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Inbox: The Packers are going to need him

You gotta do it till the final whistle


Lori from Brookfield, WI

The defense had a terrific, four-down, goal-line stand to keep New England out of the end zone.

Do you know that scene in "It's a Wonderful Life" where George Bailey takes his own honeymoon savings out to save the Building and Loan, and Mrs. Davis walks to the counter and asks humbly for $17.50? Bailey then kisses her cheek on the spot, exuberant she didn't ask for any more. That was my reaction to this submission amidst a lot of negativity Monday night. Thank you, Lori. Good morning!

Jason from Olive Branch, MS

My heart hates these past two losses. However, my head loves them. They went toe-to-toe on the road with two of the best teams. They could've won both games. My question here is how do we not have an emotional letdown against Miami?

By correcting the film and setting the focus to the Dolphins. Davante Adams had a good quote after the game about not having a magical phrase or one-liner to solve all this – they just have to get to work on Miami. Yes, the Packers are still winless on the road. It sucks. It's not fun to think about, but there's nothing you can do about that right now. You need a win – any win – and it must come at Lambeau Field Sunday. This is about getting win No. 4.

Jeremiah from Denver, CO

Any predictions for a breakout player to start the "stacking success" process against Miami?

I said Kevin King a few weeks ago before his first pick, right? With King unlikely to play against the Dolphins, I'll go with his replacement, Josh Jackson, this week.

Dylan from Honolulu, HI

Can we start Tuesday off on a positive note? MVS keeps showing everyone that he has a future in the league. He seems to have a rare combination of size and speed and his footwork and route running aren't bad, either. The sky is the limit for this young man. In a few years we might look back and talk about how he was a draft-day steal.

You're seeing a young receiver come into his own. Everyone knew Valdes-Scantling could run. Everyone knew he had size. To me, the most surprising element of his game as a rookie is his footwork. He's going to be able to beat certain corners on go routes, but gaining separation at the line of scrimmage has led to big plays early in his career.

Dean from Leavenworth, IN

I've read that statistically teams that take the second-half kickoff win more than teams that take the first. I don't know if that's true for this year's Packers. Too often they've deferred and had to play from behind and lost. Wouldn't it be refreshing if they won the toss, took the ball, went two-minute hurry-up to get on top and establish tempo and then kept their foot on the pedal for 60 minutes? I really don't expect McCarthy to change but I can hope. Wes, your thoughts please.

That's what I always did as a kid playing "Madden," so who am I to say it's the wrong approach? But honestly, I've always preferred deferring until the second half. Yes, it puts a little extra pressure on your defense, but the option to double-up is too enticing for me to pass up.

Joe from Asbury, IA

Blake Martinez twisting his ankle looked pretty bad. For him to come back and play was unbelievable. What a warrior. I wish the rest of the team could find that sense of urgency.

I was stunned when I pulled my binoculars out and saw Martinez had returned to the game. I mean that injury looked bad. Martinez told reporters Monday he had X-rays done and there was no break. It's your typical ankle sprain. We'll see how things look on Wednesday. Credit to Antonio Morrison, though, I thought he played one of his best games in a Packers uniform Sunday.

Doug from Westford, MA

"Whatever you think of the calls, the mistakes are significant, ridiculous and inexcusable, but this team keeps making them." I agree completely. What I noticed from the Patriots was a very disciplined team. But on the Packers, not so much, getting fooled by Brady on the fake screen, but most of all the penalties. What's the biggest difference, coaching?

It's not just one thing. It's the sum of all the parts. You have to play a full 60 minutes and the Packers just haven't gotten the job done the past two weeks. I think coaching and execution have positioned Green Bay to beat the likes of the Rams and Patriots, but you gotta do it till the final whistle.

Tom from Emerado, ND

Again I say, negativity breeds more negativity. In the past, Rodgers has always had a positive outlook and that is what the team received in return (RELAX, believe they can run the table). This year it is all we ain't performing, and that is what they receive. Can anyone please tell them they need to grow positive thoughts to become winners? (Paradigm shift in outlook).

The thing about "Run the table" in 2016 is it was more than a tagline, it was a belief. Even before Rodgers uttered those words, I remember leaving FedExField feeling like the Packers had turned a corner. That's what they need now.

