"Ask Vic" will publish on Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the football season.
Joe from Bloomington, IN
No moral victories, but the Packers have young weapons on both sides of the ball. They make mistakes but, if they can make it into the playoffs, they have some chances, don't you think?
I don't think that's the right take from this game. I prefer the big picture: The Packers were the equal of the best team in the league. I don't see this as a championship season. That was never my expectation. I wanted to see growth, and I'm seeing it. I see a first-round pick making plays: five passes-defensed and an impressive open-field tackle at crunch time. I understand Packers fans' frustration about the Rodgers window of opportunity thing, but I think logic and calm analysis will serve fans better than lashing out at Ty Montgomery. Not too long ago, my inbox was full of questions wanting to know what number Montgomery should wear. Finding someone to blame for defeat is easy. Don't surrender to it. It'll only make defeat hurt more.
Matthew from Chicago, IL
History repeats itself; too similar to Seattle.
Sean McVay made a terrible mistake, and he got away with it.
Ramiro from Jurupa Valley, CA
Vic, the Packers were in position to kick a game-winning field goal and it happened. What do you think about the whole thing?
The whole thing? OK, here we go: I think the Rams were bound and determined to run the ball, and Mike Pettine had his defense prepared to stop it. Pettine had his best players on the field, and I like that a lot. He was stopping the run with defensive backs attacking the line of scrimmage. Eventually, the Rams wore the Packers down. A pounder like Gurley begins to find cracks in the defense. Aaron Donald is just too good to hold down the whole game. I thought his second sack was big. At crunch time, the Rams were winning with their superior roster, and the Packers were threatening to win with a superior quarterback. I think the Packers were the better prepared team. They were focused and had fresh legs coming out of the bye week. Yes, I think the Packers would've won the game had it been put into Rodgers' hands needing only a field goal to win, but we can't know that for sure. Maybe Donald would've sacked and stripped Rodgers of the ball. Maybe a pass would've been tipped and intercepted. I think this is a game on which the Packers can build. I liked what I saw. I was impressed.
Brad from Jacksonville, FL
Vic, I’ve been secretly holding out hope Bortles will transform into something more, despite what my eyes tell me. Sunday, a better quarterback takes the Jaguars on a game-winning drive. I truly realized you’re right. There were plays left on the field he just can’t make.
Blake Bortles dinked and dunked for 286 yards. He made plays with his feet and he didn't throw an interception. He was efficient, but he didn't get it done at crunch time, and that's when a quarterback must be at his best. Be that as it may, how about that defense? How about that 75-yard drive at crunch time?
Matt from Manchester, UK
Every game we have lost (or tied) this season, with the arguable exception of the (Washington game), has been caused by moronic plays: Matthews, Brown, Montgomery. The trouble is there’s no apparent consequence for these players and the logical conclusion of that is the ill discipline continues. In my opinion, McCarthy set the tone for that by his public defense of Matthews, who was clearly in the wrong by the definition of the new rules, and by the continued presence of Brown on the squad. Mistakes and errors are fair enough, but all this stuff isn’t that, it’s self-inflicted pain, and it’s the logical consequence of a laissez-faire attitude from the coach.
The moment a coach blames a player for defeat, he's done as a coach. There isn't a player in the league that would respect him or want to play for him. Brandon Bostick was cut, but he wasn't called out by his coach.
Kevin from Rice Lake, WI
What did this game tell us about each team?
This game gave me a higher regard for the Packers' talent level. I didn't like what I saw in their performance against the 49ers. The Rams? They have true balance. They can beat you with the run or the pass, and Aaron Donald is every bit as dominant as his stats would indicate. I don't see a weakness.
Braden from Milwaukee, WI
What did you think of McCarthy's play calling? I don't understand the howl, though I would like to see Aaron Jones more.
The Packers ran the ball just enough.
Nate from Las Vegas, NV
Well, the cream rose to the top.
I thought the Packers were dominating the game. All of a sudden, they were losing, 23-13. The Rams have that kind of sudden talent.
Kyle from Cambridge, MN
I had no expectations for the Packer game. I was looking at it as a measuring stick. When it was all said and done, I was not disappointed. If the play continues to trend in the right direction, they still have a good shot at January football. If not, the growth in the young talent continues to keep me interested.
If it's all about making it into the playoffs, then the formula for doing that begins with winning their remaining NFC North games. I don't see anyone in the North running away from the pack. Yesterday's loss can be overcome, but a loss in Minnesota, for example, probably can't.
Chris from Kitakyushu, Japan
Vic, despite a strong effort, which was obviously the result of quality coaching and preparation, the wolves are howling louder than ever. Can they be placated, or is blood the only answer?
They must be ignored.
Bob from Mystic, CT
I'm over it. There's another game next week, right?
If ever there was a measuring stick game, it's the next one.
Randall from Sun Prairie, WI
Were the Rams playing down to the Packers' level?
I don't think the Rams matched the Packers' energy level until the Rams fell behind and realized they were in danger of losing. The Packers' focus and energy were at their best levels of the season. They were ready to play.
Lori from Brookfield, WI
Vic, what does the Jaguars' recent $64,000 bar tab incident reveal to someone who understands the inner workings of a football team?
The Jaguars lacked focus. They were not ready to play.