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He has that 'It' factor

Posted Nov 30, 2017

Every team is looking for flashes of greatness


Kyle from Cedar Rapids, IA

First, Davante Adams is a young superstar and it seems paramount that he remains on the team for years to come. Second, can the Packers take a day in practice and solely focus on stopping that short-yardage inside shovel-pass play? It just keeps coming back.

Adams has the opportunity to be something special. Despite the change at quarterback, he remains on pace for a 1,000-yard season and won’t turn 25 until Christmas Eve. He’s blossomed nicely in this system and still has his best football ahead of him. He has that “It” factor. To the second part of your comment, the Packers often have different areas of emphasis in practice each week. Short-yardage situations are a part of that. Shovel passes are not an easy sequence to defend, but you have to find a way.

Scott from Hayward, WI

I am wondering if you feel the "all-team" celebrations have gone too far. I personally feel that an attempt by the league to be a little permissive has turned into something pretty ridiculous that takes away from the integrity of the game. Can you imagine a PGA golfer flopping down and break-dancing because he made a birdie? Whatever happened to the modesty of act like you've been there before?

I don’t watch golf, so I wouldn’t be able to tell you what caters to that audience. But fans love celebrations. The Packers did a curling routine Sunday. A curling routine! What more could you ask for? Curling!

Jennifer from Oakland, CA

Would Rodgers have to start practicing this Saturday in order to play in the Panthers game two weeks later? And when do they have to make room on the 53-man roster for him if he starts practicing this Saturday?

You don’t have to practice for two weeks in order to be eligible to be activated. The rules simply allow a player two weeks to practice before activation, which can occur after at least eight weeks. If Rodgers returns, the Packers would need to designate him as the player returning on the day he practices. That opens the two-week window for him to return to the roster or remain on IR.

David from Los Angeles, CA

Regarding the idea of converting our likely 11 draft choices into maybe three elite picks, why not? With the draft being a crapshoot anyway, our only chance of grabbing elite players who can quickly become difference-makers is to move up. Defensively speaking, who are our difference-makers? Daniels? Perry? Even they seem to disappear for long periods of time.

There are no guarantees in the draft, though. Trading up in the draft doesn’t guarantee a Pro Bowler. The Packers actually have used the middle rounds to build the bulk of their team with David Bakhtiari (fourth), Corey Linsley (fifth), Mike Daniels (fourth) and Morgan Burnett (third) being just a few examples. I still subscribe to the old Ron Wolf adage about getting as many swings at the plate as possible. More swings means more hits.

Dean from Leavenworth, IN

What's the status on Demetri Goodson? Is he practicing with the team or working out? Any idea when he might return to the roster?

Goodson’s 21-day window to be activated off the physically unable to perform list started Nov. 15. So the Packers have until next Wednesday to either add him to the 53-man roster, release him, or place him on season-ending injured reserve.

Mike from Kalamazoo, MN

Dean from Leavenworth, IN, has to be the 2017 Insider Inbox MVP. Does he ever have a question go unanswered?

Once the season is over, I think I’m going to go back and tally up who had the most questions answered since Week 1. You know, for my records.

Zak from Blaine, MN

Shout out to Ahmad Brooks for deflecting the pass so Martinez could get the interception. I feel like he also got good pressure on Ben even though he never got home. Hopefully we see more good things from him.

It’s been a tough go for Brooks this year. He started the year with the concussion and then his back flared up when he appeared to be settling in. He’s had two nice breakups in the last three games with a half sack, too. The Packers and their pass rush hope it’s a sign for a late-season rally.

Blaine from Bagley, WI

I trusted the coaches’ decision to stick with Hundley over trying Callahan. Have people stopped asking when Callahan will start now that Hundley had a good game?

The howling has quieted. I liken it to the tranquility you feel when your dog finally stops barking.

Mike from Novato, CA

Any chance Kevin King will start jamming receivers at the line? I know he has a recurring shoulder issue, but it hasn't affected his tackling. It looks like he's giving too much cushion to some of the better WRs, but he has the size and make-up speed to be more physical. Thoughts?

While it might not affect the outcome of his tackling, you can see King grimace when he puts his shoulder into that contact. There’s no question it’s affected his ability to press at the line of scrimmage, one of his greatest strengths. When he’s healthy, King is the total package with his size, speed and physicality. He just keeps gritting his teeth and moving forward. You have to commend him for being willing to tough it out.

Luke from Oconomowoc, WI

Are other teams in the league keeping a close eye on Hundley? If so, do you think these teams would rather see a QB with flashes of greatness or someone who plays at a lower level, but more consistently?

Every team is looking for flashes of greatness from young players. Consistently performing at a lower level won’t make you an NFL player. It’ll make you me on the basketball court.

Tom from Vista, CA

Tampa Bay reminds me of the Snow Bowl. Jim Hill was calling the game from the old press box. His hair was caked and frozen with snow. It was an unreal blizzard. I could not see yard lines. Hill shared stories of how the Packers psyched out the visitors, how the Packers could tell they defeated the opponent when they crowded around the heaters. Last play Young is buried in the snow all alone on Lambeau Field, the Bucs were rushing into the locker room, Young was frantically digging snow out from underneath his face mask after his last sack. Packers won, home field prevailed.

