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  • Fri., Apr. 18, 2014 6:00PM - 8:30PM CDT Tailgate Tour: Rice Lake party

    The Green Bay Packers announced plans for the ninth ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour,’ set for April 15-19. This year’s tour includes two stops in Michigan, in addition to three Wisconsin stops, to visit with fans and thank them in person for their support.

    Tour celebrities will include Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy, players Jarrett Bush, Brad Jones and Mason Crosby, and Packers alumni Paul Coffman, Lynn Dickey and James Lofton.

    The tailgate parties will welcome the players and alumni arriving at each location at 6 p.m., and will run until 8:30 p.m., except in Merrill, where the tailgate party will take place from 12:30 to 3 p.m. A local non-profit organization will host each party which will feature food, giveaways, question-and-answer sessions and autographs. Tailgate party tickets cost $30.

    General admission tickets also will be available for $5, which includes access to the Q-and-A sessions as well as tailgate party activities. Food and beverage will be available for purchase. Due to space limitations, no general admission tickets will be available in Ironwood. 

    One hundred percent of the Tailgate Tour proceeds will benefit the hosting organizations.

    Tickets for the tailgate parties at all locations will go on sale Friday, Feb. 28. ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour’ tailgate party locations, hosting organizations and ticket information are as follows:

    Rice Lake: Barron County Fairgrounds. To benefit Benjamin’s House. Tickets on sale at Marketplace Foods, 330 S. Main St., Rice Lake; and Rainbow Home Center, 1124 Hammond Ave., Rice Lake.

  • Sat., Apr. 19, 2014 12:30PM - 3:00PM CDT Tailgate Tour: Merrill party

    The Green Bay Packers announced plans for the ninth ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour,’ set for April 15-19. This year’s tour includes two stops in Michigan, in addition to three Wisconsin stops, to visit with fans and thank them in person for their support.

    Tour celebrities will include Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy, players Jarrett Bush, Brad Jones and Mason Crosby, and Packers alumni Paul Coffman, Lynn Dickey and James Lofton.

    The tailgate parties will welcome the players and alumni arriving at each location at 6 p.m., and will run until 8:30 p.m., except in Merrill, where the tailgate party will take place from 12:30 to 3 p.m. A local non-profit organization will host each party which will feature food, giveaways, question-and-answer sessions and autographs. Tailgate party tickets cost $30.

    General admission tickets also will be available for $5, which includes access to the Q-and-A sessions as well as tailgate party activities. Food and beverage will be available for purchase. Due to space limitations, no general admission tickets will be available in Ironwood. 

    One hundred percent of the Tailgate Tour proceeds will benefit the hosting organizations.

    Tickets for the tailgate parties at all locations will go on sale Friday, Feb. 28. ‘Green Bay Packers Tailgate Tour’ tailgate party locations, hosting organizations and ticket information are as follows:

    Merrill: MARC. To benefit Riverbend Trail. Tickets on sale at Merrill Chamber of Commerce, 705 N. Center Ave., Merrill; Dave’s County Market, 300 E. 1st St., Merrill; and Drew’s Piggly Wiggly, 3404 E. Main St., Merrill. Tickets also available online at www.merrillchamber.org.

  • Sat., Apr. 26, 2014 8:00AM - 6:00PM CDT Packers Pro Shop Tent Sale

    The sale is taking place earlier than in previous years, due to the construction at Lambeau Field and the work that the Pro Shop team must complete in preparation for the new store, which will open this summer. Visitors to Lambeau Field should enter the Atrium through the Oneida Nation Gate. Parking is available in the lot on Lambeau Field’s east side near the Oneida Nation Gate, which can be accessed off Oneida Street and Lombardi Avenue.

    The sale will feature the traditional mix of Pro Shop items greatly reduced in price and other special purchases.

    The team’s football operations staff also has provided Packers team apparel no longer in use, including a large assortment of t-shirts, shorts, jackets, jerseys and pants. Some items are practice-worn gear not normally available in the Pro Shop.

