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Inbox: It remains the great equalizer

David Bakhtiari is on his way to becoming the best tackle in the game


Stephen from Oshkosh, WI

Since we'll never get the infamous training camp video, can we at least see the bruise Josh Allen left on Wes's calf after that stray ball? Come on, you gotta give us something here.

No bruise, but it definitely stung. I'm just fortunate it was a deflected ball and not a straight shot. Otherwise, I might have needed to take PTO Monday. Good morning!

Carol from Manitowoc, WI

Did you notice that Aaron Rodgers seemed to be able to run a lot easier than previous weeks? I noticed it on his first run. He wasn't favoring his opposite leg as much and didn't hobble at the end of his runs.

He said adrenaline helped, but whatever the case, that was the most mobile I've seen Rodgers since the Chicago game. Yes, he scrambled a few times, but the Packers also called more bootlegs and play-action.

Jackson from Rothschild, WI

This is an offensive-driven league with the rules tilted to promote offense making it very difficult to play defense. But yet, defense wins championships? Which one is it? Defense or offense? Also, did anyone else google follyrot?

I googled "follyrot" and was pleased to see Spoff's Inbox came up as one of the first three entries. Inbox runs the world. Offense is the driving force in today's NFL, but at the end of the day, defense remains the great equalizer. I tweeted after the game about the Packers jumping from No. 23 to sixth in total defense with that performance. Some folks replied saying, "Yeah, but it was the Bills." If the Packers played poorly on defense, everyone would be bickering about, "How could you let the Bills do that to you?" It's a 16-game season, folks. You have to play well against the teams on the schedule. Green Bay did that Sunday and it needs to do it again in Detroit.

Tim from Menomonie, WI

Did it look to you like Allen took a dive on the play Martinez was flagged on? Looked like basketball with helmets. First one I have seen, but I only watch the Packers.

Ric Flair would have been proud.

Joe from East Moline, IL

With Kelvin Benjamin and Vernon Davis having interactions with Jaire Alexander after plays, I get the feeling he likes to chirp a lot. Can you confirm?

I don't know the nature of the conversations, but my takeaway from Alexander in the short time I've covered him is he doesn't back down from anyone. He's a spitfire. It doesn't seem like he's purposely looking to talk with the opposition, but he's ready for it at all times.

Jack from Chicago, IL

In response to Tim from Normal, IL – Did you see the third-and-2 where Jamaal Williams moved the pile for the big first down in our own territory? I love Aaron Jones for his big-play ability and absurd balance, but Williams has a role in this offense too. I love it.

Jones mentioned after the game how much intel he's gained the past two weeks from Williams and Ty Montgomery when he enters the game about how to attack the defense. There are no egos in that room. They're playing for each other. From a team perspective, the Packers are pleased to have all three healthy and the goal is to keep them that way in October, November and December. Eddie Lacy was an absolute beast for the Packers in 2013 and 2014, but don't forget he had to play through a lot in his 1,100-yard seasons.

Chad from North Aurora, IL

The Pack has RBs, Ty Montgomery (former receiver) and Aaron Jones, at their disposal. Why isn't there a package with both of them on the field? Match up nightmare.

They used a package with both Sunday. Did you miss it?

Bob from Wintersville, OH

It is obvious with no backs in the backfield we're passing, why not put in a back or an H-back to help block Aaron's blindside? He could be used as a checkdown also.

The Packers motion the back – often Montgomery – in those empty packages to make the defense show its cards as far as who's covering whom. That's valuable information for Aaron Rodgers diagnosing the defensive coverage and assignments.

Jordan from Lawrenceburg, KY

At what point will we start calling him Ha Ha Clinton-Pix. Three in four games!

Clinton-Dix said this offseason he felt Mike Pettine's defense would give him more freedom to fly around in the secondary and make plays. Three INTs in the first four games isn't a bad start. He's currently tied for the league lead.

Alexis from Mauston, WI

Can we talk about how Blake Martinez is in the middle of nearly every defensive play? I feel like he deserves some recognition.

There's more on Martinez's plate than ever before and he's stepped his game up accordingly. He's a tackling machine (33 tackles and a sack in four games), the key communicator in the defense, and he's also adjusted to playing next to four different inside linebackers (Oren Burks, Antonio Morrison, Korey Toomer and Jermaine Whitehead). The Packers' 2016 draft class is off to a fine start on defense.

Brandon from Mount Vernon, IL

Why are the throwback jerseys blue and yellow? When did the team switch from blue to green?

You can find out for yourself on the **uniform page of our wonderful 100 Seasons** website.

Stephen from Chicago, IL

Did Antonio Morrison just show all of Packers nation how to not get flagged on a free rush to the QB from head-on? It wasn't a sack, but he did everything Matthews did on the flagged hit to Alex Smith, but that quarter twist (while still bear-hugging him) immediately after the point of impact (which didn't look soft) resulted in both player landing on the ground side by side. Not with Morrison on top of the QB.

Morrison might be on to something. He threw the shoulder into the abdomen instead of bringing the quarterback to the ground. Is it safer? I don't know, but you can't get called for landing on the QB with the full weight of your body if you don't land on the QB with the full weight of your body.

Shawn from Kissimmee, FL

Was this performance a product of playing a young inexperienced QB or did the defense just beat their one-on-ones consistently? That was the most pressure I've seen on a QB by our pass rush in a while. Definitely helped out our secondary and that was without King and Breeland. Next up is an experienced division QB in their stadium. What can we do to keep this momentum on defense?

McCarthy was asked a similar question during his Monday news conference and I'm going to give a similar answer. You have a game plan for an opponent and it's up to you to execute it. The Packers' defense did its job Sunday. Now, it needs to build on that performance against one of the league's very best quarterbacks this Sunday.

