"Ask Vic" will publish on Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the football season.
Here's the "Ask Vic" Week 6 power rankings:
1. Rams -- They're for real, for now.
2. Chiefs -- Fast start or in for the long haul?
3. Saints -- Brees is "The Man."
4. Bengals -- Can take control of AFC North.
5. Panthers -- Underwhelming win.
6. Bears -- Can pull away.
7. Patriots -- Here they come.
8. Vikings -- Back on track.
9. Titans -- The Bills, really?
10. Jaguars -- Too much talk.
11. Chargers -- Making a move.
12. Ravens -- Flacco is back.
13. Steelers -- At the test in Cincinnati.
14. Redskins -- Better than expected.
15. Lions -- In the hunt.
16. Seahawks -- They still have some fight.
17. Packers -- October schedule difficult.
18. Eagles -- Could be in free fall.
19. Dolphins -- Crossroads game vs. Bears.
20. Texans -- Could be the start of something big.
21. Cowboys -- Overrated, again.
22. Browns -- Beginning to look like a winner.
23. Bucs -- Big game in Atlanta.
24. Falcons -- No excuse for this.
25. Jets -- Showing some grit.
26. Broncos -- Sinking in Mile High.
27. Bills -- Fall down a well, eyes go cross; kicked by a mule, eyes go back.
28. Colts -- Andrew Luck vs. Sam Darnold.
29. Giants -- Manning comes to life.
30. 49ers -- Next loss, at Packers.
31. Raiders -- 1-5 on the way.
32. Cardinals -- It's gonna get worse.
Mark from Madison, WI
Thinking about fan bases and their demographics, how do you reckon one person ends up a Giants fan instead of the Jets, and vice versa? What’s the delineation?
It's not as simple as the Jets are the team of Long Island; it's about more than geography. For example, the Giants had taken a turn into some very dark years when the Jets signed Joe Namath. Young New York fans from that time period were likely to identify with the Jets. The Giants were also going through a stadium problem at that time. They left Yankee Stadium to play in the Yale Bowl while Giants Stadium was being built, and that opened the door a little farther for the Jets to build a fan base, especially in the Flushing and Queens areas near Shea Stadium. Ironically, history repeated itself in an opposite way when the Jets left Shea Stadium for Giants Stadium. The Jets were moving away from their base on Long Island and across the Hudson into New Jersey. Two qualities have sustained the Giants and Jets through their travails: loyalty and market size. Wellington Mara said the Giants made a big mistake in underestimating the loyalty of their fan base when they moved into the Yale Bowl. Instead of making wild moves -- such as signing an aged Larry Csonka -- to curry the favor of their fans, they should've trusted their fans' loyalty and known they would follow them to New Jersey. As for market size, when there are 14 million people in your market, there's room for two teams and you almost can't screw it up.
Matt from Chicago, IL
Whether you agree with it or not, do you believe Mike McCarthy is coaching to keep his job next Monday night? It seems teams are much more likely to make a change at the bye week.
Congratulations, you're in the "Ask Vic" Hall of Fame.
Craig from Cedarburg, WI
Is the NFC North crown a four-team race?
The Lions put themselves in the race with the win over the Packers. Whether or not the Lions stay in the race will be determined the first two weeks of November, when they play at Minnesota and at Chicago. I think we're going to get some clear direction shortly after the bye.
Elten from Pleasant Lake, IN
I've seen three articles now that say the Packers offense is not "modern" or is "easy to scheme against." What is your take?
It has been my experience teams easy to scheme against lack personnel to make it difficult to match up against.
Mike from North Hudson, WI
Vic, you're the coach of the Green Bay Packers. Through the first five weeks of the season, your team is at .500. What are you saying to your coaches and the team this week? What do you expect to see as a result?
Here's my perspective: With a win over the 49ers, the Packers will be 3-2-1. They will use the bye week to prepare for a five-week stretch of schedule that will see them play at the Rams, at the Patriots, at the Seahawks and at the Vikings. In my opinion, that stretch of schedule will decide and define their season.
Dave from Rochester, MN
Vic, can you give me a bit of insight on McCarthy's use of Aaron Jones. I saw his comment, “There’s more to the offense than just running the football.” I am assuming he is referencing pass blocking. Is that correct?
James Conner could run and catch as a rookie every bit as well as he's running and catching this season. So why was he lightly used last year? The answer to that question is Mike Tomlin lacked confidence in Conner's ability to protect the quarterback. It begins with that for a young back. Conner blew a blitz pick up early in his rookie season and his playing time was limited from that point on. This season, he's making that block. Jones has to make that same progression. He looks good with the ball in his hands, but he must be lacking in other phases of the game. Jim Brown didn't like to block, but he was Jim Brown. Aaron Jones isn't Jim Brown.
