"Ask Vic" will publish on Mondays and Thursdays through the offseason.
Kevin from Milwaukee, WI
VIc, I read your blog religiously from 2012- 2016. I was living in downtown Baltimore, a tough town. Your blog helped me maintain a sliver of winsome at an otherwise less than winsome time. I Google-searched you today, hoping you were still out there somewhere. Boy, are you ever! I read some of your recent work; better than ever, baby. My question is about anger. Football has long been a place for anger. With more anger in our daily lives and our political climate, what are the lessons football can lend us? Keep letting it rip, man.
Football isn't life. We don't walk down the sidewalk ramming into people. Be that as it may, we can learn life lessons from something as condensed and intense as football. I think one of its best lessons is self-control. It teaches us to overcome obstacles in a disciplined way.
Alex from Milwaukee, WI
You are not a fan, you are a writer. Does the same apply to politics? I notice you are right down the middle most of the time, even though (just like with your sports writing) you are often accused of bias.
Middle is the new left.
Nate from Pueblo, CO
I remember you posing the question about what’s going to happen if and when parts of the crowd start kneeling for the National Anthem. At first I thought it wouldn’t be an issue. Now I think you were way ahead of the crowd. Do you have any new insight on this?
If there are games, which I still doubt will be the case, there will be plenty of room to kneel, because stadiums are going to be empty. Will there be altercations? Yes, because some of us still don't understand the concept of freedom of expression.
Ed from Jacksonville, FL
As a Jags fan since inception, having missed only three games since 1995, I’ve always enjoyed reading your perspective on the NFL. After reading your answer to the last question on Monday, I’m glad my world view and political beliefs were not formed by what is one of the most corrupt and dishonest institutions in American history.
Yeah, I know, fake news. Any time I answer a question by expressing respect for the media, I know my inbox is going to light up with angry rebuttal. So what qualifies you to offer critical commentary on the media? Did you work in the media? Were you a journalism student? Did you ever take courses in "Ethics of Journalism" or "Law of the Mass Media?" Do you have any idea what the significance is of the landmark court case "New York Times v. Sullivan?" Or are you just another angry man with an opinion?
Brian from Columbia, MD
Let's pretend you were an NBA player with the option of wearing a jersey with a social media message where your name would ordinarily be. What would be yours?
Love is the answer.
Jason from Austin, TX
Why do political parties have mascots? Between the mascots, colors (red vs. blue) and sides (left vs. right), it's become a full fledge sporting event. It's no wonder we have a tough time being bipartisan. It almost feels intentionally done to encourage division.
I completely agree.
Thomas from Appleton, WI
Did you ever think you’d see the team in D.C. and the state of Mississippi both abolish their logo and flag, respectively, within a week of each other? It’s been a long time coming.
The young people of today aren't going to tolerate the old ways. They want a better world. Good for them.
Aaron from Eau Claire, WI
Looking back on the Packers-49ers game, many of the 49ers' big runs happened in Packers territory close to or just inside the red zone. Is that the 49ers taking advantage of a specific defensive front the Packers showed, or would those runs have gone big at any point on the field? I have to believe if the Packers don't give the 49ers two very short fields at the end of the second quarter, the game would have been a lot closer.
Yeah, the 49ers caught the Packers in a particular defensive front: the one they had been in all season. Strategy and play-calling were the differences in the game. The 49ers' strategy was to call plays that would allow them to beat the Packers to a pulp. Eight passes, Aaron.
Brian from Sugar Land, TX
It has always been a dangerous world, certainly in my lifetime. And back in the day, parents made informed choices. I bet you can recall kids walking to school unattended, riding bikes without helmets, crossing busy streets on their own. You may have been such a kid. When did the world get so dangerous we now fear daily life? How did that happen? Might some of it be our sources of public information are more questionable today?
Blame the media? Really? Our population has more than doubled in my lifetime. There were 67 million registered vehicles in the United States in 1958; today there are nearly 300 million. More people, more cars, more everything has made life more dangerous. There are more good people, and there are more bad people. There's more money, but also more poverty. There's more information and technology, but also more ignorance. Whatever it is you don't like, blame it on people, because ultimately we are responsible for the problems we create.
Braden from Milwaukee, WI
Vic, does the revenue from stadium naming rights get split among all teams? If it does, are other owners OK with teams not selling naming rights to corporations?
The money is divided, though not evenly, and all teams get a cut of it. It wasn't a big hit with the other owners when the Bengals named their new stadium after their founder. Lambeau Field? It gets a pass with most owners because of the iconic name, but some owners have complained.
Joe from Bloomington, IN
How would the "Greatest Generation" have handled COVID-19?
Just as they handled polio: worry and protect until a vaccine was discovered. I wasn't permitted to go into a public pool until after the Salk vaccine. The difference between polio and coronavirus is polio went after the kids; coronavirus is attacking the older population.
Tim from Ocala, FL
What possesses someone to go to Disneyworld during the height of a pandemic, especially when Florida is now the epicenter of the pandemic? Weren't we supposed to be better than this? When did we become so selfish as a country?
I can hear Coach Noll saying, "Joey, you like to have fun, and you're going to fun yourself right out of the league." Selfish? Bored. We require constant entertainment.
Isaac from Nashville, TN
Vic, I recently encountered a tendency among Carolina fans I've frequently observed among Packers fans (myself included), complaining the Panthers squandered Newton's career by taking a lackadaisical approach to team-building during the QB's prime.
They built a great defense around him; I'm sure Aaron Rodgers wishes he had that defense. The Panthers had their chance to win a Super Bowl and didn't get it done. In a conference with quarterbacks such as Rodgers, Drew Brees, Eli Manning, Matt Ryan and Russell Wilson, why would anyone think Newton would dominate?
Mike from Boscobel, WI
I support the idea of a free press. In my view, it's essential to a free people. I'm concerned, however, corporate mergers and consolidations have placed the concept of a free press in great danger. It seems almost impossible to find a just-the-facts approach to journalism these days. Are my fears unfounded?
I don't want a just-the-facts approach to journalism. I want the facts and opinion. I know what FOX is. I know what CNN is. When I go there, I know what I'm going to get, and that's good because I want to hear both sides. The media coverage in this country has never been better. It's mind-boggling what big media spends on having assets around the world. They are giving us news and a view of the world we never got when I was young. The live coverage of police clearing a way for Trump to walk across the street, stand in front of that church and hold a Bible in front of him was amazing drama. How can you not appreciate a media and a freedom of press that allows for that kind of untainted and spontaneous coverage? That was real news and it was happening as we watched.
Ben from El Paso, TX
If you submitted a question to "Ask Vic," what would you identify as your hometown?
Edisto Island, SC.
Adam from Wausau, WI
Does the media shape our opinions or assign our opinions?
Only the consumer can answer that question. There are plenty of right and left media outlets available to you.
Vincent from Seattle, WA
This is Lance56. Please review, if you have time, Rodgers and Hammertime, Skeptical Guy and Roberts comments. I think being called a liar and an utter cabbage is a bit over the top for your comments section.
Mark from Eau Claire, WI
What quality do you admire most in other people?
"Or, being hated, don't give way to hating."