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Inbox: It gives the Packers so many more options

Jon Runyan is the personification of steady


Sam from Greendale, WI

Since Twitter's named changed shouldn't Mike do the practice live posts? You know the saying … "X marks the Spoff."

Spoff hung a curveball right over the plate and Sam just tattooed it.

Dar from Mansfield, TX

With T.J. Slaton now seemingly holding down the nose tackle spot, that puts Kenny Clark at right (strong side) end much more. I assume that gives Clark more opportunities to rush the passer. How else does it change his responsibilities, and/or what are the perceived benefits from playing Clark there?

Slaton becoming a run-stopping, gap-eating nose tackle would be huge. It would give the Packers so many more options with how they can use Clark on defense. I think history has shown Clark is most dangerous when the defense can't predict where he's lined up. I like what I've seen so far from Slaton and Devonte Wyatt, whom I'll have more on later this morning.

Justin from Los Angeles, CA

Is there any more underrated current Packer than Jon Runyan Jr.? The former sixth-round pick quietly and convincingly ascended the depth chart and now seems ensconced in a starting spot without much fanfare or discussion. Or is there a challenge to his job we've missed?

Probably not. As Spoff wrote last summer, Runyan is the personification of steady. He's durable, does his job and just keeps trucking along. It took a couple years for him to firmly grab onto a starting role, but Runyan hasn't loosened his grip whatsoever on the right guard spot this summer.

Steve from Ankeny, IA

The best problem the Packers have had in a long time is that there are so many good offensive linemen that we aren't sure which ones will start! Loving it.

And I thought several young offensive linemen have looked good so far in camp. Former third-round pick Sean Rhyan may have had his best practice as a Packers player on Tuesday, winning all five of his one-on-one reps.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

Wes, thank you for the inspirational article on Derrick Coleman. You kicked the football out of the park. This young man has overcome so much and devoted himself to helping others. Derrick's story calls each of us to press on to victory and pull others up with us on the journey.

It was a very rewarding project to be apart of. Tyler Gajewski, Nick McGahan and I traveled down to Verona for Derrick's speech at the end of the May and had the opportunity to watch him interact with all the faculty and students. He's a special guy and I think he fits well in Green Bay's locker room. Like Aaron Jones said, Coleman could be a special piece to this team.

Jake from Lansing, MI

Wes, thank you for your great piece on Derrick Coleman. As a hard of hearing/deaf teenager, I struggled to play high school football because my hearing aids went flying on the field or they stopped working due to heat and sweat resulting in times where couldn't hear anything. I imagine Derrick had many similar experiences. I appreciated hearing (pun intended) Derrick's success story and it's even more great to have him on OUR team. I for one will be cheering him on in his professional journey.

Thank you, Jake. That means a great deal coming from someone with your lived experience. I wasn't able to get into it during the story, but there was trial-and-error involved with Coleman keeping his hearing aids in. Before skullcaps were readily available, Coleman's mom bought, and cut, pantyhose to help keep Derrick's hearing aids in during games.

Larry from Chubbuck, ID

Good morning II. When the Packers and Bengals have their joint practice next week, what is done separately and what is done together? Will both days be the same? Have the coaches already made the decisions on what to work on, or will that be decided next week? Thank you for any information you can provide.

If last year's practices against New Orleans are any indication, early walkthroughs and stretching will be separate. The teams will then come together for individual one-on-ones and all team periods. I'm not sure whether the Packers will practice a second day with the Bengals, though. I was under the assumption it was one session – Wednesday, Aug. 9.

Eddie from Fort Myers, FL

Jaire Alexander's sheathing of the sword celebration has become my favorite (who can forget that Dolphins postgame interview?), but after his recent interview proclaiming the secondary as "Strap City" I started to question it. Has he just been putting on his seat belt this whole time?

That's always been my interpretation, but maybe it's just like high art – it has a different meaning to different people.

Brian from Madison, WI

For football neophytes like me, can you explain the difference between a two- and three-point stance? Does it mean whether the player has a hand on the ground before the snap? What advantage do they get from the three-point stance?

Correct. A three-point stance includes a hand being in the ground. A three-point stance is good for utilizing leverage and power, where a two-point stance makes it easier for a defender to peer into the backfield and make pre-snap adjustments.

Dan from Waupun, WI

Are the temps just right for the training camp competitions?

It sounds like it's going to be pretty toasty today, but I've had no complaints about the weather so far. It's been very temperate for August in northeastern Wisconsin. At least on the hottest days, there tends to be a breeze.

Scott from Norwalk, CT

Good morning gentlemen! I find myself not at all surprised that the defense keeps winning the day each day in camp. With all the No. 1 picks, and the offense being younger and needing to gel, it's going to take some time for the O to be consistently competitive – and in fact that's been a primary story of this season so far. Do you agree? That said, I can only imagine the gauntlet Jordan Love and Co. are going through right now will serve them quite well for mid-end of season. GPG!