That was the tale my father used to tell me about the Snow Bowl, as well. Attendance for the game was fewer than 20,000. I can only imagine what it must have looked like with more than half the stadium empty. Those diehards who turned out were treated to an all-timer from the wizard in the blizzard. That’s one you tell your grandkids about.

Alex from Acworth, GA

Let's say we win out. Don't we only need four games to go our way? Two losses by the Seahawks and two by the Panthers (other than our game)?

I’m going to entertain this briefly, but I’m going to concur with Spoff’s logic on this narrative. The Packers need help. They need to win out and have the Vikings take care of business against the Falcons and Panthers. That’s the simplest outside assessment. Internally, Green Bay needs to get the job done against Tampa Bay and Cleveland. That’s what it controls.

Joe from Pittsburgh, PA

You really have to feel for Eli Manning after he was thrown under the bus by the Giants. Management says thanks for answering the bell for over 200 straight games and two Super Bowls with a kick to the curb. I have a feeling this Manning will end his career in Denver just like Peyton.

I’m a fan of Ben McAdoo. He’s a standup guy with a good heart. The historian part of me is struggling with the decision, though. As Crash Davis once said, “Respect the streak because they don’t happen very often.” Say what you want about Eli, but 210 consecutive starts is a remarkable stat. I used this analogy on “Packers Unscripted” – could you imagine if the 2005 Packers had benched Brett Favre in the midst of a 4-12 season in which he threw 29 interceptions? And they even had a rookie first-round pick on their bench in Aaron Rodgers. What Manning has accomplished is bigger than a 2-9 season.

Patrick from Ashland, WI

This QB starter streak by Brett Favre will eventually be broken with the evolving rules. Could they start a new record called “toughest QB of all-time” and just leave it alone? Some of us saw every game, and the video will never go away.

On the contrary, I don’t think Favre’s starting streak will ever be broken with the evolving rules. It takes durability, elite production and competitiveness to perform at the level Favre did, for as long as he did. In my opinion, his 297 consecutive starts streak is the holy grail of NFL records. Without question, he’s the toughest QB of all-time. Even if Eli finished out the year as the starting QB, he would’ve needed five more seasons to come close to Favre’s mark.

Elizabeth from Toledo, OH

Why do you have to rain on Mark from Westernport's parade? The Steelers game was a lot of fun to watch, even if the outcome wasn't in our favor. Seeing Aaron throw before the game made it better. Let the man be pumped up!

Maybe Rodgers just wanted to show Alex Van Pelt he could throw a football over them mountains.

Chris from Wyoming, OH

The 12th man staying on the field has been brought up more than once recently. I believe that if that 12th guy decides to say "what the heck" and actually get involved in the play, it's unsportsmanlike conduct for 15 yards and imminent ejection versus 5 yards. Am I right?

No. There was a play during the Minnesota-Detroit game on Thanksgiving where the Vikings kept 12 players on the field for the full duration of the play. Matthew Stafford still completed the pass to Marvin Jones Jr. through double coverage for the 43-yard touchdown.

Scott from Dallas, TX

When a player is desperately trying to get off the field (12 men on the field situation), can they run anywhere out of bounds or do they need to get to a certain part of their sideline?

They can run anywhere on their sideline. It’s a mad dash to the chalk.

Bill from Bloomfield Hills, MI

I got to thinking about somehow having access to all my submitted comment/questions and realized the hazards of your responses being published daily. What response would you most like to take back this year?

Not a single one. I’m not trying to be right. I’m trying to be me. I mean what I say and I say what I mean. No ragrets.

Mike from Fort Wayne, IN

When making a snowman as a kid did you use a carrot or charcoal for the nose?

Carrot. Pa Hod didn’t let me near anything flammable.

Jeriah from Las Cruces, NM

I was disappointed not to see you guys at the Packers Everywhere pep rally in Pittsburgh this past week. It took a while to get in the door. But it was a lot of fun! I was glad that I got to meet Mark Murphy and Dave Robinson. Both class acts. The game wasn't too shabby either. Hundley did more than enough to win the game. But I can't help but feel like that would have been a game we would have won had Rodgers been healthy, which I'm sure a lot of fans feel the same way about the past few games. Hopefully our young players continue to develop and Lady Luck helps us get into the playoffs this year. If not, at least we'll have a decent draft pick this year!

I’m sorry we missed you, but I’m glad to hear you enjoyed yourself. I had a ton of fun. It was a wonderful atmosphere in a very neat part of town. There’s always going to be ifs, ands, and buts during every season. The one constant is you’re only guaranteed 16 meaningful NFL games each season. My only wish for Packers fans is they take time to enjoy them.

Ben from Indianapolis, IN

My best friend (sadly a Bucs fan) and I will be at the game Sunday. How would one go about meeting the heroes of the Insider Inbox?

We’re still trying to coordinate with Spoff what time his autograph session will begin Sunday. He’s a busy man.


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