Sue from Tomah, WI
An answer to James from Ottawa, Canada: It's simply the "Ins" and "Outs" of our favorite "Box" to read. There is no wrong answer. Both is all.
Insider Inbox is a communal experience. We're all shareholders. Outsider Inbox belongs solely to the fans. It is whatever you make of it. We just curate and edit.
Dean from Leavenworth, IN
You get one day a week to observe OTAs and I was wondering if this might be an advantage when looking for improvements both individually and as a unit? Watching daily, it might be harder to see those small gains vs. once a week. So, who or what jumped out at you yesterday from last week, Weston?
Romeo Doubs did what Romeo Doubs does, catching four passes for 42 yards from Jordan Love during two-minute at the end of practice. Matt LaFleur talked after practice about the difference he sees in Doubs now compared to last year. While LaFleur is spot-on in his assessment of the former fourth-round pick, I continue to be blown away by Doubs' consistency. I can probably count on one hand how many "off" days he's had in practice. What I've learned over the past year is Romeo Doubs is as steady and even-keeled as they come.
John from Stevens Point, WI
When will we know if Jordan Love is the answer? Game 3? Game 6? Is this something where the Packers are looking at the entirety of the season, or will the panic button be pushed if Love is struggling early on?
Panic is the weakest of all human emotions. I highly doubt the Packers do such a thing. Nobody understands more than the Packers that Love is a 24-year-old quarterback who has started one NFL game. Everyone in Green Bay's locker room is ready to ride with Love this season. Progress over prediction. Patience over panic.
Al from Green Bay, WI
It's clear there is no dead zone for Gutey and his team. The search for talent in constant. But what about the coaches? How much of a break do they get before things get real?
Like the players, the Packers' coaches will break away for a couple weeks after the offseason program wraps up before diving fully into 2023. Players will be reporting for training camp before you know it.
Jeff from Indian Lake, NY
I saw Mike listed Tariq Carpenter with the ILBs yesterday. If we assume that De'Vondre Campbell, Quay Walker and Isaiah McDuffie will make the 53, given the lack of depth in the safety room, wouldn't Carpenter's path to the roster be easier on the back end? Or would the listed position of a core special-teamer really matter? Obviously, no roster spot is guaranteed but he really came on for the "We-fense" at the end of the season and I know I wouldn't want to be hit by that guy.
Determining Carpenter's best defensive position has been a storyline since the Packers drafted him last year, but potential contributions to special teams supersede everything right now. It's true Green Bay has a lot of returning depth at inside linebacker, but also remember the Packers carried five for most of last season with Eric Wilson and Krys Barnes filling out the room. Barnes was non-tendered, so there is an opportunity present for any player who warrants a roster spot.
Bob from Oshkosh, WI
Decades ago, when Aaron Rodgers was asked how he improved his skills to enable him to start, he cited an offseason workout camp headed up by, I believe, Drew Brees. Do camps like that still exist and might Jordan Love check it out?
I haven't heard of anything like that, but Love is in good hands in the offseason. He has a longtime quarterbacks coach, Steve Calhoun, with whom Love has worked since eighth grade. Calhoun has been with Love during each step of his journey and seen all the maturations of his game.
David from Henderson, NV
Hi Wes! Regarding what you had said about where Love has improved the most, why is footwork so important at the QB position?
Footwork is the connecting point for an NFL quarterback. You can be the most athletic QB with high intelligence and premium arm strength, but none of it will matter on an NFL playing surface if not synced with proper footwork.
Adilson from Rotterdam, Netherlands
Happy Thursday Wes! In 2021, T.J. Slaton mentioned he wanted to get his weight down to 320 pounds to increase his speed and quickness to go with his natural athleticism. Has he ever mentioned if he achieved this? I like following the physical development these young players go through while becoming pros. Like Jayden Reed, hitting the weight room after the combine and getting up to 195 pounds. Or Christian Watson looking strong and lean during these OTAs as you mentioned in "Unscripted."
I don't know the exact poundage, but Slaton got his weight where he wanted last year. He had a strict nutrition plan and a lot of the resources at Lambeau Field to make that goal achievable. It's not atypical. Caleb Jones did the same last year to get down in the 340 range. It's all part of the maturation process.
Jeffrey from Eveleth, MN
I like this core of players. It feels special. It may take some time, even a few years, but I think it is going to gel.
I'll echo what Packers great John Kuhn said regarding his No. 1 takeaway from Wednesday's OTA practice: "This team is bigger, faster and younger than I have ever seen it."
Dee from Florence, WI
Thanks for all the work you do to keep us informed! Was wondering which veterans are not participating in the OTAs. Sounds like quite a few are in Green Bay. I find myself excited for the season also!
David Bakhtiari, Elgton Jenkins and Preston Smith all practiced Wednesday after not participating last Tuesday. So, the only veterans we've yet to see are Jaire Alexander and Rasul Douglas. Rashan Gary and Eric Stokes aren't practicing yet but they're in town. In fact, Matt LaFleur said it's possible Stokes could do some individual work by the end of the offseason program. That would be huge.
The Green Bay Packers returned to the practice field on Wednesday for organized team activities (OTAs) at Ray Nitschke Field.
