"Ask Vic" will publish on Monday and Thursday through the offseason.
Craig from Cedarburg, WI
If offense wins championships, why have the Packers placed such a heavy emphasis in the draft and in free agency on defense?
Because defense loses championships.
Jason from Oneida, WI
I have been a reader of yours since your early days with the Packers. I continue to do so for your knowledge of the game that I love so much. I now have another. Thank you for your response to Sandy from Texas. You are spot on when it comes to this culture vs. tradition controversy. I am a descendant and my wife, children, mother and grandmother are enrolled Oneida Nation citizens. From my perspective, the majority of Tribal citizens that are active participants in our culture do not support mascots and are working to end the practice. At one point in time I was naive to my Native heritage and felt indifferent to the mascot issue until I had an experience that changed my life. In high school in the early '90's, my football team was preparing for homecoming against another local school with Indians as their mascot (they still do). In the parade there was a float that had writing "Kill the Indians" and "Scalp the Indians" as well as drawings with a male Indian figure with arrows in his head. It bothered me even though I was not raised in my culture. I asked myself is that how my classmates see me? They were ignorant to how it made me feel. I can only imagine now as the father of two beautiful and impressionable children how something like that might make them feel knowing they have been raised to respect and appreciate where they came from and who they are. These mascots and the fallout from them make many of our children feel as if they are less than their white classmates. I now ask those in support of keeping Native mascots if they believe keeping athletic traditions going (Redskins, Braves, Chiefs, Indians) is more important than protecting the well-being of children whose self-identity is derived through their culture?
The answer to your question is obvious to any caring person.
John from Austin, TX
Not a song-and-dance kind of guy? What if the halftime show could feature Sinatra?
Sinatra could sing but he couldn't dance, so I'd probably watch a little. I don't like dancing.
Sue from Pittsburgh, PA
My husband and I are having our first child and it will be named Vic.
It's a good name for a kid from Pittsburgh because not even the Pittsburgh accent can screw it up.
Zachary from Jacksonville, FL
Do any OTs fit at the end of round one or the front end of the second?
I asked Tony Pauline what the tackle crop looks like. He said, "Terrific. At least five first-round picks and eight top 45 picks." It looks like a good year to get a big guy late in the first round.
David from Rochester, MN
You said: "A visitor should never ask, 'Who's this guy?' ... But Vainisi and Rooney are unlikely to be considered for election because most people don't know who they are." You're kind of arguing against yourself, Vic, although I understand your intention.
You omitted that I said "the contributor category is a mistake." It's a mistake because those in the contributor category aren't famous. Polian and Wolf are notable in the present, but their "fame" will fade, just as Vainisi's and Rooney's has.
Jerry from Savannah, GA
Vic, how long are you going to avoid talking about the XFL?
They just began play. Couldn't it wait until then? I watched a little of two games on Saturday. It looked like a minor league NFL. The plays are the same; it's more basketball on grass. I just spent five months watching football -- as I've written, this wasn't one of my favorite seasons -- and I'd like to take a break from it. My opinion of the XFL? At first glance, it can provide a fix for those who can't live without football. What it can't provide is the true allure of the NFL. It's not plays or players. It's brand! It's Lambeau Field. It's the Steelers' logo on the right side only. It's the tradition, history, memories and emotions that go with a league that defines life for its rabid fans. The XFL can't do that now and it won't last long enough to be able to ever do that. Empty seats and injury liability will collapse the league before it has time to root.
Keith from Roanoke, VA
What do you think of the XFL kickoff rules? It seems safer for the players and an overall worthwhile experiment for the NFL to follow.
I favor getting rid of the kickoff. Just put the ball at the 25 and let's go. Onside kicks? Why should losing teams have a chance to reverse what happened for the previous 58 minutes of the game?
Mike from Fort Wayne, IN
Just to clarify your comment about being surprised the Packers picked Gary and Savage after the free-agent acquisitions in the offseason. What if they were at the top of their board?
OK, this is a good time to go over this again; it's an annual thing. If you don't like the players available to you, move to where the player you want fits. Moving back in the order is a way of fitting yourself to the player you want and recouping the value of your original pick position. It combines the concepts of drafting BAP with drafting for need. In the first round especially, never reach and never pick a player you don't love. Brian Gutekunst said he fell in love with Rashan Gary as far back as February, and I'm inclined to believe Brian because I'm inclined to believe he could've moved out of the 12th spot if he wanted to do so. There were plenty of attractive big guys available at No. 12. Hey, he moved back for Alexander and up for Savage. It's what good GMs do. They move to where the player they want fits. I think Gary was Brian's guy. My opinion is it was overkill. That's my opinion. This is also my column.
Scott from Milwaukee, WI
If wide receiver isn't the problem for the Packers, then what needs do you perceive they have?
I don't think WR is the problem Packers fans think it is, but I agree the Packers need to add to the unit. Again, talent at that position is plentiful, so I don't think it should be prioritized above big guys and premium-position players. In my mind, the Packers need to address tackle; I think it's a big need. Tight end is a need position and, in my opinion, the Packers desperately need a run-and-hit guy on defense. They need somebody who'll put some crunch into that defense, at any position.
Tracy from Sioux Falls, SD
So what did you do with your football free Sunday?
I've begun re-reading James Michener's "Kent State." This is the 50th anniversary year. I want to make sure it's as I remember it.
James from Green Bay, WI
Why have the Packers been so consistently bad at special teams in recent years, across multiple head coaches and coordinators?
Performance on special teams is usually considered a product of the talent in the bottom half of a team's roster.
Oscar from Milwaukee, WI
Vic, linebackers are supposed to be the heart and soul of a 3-4 defense, yet, the Packers seem to be highly apathetic to the position. Why is that?
Maybe it's because they've been gaga about wide receivers. Didn't they keep eight one year? My kingdom for a linebacker.
David from Riverside, CA
I thought of you while watching a recent interview with Rock and Roll Hall of Famer (and former Eagle) Joe Walsh. I was surprised to learn he was also a student at Kent State at the time of the shootings. Did you know him?
No, but I knew Mike Goodman and he let me use his 240Z. I remember thinking to myself, "I'll never own a car like this." I was right.
John from St. Augustine, FL
Would you elaborate on why you’d be willing to share the Jaguars with London?
It's because half of something is better than none of it. I'm afraid the team will leave if the backlash of fans creates declining ticket sales.
Matt from Birmingham, UK
Tell us a story about toughness.
Jack Lambert said, "Give me 20 minutes and a six-pack and I'll go play them again." I had no doubt he would.
Casey from York, PA
How has the Sandusky scandal shaped your opinion of Joe Paterno?
Paterno chose to protect a football program he created and considered his precious child, at the expense of real children.
Jon from Wright City, MO
What is your favorite car you owned and why?
I had a 2002 Nissan Sentra that refused to die. It might still be running. Golf clubs never fit more perfectly into the trunk of a car. I miss it.