Mark from West Bend, WI

What an awesome story about what the Packers organization was willing to do to accommodate JK Scott. That should put an end to all the questions and head scratching from last week. Proud to be a Packer fan. Football is a part of life, football is not life.

This resonated with me because I was in a similar spot last year when my wife and I were expecting. The due date was Christmas Eve and I strongly considered going to Carolina because it was going to be Aaron Rodgers' comeback game. On the Thursday before the game, Kregg Shilbauer and Duke Bobber pulled me aside, and told me they weren't going to let me go. They didn't want me to risk it and we ended up having our son in the middle of the second quarter. There's nothing like the birth of your child, but the first one is extra special. I'm glad there were measures in place to make sure Scott would be there, too.

Mike from Algoma, WI

Unfortunately, I first heard about the Packers signing Kaser from a national "source." Naturally I was wondering, "What are they doing?" Then I read on the Packers app about having a plane ready for Scott to leave if necessary. I'm as disappointed as the next fan about their record. Who cannot be impressed with the organization after finding out why they signed a second punter? Again, perspective is a wonderful thing.

And it was a smart move on the Packers' part with a spot open on the 53-man roster. It was an emergency measure that didn't cost anyone a job.

Shawn from Blaine, MN

I think it is highly likely that JK Scott's new baby, whenever he/she comes into this world, will already look older than him.

OK. I'll admit I giggled.

Jessi from Sterling, KS

No one is ever satisfied. You guys don't try and sugarcoat things, even your article titles will tell us that much. When you have to face the Inbox after another tough loss, just know there are fans out there who see how challenging your job can be to state realistically where the Packers are at without dooming hope. Keep pressing on and thanks for all the sleep you lose to bring us Packers news.

The job of fans is to react to what's happening in the moment – win, lose or draw. Our job is to analyze, keeping an eye on the future and understanding how quickly the narrative can shift every Sunday. It's the approach Spoff and I took when the Packers were 4-6 in 2016 and the mentality we still have today. When the dust settles, we have a five- or six-month offseason to review the season.

Trevor from Seattle, WA

Injuries and ejections aside, did you notice any obvious voids originally filled by Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, or was it a smooth transition for the secondary?

I think it was relatively smooth. I actually think the secondary played fairly well considering it finished without Kevin King, Kentrell Brice and Jermaine Whitehead. Tramon Williams is a solid communicator who knows all the calls. And Josh Jones and Josh Jackson got the chance to contribute.

Tyler from River Falls, WI

How do you think Tramon did at safety? He definitely missed one big tackle, but other than that one, it seemed to me that he did a decent job at cleaning up on the back end.

I thought he did a great job considering the quick turnaround after the Clinton-Dix trade Tuesday. Of course, he wants that Gordon touchdown back, but I thought Williams was the glue of the secondary in the face of a lot of moving parts. If he stays on the back end, I'm eager to see him settle in at that spot.

Daniel from Athens, OH

Is time of possession no longer an important football statistic? It's gotten really difficult to find TOP stats for NFL games anyway. I'm curious what the won-loss record is this season for NFL teams that have had the greater time of possession.

The top three teams in the NFL in time of possession this season are Philadelphia, New Orleans and Pittsburgh. The Eagles had a few tough battles early on, but they're still the team to beat in the NFC East in my mind. TOP isn't the only statistic, though. What's your turnover differential? Are you converting in the red zone? It's one piece of the puzzle.

Haillie from Washington, WI

I think the problem with the offense is they are trying to orchestrate perfection. How do they loosen up and just let it fly?

I liken it to smiling. You can't force a smile. It doesn't look right. You just do it. You can't force consistency and production. You just need to get into a rhythm and develop it, organically. The offense has played well in spurts, but it takes more than spurts to succeed. As I said earlier, the search for that corner continues.

Zach from Delavan, WI

Love the Pack, you both and the Inbox. Now some hard facts. Since 2008 when Rodgers was starting there have been 21 defensive draft picks and 12 offensive picks (one was Brian Brohm) in the first three rounds of the draft. Only four WR (one was Ty Montgomery) and no real free-agent help at the position. The last seven years straight, No. 1 pick by us was defense. 2010 we had Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, James Jones and Jermichael Finley. Rodgers is now 34. Did we blow it?

