"Ask Vic" will publish on M-W-F through the football season.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
What are your thoughts on the Packers-Cowboys game?
The Packers were ready to play, the Cowboys weren't. The Packers were focused and prepared. They dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. They blocked, tackled and covered. Rodgers and Jones were an overwhelming 1-2 punch. I saw no weakness in the Packers' play, other than for sloppy defense late in the game that allowed the final score to be closer than the game actually was. The Cowboys? They didn't show up until it was too late to do anything about it. Prescott threw the ball all over the building. His first interception should've been a touchdown. Both lines were a sieve. The Cowboys fell so far behind they had to abandon the run, which is their strength. They punted poorly and kicked from placement even worse. If I was Jerry Jones, Jason Garrett would officially be on the hot seat. Lazy play is something I will not tolerate.
Stirling from Nashville, TN
Vic, it feels strange to say that was a defensive win. I guess I like it better than letting someone just run it down our throats all day.
That's not the kind of game I was hoping to see. I wanted to see something a little closer to the vest and hard-fought. I wanted to see if the Packers could stop the run. Instead, what I saw was another one of those wild games that have been the Packers' identity through the Rodgers era. The league loves it and so does TV, but I'm not a fan of it. I guess the trauma of the 2014 NFC title game still exists in me.
Brent from Dubuque, IA
Just win, baby. Right?
Yep. Whatever it takes.
Lance from Savannah, GA
It was tough to watch the hit on Mason Rudolph, but it’s become a familiar sight in the NFL. Did that image remind you of football of the past? Is that the type of violence that used to be commonplace in football decades ago?
No, the type of violence that was common in football decades ago was intentional; Earl Thomas said his hit on Rudolph wasn't intentional. Also, decades ago it would not have been flagged. Be that as it may, the protections being afforded the quarterback aren't working. They're damaging the game but they're not protecting the quarterback. Vic to NFL: The culture is not being changed. Think of something else.
Dave from Savage, MN
Well, the Packers have some talent and now they have an edge. I'd like to see a bit more poise (and fewer injuries). What do they need to do to take the next step?
They took a big step with the running game yesterday. Frankly, the schedule isn't real challenging. I'm going to make a prediction: The Packers will be 11-2 heading into the final three games of the season.
Jerry from Savannah, GA
Vic, what do you think of Coach LaFleur calmly getting in Aaron Rodgers’ face?
I think Coach LaFleur should stop pursuing Rodgers every time he comes off the field. It has a puppy dog look to it and TV has its camera trained on it, just waiting for a sideways glance or a stern exchange. Matt LaFleur is the coach. He's the boss. I'd like to get more of a sense of that.
Brad from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, the Jaguars defense has been getting torched recently. The turnovers haven’t helped them, but they got gashed last week on the pass, then gashed this week on the run. Seems we have way too much money on that side of the ball to look like that.
The Panthers broke the line of scrimmage time and again untouched. The Jaguars defensive linemen and linebackers were freelancing. They weren't manning their gaps. A lack of discipline is the cause. Given the way Gardner Minshew played on Sunday, that's a game the Jaguars should've won.
John from St. Augustine, FL
Could you elaborate a little on PSLs and how the Jaguars' franchise history would be different for selling them?
A permanent seat license is an investment. A fan buys a seat with the agreement to purchase the ticket that accompanies it. If at any time the fan fails to buy the ticket, he loses ownership of the seat and the team is free to sell it to someone else. PSLs aren't cheap. The Panthers sold PSLs at the start of their franchise. The Jaguars didn't sell PSLs; they sold season-ticket contracts. The difference is the PSLs sustained the Panthers through some rough seasons -- the float also made for lucrative investing. The PSLs effectively sold the season tickets and provided the Panthers with a consistent revenue flow that allowed them to operate evenly. The Jaguars lost season-ticket holders when their contracts expired -- why sign a contract when you can pick and choose the games you want to see? -- and have faced constant season-ticket churn.
Gaert from Old Windsor, UK
Vic, this will be an unpopular take, but one has to respect how Jon Gruden had his team ready to play on a long road trip. Both tactically and on grit, the Raiders were ready to go in a surprisingly hostile environment.
Yes, we should acknowledge the Raiders' win. I think we should also consider it might all be falling apart in Chicago.
Sam from Tahunanui, NZ
You have been reading questions from non-professional writers for a long time. What have you learned about how this population expresses themselves?
I had to go to the DMV last week. It gave me new appreciation for my "Ask Vic" inbox.
Oscar from Milwaukee, WI
Vic, you've always said college football is dying. Assuming it goes away in the future, what would take its place in people's hearts and minds?
The NFL would take its place, and it wouldn't just be in people's hearts and minds, it would be on their TVs on Saturdays. That day is coming. The NFL will share Saturday with college football -- an NFL/college football doubleheader -- and it will improve college football's TV ratings. The NFL will put people in front of their TVs on Saturdays. While they're there, they might as well watch the stinky college game, too. College football would be a big winner in a partnership with the NFL, but college football is too stupid and greedy to think of something that innovative. They'll have to reach the point of desperation first.
Matt from New York, NY
You know who the Eagles, Rams and Seahawks remind me of? The evolution of the Packers from 2010-2015. Success equals less overall talent.
All teams remind me of all other teams because they all go through the same trials, tribulations and cycles.
Joseph from Ripon, WI
I know a head coach is only as good as his players, but what's the most important quality of a head coach to bring to his team? What separates the good coaches from the greats?
Second question first: great players. As for the first question, all coaches are good strategists. You can't get to where they are without knowing schematic football inside and out. In my mind, the successful coaches are the ones who are especially adept at evaluating, utilizing and managing talent. They have a big-picture leadership quality and it permeates the team's entire football operation.
Mark from Wheaton, IL
Vic, I know you rooted for Kent State as best you could and have previously written about the reason for these games. How do the players feel about them?
You're going to blame Kent State for that game? Vic to Barry Alvarez: Stop scheduling cupcakes!
Tim from Jacksonville, FL
I enjoyed your article on jaguars.com. Will you be doing more of those or was it only a one-time deal? I'm guessing they won't let you do a power ranking.
I'm doing a story once a month during the season, in conjunction with their 25th anniversary celebration. Power ranking? Oh, I remember the asterisk: "Cheated in one game." I was walking from the press box to the radio booth, which required walking through the Gillette Stadium concourse and the crowd that was pouring into the stadium, when a fan pointed at me and yelled out, "There's the asterisk man!" Maybe I should do an asterisk in my new "Ask Vic" power rankings.