Skip to main content
Powered by

Don't let the mania make you crazy

Low risk is all about guaranteed money


Aron from Gold Coast, Australia

Why are we not trying to acquire Jimmy Graham from Seattle? Rumors are he is headed to Chicago. He could make us unstoppable on offense, so why are we letting Chicago get him cheap?

The day before free agency begins is a special time.

Andrew from New York, NY

Vic, who would the Packers choose if they had the No. 1 draft pick?

I don't know the Packers' board, but A'Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama, is a guy who would interest me with that pick. You know how I am about big guys, and Robinson is a natural two-gapper. This isn't a good year to be at the top. This draft class lacks a first-overall-pick quarterback and pass rusher. It has a premier LT, but there are some off-the-field concerns. A first overall pick, in my opinion, must be a rare guy. Robinson is rare.

Jake from Franklin, WI

What are your thoughts on the Eagles erasing everything Kelly built? Have you ever seen a team do a complete 180 like this where they don't just go for the opposite coaching personality, but jettison off players, too?

It's reminiscent of what the Oilers had to do when they moved out of the "Run and Shoot" era. They went from a finesse offense that didn't have a tight end and had trouble in goal line and short yardage because it lacked power, to a coach (Jeff Fisher) who wanted to run the ball and play power football. It took time.

Jake from Franklin, WI

Who is a better fit for the Packers, Jared Cook or Ladarius Green?

I think they're both interesting guys, but I expect Cook to last a little longer and be less expensive to sign.

Matt from Arlington, VA

What is the best trade one team has made for a player since you've been covering the NFL? Is it Herschel Walker to Minnesota by Dallas?

For a player? That wasn't a good trade for the Vikings. There are lots of examples of great trades for draft picks, but not nearly as many for players. The trade that brought Brett Favre to Green Bay is the best for a player in my time covering football. Favre became the face of the franchise. The trade that brought Jerome Bettis to the Steelers was a face-of-the-franchise deal. The Mark Brunell trade was good for the Jaguars.

Jeffery from Shullsburg, WI

Pick up Forte and Lauranaitis and trade a first-round pick for Joe Thomas! What do you think?

Congratulations, you just built an old football team.

Rob from Sturgeon Bay, WI

I am amazed at the number of media outlets that would benefit from "Ask Vic." Numerous outlets, including local sources, are writing articles connecting the Packers with a variety of older free agents. As a fan, I can see into the future. The Packers should not gamble on other teams' casualties if it means they can't sign their own. Media outlets apparently lack the ability to look beyond this year. What happened to your profession, Vic? Are we to blame, or vice versa?

The media gives the fans what they want. Imagine the visits this column would get if I topped it with this headline: Packers deal for Jimmy Graham considered. It would be totally disingenuous to do that, but it would light this column up, and that's what a lot of websites use the mania for free agency to do. We have arrived in Nutsville, and every football site in the nation, including the league's own, is going to advance nutty rumors to capitalize on the fan frenzy. I won't do that. I'd like to see the Packers be a player in sensible free agency, but my focus is on the draft. The draft is the lifeblood of this franchise.

Gabriel from Appleton, WI

"An' live off the fatta the lan'," Lennie shouted. "An' have free agency! Go on, George! Tell about what we're gonna have in Lambeau and about the receivers with speed in training camp and about the snow in the winter and the cold, and how thick the cheese is like you can hardly cut it. Tell about that George."

Don't squeeze your cheese too hard.

Ricky from St. Louis, MO

How come the Eagles are able to trade already? I thought the new NFL year didn't start until Wednesday?

You can arrange a trade, but you can't execute it until tomorrow's deadline. First you get under the cap, and then you trade.

Daniel from Appleton,  WI

I just read the article following Peyton Manning's retirement that discussed who ranks as the greatest at the quarterback position all time. So if you had to pick, who would be on your Mt. Rushmore of quarterbacks?

Unitas, Montana, Brady and Graham.

Max from Hoffman Estates, IL

It's reported Dwayne Allen is getting a $30 million, four-year contract to stay in Indy. Would you have paid that much to bring him to Green Bay? Alternatively, is Ladarius Green worth that price? I know you're looking for a bargain, but how do those figures fall on the bargain-to-overspending spectrum?

I can't find a signing bonus figure, so $30 million is meaningless to me until I know how much of that money is guaranteed. Whatever that deal turns out to be, it'll likely set the market for Ladarius Green.

WR Randall Cobb, in his fifth year with the Packers, caught 79 balls for 829 yards and 6 TDs. He also rushed 13 times for 50 yards. Photos by Shawn Hubbard Photography, Jim Biever, and Matt Becker,

Dacia from McGregor, IA

What do you think went wrong with the defense in the Packers/Cardinals playoff game, Vic?

It was on the field too long late in the game. The Cardinals repeatedly converted third down on that long touchdown drive in the fourth quarter. The Packers needed a stop and couldn't get it.

Anthony from Milwaukee, WI

Trades seem to be happening more and more. Are teams understanding how to handle it better than they previously had?

Impatience is fueling desperation. Everybody wants to win the Super Bowl this year. I don't think that's a healthy attitude if it causes a team to chase ghosts, to use Ted Thompson's words. Commitment and patience are virtues. Coach Noll was 1-13, 5-9 and 6-8. There's no way he would've made it to year four and 11-3 in today's game. Different game? Not really. It was about the draft back then, and it's still about the draft today. The big difference is the howl of the wolves. It's much louder now.

Kason from Loves Park, IL

Can you explain what a low-risk, high-reward free agent is? Is it just signing a player with a low bonus?

That's the definition of low risk. I'll sign a free agent for $100 million if he'll allow me to structure the contract so it's heavy in salary and at the back end of the contract. Once you pay a big signing bonus, you are at the mercy of the player and the potential for injury. That's not for me.

Steven from Sacramento, CA

What is the best option for the Packers at inside linebacker, the draft or free agency, in your opinion?

I think they can find what they need in the draft, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't look for a guy in free agency. Everything is about price and contract structure. Ask the cap. "Cap, should we sign this guy?" If the cap says no, then don't sign him, because the cap knows. Take care of the cap and the cap will take care of you.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.