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Inbox: It’s the greatest play that’s never seen the light of day

QB Aaron Rodgers
QB Aaron Rodgers

Lex from Chicago, IL

Burgers, brats or hot dogs on the Fourth?

You can never go wrong with burgers. Good morning!

Julius from Providence, RI

Now that we are a year removed with a different coach and a different offense, are we any closer to finding out about that play from last year's training camp?

That play – Aaron Rodgers’ no-look touchdown pass to Geronimo Allison – is up there somewhere in the office of the Packers’ video department. I hope they allow us to post it on packers.com someday. It’s one of Rodgers’ finest summer moments. It’s also what makes training camp special – only those 2,000 people watching practice were able to witness it. It’s the greatest play that’s never seen the light of day in my eight years covering practices.

Robert from Salem, WI

Do you see the run/pass percentage increasing/decreasing or staying the same?

Statistically, I believe the Packers will be more committed to running the ball in 2019. I just don’t know if it’ll be so jarring that you nudge to your buddy and say, “Man, the Packers sure are running the ball an awful lot.”

Theologos from Athens, Greece

Wes, do you think that come training camp Aaron will get rid of the mustache? He looks like a character from “Tacoma FD” right now.

Rodgers was clean shaven in that workout photo I saw last week, though I guess he would still have enough time to grow another one before camp starts in 2½ weeks.

Take a look at headshots of the full Green Bay Packers roster as of June 20, 2019.

Jeff from Green Bay, WI

So...Ben Askren never saw it coming. What might we Packers fans miss at the start of the upcoming battles in training camp?

Too soon, Jeff. Too soon, but the Packers’ D-line competition is really flying under the radar. I see Montravius Adams, Tyler Lancaster, Kingsley Keke, James Looney and Fadol Brown all pushing for playing time behind Kenny Clark, Mike Daniels and Dean Lowry.

Jason from Des Plaines, IL

What is Rashan Gary’s legacy as a Michigan Wolverine? He was not selected at No. 12 in most people’s mock drafts, and he may have been slightly overlooked in the public’s eye as an early first-rounder. Therefore, I am not educated on his career in college as a whole. What I do know is he played for Jim Harbaugh, and that team had quite the defense last year.

I don’t know what Michigan fans thought of Gary, but his former coaches have had nothing but positive things to say about him and his work ethic – on and off the record. I thought Mike Smith’s glowing endorsement of Gary during OTAs was telling. The Packers did their research and clearly are excited about this young man.

Bill from Wilmington, DE

Wes, do you feel Jace Sternberger will be used more on special teams in his rookie year. I can't see him getting very many snaps on offense with the experience ahead of him.

You never know, but that’s going to be the starting point for Sternberger – no different than it was for Robert Tonyan last year. When healthy, Jimmy Graham is an every-down player and Marcedes Lewis seems to have an established role in this Green Bay offense. Like any rookie, it’s on Sternberger to make his opportunities count whenever his number does get called on offense.

Ross from Roswell, GA

Gents, what changes to the training camp schedules and routines are you anticipating over the previous years?

It’s not going to be anything too out of the ordinary. There were some subtle changes to drills this spring, but nothing I think is going to catch fans by surprise. The three biggest changes I anticipate are the 10:15 a.m. start times, the first- and second-team 11-on-11 periods and obviously the joint practices with Houston.

Ron from Waukesha, WI

The Packers still haven’t replaced the touchdowns they lost when Jordy Nelson departed. With the new Matt LaFleur offense, do you see them coming from the second-year wide receivers, the tight ends or with the running backs?

I think your argument is fundamentally flawed – Davante Adams had 13 touchdowns last year and Nelson only had six the year before – but I’ll entertain the question regardless. If you’re asking who could become a serious touchdown threat, I think Allison and Jimmy Graham are definitely capable.

Nate from Kewaskum, WI

With some time before training camp, many players are golfing around the country. Who are the best golfers on the team?

Bryan Bulaga, Mason Crosby, Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams are the first names that pop into my mind.

Steve from St. Croix Falls, WI

It seems that most of the questions regarding who is going to emerge as dominant players are about the offense or defense. I was wondering who you thought will take the lead as gunners? We've had some pretty special people dominate that position in the past.

