"Ask Vic" will publish on Mondays and Thursdays through the offseason.
Darren from Avon, IN
Judging by Thursday's comment section, it seems I am not alone in believing you are providing harsh good-vs.-evil stances on allowing people the choice to go back to work. Beyond this whole thing being unconstitutional, you should also remember we are not all retired in a beach house. We have to eat. We have to provide. We have bills. Don't forget your blue-collar roots, Vic.
Your view of retirement is distorted, to say the least. Retirement isn't free. I have a mortgage and a car payment. I pay taxes and all of the kinds of bills that go with life in this country. Here's the tough part: I am my employer -- I pay myself -- and when this virus dropped the stock market 40 percent, I lost 40 percent of the money I had saved to take me through the final years of my journey. Retirees are every bit at risk in this downturn as their children and grandchildren are. In many cases, our children are turning to us to help get them through these tough times -- "Dad, I can't pay the mortgage. Can you help us?" -- and our savings decline even more. I, too, need this country to re-start. I need businesses and schools to re-open their doors. I completely appreciate and agree with our president's desire to re-start, but I will not join the voice that says, "Let 'em die." That's where I draw the line. I will not lose my soul, my conscience, my self-respect to these times. In the lives vs. money debate, cast me on the side of life. I will not sentence my fellow man to death so I might prosper.
Adam from Wausau, WI
You are a good storyteller. How would you teach someone to write a good story?
If you do nothing more than write in the inverted pyramid style, the fundamental of newswriting, you will be a good storyteller. The facts are always the feature of a good story.
Pete from Minneapolis, MN
Vic, what do you think about Trump accusing Dr. Fauci of trying to "play all sides?"
I think Dr. Fauci has become a character in this drama too big to cancel. He's on FOX and he's on CNN. He's not right or left, he's truth. Dr. Fauci is what Americans want the media to be: without bias. It amuses me Trump is Dr. Fauci's creator. None of us knew who he was until Trump created the Dr. Fauci character to use his credibility to sell the president's agenda, but then Dr. Fauci began telling uncomfortable truths. There's no turning him off now.
Mike from Bridgeport, CT
How about this schedule, speaking of teams who aren't high-profile? Fourteen one o'clock kickoffs, one four o'clock start (because it's on the West Coast) and a Thursday night game because everyone gets one. Plus, lose your two London games that ease the burden on ticket sales and feature your franchise to the world. Could this pandemic be the beginning of the end for professional football in Jacksonville?
Wayne Weaver would be despondent. He was obsessed with national exposure for the Jaguars. I appreciate your concern.
Craig from Cedarburg, WI
I hate that I'm even asking this, as many of us read your blog for more than just football analysis, but let me be that guy. If there's no season, will you continue your blog?
As long as I can afford to do it, I will. "Ask Vic" is another one of those bills I pay from my shrinking pile of retirement money.
Carter from Fernandina Beach, FL
You've stated several times in the last couple of weeks you expect the supplemental draft this year to be unusually deep and talented. I presume this is because you expect the NCAA to cancel the football season this year and the majority of this year's seniors (at least) with draftable grades will declare for the supplemental draft. How do you see this playing out?
Initially, I saw an explosion of players entering this supplemental draft, but not any more. A recent report said the league will continue to limit eligibility to players who've been suspended or declared academically ineligible for the upcoming season. In other words, the league won't grant eligibility due to cancellation or potential cancellation of the upcoming college football season. I understand why the league doesn't want an avalanche of eligible players in this summer's supplemental draft. It would cannibalize next spring's draft. I have a feeling someone will sue.
Casey from York, PA
What are your thoughts on what Rodgers and his coach had to say on Friday?
None of it was inflammatory. I thought Aaron Rodgers was open and honest in his comments, but careful not to say the wrong thing. Coach LaFleur can't tell all, so he said little. Rodgers is being challenged. His performance will be his response. I sensed acknowledgment by Rodgers.
James from London, UK
What would constitute a meaningful season in your eyes?
I could say nothing less than 1982, but there are so many issues beyond lost games clouding a 2020 season. What if three or four players on a team test positive? Is the team quarantined for two weeks? If that was to happen, how could the league achieve a balanced schedule? What if a Patrick Mahomes or other star quarterbacks test positive? My greatest concern is playing the season could result in someone's death. How can a league obsessed with player safety risk players becoming infected by a pandemic?
Colby from Jacksonville, FL
I love studying and reading about NFL dynasties over the years. Since you covered the entire Steelers dynasty, I am curious to find out in your opinion after which game in which year did you realize it was over?
There were strong indications in 1979, the Steelers' final Super Bowl season. Star players were losing time to injury. That's always the first indication of aging. Joe Greene was no longer a dominant player and the defensive line clearly needed rebuilding, the new pass-defense rule compromised Mel Blount's impact, Jack Ham's career was effectively ended by an ankle injury, Lynn Swann began losing time to what would become a chronic hamstring injury, and Terry Bradshaw began speaking of retirement. The Steelers' biggest problem was their drafts weren't nearly as productive as they were between 1969 and '74, when their cast of stars was assembled. It was obvious the end was near, even though the Steelers were still winning and would somehow capture another Super Bowl title. Winning will disguise decline, just as losing will disguise growth. There was no one game. There was one season, which ended in victory but clearly sent warning signals of hard times ahead. I've been told Coach Noll told his wife, "We're headed for some lean years."
Andrew from Madison, WI
Probably you've noticed this, but in case you haven't, South Korean baseball teams are playing televised games without an audience.
I'm not sure if you're trying to compare that situation to what might happen in the NFL, but I can tell you the average salary of a South Korean baseball player is about $122,000 and minimum wage is about $23,000. We're talking apples and oranges.