    The tent sale began in 1994 in the parking lot outside the former Pro Shop on the north end of Lambeau Field and grew into a popular event. Now in its 11th year in the Atrium, the tent sale also was held in the west side stadium concourse in previous years.

     
  • Sat., May. 10, 2014 7:00PM CDT Eddie Lacy appearance 22nd Annual Doug Jirschele Memorial Sports Award Banquet
  • Sat., Jun. 07, 2014 8:30AM - 3:30PM CDT JPP Kids Clinic

    The 17th annual Junior Power Pack Kids Clinic is set for Saturday, June 7, 2014 in the Don Hutson Center with sessions ranging from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

    The Junior Power Pack Clinic gives members ages 5-14 years old the opportunity to practice football skills and drills with other Packers backers and a few up-and-coming Packers players.  Parents/Guardians are welcome to come and watch their child/ren participate in the clinic. 

    Members may choose one of three sessions to attend:

    • Session 1 – 8:30 to 10 a.m.
    • Session 2 – 11 to 12:30 p.m.
    • Session 3 – 2 to 3:30 p.m.


    The event will be held inside the Don Hutson Center, the Packers indoor practice facility. Parking for the event is available in the lot on Lambeau Field’s east side near the Oneida Nation Gate.  

    The Junior Power Pack Clinic is a member’s only event and will have a registration fee of $5.

    Deadline to register:

    • New Members – May 11, 2014
    • Current Members – May 18, 2014


    To sign up to become a member of the Junior Power Pack and receive an invitation to the clinic fans can go to www.packers.com/jpp.

     
  • Sat., Jun. 14, 2014 2:30PM CDT Jerry Parins Cruise for Cancer

    The eleventh annual Jerry Parins Cruise for Cancer motorcycle ride will be held, rain or shine, on Saturday, June 14, 2014. The ride will start at Vandervest Harley-Davidson (1966 Velp Avenue, Green Bay) and will make a fun-filled stop at the Seymour Fireman's Picnic, held at the Outagamie County Fairgrounds in Seymour.

    Ride Day Schedule

    • 9-10:30 am: Registration at Vandervest Harley-Davidson, Geen Bay
    • 11 am: Depart Vandervest Harley-Davidson, Green Bay
    • 12 pm: Arrive in Seymour. Enjoy food, beverages, entertainment and a short program.
    • 2:30 pm: Party kicks off at the new South Endzone Festival Foods MVP Deck at Lambeau Field! Guests can access the space by way of the Shopko Gate. See the field and enjoy the atmosphere from this beautiful indoor/outdoor space newly opened and accessed by very few. The party will include silent and live auction, food, beverages, music and merchandise available for purchase.


    More information: http://cruiseforcancer.org/

     

Ask Vic

Vic Ketchman

Do you have a question for Vic? Fill out the form below to send it to him. Your question could be posted on packers.com.

Vic Ketchman has covered the NFL through 42 seasons, including 23 years covering the Steelers and 16 years covering the Jaguars.

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Reggie White types don't come along often

Posted May 26, 2011

Donald from Vienna, VA

Hey, slick Vic, can you please explain the mysterious Wonderlic Test. What does it test and what is the final score breakdown?

It’s a 12-minute, 50-question aptitude test that claims to determine someone’s deductive-reasoning power. For example, the test might ask that if one train leaves Chicago headed east on the same tracks that a train has left New York headed west, where will they collide? The answer is obviously Cleveland, right? So you put down Cleveland and that’s one point for you. At the end of the test, they count up your right answers and that’s your score. Quarterbacks usually score in the 20s or higher, then come offensive linemen, wide receivers, running backs, defensive backs, linebackers, defensive linemen and sportswriters.

Agustin from Buenos Aires, Argentina

First of all, I would like to congratulate you for this incredible column. I agree with you that rainy or snowy games are the best. It always makes my day to watch a snowy football game.

There’s something about football and snow that make for a dramatically perfect visual. A picture of a football game in the snow is the closest thing sports can offer to a painting. I am drawn to pictures of football games played in the snow. It’s as though I want to count the snowflakes.

Mark from Madrid, Spain

Loved your explanation of the 5-2, 4-3, 3-4. How do nickel and dime packages factor in?

