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Mike Pennel will have his chance in half-lines

Posted Jul 29, 2015

Packers' throwback uniforms are classy

Craig from Weare, NH

Vic, why do you think Mo and Fred are better than Rocky and Franco? I do not understand how you can compare them. Thanks for the column.

Mo and Fred were complementary backs, just as Eddie Lacy and James Starks are complementary backs. It means they are each feature backs when they are in the game, but they are nearly never in the game at the same time. Franco and Rocky played together in the same backfield. One was the feature back and the other was the main blocker, as were Jim Taylor and Paul Hornung.

Dan from Port Hueneme, CA

Vic, I agree the NFL has favored the Packers in many ways, but I don’t think that’s based on altruism or sentiment. What does the NFL get in return for its support?

The NFL gets Lombardi and everything that comes with him. The league decision that provided for the future of this franchise was Pete Rozelle’s pool-the-revenue, leaguethink concept, especially as it pertained to his leaguewide CBS TV deal. If he hadn’t been able to sell the concept of pooling the revenue to the big-market owners, primarily Wellington Mara, what chance would Green Bay have of attracting a TV deal that could compete with the Giants and Bears? TV was just about to become the driving force in football’s future. Rozelle had the vision to see it and he knew the big-market teams had an advantage that would make the small-market teams uncompetitive, unless he got the OK from the big-market owners to negotiate one deal for everyone. 

Mike from Valemount, BC

What are your thoughts on the Cardinals signing the first woman to coach in the NFL?

It’s progress and it will create more fans for the game. In my time covering the league, women have become owners, officials and coaches. They’ve broken the locker room barrier as media, and I think we’re headed for the day when a woman will be commissioner. Will we ever see the day a woman is a player?

Steve from Fergus Falls, MN

Vic, why a third jersey? Is that a revenue thing?

Fergus Falls sounds like a wonderful place.

Alex from Middletown, KY

Vic, my wife and I are planning our trip for “Family Night” and we have faced a dilemma; we cannot find any Green Bay Packers maternity apparel. I know this is quite an odd question, but being you are much closer to Lambeau Field than we are, do you know of any place we can find her a shirt?

Do they still sell the Gilbert Brown model?

Kurt from Frisco, TX

Any truth to the rumor that while in Florida you were part of the committee that named hurricanes?

Not true at all, but I’ll tell you a story about my first hurricane evacuation. It was for Floyd in 1999. Floyd was a monster and Jacksonville Beach was supposed to be a direct hit. When I left my house on a Monday night, I truly believed I would never see it again. They were saying the storm surge would wash everything away. So, I loaded my car with everything of value I could put into it. Golf balls! I put golf balls in my car, and my golf clubs, of course. I had a closet full of boxes of new golf balls and I couldn’t bear to see them washed away. These are the kinds of memories that remind me of my mental limitations and make me thankful I could earn a living as a sportswriter.

Ken from Long Beach, CA

Vic, it’s too early to speculate on which players will be placed on the practice squad, however, is there one position that is usually grabbed up by other teams?

Tackles; everybody is looking for big guys.

Tom from Syracuse, NY

Vic, I checked out the website of your favorite restaurant. Fantastic views. I glanced at the menu. The Scallops O’range looked delicious.

Yeah, the waiters all know me by my first name. Natrona hath its privileges.

John from Ashburn, VA

To piggyback off your comments about Joe Greene, have your core football beliefs generally been formed by your own observations, or by what others have taught you directly?

My football beliefs have generally been formed by my cowardice. Find the weak and their weakness and pound on it.

Kraig from Colville, WA

Who is the toughest coach you ever covered? Could you offer an exemplary moment?

Coach Coughlin; he fined Ben Coleman for talking to me.

Benny from Joliet, IL

Vic, love your column! Which throwback jersey do you like better: 1937-49 Packers or the Steelers’ bumble-bee uniforms?

The Packers’ throwback uniforms are classy in an understated way. They remind me of a navy sports coat, white shirt and yellow tie with a pair of khakis and fashionable loafers. This isn’t a bumble-bee jersey kind of franchise. Its fans would have a heart attack if the Packers wore something that bold. Most of all, I don’t think it would sell, especially not in Fergus Falls, Minn. I am, however, a bumble-bell shirt kind of guy. I love bold colors and styles. My two favorite pieces of throwback garb are the Steelers’ bumble-bee jerseys and the Broncos’ vertically striped socks.

Matt from Verona, WI

You know what the best part of my day is? For about 10 seconds, from when I see “Ask Vic” is posted until I scroll to the bottom of the page, I think maybe Vic has responded to my question.

Today’s “Ask Vic Day.” I wish you were here.

P.S. from Gomer, OH

As a grammar Nazi, I appreciate your winsome approach to correct speech. By the way, the abrupt and sometimes sarcastic ambiance of your column is very welcome.

I regret having answered that question. I hate grammar police and now I feel like one. It goes back to when I was a young reporter interviewing for a job. A guy on the staff wanted to hire me and arranged for the interview. The sports editor didn’t want to hire me; he had somebody else in mind. So, in the interview, the sports editor gave me an editing test to complete. I came to learn that being given an editing test means you’re not getting the job; nobody could pass one of those tests. I failed the test miserably. I missed stuff I didn’t even know was stuff. I gave the sports editor a look, as if to say, “You got me.” It made me feel small and I hated the feeling, and that’s why I don’t like grammar police.

Sal from El Paso, TX

Who is the best goal line back you’ve seen? I say it was Marcus Allen.

Sam Cunningham.

Tim from Normal, IL

Vic, how does a DL like Mike Pennel make his mark in camp when there are so few practices in pads with full contact hitting?

Half-line drills. That’s where a nose tackle defines himself. Can he hold the point? I live for the half-line days in training camp. It’s the drill that connects me to my past.

Troy from McKinney, TX

Do all the players arrive in shape or has there been cases of Packers players showing up to training camp out of shape?

If you arrive at training camp out of shape in today’s game, you’re probably going on PUP.

Ben from Milwaukee, WI

Vic, you say revenue sharing has helped make this game great. Maybe Wellington Mara should be on the NFL Mt. Rushmore. What do you think?

That’s why Pete Rozelle is on my Rushmore. He sold the idea to Mara. It’s probably the single-most important event in the history of the NFL.

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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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