Trevor Davis is high on my depth chart. He was exceptional there before the hamstring issues. Tony Brown, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Josh Jackson and Ka'Dar Hollman will be in contention, too.

David from Appleton, WI

How many wide receivers are traditionally on the 53-man roster at the start of the season? Asking because Green Bay didn't draft any and didn't sign any as free agents.

The Packers have had as few as four during my time on the beat and as many as eight (last year). I’d say five is around the average.

David from Janesville, WI

Insiders, it has been said that NFL rosters have a few truly special players and the bulk of the rosters are of a similar level (but still incredibly talented) across all teams. Considering the roster as it stands and your expectations of the additions this year, what is the one position you would choose to add a 'special' player for the 2019 Packers team?

Cornerback, but that probably applies to any year. They’re field-tilters and you can never have enough good ones.

Tyler from Kaukauna, WI

Who’s got the biggest upside for 2019 on the defensive side of the ball?

The answer remains 23-year-old Kenny Clark even after everything he’s accomplished. He’s everything an NFL team desires in a player – uber-talented, hard-working and a good individual off the field. If Clark stays on that path – and avoids the injury bug – he will go far in this league. The other guy is Jaire Alexander. He has the talent to make a quantum leap in Year 2.

Carl from Antigo, WI

Will the Packers’ defense be better under Mike Pettine in Year 2?

Indubitably.

Lori from Heredia, Costa Rica

Hey Wes, the Milwaukee Bucks will have two sets of brothers on the team next year. Have the Packers ever had brothers on the team at the same time? How did that work out?

Spoff would know this answer, for sure. The only example I can think of is Jeremy and Orrin Thompson. They were on the offseason roster in 2008, but Orrin was among the team’s final cuts.

Wade from Roseville, MN

Do you know which individual player has the most sacks on an individual quarterback in NFL history? What about team history? I’ve searched high and low and cannot find the answer to this question.

I don’t know. Rob Demovsky, who has access to ESPN Stats & Info, might be able to look that one up. I have to imagine Clay Matthews’ 8½ sacks of Jay Cutler rank high on the list.

James from Sawbridgeworth, UK

Did you see the photos of the NFL setup at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium over here in the UK, thoughts? Having an NFL game at the stadium where my football (soccer) team plays will be amazing. Hopefully, the Packers play there soon. That would be very special.

Gorgeous. I hope I get a chance to cover a Packers game there someday.

Theodore from St. Louis, MO

GPS location devices in footballs? What will happen to the Tom Turners of the world? Tom is my father-in-law's best friend. He works the chains at Lambeau. His glorious white mustache is a highlight for our family during home games. We always take a screenshot of Tom when he appears. The first to text the group gets bragging rights. Please don't take this tradition from us.

The original question asked whether it would be possible in 50 years. More power to Tom if he still desires to work the chains in 2069, but I will be long since retired.

Gavin from Albuquerque, NM

Response to Tim from Hudson, WI: I too am an engineer and as I understand it commercially available GPS is no more accurate than 3 meters (that's only 95 percent of the time). Long-term measurements are accurate to a couple centimeters, but that's not on a moving ball on a running athlete. It's not good enough for the NFL. More accurate GPS is available, but only for military use. DHS will never release that encryption. The only option would be an in-house positioning system, local to each stadium.

Engineer fight! Engineer fight! *Grabs popcorn*

Bob from Bement, IL

Vic wrote in a windowless offense? Wow! Now we know! On the subject of sensors inserted into footballs – yes, I see it likely in the not-too-distant future. My wife has worked in office support at the Material Science and Coordinated Science Labs of the University of Illinois. They have developed many similar technologies, skin-applied included, so putting something into a football is probably possible right now. The next discussion segment – determining if the ball carrier went back over the line of gain after breaking that plane. Might help significantly with touchdowns, though. Trust me, it will never stop!

Evolution is a mystery, full of change that no one sees.

Bob from Port Saint Lucie, FL

If you are using your lasers to determine first downs, they need to also use them to set the first down chains. To me, that's always been an approximation that is usually far from laser accurate. The old guys working the "chain gang" may be another job lost to modern technology.

You guys and the chain gang. Listen, I’ll make sure all the member of the chain gang have jobs in my football world with sensors. At the end of the day, I think the only way I’ll be happy is if every NFL game resembles the movie “Tron.”