Monty from Hazen, ND
Aaron Rodgers was a master of getting the free play with too many players on the field. In my opinion, it came with a price as we also took a lot of delay of game penalties and use of timeouts at inopportune times. Am I off-base on this observation? I'm hoping we have less of those this year.
Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, right? But at the end of the day, I think it was a part of Rodgers' brilliance. Green Bay's offensive line also understood that was part of the gig and the offense largely benefited from Rodgers' pre-snap reads in the long run.
Juuso from Nurmijärvi, Finland
Would having draft lottery for the top 10 slots be the best solution and having rest of them be in their normal order? That way NFL would still get more eyes on the lottery part and still keep parity in draft. Any team being in bottom 10 in wins needs the help.
Unless there are obvious, unapologetic signs of tanking, I'm against the idea of a draft lottery in the NFL. I get why it works for other sports, but the NFL has the most visible and successful college-amateur draft in all of sports. Why mess with that? As long as a team like the 2022 Houston Texans is playing to win in Week 18, I believe the right system is in place.
John from Austin, TX
On the hot topic of jersey numbers...I'm fairly certain "The Magic Man" Don Majkowski started his career with No. 5...then changed to No. 7 when many fans complained about Paul Hornung's number not being retired? Enjoy summer and many thanks for the effort, good scribes!
He did. Coincidentally, though, Majkowski wasn't the last Packers player to wear "5" in the regular season. That distinction goes to former Green Bay kicker Curtis Burrow, who played in the 1988 finale against the Phoenix Cardinals. He went 2-of-4 on extra points and had his lone field-goal attempt blocked. The good news? The Packers still won, 26-17, and Burrow finished his NFL career undefeated (never lost).
Kevin from Jacksonville, NC
So, my question is simple...or complex maybe...I dunno but here goes: With Mike being editor, and Wes being senior writer, who takes whose parking spot when the other is on vacation or reporting out of town? Also, does the same person get to commandeer the same place in the fridge for storing their lunch? Love the II!
Spoff gets the better parking spot, all day, every day. It's like my first few years at the Press-Gazette when I had to park down by the YWCA.
Dar from Mansfield, TX
Wes, in reply to Kevin from Rockton's inquiry about my sports highlights, Inbox is my best arena, but by mostly luck I've had two holes-in-one in my duffing career. As a late bloomer physically, I was too small for high school sports. Not unathletic, just small: 5-6 and 107 pounds as a junior. I've added over eight inches and 100 lbs. since, so every time I see a young NFLer grow into his frame as he puts on "full-grown man" weight, I understand that. I didn't stop growing until age 26.
Hey, I'm 35 and still holding out hope for a late growth spurt. I had a fascinating conversation earlier this week with Iowa defensive line coach Kelvin Bell for the story I'm writing on Lukas Van Ness and how the Hawkeyes go about projecting players based on their frame. If Van Ness was the size he is today, Iowa wouldn't have been able to land him, but he grew into a premier pass rusher within three years.
Brian from Madison, WI
I get this is more of a "coach" question, but Van Ness is a young, sculpted kid who weighs 275 pounds! Is he an OLB today and a DL down the road?
All the above. You can't put a player of his talent in a box. Again, I'll have more on that very soon.
Marc from Gainesville, FL
The news that Paul Chryst is selling his home puts a question in mind. I know coaches and players expect, or at least hope, to stay a long time, but the reality is very different. Since many assistant coaches are only here for a short time, do they tend to buy homes, or rent? The same question applies to practice squad and bottom-of-the-roster players.
Most will buy, especially those with families. It's a better financial investment given the affordable cost of living in the area. Plus, you're 15 minutes from everywhere in town.
Bill from Urbana, IL
The view from the large end-zone openings to the stadium bowl are breathtaking. My son was married in the north end zone on that level. And oh my goodness, it was beautiful. Not much will ever compare to him taking his vows with that background. Thanks for bringing up that memory to this old man. Have a great day and thanks for everything you guys do for us fans out here. Have a wonderful day.
Thanks for sharing that memory, Bill. Tom Grossi was in town this week for his "30 in 30" charity fundraiser and I made it a point to bring him to the south end zone to shoot his introduction from Lambeau Field. It's one of the best views in all of sports. I hope every Packers fan can experience it.
Rudy from Cedarburg, WI
The Packer roster has to present a few challenges to the broadcast team. There are three Fords, two Joneses, two Walkers and two Wilsons – as well as a Ballentine and a Valentine. How do they keep it all straight? First names? Numbers? Just hope for the best.
Not to mention two of the Fords have the same first name with different spellings. Nobody is struggling more with Ballentine and Valentine than me right now. Just ask Spoff and our manager of broadcast Adam Hoebelheinrich.
Craig from Laramie, WY
More a comment than question. After Mike's recent fishing report, I got to thinking I can tell it's fishing season by how much clickbait I see in the headlines about the Packers' roster lately. So far, none of it's working because I believe that when something real is actually happening, I'll hear about it here. That's actually a pretty good feeling.
Insider Inbox: Combing through life's tacklebox to bring you the highest quality Packers headlines since 2017…for the cure.
TK from Grafton, WI
Do you think the NFL will increase or decrease its use of analytics in 2023? While there is only a 2% chance you'll post this question, there is a 98% likelihood I'll enjoy your response.
Will the NFL increase or decrease its use of analytics? Grandma's house on Thanksgiving, bro. Plate never empties. Welcome to June, everyone.