In nickel, a fifth defensive back comes onto the field and a linebacker usually comes off. In dime, a sixth defensive back comes onto the field and either a defensive lineman or a linebacker comes off the field. You would only play dime when you have the offense in a must-pass situation because dime is extremely vulnerable to the run.

Jason from Burbank, CA

Kurt Warner wasn't left-handed and we weren't talking about switching defensive players, we were talking about left-handed quarterbacks having the best blocker on the left side. Even if the defense switches its best pass-rusher to the other side, he is at a disadvantage because he trains to be a right end not a left end.

You are absolutely right. There aren’t a lot of players special enough to switch sides and perform with equal effectiveness. Yes, there are those special players, as Reggie White was, that can play the run and rush the passer with equal effectiveness, and they don’t care which hand they put on the ground or which leg they drop back or who’s blocking them or if they’re “clubbing” or “swimming” with their right arm or their left arm; they are so incredibly gifted that they can do it all and from multiple positions, but start counting those guys and let me know when you run out of fingers. The sacks rankings are loaded with front-side pass-rushers: Clay Matthews, LaMarr Woodley and Robert Mathis immediately come to mind. Kevin Greene and Reggie White were front-side guys. I covered a game Charles Haley dominated from the front side. Again, most rushers are right-handed and they are most comfortable coming from the right side, but when you find a premier pass-rusher that likes coming from the left side, you have a guy that will often present a mismatch for a right tackle that isn’t as gifted a pass-blocker as the left tackle is. That’s what you’re looking for, matchups. Creating matchup advantages is much more important than the hand with which the quarterback throws.

Andy from Abbotsford, BC

Which Packers players do you see making the biggest jump in their performances from years one to two?

I think Bryan Bulaga is an obvious candidate. Offensive tackles are always big-jump candidates because the position requires learning some tricks of the trade, so to speak, and Bulaga did his learning last season during the late-season rush to the Super Bowl. I would expect him to become a real force up front for the Packers this season.

Daryl from Portland, ME

Your videos make public-access TV look like Academy Award-winning programming.

Thank you. Hey, do you have a picture of yourself you could share with us?

Loftur from Columbus, OH

I really enjoy your discussion about the evolution of the defenses. What do you see as the next big switch when it comes to base defenses? With the added emphasis on the passing game, do you see a 3-3 or a 4-2 defense where you remove a linebacker and add a third corner?

That’s nickel and teams are using it more and more as their base defense, meaning they open the game in it and use it for a higher percentage of plays than the alignment that is generally considered to be their base. What we need to know before we look into the future is what the league intends to do with the rules. There was serious talk last season about outlawing three and four-point stances. Will that talk resurface? Is there a chance that might actually happen? If it does, it’s a game-changer. Outlawing three and four-point stances would result in the most dramatic changes the game has ever seen.

Michael from Baltimore, MD

What do you think of the modern players or teams that trash-talk excessively? Even though I'm a diehard Packers fan, I also root for the Baltimore Ravens since I live in Baltimore and I really think their bravado hurts them at times. I really prefer the Packers’ mindset better, which seems to be a supreme, quiet confidence. I think arrogance and ignorance are closely correlated. Hope you can share on this point.

Just win, baby. That’s my thought on the subject. I don’t like all of that big-talk stuff, but if you can make it work, go ahead and do it. The Ravens didn’t make it work. They had the lead and they were talkin’ it up pretty good, but they folded at crunch time. The Jets are another big-talk team and they’re a legitimate Super Bowl contender, too, but they wouldn’t be much without Darrelle Revis and you don’t see him putting on a show, do you? I couldn’t figure out why Rex Ryan would tell that ridiculous story before last season’s AFC title game. Why would he go out of his way to tell a story about laughing at a player that got knocked out? How does that help your cause, especially heading into a hostile environment? So what happened? They got the ball run down their throat. That’s embarrassing.

Daniel from Brooklyn, WI

It's a copy-cat league, so please explain why teams don't copy the 1985 Bears’ “46” defense?