George from Olympia, WA

Is there any opportunity to bid for having the draft in Green Bay?

The Packers have thrown their name in the hat to host in 2022 and 2024. Las Vegas has it in 2020, Cleveland in 2021 and Kansas City for 2023.

James from Murfreesboro, TN

How many Packers do you think will be picked for the Pro Bowl at the end of the season, if no injuries?

Four…and David Bakhtiari will probably still be an alternate despite making a fourth consecutive All-Pro team.

Bill from Bloomfield Hills

Bakhtiari could catch a pass batted up in the air at the line of scrimmage and then rumble in for a touchdown right? Just like I think you batted that answer up in the air for us to respond to?

Bump, set, spike!

Dale from Prescott, WI

Couldn’t Bakhtiari also lineup at running back to get his TD?

I think Bakhtiari can line up anywhere he pleases as long as he reports as an eligible receiver. But do you really want to pull an All-Pro left tackle from his post so he can carry the football?

Markus from Aurora, CO

Insiders, what is the biggest challenge in your professional life when you shift from offseason to training camp and preseason?

The days when I don’t see my son awake, especially when the weather is still nice in August.

Duane from Oak Creek, WI

I saw Bubba Franks at Lambeau Live/Summerfest. You think we'll ever again get a tight end playing like he did back in his day?

I don’t see why not. It’s not like Bubba Franks was some kind of anomaly. He was a big, physical tight end who could block. The Packers sort of have one of those guys right now in Marcedes Lewis.

JR from East Molinee, IL

I need to confess something to my fellow Packers fans. I started a “Madden” fantasy draft franchise with...the Seattle Seahawks. Hear me out. I did it strictly because I like that region of the country. I also drafted no Seahawks players and made firing Pete Carroll my first order of business. It feels good to get this off my chest and I hope I can be forgiven.

Hey, I used to do the same thing. I liked playing with Seneca Wallace in “Madden 04.” He had like 82 speed.

Dan from Minneapolis, MN

Can NFL teams use "protected draft picks" in trades like the NBA? If not, would protected picks be good or bad for the league?

There are no protected picks in the NFL, but it’s not unusual for GMs to work in clauses when trading draft picks (e.g. the escalators in the Brett Favre trade with the Jets in 2008). Protected picks make sense in the NBA because there are only 60 draft picks every year and 15 roster spots on every team.

Ryan from Hartland, WI

Who will be the breakout players of camp?

Only those 20 practices in training camp will tell, but Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Ka’Dar Hollman, Rashan Gary and James Crawford are all off to fine starts.

George from Hutchinson, MN

Do you ever use binoculars when watching a game from the press box?

I do. I have one pair I’ve used since I started covering the team. My dad gave them to me before I started covering the team.

The Green Bay Packers, Essity and Green Bay Packaging Inc., planted 437 trees in local communities through the "First Down for Trees" initiative.

Brett from Boonsboro, MD

So which one of you has the red stapler?

Definitely Spoff.

Jerad from Minneapolis, MN

I was surprised not to see any questions about Ben Askren's fight. What were your thoughts and impressions?

There were questions about it, but I didn’t post them because there are some readers who believe I was put on this earth to answer 25-30 NFL questions a day. They couldn’t care less that I’m an actual human with interests outside of this building. But yeah, it totally sucked. Congrats to Jorge Masvidal and ATT. That plan was brilliant. I’ve always been a huge fan of Masvidal. I just like to support the Wisconsin guy…especially with how long I waited for Ben to get in the UFC.

Bryce from Sullivan, IN

Summerfest looks pretty legit. You been?

Not in the last three years.

Eddie from La Crosse, WI

You polished that lamp brilliantly. The genie rewards you by letting you live a second life as a Hall of Fame pro athlete - inducted unanimously, first ballot. What team and what position?

A 6-foot-11 small forward for the Milwaukee Bucks. I mean did you see those numbers on that extension Giannis is in position for next year?

Dean from Leavenworth, IN

Wes, we're 12 months from the next Outsiders Inbox but I'd like to submit a question for the next one. When did you start reading II or Ask Vic and when/why did you decide to start submitting questions?

Remind me in like 360 days.

Brett from Green Bay, WI

Everyone loves a good comeback! Am I right?

It’s what Lifetime movies are made of, Brett.

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