Ronaldo from Montreal, Canada
Hey II, seriously, what's next?
Minicamp is next week, then one more week of OTAs, and then the dead zone arrives.
David from Appleton, WI
Hello Insiders! What/who has been your biggest surprise out of rookie camp/OTAs to date?
Seeing Ty Summers take reps next to Krys Barnes with the No. 1 defense caught my eye Wednesday. As I noted in "Three Things," the stage is being set for a wide-open competition at inside linebacker in training camp.
Andy from Verona, WI
With the top five WRs (absent), which young wideout has made the most of the extra reps?
Bailey Gaither's diving catch on a deep ball was noteworthy, but I'll qualify that by saying we don't get to watch every rep, every day. I'm wondering if Chris Blair, from Donald Driver's alma mater of Alcorn State, will be a guy to watch in camp. He sure looks the part.
Walter from El Centro, CA
When 12 returns to the team, we will have a triple-A backfield. Aaron Rodgers, Aaron Jones, and AJ Dillon. What does the A stand for in Dillon's name?
His given name is Algiers Jameal William Dillon Jr.
Bruce from Green Bay, WI
Have you noticed if AJ Dillon has been getting any reps in practice receiving?
Out of the backfield, yes, a fair amount, actually.
Gary from Arvada, CO
With "uncrowned Pro Bowler" Robert Tonyan and "Big Dog" Marcedes Lewis back, and Dominique Dafney, Josiah Deguara, and Jace Sternberger all showing intriguing potential, I can't recall a more deep and exciting tight end group in all my 50 years as a Packer fan – can you?
In my time here, it's somewhat reminiscent of 2011 when the position had Jermichael Finley, Andrew Quarless, Tom Crabtree, and two new draft picks in D.J. Williams and Ryan Taylor. A super-seasoned veteran like Lewis was missing then, but it was an intriguing mix for sure. The potential of the '11 group was never fully realized, for different reasons. We'll see about this one.
Michael from Novato, CA
Good morning, II. Not a question, just a comment. There was a good article by Andrew Brandt, where he explained how Adam Vinatieri almost became a Packer; apparently, they offered more money, but the Colts offered a chance to kick in a dome. The year after, the Packers drafted Mason Crosby. Odd how missing out on a quality free agent can sometimes turn out OK.
Hey, I don't blame Vinatieri one bit. Ryan Longwell has said many times that going to the Vikings and kicking indoors extended his career. In the same breath, it's a credit to Crosby that all of his accomplishments have come with a team like Green Bay.
In honor of World Bicycle Day, check out photos of Packers players riding bikes during training camp throughout the years.
Jacob from Portage, WI
Regarding Richard from Greenwich's comment on players raising the standard of others' performance. There is actually a name for it: the Pygmalion effect. It essentially states that your perception of an individual's ability can have an effect on their outcomes.
I clearly need to brush up on my Greek mythology.
Robert from Verona, WI
How do coaches evaluate a player's performance on a play that was successful due to the opposition's mistake? Say that Bob Tonyan is wide open because the defense didn't pick him up and scores a touchdown – how much "credit" does he get? He ran the right route and caught the ball (two important things), but since there are a lot of guys at the NFL level who could do those things (compared to catching a heavily contested ball or picking up a blitz), do they place much weight on a play like that?
Not really. He'd get credit for executing properly, as he should, but the type of play you describe would not get an extra star or anything on the grade sheet.
Derek from Norton, KS
Summer conditioning was always voluntary when I was in high school, but it definitely had an impact on playing time. Is there language in the labor contract that prevents teams from penalizing individuals that don't attend "voluntary" workouts?
Not specifically, but the desire to win prevents it. You don't win in this league unless the best players play, and if a player proves he's in that category in training camp, any voluntary workouts he missed don't matter.
Kenneth from Hartford, WI
Could the Packers choose a forward-looking uniform design as their alternative instead of always going retro?
There's more than a century's worth of history to celebrate here, and not many teams can say so. I'm fine with leaving futuristic duds to those franchises with far less to commemorate.