Gladys from Estero, FL
With every passing game (pun intended), the Kevin King draft pick looks worse and worse. Is there any reason to believe that trend will reverse?
If T.J. Watt had played at, say, Penn State, I don't think you'd be asking this question. Watt is a Wisconsin favorite son and King will forever be measured against the player on whom the Packers passed to select King. It's unfair to King.
Bill from Sheboygan, WI
Why didn't McCarthy simplify the offense for the rookie wide receivers?
You think the Packers offense is too difficult and Elten thinks it's too easy to scheme against. As Coach Noll was fond of saying, "What you're really asking is why didn't we win." The answer to that question is lost fumbles, missed kicks and a defense that went soft when the Packers needed a stop.
Ed from South Beloit, IL
Ultimately the coach is responsible. Beneath him are layers of assistant coaches getting men ready to play. Once the game starts, the coaches have to say, "We went over that again and again and again." Many fans want to assign blame. Does it ultimately rest on the head coach? Or on the player?
What you're really asking is when are the Packers going to fire Mike McCarthy. The answer is he'll be the team's coach next season.
Jake from Eden Prairie, MN
The Packers are 23-23-1 in their last 47 games; that is simply not good enough with Aaron Rodgers in his prime. This team has repeatedly been slow out of the gate. Doesn’t that reflect the head coach?
Seven of those losses were without Rodgers as the Packers' quarterback.
Steve from Lake Stevens, WA
I was born in 1961. I remember watching Lombardi's Packers on a black and white Motorola. Sometimes my dad would have to go out and adjust the antenna. I can still hear his voice, "Is that better?" As you say, Vic, memories make us rich. But now it's like those of us who remember are being told we were wrong. The game was wrong. Butkus, Nitcshke, Lambert were wrong. I must have been a bad kid. I liked the idea of stopping the other guy from scoring more than scoring. I wanted to be a linebacker. Like the players themselves, I make no apologies. I feel no guilt. I enjoyed hating Atkinson and Tatum. I wanted to see them get theirs. How do those of us who were there to see the game then reconcile this? Were we all wrong?
Hold onto the memories, but be new. It can be done.
Ben from El Paso, TX
Would you please give us your bottom five power rankings for NFL uniforms?
Beyond the Lions and Browns? 26. Falcons -- The sleeve design is minor league. 27. Bucs -- Too much going on. 28. Titans -- Bad has gotten worse. 29. Seahawks -- Perfect for road construction work. 30. Vikings -- Too many changes; I liked the purple pants.
Kris from Stockbridge, WI
The Packers are currently seventh in the NFC, half a win outside of the playoff picture. Things could be worse. Looking at the records, is the AFC actually tougher than the NFC this year?
The AFC has young quarterbacks on the rise. Last year, it was the NFC. It's the defining position.
Brad from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, it is truly a game of attrition. Jacksonville has placed their starting LT, starting TE, No. 1 WR and backup RB (and fastest player on the team) on IR. They have also been without their starting RB three of four games, and the second-string RB has been playing on a bum ankle. To add insult to injury, the backup LT, the new starter, is week to week with a groin injury. Jacksonville avoided the injuries last year, but the injury bug seems to be making up for it now. It will be interesting to see how the team responds.
For most top teams, I would say they're not injured until their quarterback is injured. That's not true for the Jaguars, and that's their greatest weakness. The Jaguars need many to do the job of one. They must fix that position.
Neil from Cheddar, UK
You are what your record says you are. What are the records of the Packers, Steelers and Jaguars saying?
I think we're going to get a defining statement on the Packers during that five-game stretch to which I alluded. I think we're going to get some direction on the Steelers this weekend. The Jaguars' record says they still can't beat the Titans.
John from St. Augustine, FL
Just wondering what is your opinion of Drew Brees. I have really enjoyed watching his career.
He's a great player and representative of everything with which he's associated. Brees was always a cooperative interview for the media and I appreciated his efforts during conference calls and the such. He's the culture the NFL is trying to promote. He's a gentle warrior.
Josh from Indiana
What’s worse, the amount of penalties or the amount of analysis each penalty receives?
I agree, penalties have become too prominent in the story of the NFL in recent seasons. I don't think Mike Tomlin did himself or his team any favors in being critical of the officiating in last week's game and of the increase in penalties being called leaguewide, but I give him credit for speaking for the fans. When a member of the competition committee speaks out against the way the game is being officiated, the league is compelled to take note.
Steve from North Hudson, WI
Wow, the wolves are howling loud in Packerland. This could be an interesting season.
Be careful for what you howl.
Elizabeth from Sylvania, OH
Vic, if there is one thing you could see emerging from the 2018 Packers team that will be the bright spot for the season, what is it?
Based on the way the team has drafted, I expect and believe the secondary will become the bright spot in this season. The Packers need some time at the top of the draft to build a roster that's been softened by too many years at the bottom of the order.