Because it’s players, not plays; that’s why. When you have the cast of players the ’85 Bears had, you can play any defense you want. Put that team in a 3-4. Put “Refrigerator” Perry at nose tackle, with Steve McMichael at one end and Dan Hampton at the other end. Now stand up Richard Dent as a linebacker, along with Wilber Marshall, Mike Singletary and Otis Wilson. Do you think they would’ve been pretty good in a 3-4? I’ll tell you what, turn that bunch over to Dom Capers and they might’ve gotten even more sacks. Daniel, don’t fall into the video-game trap of believing you win with plays. You win with players.

Ryan from Irvine, CA

In your video about the 3-4, why did you go out of your way to specify that it was a nose guard, not a nose tackle? My dad and grandpa call it a nose guard and I have to admit it sounds better, but nowadays I hear it as a nose tackle. Same difference, right?

Yeah, it’s the same thing. In a “52,” the lineman over the center is referred to as a nose guard because you already have two defensive tackles; it’s just nomenclature. In a 3-4, that player is called a nose tackle because he’s the only tackle on the line.

David from Richmond, IN

I loved that picture of a muddy Jim Taylor running to daylight. That's football.

I can’t remember the last time a picture got to me as that one did when I saw it on the site yesterday. It’s beautiful. It’s art. It’s the work of Vernon Biever, the Packers’ legendary photographer, who passed away last fall. Packers.com is blessed to have access to Vern’s work and I am thrilled that you enjoy it, as I’m sure a lot of other Packers fans do, too. That, David, is a classic picture of what Taylor saw as he ran to daylight. You know, I look at that picture and I feel sorry for the people who are bored by the running game. I pity those that can’t see the simple beauty in that play and in that picture.

Ted from Madison, WI

What's your take on why Jerry Kramer hasn't been elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame? To me, his situation seems similar to Andy Russell's. Are the HOF voters overlooking these guys because they played on teams with many HOF inductees already?

They’re not overlooking them, they’re just refusing to vote them in because they believe those two teams have reached their quota. I had a member of the selection committee tell me that if another guy goes in, then the coach has to go out because how good of a coach do you have to be to coach a team with those many Hall of Fame players on it. He was being facetious, of course, but I got his point.

Wayne from Lakeside, AZ

How about a 2-5 defense? It would replace one down lineman with a mobile middle linebacker that could spy on the quarterback and increase pass-defense while still providing fast response to plug the run.

Why not 0-0-11 instead of prevent? Why bother wasting rushers? They’re not likely to sack the quarterback and why do you wanna hurry him anyhow? Let him stand back there all day; the clock is running, isn’t it? Put 11 defensive backs on the field and show me where the open receiver is.

Sean from Leeds, UT

Darn it, Vic, when are you going to answer one of my questions?

Right now.

Randy from Longview, TX

I think we hear the talking heads talk about how tight ends are a mismatch against any defense. They have the speed of a wide receiver, the quickness of a running back, the size of a lineman, making them impossible to cover, so fans take that and run with it. What makes a great tight end and who would be your No. 1 tight end?

You have to create mismatches and putting five tight ends on the field at the same time is going to create a lot of mismatches that’ll favor the defense. It’s nonsensical but I have no doubt some tight end-crazy offensive coordinator will do it someday. In my opinion, a great tight end is one that can block and catch with equal aplomb. In my opinion, players such as Mike Ditka and John Mackey define the position; the Kellen Winslow and Shannon Sharpe types are wide receivers disguised as tight ends. Today’s game is a game of formations. We have blocking tight ends and we have pass-catching tight ends and they are used accordingly. What we don’t have are a lot of traditional block-and-catch types. Andrew Quarless has a chance to become one of those block-and-catch guys; he has the skill set for it. What makes those guys special is that their ability to perform both functions allows you to do more with less, meaning you can do more out of the same formations, and that’s a play-caller’s delight. Where, however, are you going to find those block-and-catch guys? Their ranks are dwindling more every year, because of the proliferation of spread offenses on the college level. You might find tight ends coach Ben McAdoo’s comments on the subject interesting.

 
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