Pete from Chippewa Falls, WI
Do the Packers have a policy of always fining players for missing mandatory minicamp? When was the last time the team fined a player for training camp absences? Do you think the front office would fine Rodgers for missing the mandatory minicamp (if that happens)? Or will they let it go because they don't want to tick Rodgers off even more than he already is at the front office? I would think they would not want to rock the boat any more than it already is.
It's not a Packers policy, it's a league-wide policy the owners and players agreed to in collective bargaining. Fines for missing minicamp and/or training camp are mandated by the CBA and cannot be rescinded.
Eric from Erie, PA
If you could have one position group be the No. 1 unit in the league, which position group would you choose?
I'm debating between the offensive and defensive lines, and forced to pick one, I'm leaning defense because it gives a team so many options schematically.
Bernardo from Trinidad, Brazil
So in two drafts we got Jon Runyan, Simon Stepaniak, Jake Hanson, Josh Myers, Cole Van Lanen and Royce Newman. Do you think that the future of our offensive line will be about those guys?
Some of them, sure. But the way things go in this league, I'd predict that by the start of the 2022 season, at least two if not three of those guys won't be here any longer. That's not a knock on anyone, just reality.
Eric from Mequon, WI
I'm not asking for a crystal-ball answer here but one based on the facts of history. Realistically how many seasons could we expect AR12 to play at his current level? Did Brees and Brady change history or are they exceptions to the rule? I ask this because the debate the fanbase is having is do we capitalize on those remaining years or do we get a "king's ransom" with a trade? No one will ever know the true answer for five years but you can help us rationalize our debates.
Based on what we saw in just his second year in LaFleur's offense, I have little doubt Rodgers could maintain something resembling his 2020 level of play for at least a few years. Putting a specific number on it would be guessing. But knowing how he takes care of his body, and that his mind is as sharp as ever amidst mastering LaFleur's scheme, decline appears far from imminent.
Perry from Ishpeming, MI
No question today just a response to the Monster question/comment. The Monster was typically run in a 6-1 formation, AKA 61 Monster, six down linemen and one linebacker. The idea was that the linemen would be locked up with the O-line and TE, allowing the Monster free to make plays. The formation was popular against running teams, mostly HS and college. In a passing down the two end linemen could be used in a stand-up position to rush the passer, essentially creating a 4-3 defense.
I also covered some high school teams in my earlier days that played a 52 Monster, with a strong safety as the Monster who had some freedom to roam and cause havoc. At small schools where guys played both ways, the Monster was often the star running back or QB on offense.
Tyler form Rowlett, TX
Hey Mike/Wes, continuing with the "star" discussion, which player in the past has excelled there the most in this defensive system? Which all-time player do you think would be the best fit? It'd be hard to pick against Woodson, but I'm also considering Troy Polamalu.
I would only choose from guys I've covered in person, and I've never seen anyone play a multi-faceted role like that better than Woodson. Though I do think Nick Collins also had the ability to thrive in a spot like that as well. He was just never asked to because Woodson was here.
Neil from Tunbridge Wells, England
As a fan which venue would you be glad to see demolished and rebuilt? If not the whole venue which part?
I'll just say in each of my successive visits to Washington's FedEx Field over my time here (2010, '15 playoffs, '16, '18) I've been less and less impressed every time.
Jack from Indianapolis, IN
I can't help but wonder if the Packers best five on the OL involves David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins as bookends. I've been led to believe Billy Turner is proficient at guard and it would give some needed experience on the interior. Maybe I'm just enamored by Jenkins and feel our best linemen should be playing tackle.
The versatility of Jenkins and Turner has proven immensely valuable, but in a perfect world, Jenkins' best position is guard, and Turner's is right tackle. The coaches have confirmed that in numerous comments.
Scott from New Orleans, LA
You two should not sell yourselves short for what you do for active duty military members and vets. I know, as a vet, what you miss most are the ties to home, your parents, your friends, local events or news, etc. You guys give us 20 to 30 minutes a day to remind us of home or the place we grew up and that is always greatly appreciated!
It's humbling to be thought of in that way. The appreciation is all ours, truly.
Doug from Green Bay, WI
It starts out with banning math questions and now we have moved on to geometry questions. I hope that's not a sine we are going off on another tangent.
Please see … I shouldn't even have to say it.
Cameron from Cincinnati, OH
I thought all triangles had two sides. An inside and an outside.