"Ask Vic" is published on Monday and Thursday through the offseason.
Benjamin from Albuquerque, NM
Does GM Vic trade Rodgers? Or force him to retire?
I spoke my mind in advance of this issue. Everybody knows where I stood, so I'll update my position according to the most recent developments and then try to move on because I don't want it to become the only subject matter in this column. It was easy to see this coming. Aaron Rodgers is not a let-it-go kind of guy. We're talking about a man who's still bitter about falling as low as he did in the 2005 draft. The Love pick, especially trading up to draft him, was the proverbial glove across the face. The Packers had to know how Rodgers would react. I refuse to believe Brian Gutekunst picked Love without the approval of Murphy and LaFleur; it's too big to be a one-man act. Now, the Packers have a mess on their hands and I don't know how they can get out of it without giving Rodgers a new contract, and that's problematic because it would explode his potential dead money and devastate future caps. Trade him and plunge into rebuilding? After giving big contracts to Bakhtiari and Jones, restructuring and pushing money out? Also, I have to believe Rodgers' trade value isn't what it was prior to the draft. A record number of quarterbacks were selected. The supply of teams willing to trade for Rodgers has been greatly reduced, and the Packers' position has been weakened. The whole thing has been botched and I can't think of a way for the Packers to clean up this mess without taking a hit. They rushed into the last contract with Rodgers and now they almost have to rush into another one just to make this problem go away. If they don't calm these waters, the distraction they've created will become the Packers' greatest opponent. My inbox is jammed with angst on this subject. It's difficult to find other subject matter on which to write this column. Picking Love without the commitment to move on was a big mistake and it's going to cost the Packers a lot of money. They need to give Rodgers a new contract.
Tom from Eau Claire, WI
I’ll be curious to see how Stokes turns out compared to the three edge rushers that immediately followed him in the draft. I just can’t understand how the Packers continue to value cover over rush.
This was clearly a needs draft for the Packers. I regard the Stokes pick to be a little bit of a reach, and it suggests to me the Packers agree with their fans who believe the Packers were one player away (a cornerback) last season. The Myers pick directly addresses the issue at center. It's as though the Packers picked Corey Linsley again. Amari Rodgers is the slot receiver the Packers needed. He's Randall Cobb II. Three of the next four picks are big guys, sandwiching another cornerback. Then comes the obligatory inside linebacker, followed by a running back to replace Jamaal Williams. The Packers addressed every need they had. if you want to find a positive in this draft class, there it is: The Packers have no needs; they are complete.
Steve from Lake Stevens, WA
You've mentioned the flipping of the hips, and I read Tony Pauline doesn't think Eric Stokes does this off the line. Is it something that can be corrected?
A cornerback who can't turn his hips is easily remedied by moving him to safety, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. Stokes is a press corner. He's a big, strong guy who's known to jam receivers at the line of scrimmage, so you don't see a lot of hips-flipping in his game. The concern for Stokes is he won't get away with his bump-and-run style in the NFL; he'll be penalized out of it. Brian Gutekunst has to believe Stokes' skills can be NFLized or Gutekunst wouldn't have drafted him in the first round.
Lance from Lincoln, NE
Like the leaves changing in the fall, another hilarious pick by the Jags. Nothing like using a first-rounder on a third-down back. No doubting the talent, but Trevor is an adult now. He doesn't need a security blanket.
Travis Etienne is a complete player and he'll evolve into that role in time. Trevor Lawrence is now the face of the franchise. The Jaguars need to get him success ASAP. Etienne will give Lawrence a degree of comfort that'll help ease his transition to the NFL.
Ann from Mountain View, CA
Now that the draft has concluded, what do Green Bay’s picks tell you about what we might see next season on offense and defense as compared to last year?
The Florida defensive tackle is a pure hold-the-point plug. If that type of player had been picked in the first round, it would tell me the Packers were going to play more four-man fronts and Kenny Clark was going to be used as a three-technique tackle, but I can't jump to that conclusion based on a fifth-round pick. On offense, I see no big shift.
Zach from Chicago, IL
At almost every position, players watch their potential replacements get drafted almost every year. Why is there an expectation QBs are treated differently?
They're treated differently because they define eras, and you don't begin the next era until you're ready to end the current one. Shouldn't the Packers have learned that lesson with Favre/Rodgers?
Jared from Rigby, ID
Vic, when should the Packers start responding with "Aaron who?"
Stand firm? It's an option.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
Please evaluate your three teams' drafts.
I've already weighed in on the Packers. The Jaguars made the pick everyone expected, and then gave him a weapon with which he is familiar. Their next three picks don't excite me. My favorite scout friend told me the Georgia corner is long on measurables but short on production. The Stanford tackle and Syracuse safety are needs reaches. Tufele is outstanding value and he'll give the Jaguars energy and verve on defense. In my opinion, the Jaguars didn't get enough out of the picks they had. The Steelers had a theme draft. The theme is: Run the ball. The lynchpin to that theme is the third-round guard, a drive-blocker who can move the line of scrimmage. I was told the Steelers intend to move him to center. My favorite Steelers pick is the smallish Texas A&M linebacker. He's a classic run-and-hit tough guy. The Steelers held off on selecting a quarterback. They're not ready to end the Roethlisberger era just yet. Rudolph and Haskins will be given a chance to prove they can replace Roethlisberger.
Pat from Sun Prairie, WI
We can't excuse horrible behavior just because the person acting that way is somehow exceptional.
It's professional football. It's about the money. It's the excuse for everything.
Bill from Fort Worth, TX
Rodgers to the Bears. We could probably get eight first-round picks and the mineral rights to Soldier Field, and he’d come to realize things weren’t so bad in Green Bay.
The Bears picked a quarterback. They wouldn't want Rodgers. That's how bad this has gotten.
Richard from Truckee, CA
Did the Vikings get a steal?
I talked about liking Jaylen Twyman and how he could become one of those opt-out mistakes. He's perfectly cast as a penetrate-and-disrupt tackle in Mike Zimmer's defense. I love the Vikings' draft. They got an underrated quarterback, major help for their offensive line, and two playmakers in North Carolina linebacker Chazz Surratt and Pitt pass rusher Patrick Jones.
Dan from Minneapolis, MN
Vic, I am submitting this to ensure you have a clean question to respond to regarding the Rodgers situation. What do you think is the reality of the situation, and what do you think is the likely outcome?
I think the Packers will give Rodgers a new contract, and the next controversy will be what to do with Love.
Hugh from Sioux Falls, SD
Vic, how much of the draft do you actually watch?
I stayed away from the TV this year. I wanted my take on this draft to be original.