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Job one is stop the run

Posted Jul 14, 2016

Here's one thing I won't miss


Greg from Marquette, MI

Vic, I love your “burn the boats” comment. Every player should play every play as if the boats had been burned.

If you haven’t burned your boat, you haven’t committed completely to what you’re doing. When I came to Green Bay, I burned my boat.

Taylor from Fargo, ND

A while back, I thought it was strange of you to say you had probably had your last press box hot dog. What was the first hint you gave us about the change to come?

Calling them hints is like calling the Rodgers-to-Rodgers “Hail Mary” a pass completion. If you didn’t catch my hints, don’t ever complain when a receiver drops a pass.

[See related: Rodgers-to-Rodgers Hail Mary wins ESPY's 'Best Play']

Aaron from Post Falls, ID

If you had known it was going to be your last, would you have savored that press box hot dog any differently, or did you savor them all like it was your last?

I knew they were my last. I said goodbye to a lot of press boxes last year. The most memorable goodbye was in Oakland. The memories poured over me like a cold rain. With apologies to Dickens, they were the best of times, they were the worst of times.

Adam from Nutley, NJ

In this new phase, will there be any difference in how you split up your time between Packers, Steelers and Jaguars fandom?

It’s my greatest failure while in Green Bay. I was never able to accurately convey the difference between what I do and what a fan does, between what I feel and what a fan feels.

Rob from Portland, ME

Which part of the weekly routine will you not miss? There must be something to which you are happy to say goodbye.

I won’t miss the injury questions at press conferences, nor the non-answers to injury questions at press conferences.

Omar from Morelia, WI

Vic, can you ask Mike and the guys from packers.com to post your best “Video Ask Vic” one more time?

Here’s the last one. I like it.

Matt from Waunakee, WI

Vic, do you retain the title of editor?

That’s been gone for a long time. That was your first hint.

Dan from Chautauqua, NY

Vic, at what moment did you realize it was time to cut back? It was such a memorable season. Was it the “Hail Mary” in Detroit? The shocking playoff run? The helicopter ride? Thanks for the daily memories.

The move from the press box to the media interview room at the end of the third quarter had become difficult for me. You have to get there quickly so you don’t miss anything in transit. Once you get there, you have to unpack the laptop, reconnect, etc. I was beginning to huff and puff.

Gary from Davenport, IA

Thank you for your candid answers to our questions. I have a personal question for you. Is that your natural hair color or did you dye it that color like fellow Pittsburgher Andy Warhol?

Only my hairdresser knows for sure.

Spurgeon from Butterburn, UK

Vic, will you be a part of the Packers pregame radio program? I loved your bantering with Mark Tauscher and Dennis Krause.

I’m delighted to report I will remain a member of the pregame radio team. I think I’m gonna banter more than ever this year.

Brady from Volga, SD

What do you think the defense needs to do to become a top-tier defense?

Stop the run. That’s job one.

Lori from Heredia, Costa Rica

Vic, Mike McCarthy gives you the gift of adding a play to his playbook. What is the name of your play and what happens on your play?

There isn’t a play I’ve seen or could create that Coach McCarthy doesn’t have in his playbook. The one I’d like to see run more often is the middle trap. It’s the best way to quiet three-technique tackles such as Aaron Donald.

Mike from Spring Lake, MI

How has Coach McCarthy taken the news he won’t get Vic’s questions after the games?

He knew last January, the week I left. We talked. A few hours before I drove away, I sent him this text message: “We will meet again. I love your team and the way you coach.”

Ben from Alameda, CA

You once said you can never have too many khakis. Do you have a tailor turning them into shorts now?

I was wrong. I have too many khakis.

Robert from Kent, OH

Vic, thanks for giving me a better perspective on football. When did players stop being real with the media and turn into broken records?

When the media began betraying them. It’s the same with coaches. We had a good thing going. We had a bond between us and our readers benefitted from the information that resulted. Then, trust was lost. Joe Paterno entertained reporters at his house before games. He would open up to them, give them tidbits of information they could use without attributing it to him. Then, one day a reporter quoted Coach Paterno from one of those gatherings as having said he wasn’t going to leave college football to the Jackie Sherrills and Barry Switzers of the world. That was the end of the tidbits of information.

Brian from Victoria, MN

Will your new “press box” allow cheering?

Absolutely not. I just can’t get it across to you, can I? We’re different.

Chad from Tarpon Springs, FL

When was the game innocent? Is there a starting and stopping time?

The game was innocent until it was turned over to TV. It’s another example of life imitating football, or vice versa.

David from Maribor, Slovenia

In the last couple of years, FIFA cut the size of your second favorite sport’s rulebook almost in half. If you put your feelings about soccer aside, should the NFL follow that example?

The NFL has re-defined what a catch is. They did exactly what I said they should do: broaden the language and make it a judgment call. We need more of that.

Spencer from Harbor City, CA

What would you do with the truth if given to you by Frenchy?

I would find a way to share it with my readers without betraying Frenchy. In my mind, that is the essence of journalism. It’s the reason we don’t have to reveal our sources. So why burn them?


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Vic Ketchman

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Do you have a question for Vic? Your question could be posted on packers.com. Vic has covered the NFL through 43 seasons, including 23 years covering the Steelers and 16 years covering the Jaguars.

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