"Ask Vic" will publish on Mondays and Thursdays through the offseason.
Trevor from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
While watching old NFL games, I came across a game in 1987 when they where using replacement players because of a strike. However, I read many teams had players cross the picket line and play with the replacements. What happened that so many veterans played with replacements?
Veteran players crossed picket lines because they weren't secure in their jobs or needed the money. They were afraid they'd be permanently replaced. It's professional football; it's about the money. I remember being in the Steelers locker room in Atlanta following a replacement game. Coach Noll heard reporters questioning Mike Webster as to why a player of his esteem had crossed picket lines, and Coach Noll pulled me aside and explained Mike was going to retire after the season; it didn't turn out that way but that was Mike's plan. When the strike crumbled a few weeks later, the owners had won a huge victory. They crushed the players union and at an owners meeting following that season, Dan Rooney explained why that was a problem. He told his fellow owners the league needed a strong players union because only through a Collective Bargaining Agreement could the league protect its draft and other such devices. Some might say the '87 players strike changed the game forever. It led to the owners and players becoming true partners.
Ben from El Paso, TX
On a whim, I asked what your female readers were asking. I noticed you had not published a response from a person with a name typically associated with a female. After doing a little re-reading, it looks like on May 14 you published responses to questions from people named Cindy, Lori and Elizabeth. Since then, only an Alex here and there. What do you think is happening? Is it simply a coincidence? I certainly do not know, nor do I presume to know. I am not smart enough. I do not have access to enough information to explain it. But I did notice it. It has piqued my interest. What do you think?
I hadn't noticed because I don't look at the names attached to the questions I choose. I would do a ladies day every so often in Jacksonville; everybody loved them. I did one in Green Bay and a woman complained I was sexist and wrote a letter to Mark Murphy demanding I be fired. That was the last ladies day I did. I am appointing you, Ben, as the "Ask Vic" commissioner of fairness to women.
Matt from San Luis Obispo, CA
Vic, I realize you were probably at least partly joking, but my dad considers Jim Brown the best player he’s ever seen. In your opinion, would he not have been an effective three-down back in today’s game?
I was sarcastically poking fun at the egotistical offensive coordinators who believe their play-calling wins games; the ones who would pass on second and goal at the 1-yard line with Marshawn Lynch in the backfield in the Super Bowl. Those are the ones who would have a third-down package that wouldn't include Jim Brown, and that's no joke.
Paul from Bluffton, IN
Vic, I remember you telling the story of watching Aaron Rodgers in a preseason game and thinking, "What are they waiting for?" I look forward to you sharing those same thoughts about Jordan Love.
It was the 2007 preseason. I did an in-game blog for jaguars.com back then. Rodgers was unstoppable. I know greatness when I see it. I saw it that night.
Derek from Eau Claire, WI
What do you make of the Drew Brees comments and the subsequent comments made by his teammates?
It was the wrong time to speak as Brees did. He offered a quick and sincere apology, which speaks volumes about his character. Any teammate unwilling to accept his apology is a bigger problem than Brees' bad timing. This is a time for forgiveness. We must forgive each other and ourselves if this movement is to succeed. This is not a time for pointing fingers or for making a point. This is a "time to cast away stones, a time to gather stones together." This is a time to be new.
Travis from Sanford, ME
Meester was the Jags center for 10-plus years and I can't remember during his time ever thinking about center issues, which means he must've been pretty good. What separates the two you mentioned from Brad?
Sixteen Pro Bowls, 11 All-Pro selections and two Hall of Fame busts. Brad is the center on my all-underrated team.
Wayne from Beavercreek, OH
Can a head coach win a Super Bowl with only compliance and without respect?
Yes. Just do your job.
William from London, England
Vic, I am trying to ask this question as politely as possible (and will caveat I think the USA is a fantastic and beautiful country), but from the other side of the pond, I (we) cannot help but ask: Why does the USA have such a penchant for violence and the nefarious? From afar one cannot help but notice: You have by far the largest military spending in the world, your gun culture (and tolerance thereof) is out of line with any other developed western nation, and the reports of rioting coming out of every state make the Arab spring revolutions seem mild (ironic).
How dare you look down your nose at us. We have spent four centuries trying to overcome the seed of slavery you and a few other European nations planted in our soil. Your country's caste system is the problem. The stain of prejudice and elitism it left behind was so great not even the words "all men are created equal" could remove it. The cancer your country brought to our innocent shores caused millions to suffer in our Civil War. We are still fighting to defeat you. Maybe this is it. Maybe this will be our declaration of independence.
Justin from Portland, OR
Vic, your platform reaches a lot of white men with ages ranging all over the place. Please use this as an opportunity to say the right things. I have been reading "Ask Vic" for five years, pretty much every day you post, but if you don’t say something, I will no longer be comfortable reading what you have to say. Please stand up for the black community. They have needed it for hundreds of years.
I'm not a fan of self-serving statements, but your request is fair and here's what I would say: I support the George Floyd movement. I support peaceful protest to all forms of injustice. I have since May 4, 1970.
Richard from St. Augustine, FL
I would like a little mood indigo. What time, days, radio dial and band location?
Thomas Wolfe said you can't go home again, but I go there any time I want, to all of the places I've called home, because I have memories. Money pays the bills; memories make us rich.
Alex from Orlando, FL
Vic, part of me thinks what the Jaguars badly need to reinvigorate the fans and provide for a fresh beginning is to build a new stadium. I get that winning solves everything, but when the Cardinals built their new stadium it seemed like my entire opinion of that franchise also changed. Do you think this is something they should consider before Shad Khan and the city invest too much money to develop the immediate surrounding area of the stadium?
Discussion on a new stadium will most prominently involve the Jaguars' commitment to Jacksonville. Is either side ready to open that can of worms?
Sean from Long Beach, NY
Vic, I am mostly through a book called "The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee." I read and thoroughly enjoyed "Carlisle v. Army" and thought perhaps you would enjoy the story of the Native American from 1890 to present as told by a native.
This is the perfect time for the football team in Washington to voluntarily change its name.