight hips and no bend mean?
He's a stiff.
Anthony from Milwaukee, WI
Of your time covering the Packers, is there any player they released or you feel they didn’t attempt to resign that left you scratching your head? Anyone they signed that left you in disbelief?
Jeff Saturday is the only one. I know they wanted insurance at the position and the contract was cap friendly, but it kind of felt like welfare for the rich. Saturday was over the hill and the signing was unnecessary. Look how easily the Packers were able to address the center position with Corey Linsley.
Kirsten from Madison, WI
If you have "The Man," as the Packers clearly do, how good on average does the rest of the team have to be in order to be championship caliber? On a scale of 1-10, I'd say the Packers average a 5-6, with a few eights in the ranks. Clearly that wasn't nearly enough last season, but if Rodgers is playing at "The Man" level, do you think that'd be sufficient?
I think you can win with a roster that averages to a seven, maybe even a six if your quarterback stands on his head. Eights? I don't think even Aaron Rodgers played to an eight last season. I think the Packers roster averaged out to a four.
Bill from Good Villbell, Germany
Vic, if the verdict is bad, would you consider an asterisk next to massage?
Instead of "cheated in one game," it would be "had illicit sex before one game?"
Monty from Seattle, WA
In regards to Kraft, I agree a full opinion can't be properly formed until the evidence is released, however, I find it implausible a man of such great resources didn't know exactly what he was purchasing.
Some men wake up on Sunday morning and take their family out to brunch. Others get a massage in Miami from young, captive Asian women and then fly to Kansas City to watch a football game.
Spencer from Wrightsville Beach, NC
In what ways have your views on society changed from when you were a young adult to now? Do you think you have changed in material ways or, conversely, have your views from early adulthood been cemented and validated by your experiences throughout your life?
I've softened with age, the result of having witnessed my increasing unimportance and frailty. Cancer and a couple of heart attacks will back you off the plate. I don't take myself nearly as serious as I did when I was young and of immense significance. I'm calmer now knowing I don't matter. I feel peaceful, loving.
Dale from Palmyra, NE
I've been reading and enjoying your writing for several years. I have a much greater understanding of football due to "Ask Vic." More importantly, my wife and I are getting on in years and nearing retirement. When she asked me what retirement will be like, I quoted you: "When you stop being new, you start getting old." It's become her new mantra. Thank you.
I'm remodeling my house and I'm doing all kinds of new things, such as eating my meals in the bedroom and using a refrigerator that's parked in the middle of the living room. I'm writing this column with the laptop "mouse" perched on the arm rest of the chair. When this is over, I think I want to be old for a while.
Tim from Madison, WI
In the spirit of the NFL combine, who is the most impressive athlete you ever covered?
Brice from Vancouver, BC
If you were Arizona's GM, what would you do with the first overall pick?
Steve from Lake Stevens, WA
If it was your job to do so, how would you approach your evaluation of a player like Montez Sweat in the draft? He has obvious athletic gifts, but also some off-the-field issues that put his character into question. Personally, I like defensive players who aren't choirboys.
You do your homework, talk to his coaches, and then you look him in the eye and you ask him if you can depend on him. You listen to the answer and make your decision. It comes down to that. There are examples of hits and there are examples of misses, but isn't that what the draft is, a series of hits and misses? I think you have to ask yourself this question: Would I be acting responsibly to bring this person into my team's community? Putting a million dollars into a man's pocket doesn't usually make him a better person.
John from Peoria, IL
The Vikings extended Zimmer through 2020. I guess that makes me feel a little more secure they won't hire Mike McCarthy after 2019. OK, not much more secure.
For whom the horn blows. It blows for thee.
Connor from Greenville, SC
How did the Patriots win six Super Bowls with a QB with a lower career postseason passer rating than Blake Bortles, Mark Sanchez and Alex Smith?
Passer rating? How about crunch time rating? Brady gets it done when it counts.
Ben from Chicago, IL
Vic, a while back you said you would wait and see on Kyler Fackrell. What is your current thinking on his pass-rush abilities?
He flashed against the Seahawks, but then disappeared again. He strikes me as a quiet kind of pass rusher. The Packers need a noisy one.
Kabir from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
Does a runner like Le'Veon Bell require different blocking schemes compared to a standard one-cut runner? His hesitation move seems to force blockers to hold longer.
I think he fits best with a pass-blocking offensive line. He's a draw runner who hesitates and bounces. He's not a pounder. I thought the Steelers got soft up front as a result of Bell's style of running. They couldn't convert short yardage with any regularity. They became a stand-and-punch front, and I think that's because it favored Bell's style of running. Pouncey and DeCastro are powerful, mobile run blockers. I thought their talents were largely wasted with Bell in the backfield. The Steelers got back some of their natural personality last season, and they need to continue that pursuit.
Mike from Bridgeport, CT
A lot of buzz about Kyler Murray being the first overall pick of the 2019 draft, while I imagine there are teams who don't even have him on their board due to his height. Would you have him on your board and, if so, where?
I don't have a problem with his lack of height. I don't like his long throwing motion. I wouldn't have a first-round grade on him.
Dan from Madison, WI
Mock drafts can’t decide what the Packers' biggest need is. Looks like the football world is coming to a consensus about your belief the Packers have a weak roster. Will the fan base take the hint?
No. I had Packers fans in my inbox who wanted a first-round pick for Vic So'oto.