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Inbox: His name will be forever linked to the NFL

Say a prayer of gratitude for the Inbox community

Vince Lombardi
Vince Lombardi

Welcome to the fifth annual Outsider Inbox and thank you to everyone who has participated so far. We received hundreds of submissions over the past few days and did our best to include as many entries as we possibly (and reasonably) could. With that said, let's get this thing started…

1. Who is on your NFL Mt. Rushmore?

Derek from Eau Claire, WI

Pete Rozelle for having the vision of league and growing the NFL into America's pastime, Vince Lombardi for being the most iconic person of the league's most iconic franchise, Lawrence Taylor because the dude's a beast and as much as it pains me to pen this…Tom…nah, I can't do it.

Vince from Sioux Falls, SD

Mt. Rushmore: 1) Brett Favre 2) Aaron Rodgers 3) Donald Driver 4) Reggie White 5) Clay Matthews. (Editor's note: Um, Vince from South Dakota? Are you sure about five?)

Tom from Phoenix, AZ

Although Mt. Rushmore wasn't created until the 1900s, it contains the faces of three founders of our nation and one who came along 130 years later. My Mt. Rushmore also includes founders of the game we love. Some would argue for modern-day players with huge stats, but those players and their salaries wouldn't exist if it weren't for those who forged the game we love: Jim Thorpe, George Halas, Bronco Nagurski and Don Hutson. Tough men and Hall of Famers all.

Randy from Ooltewah, TN

Too many ways to look at this, so I provided a few categorized lists: Legends/founders: Curly Lambeau, George Halas, Lamar Hunt, Al Davis. Early players: Don Hutson, Jim Brown, Johnny Unitas, Bronco Nagurski. Coaches: Lombardi, Don Shula, Bill Belichick, Bill Walsh. QBs: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, John Elway. Non-QBs: Jerry Rice, Barry Sanders, Walter Peyton, Earl Campbell. Overall, I'll take the Packers from the list: Lambeau, Lombardi, Hutson, Rodgers.

Monty from Hazen, ND

My NFL Mount Rushmore has to start with George Halas as an original founding father, he served as player, coach, and owner. Don Hutson was a superstar receiver whose TD record stood for almost 50 years. Pete Rozelle led the league to become the juggernaut it is today. Reggie White was the man who made it cool to be a Green Bay Packer again!

Tim from Greensboro, NC

My Mount Rushmore is Vince Lombardi because duh! Pete Rozelle because his vision led to league parity which begat league popularity. George Halas because his help might very well have saved the Packers. Curly Lambeau because he built the foundation of the legend. I may have a little bias built into my picks.

Bob from Pocatello, ID

Bart Starr for his unwavering leadership. Dick Butkus for epitomizing rock-solid toughness. Gronk for his fun-loving domination of a position. Walter Payton for his other-worldly athleticism. George Halas for helping save the rival Packers.

John from Belleview, FL

Given that Mt. Rushmore celebrates no living figures, I would select Curly Lambeau, George Halas, Walter Payton, and Johnny Unitas.

Eric from Oshkosh, WI

For fun, the four players I will put on my Mt. Rushmore are Walter Payton, Barry Sanders, Adrian Peterson, and Jim Taylor. I know it's unconventional, but keep in mind that it is Mt. RUSHmore after all. Plus, it's more or less a Midwest attraction!

Wally from Tigerton, WI

Lombardi, Rozelle, Brady and Don Hutson. A coach, an executive, a guy who just wins and one who changed the game.

Bob from Freeport, IL

My Mt. Rushmore would be George Halas for helping to initially establish the fledgling NFL, Curly Lambeau for being the driving force to nurture the Green Bay franchise through the tough early times and establishing the winning tradition, Pete Rozelle who took the NFL to the national stage and Vince Lombardi for performing CPR on the Packers to bring them to what they are today.

Raymond from Sturgeon Bay, WI

Johnny Unitas made the QB a thinking man's position rather than one just of the most athletic one on the field. Jim Brown was the most dominant player on the field in the NFL during his career. George Halas created the NFL, kept it going and saw it grow into a major American sport. Vince Lombardi made winning the reason the game is played. By having that trophy named after him, his name will be forever linked to the NFL.

Marty from Galena, IL

Walter Camp, without his vision, the game of American football would not exist. Jim Thorpe for lending a polarizing name to the game in its early years. George Halas, for without his help and influence, football may not have lasted. Certainly not in Green Bay! And of course, Curly Lambeau for making Green Bay a credible team and promoting the forward pass.

Brett from Effingham, IL

Of course, I'd love to debate players for Mt. Rushmore, but they come and go, and it's hard to compare generations. But for Mt. Rushmore, you simply must put those "faces" of the NFL who are responsible for where we are today. Those faces are Pete Rozelle (merger, TV contracts, rev sharing, MNF), Paul Brown (film study, taxi squad, father of today's offense, first to integrate team), Papa Halas (60-plus years as a player, coach and owner) and of course Vince (never had a losing season and the trophy is named after him).

