"Ask Vic" is published on Monday and Thursday through the offseason.
Benjamin from Burlington, VT
I started cross-country running as offseason training for cross-country skiing and loved them both. I sometimes wish I had stuck with my traditional team sports of baseball and basketball for longer, but I'm probably kidding myself that I had the fast twitch to make those teams anyhow. Cross-country left me with beautiful memories of the vistas we raced on and the camaraderie around the competition.
I got into the 10K craze for a few years. I loved it.
Tom from Brookfield, WI
Do the Packers know what they have in Jordan Love through practices, or will the time he missed with the shoulder injury hinder their evaluation of him?
They know what they have.
Chevin from Jacksonville, FL
What accounts for the prediction culture we seem to currently live in?
It's a result of boredom and the need for engagement.
Don from Cedar Rapids, IA
My grandsons attend a top-division high school which lost all of its football games last year and its first game this year by a score of 79-0. It was 48-0 at halftime, with the clock running continuously in the second half. The winning team had scored on every possession in the first half and had a yardage advantage of 345-14. Our team suited 21 players who really gave it their all, but during the game three were injured and the quarterback had to come out after throwing up several times on the field. The JV also lost 52-0. My grandsons don't play football, but they are in the marching band, which was terrific at halftime. Your thoughts about this situation? Should the players and coaches keep plugging away, should they give up the program or is there some other approach to take?
Drop football and focus on cross-country. Do not try soccer.
Dave from Escanaba, MI
So when do the power rankings start again?
Eric from Appleton, WI
Do you have a favorite of the four Steelers Super Bowls you covered?
Super Bowl XIII was the Steelers and Cowboys at their best.
Neil from Cheddar, UK
Thank you for your column. It gives me great pleasure every week. I have just lost my wife and partner of just over 20 years to the dreaded cancer. I now properly understand what it really means to be heartbroken. She was only 55 and fought the battle for 20 months, after only having been given six months to live! What is helping to keep me going is your mantra, that I regularly quoted to Sue, my wife: Memories make us rich. It has taken on a whole new meaning to me, remembering all of the amazing times we had together and with our family. Thank you for sharing some of your wisdom with us each week. It had made a big difference to me.
"Time it was and what a time it was, it was, a time of innocence, a time of confidences. Long ago it must be, I have a photograph, preserve your memories, they're all that's left you." From everyone in the "Ask Vic" community, we offer our sincere condolences, Neil.
Aiden from Jacksonville, FL
Vito gave you a shout out on Twitter. He said Unitas would be his No.1 football player of all time. He quoted you saying "Pro Football didn't matter until Johnny Unitas made it matter."
I saw a picture of O.J. Simpson posing with the Heisman Trophy on the night it was presented to him. Vito was in the background! In matters of football, there is no one more credible than Vito. He is my mentor.
Tony from Waunakee, WI
Is it really “sneaking” a player onto the practice squad if no other teams felt the player had demonstrated enough to make their roster?
It is if you limited the player's preseason exposure to avoid another team identifying the player's talent. That's what it means to sneak a player onto the practice squad.
Milan from New York, NY
Are you surprised, outraged, indifferent by the Patriots releasing Newton?
I expected it.
George from Orange Park, FL
What happens if Mac Jones is to Jacksonville what Dan Marino was to Pittsburgh?
It would be far more devastating to Jacksonville than the Steelers passing on Marino was to Pittsburgh. The Steelers had won four Super Bowls and had a waiting list for season tickets. The Jaguars desperately need a player around whom Jacksonville might rally. If it's not Lawrence and Jones turns out to be a star, I shudder to think of the fallout.
Luke from Jackson, MS
Who are some of the latest-drafted players in the modern era, not undrafted free agents, that had impressive careers?
Let's begin with Tom Brady.
Peter from Mount Horeb, WI
If you could change one thing about today’s game compared to the one you grew up watching and covering, what would it be?
Neil from Bozeman, MT
I have a great respect for you. I’m 63 and was raised by old-school parents who were both beaten by their parents. Old-school discipline they called it. Though my parents were hard on us, you often remind me of all the great lessons and love that was shown to me from my parents, teachers, mentors and coaches. I admire you immensely, and I’m thankful for all the great writing you’ve done. You’ve helped so many people, and you and I know how gratifying that is.
Respect is not a byproduct of intimidation. That's fear. Respect is an award for living virtuously.
Jacob from Mt. Horeb, WI
Hyperactive media culture and everyone spying on one another like a panopticon. Does the NFL reflect culture or does culture reflect the NFL?
The NFL creates culture.
Luke from Toronto, Canada
Did the preseason ever matter?
The games never counted so the preseason never mattered, but once upon a time coaches had goals for the preseason that went beyond evaluation of bottom-of-the-roster talent. Now, the only other goal is to not get hurt.
Ken from Daleyville, WI
Vic, I ran cross-country for four years in high school and your essay on it almost brought tears to my eyes, especially that part about the last being first. How did you manage to crystalize the essence of the sport so well without actually participating yourself?
I was just trying to capture the spirit of the thing.
Cory from Alexandria, VA
The latest proposal has the Bills playing home games in a new, approximately 60,000-seat stadium opening in 2027. Would this stadium very likely have the capacity to expand?
I don't know the answer to your question but I'm not a fan of big stadiums, especially in small markets. Limited supply creates demand, which stabilizes ticket prices and gives a franchise revenue on which they can depend and plan. The biggest mistake in Jaguars history was agreeing to a super-sized stadium to accommodate one game a season, the Florida-Georgia game. It created churn that continues to threaten the future of the franchise.
Adam from Fond du Lac, WI
How will playing in Jacksonville for the opener affect the Packers compared to playing indoors in New Orleans?
Noise won't be an issue but heat and humidity will be a challenge for both teams. Playing at 4:25 lessens the impact of the sun and the heat index, but it'll be like nothing the Packers have experienced in training camp or in the preseason.
Dan from Waupun, WI
Is Meyer a smart man? What do you think of his comments on releasing un-vaccinated players?
The Jags are trying to soften those remarks, but Meyer says some of the darndest things. For example, one of the TV analysts for the Jags-Saints game said Meyer said he called Joe Burrow to talk about the challenges Trevor Lawrence will be facing, and went on to say Meyer said he plans to talk with Burrow throughout the season. Huh? If I'm Mike Brown, my first call in the morning would've been to the league office.
Kyle from Muscatine, IA
Vic, what does cutdown day look like? Do players walk the halls of the stadium waiting? Are they called and told to head down to the stadium? I know it's a rough day for all involved, but do you have any related stories you'd like to share?
In Pittsburgh, if you walk into the locker room and your helmet has the little numbers on the front of it, you made the team.