I think the lack of resources the Packers have invested into the receiver position is partially due to the fact they've hit on the ones they drafted and haven't needed to devote more picks to the position. When they used a second-rounder in 2014, it netted them Davante Adams. I agree it's been a tough year through the first half of the season, but I wouldn't say it's due to a dearth of perimeter options.

Benjamin from Delray Beach, FL

In Rodgers' postgame press conference, he talked about feeding Adams the ball more. In your estimation, is this a reflection of him knowing he's missed opportunities to hit Adams when he's open, or is it a sign he's losing confidence in his other receivers?

It's understandable Rodgers wants to feed Adams. The guy is the Packers' top playmaker at this point of his career. I don't think it's a lack of confidence in the other receivers. He has strong ties to Randall Cobb, and demonstrated a lot of confidence in Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Equanimeous St. Brown over the past few games.

Derek from Eau Claire, WI

Let the record show that I think they can run the table. Something special is going to happen.

Faith, trust and a little pixie dust.

Rob from Aiken, SC

I am not comparing Aaron Jones to Tony Dorsett, but over his career, Tony averaged approximately a fumble every other game. Does it seem to anyone that when there is a fumble, McCarthy pulls the guy for the game? Seems to me that's why we never seem to get a rhythm to our ground game.

The Packers went back to Jones, but the offense just wasn't able to sustain drives on its last two possessions. They'll go back to him this Sunday. You can count on it.

Adam from Madison, WI

It's sadly ironic that so many fans were clamoring for more Aaron Jones (rightfully so) and in his first game of being the focal point in the running game, he commits the turnover that arguably doomed the Packers. But that's just the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.

It's an imperfect game played by humans who make mistakes. That's the reality. Even Steven Jackson fumbled a couple times. Nobody is perfect. Jones doesn't have a history of coughing the ball up at any level. He was accountable after the game. Jones just needs to learn from this and move forward because the Packers are going to need him.

Noel from Norwalk, CA

Another tough game to watch. Why does it seem that the Packers are getting the short end of the stick when it pertains to penalties? The RTK was not deserving of a 15-yard penalty (IMHO). When will they begin to review those type of penalties? The "slap" heard round the world deserves an ejection? Shouldn't he have gotten a warning first? Now don't get me wrong, I still have hope we can make the playoffs. There's plenty left and "anything can happen."

I think the referees rushed to judgment on Robert Tonyan's "roughing the kicker" penalty. I didn't see it as malicious and egregious. It was a football play. The refs saw what they saw on the Whitehead-Andrews incident. It is what it is.

Mark from Bettendorf, IA

I looked back at the last four years and noticed the Saints went 7-9, 7-9, 11-5 and now 7-1. Did they waste two years of Brees' career? I wonder if Saints fans were calling for Payton's head...

I remember standing within feet of Sean Payton's briefcase containing his contract extension at the 2016 NFL owner's meetings. A lot of folks thought that was crazy considering some of the lean years the Saints went through after "Bountygate." To the Saints' credit, they realized stability is a powerful tool in a league constantly in a state of flux.

Bill from Oswego, NY

Another tough loss, seems worse than the Rams game. We're 0-2 in the meat of a brutal four-, five-game stretch. Hoping for arctic tundra to welcome the Dolphins. What's the forecast?

It's looking like mid-30s and cloudy at the moment.

Jack from Smyrna, TN

Wes, do you and Mike get along with the Packer beat writers? Ryan Wood from the MJS offered up something pretty damning in his chat on Monday. "My initial thought is if you want pom-poms and cheerleading, go read the Packers team-controlled sight." That seems to be the sentiment that you and Mike most disagree with from fans, so I was surprised to see that from a peer.

I competed with the Journal-Sentinel for years and have nothing but respect for their writers. In my opinion, Tom Silverstein is one of the best NFL scribes in the country and an important advocate for Wisconsin journalism. Competing against Spoon for stories and news made me a better beat reporter. Gannett is lucky to have him. I also consider Tyler Dunne and Michael Cohen friends. Yes, I work for a team website, but I don't fancy myself as a cheerleader. I'm not nearly athletic enough. Whatever the outside perception of others may be, I sleep well at night. And it's site, by the way, not sight.