Curt from Algonquin, IL

The Player – Jerry Rice. No player has been picked to more All-Pro teams and played so far beyond any other without a hint of controversy.

The Coach - Vince Lombardi. Perhaps it's homer bias, but he's on the trophy for a reason.

The Owner - George Halas. Even Packer fans need to recognize he was the driving force in the first four decades of the league.

The Commish - Pete Rozelle. The NFL went from the NCAA senior circuit to the pinnacle of U.S. sports on his watch.

Matt from Kolesin, Poland

I'd sculpt: Aaron Rodgers for talent, Tom Brady for career, Reggie White for being the best minister of defense you could ask for, and Jerry Rice for all the unbelievable numbers. Remember that next to Mt. Rushmore there is even bigger Crazy Horse Memorial. This is the place for Bart Starr, the type of player and person hard to find anywhere in sports especially today.

Gerald from Mendota Heights, MN

Vince Lombardi, for taking the game to a whole new level. Gale Sayers, a candle in the wind. Paul Hornung and Max McGee, those two jokers had way too much fun playing the game. An unidentified Packers fan, we are the best and spread all over the world.

Dale from Green Bay, WI

Barry Sanders, Lawrence Taylor, Bo Jackson and Jerry Rice. I felt it was only fair to include players I've seen in my lifetime. No Packers? It's Mt. Rushmore, not Mt. Titletown, and these four players tilted the field so hard you could feel it through the television. Absolute nightmare for opposing coordinators.

Brad from Nampa, ID

In over 100 years of NFL football, it's almost impossible to select four individuals to place on this mountain. I would suggest two mountains, one for players and one for non-players. My four would be George Halas, Pete Rozelle, Vince Lombardi and Lamar Hunt. We wouldn't have the game we love without these four men. My four players would be Don Hutson, Walter Payton, Lawrence Taylor and Joe Montana. These men changed the game for the better.

Paul from West Bend, WI

Leaders – Vince Lombardi (because he's Vince), George Halas (Greatest coach), Pete Rozelle (Greatest leader), John Madden (Greatest spokesperson).

Player – Jim Brown, Ray Lewis, Deion Sanders, Don Hutson.

Charles from Ripon, WI

As Mt. Rushmore has depictions on it of people that shaped the nation, I'm going to pick players that shaped my view of football. Ahman Green, Nate Poole, Brett Favre, Eddie Lacy. Green because he felt so undeniable during his heyday. Poole because he made me believe in miracles. Favre because he showed it was a kid's game of joy and fun. And Eddie Lacy because my son has a poster of Eddie Lacy over his bed and Eddie protects against any monsters.

Team photographer Evan Siegle shares his favorite photos from the 2021 Green Bay Packers season.

2. What's your personal routine for reading Insider Inbox?

Dar from Mansfield, TX

My routine for reading II: 1.) Get caffeinated. 2.) Quickly scroll to see if there are posts from any regulars (or me). 3.) Stop immediately if I glimpse a possible long rant from Wes or Mike, especially if I see ALL CAPS. 4.) Start back at the top and read the posts in order. 5.) Recite the best and funniest posts aloud to Nickel, the Inbox-savvy dachshund, to see if he approves. 6.) Say a prayer of gratitude for the Inbox community, Spoff and Hod, and the Green Bay Packers. Life is good.

Ethan from Farley, IA

I wake up every day to get ready for work at 4 a.m. After a long morning of work, I sit down for break at 9:30 and open Insider Inbox. And every single day my coworker walks by and says, "All Packers, all the time." (He's a Steelers fan.) He doesn't understand how I can read about the Packers every day. I guess you don't know what you don't know!

Braedon from Endicott, NY

As soon as my lunch starts at noon, I open II and devour the same PB&J sandwich I've been eating for the past four years. Sandwich in my right hand, phone in my left. Fun fact, if I eat a PB&J on a Sunday, I instinctively open the Packers app even though I know there's no II. It's funny how the brain works. I don't do that with any other food!

Jim from St. Pete Beach, FL

I'm a pediatric cardiologist. My job can often be quite demanding and stressful. My sanctuary is the II. I grab some lunch between procedures and find the most secluded spot possible in the hospital and read the Inbox while I eat. It relaxes me and is usually good for a laugh or two. I know it's been a rough week when I'm five columns behind by the weekend! Thanks for this great forum!

Tom from Virginia Beach, VA

Routine for reading. Letter carrier. I always like to eat lunch at 11 a.m., which jives with II release time. I pull the LLV truck into a shady spot in the neighborhood. First, I fire off an "I love you" text to the maker of my lunch, then dive into II eating sandwiches, working to the bottom of the post. Sometimes the "Have a question?" last line hits hard, because it's "Finish the banana" time. The remainder of the route beckons.