Kegan from Madison, WI

I was excited to see Josh Jones active against the Bills. I didn't get to watch most of the game though. Did he end up playing many snaps? If so, how did he do?

It looks like everything checked out with his ankle. Jones was solid on the 15 special-teams snaps he received, adding one coverage tackle.

Mike from Exeter, PA

I think I can speak for all Packers fans when I say it felt refreshing to finally have our defense go for the throat, so to speak. I was waiting all day for a Bills comeback that never came. Seems like we cranked it up even more in the second half. I know it's Buffalo, but we had to start somewhere. Seven sacks! Seven! Whoa!

Dom Capers used to always say sacks come in bunches. That wasn't lip service. It's the truth. It started with that split sack between Clay Matthews and Nick Perry, and snowballed from there.

Rich from Phoenix, AZ

The play of Taylor, McCray, and now Bell has got me thinking about how it's a little easier to fill a guard spot than a tackle. But then when you factor in the struggles that the Vikings have had on the interior, is James Campen just the best at what he does, or is our director of personnel just better at evaluating linemen? No chortling intended.

It's a little of both. The Packers have done a masterful job of scouting offensive linemen over the years, particularly undrafted free agents such as Lane Taylor, Justin McCray and Lucas Patrick. From there, James Campen has a Midas touch for getting the most out of players. He developed Taylor, and taught McCray and Patrick the center position.

Geert from Old Windsor, UK

Hi Wes, so what is it about the TNF game and the time zone/distance causing losses? Long flight? Charter a better plane? Time zone? Can you change the schedule to ensure rest? Short week? Can you rotate players more week prior? At least the Seahawks are coming off a road game against the Rams, no less.

The struggle is real for teams making long trips on short weeks. I know there are times I get taxed by travel, but nobody is paying me to be an athlete. The Packers have tweaked their schedule for West Coast games in recent years, sometimes arriving a day early, but occasionally there's nothing you can do. The Packers obviously made no excuses for how things played out in the NFC Championship Game two years ago, but getting into Atlanta late due to weather in the Green Bay area was less than ideal. You just have to endure.

Judy from Channing, MI

What did you think of Reggie Gilbert pulling the full weight of Josh Allen on top of himself for his sack?

Brilliant. I do the same thing with my nephews.

Brett from Marietta, GA

Who was the last Packers player to have three sacks in a game?

It actually has happened fairly recently. Nick Perry had three sacks last November against Chicago.

Trent from Red Wing, MN

Did Montravius Adams hit a wall when going against the ones? Seemed very promising in preseason and his snap count is very low so far, especially Sunday. Was expecting more snaps with Wilkerson being out.

Adams will get his chances. With the Packers playing a lot of sub-package defense, Dean Lowry's workload also had been fairly light prior to Wilkerson's injury. Adams will be fine. He just needs to stay the course and keep improving.

Brad from Quinton, VA

What's up with the fans at the game? Making noise at the wrong time is frustrating. How can the best fans in football not get it right?

I've said my piece on this subject in previous Inboxes, so I'm just going to leave this right here.

Jacob from Superior, WI

I know a lot of plays probably stood out over this, but did you see Montgomery get stopped short of the first down and then Corey Linsley and David Bakhtiari push him all the way to that first down? I love seeing stuff like that, makes me appreciate those O-linemen not just because they protect our QB, but for the sacrifices they will make to help others.

I thought the offensive line really got after it in the run game Sunday, especially getting to the second level. I thought Bakhtiari was exceptional shutting down Jerry Hughes and getting downfield for some key blocks. He might go down as Ted Thompson's second- or third-best draft pick when it's all said and done when you consider the position he plays and the round in which he was taken. Pro Bowls or no Pro Bowls, he's on his way to becoming the best tackle in the game.

Greg from Ann Arbor, MI

I'd like to hear your thoughts about a talented offensive player who needs to see the field more often. That's right…Marcedes Lewis. I get that there's a lot of talent and experience at the TE position and only so many snaps to go around, but I was really excited by this acquisition in the offseason and thought he added a unique skill set that this roster hasn't had in many years. Do you think we can expect to see Lewis worked into the offense more often as the season wears on?

Packers fans love them some Marcedes Lewis. I don't blame you. He's an engaging fellow and a beast of an athlete.

Josh from Oshkosh, WI

When a defender is credited with a sack, is he also credited with a tackle?

Yes. And a quarterback hit.

Danielle from St. George, UT

What was the significance of the flag used before the game Sunday? I've seen a lot of people asking, but haven't found an answer.

This is the statement the Packers released on the matter: "The banner used during Sunday's pregame ceremony supplemented the three U.S. flags on the roof of the stadium and the flag carried by the color guard on the field. We've used such displays from time to time in the past when other pregame elements take up a significant portion of the field. To avoid causing confusion, we will not be using such displays in the future."

John from Gaylord, MI

Hearing about Earl Thomas and Le'Veon Bell this season made me wonder, have the Packers had any significant holdouts over the years due to contract situations? Is there a way to avoid them?

I don't recall any since the last collective bargaining agreement. The closest they've come might be Sam Shields sitting out the offseason program in 2013 after the Packers placed a restricted tender on him.

Sonia from Fairbanks, AK

I'm sitting at the Chicago airport with three hours to kill before my flight, watching the Cubs and Brewers. I didn't think I had a horse in the race but was reminded by my spouse that Spoff and Wes would be cheering for Milwaukee. Boarding my flight at the top the ninth. Hope you can take a break to watch the last inning for me. Good game.

I wasn't cheering for the Brewers as much as I was cheering for Spoff. I have a feeling it would have been a rough week around the office if things turned out differently.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

Wes, was the little toddler at Lambeau holding the tiny lunch box and the miniature cowbell your son?

No, but you can bet next time he will be.