It's been a good battle. Like I mentioned on "Unscripted," the No. 1 offense has had some good showings in team periods. It's just that the defense is coming out ahead during the one competition session near the end of the practice. When Love guided the offense down the field for a field goal on Saturday, the No. 2 and 3 units came up short.

Mark from Westminster, CO

Over the years, I've admired the NFL teams who were able to compete with younger, faster, and less experienced players; the Packers fell victim to many of these teams. Now, we are younger, faster, and less experienced. I can't wait to see the results this season.

Most of all, if the Packers can stay healthy-ish, it will be a much better football team in four months because of all these reps the young players are taking. Wyatt and Slaton are a great example of that. There were a lot of mouths to feed on the D-line last summer with three seventh-year veterans in Clark, Dean Lowry, and Jarran Reed. Now, Slaton and Wyatt are getting most of that work.

Matt from Waunakee, WI

What are Eric Stokes and Rashan Gary up to during practice?

Just rehabbing with the training staff and taking those incremental steps back to the football field.

Dan from Concord, NC

You spoke yesterday about the Z, X, and F receiver positions. Here's my question: Do these positions match up at all with the old "flanker" and "split end"? And do those terms ever get used in the football world anymore?

It was a good summary by Spoff. In theory, the old terms do match up. The "Z" is often the flanker and "X" is the split end (a.k.a. the opposite side of the tight end).

Caleb from Knoxville, TN

With the season approaching, where do our rivals in the North stand?

In the shadow of their own expectations.

Bruce from Jackson, WI

OK Wes, notwithstanding "The Armchair Psychologists'" opinion, I have to say Mike nailed it with his personal observation regarding pessimism. It has nothing to do with sports fans in particular. You are either an optimist or a pessimist. I have a glass half full instead of glass half empty personality. I've found that people either have an air of positivity around them or are never happy no matter where they are. I missed what Mike said that caused this kerfuffle but that's my two cents worth.

Mike warned me Tuesday night about his upcoming manifesto, but I agree with him wholeheartedly. I obviously have a positive outlook on life. I get not everyone will, but there are plenty of outlets out there to voice your complaints. The only difference here is we're willing to hear them six days a week.

Derrick from Dell Rapids, SD

Longtime reader, first-time writer! With Aaron Rodgers gone, I need a new home jersey. I have a Charles Woodson away jersey for away games, and if it wasn't for that, I would go with a "23" for the home jersey. I like the jersey to be one where I can wear it anytime and somebody would think, that's a great player. Maybe a Tucker Kraft jersey because he's from my school South Dakota State, so that would just be cool. Do you have any suggestions other than "23"?

Kraft is a good pick, especially considering your South Dakota roots. I also feel like "9" and "87" are good long-term investments…of course, that's assuming you can get yourself to wear a North Dakota State alumnus' jersey.

Julian from Gastonia, NC

In today's NFL would you consider the center to be the most important offensive line position after the left tackle?

No. Center is important, but for me, it's either left guard or right tackle. We've seen how important it is to have chemistry on the quarterback's blindside. Meanwhile, contracts have ballooned at right tackle over the past decade with more and more teams putting their top pass rusher on that side.

Evan from Manitowoc, WI

Most NFL teams are in cities that are big commercial hubs for their state, and while Green Bay is a larger city in Wisconsin, it doesn't compare to LA, Philly, NYC, Chicago, Dallas, etc. But I believe Green Bay has the most character and love for their team. The support from the fans, and the unison that the Packers organization and the city of Green Bay has is amazing. Is there a city, in your experience, that matches, or surpasses the level of support the Packers have from their fans?

Green Bay is on its own level, but Buffalo is the closest. If you don't believe me, there's a video on YouTube of Tom Grossi doing an elbow drop through a table in front of like 50 Bills fans.

Jessi from Sterling, KS

"Phew. Fruit fly." lol Now we have flies trying to bomb the podcasts. Good to smile and chuckle, Wes. Thank you for that, and for all the great training camp coverage from you two and the Rock. I have a new recumbent bike and thanks to all the coverage while I pedal, I knocked out 49 miles in my first week!

I'm just glad I didn't accidentally inhale it.

Ummy from Two Rivers, WI

So, just how many rules are there in the II (both written and unwritten)? And am I breaking one of those rules by asking?

I'm still waiting for a bearded and weathered Spoff to come back down from the mountain with the official tablets.

Ed from Tucson, AZ

I'm sure this seems strange to most people, but the HOF game is my favorite game of the year. It signifies the start of football, and the traditionalist in me enjoys the feel of football in the summer, the HOF inductee interviews, and seeing the HOF logo on the field. Plus, it's a chance to watch a game without all the normal pomp and circumstance. Anyway, looking forward to ordering a pizza and watching the game.

That's the beauty of football come August, Ed. There's always something to watch. Enjoy that pizza. Have a great day, folks.

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