Stephie Rae from Flowery Beach, GA

Open and rub eyes, grab phone. Foregoing work and business assignments or household chores, open GBP app, read any and all articles, watch videos, research references to games, plays, players or coaches I don't know, scroll for anything I may have missed…and late for work. Check again later in case anything else was added, check again at night just in case I missed something. Help! "They tried to make me go to rehab, but I said, 'No, no, no!'"

Jason from Austin, TX

My routine isn't that exciting. I wake up, go to work, and stare at the small clock on the bottom of the computer, watching the minutes crawl by, until it's lunch time. Then I can finally enjoy the salad I brought from home while reading the Inbox. The salad is exciting, though! Lettuce, tomato, buffalo chicken, corn, cheese, grapes, avocado and croutons. It's filling and delicious!

Bill from Clive, IA

Every day, but Sunday, at about 11:30 a.m., I prepare my lunch. After everything is ready, I sit down with my smartphone and check scores of interest from yesterday (currently the Brewers). I scan the clickbait headlines for Green Bay stories, resisting as many as I can, then stop the noise and head to for the facts. I save Inbox for last. My wise wife gives me space to read unimpeded; in return I give her selected tidbits, which she enjoys (or pretends to, anyway).

Steve from Eau Claire, WI

I save II as an "after ESPN" treat. When they run out of Packers news, I dial up the "Good Stuff."

Hannes from Glendale, WI

When working from home I prepare and eat my lunch while reading the thoughts of a person who just took someone's lunch or the words of someone who just had his lunch taken. It makes me feel like there is a deeper connection.

Salongo from Hailey, ID

My II routine in the summer tourist season tends toward reading a few days at once, whenever I get the time. Otherwise, I read/submit in the a.m. If I'm up all night with my chronic insomnia, chances are you'll see my submissions come in after midnight when my hamster wheel is occupied with the Packers. I'm not sure if you guys post the ones that come in that late, but I like to think you read them, regardless. It helps me get rid of my GB-related anxiety, so thank you both.

Greg from Myrtle Beach, SC

Coffee, clear emails, and then II…even before breakfast.

George from North Mankato, MN

My personal routine for reading II is actually quite selfish. As close to 8:30 a.m. as I can, I open the app on my phone at work and scan the names of all submitters looking for my name (if I sent a recent submission) and the names of regular submitters to take a guess at the types of questions to expect. Then, during a short lunch break, I actually read II. While doing this, I take time to note how many cities from the submissions I have visited. I pair cities to memories I have of them.

Bob from Rome, NY

I read II every day after taking third period study hall attendance.

Hank from Centennial, CO

I am a daily journalist myself. I cover the dietary supplement industry for a global media company. I'm tasked with writing two stories a day every day as well as editing and sending the daily newsletters, recruiting speakers for events, etc. My reward for grinding through my morning deadline is getting to read the Inbox. As I do, I figuratively raise a glass to two guys who churn out stuff at a similar rate to what I do. Kudos!

Jared from Rochester, MN

My routine for reading Inbox is getting to read it any downtime that happens while I'm at work. I work in the healthcare field right now and things are very exhausting. Inbox is my little home away from home when I need to de-stress. No matter what happens on a day, I know that I have Inbox to look forward to.

Steve from St. Croix Falls, WI

After getting my wife to bed and creating the meal plan for the next day, I spend some time with Shadow, one of our cats. With one hand, I pat/scratch her, while reading the Insider Inbox on my phone. When I'm done reading, I go to bed.

Rose from Madison, WI

When I was a kid, I always saved a bite of hot dog for after dessert. I wanted the last bite to be the best bite. When I visit, I read II last . . . because it's the best.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

My personal routine for reading the daily Inbox is to run to the computer by 8:29 a.m. and continuously refresh the screen until the Insider Inbox automagically lights up with the day's column. Thanks, Mike and Wes, for giving purpose and anticipation to each day

Jerad from Fitchburg, WI

I feel like the majority of readers probably have this answer, but I read II every day during my first bathroom break while at work. Why not get paid to read? (Editor's note: I just hope you remember to wash your hands).

James from Ottawa, Canada

Reading II has become the best part of my day. Not only because of the content but also because of what II has come to represent: Family time. Specifically, bonding time with my 3-year-old daughter. Every night, she gets ready for bed, tucked in, and then we read a book. After her story is read, I pull up II and I read it aloud, too. She is always fast asleep by the time I am done. But those quiet and gentle moments, shared with my daughter, are cherished. I know these memories are making me rich. (Editor's note: I'm not crying. You're crying.)

Wes from New Philadelphia, OH

I usually read Insider Inbox while enjoying a plate of liver, fava beans and a nice Chianti. Actually, it's a daily work staple to help break the monotony of a long workday; working swing turn it's refreshing and informative in the wee hours of the a.m. Thanks for all you do. (Editor's note: No, thank you for that "Hannibal" reference. Happy Fourth of July, everyone).