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Inbox: They know who he is now

WR Allen Lazard
WR Allen Lazard

Michael from Morrison, IL

With all the game recaps lamenting how the Packers didn't defeat the Giants handily enough, can we just remind ourselves the only thing that matters in December/January football is wins and losses and style points don't matter? Due credit should be given to New York, as it looked like an energized team despite the record.

The critics would have had a field day if the Packers fell on their faces in New Jersey, so there is absolutely no need to apologize for an 18-point victory in a time-of-possession game. A win is a win and the Packers have nine of them in 12 tries. Good morning!

Blake from Longwood, FL

How in the world did Allen Lazard go undrafted? How does a guy that is 6-5, 227 pounds that runs a 4.55 40, and is the all-time leading receiver in school history at Iowa State go undrafted?

Part of it had to do with NFL teams being uncertain whether he was a receiver or a tight end. After the draft, Lazard committed himself to playing receiver and adjusted his diet accordingly. What’s truly astonishing is how no one seemed to catch onto his speed, though. NFL NextGEN had a stat about how Lazard nearly topped 20 miles per hour on his 21-yard sweep in San Francisco. He also was among the league leaders in separation Sunday. It doesn’t matter if nobody knew Lazard entering the NFL. They know who he is now.

Anthony from New York, NY

Guys, while we've hit Lambeau among other annual road trips, Sunday’s contest in our home town gave a glimpse of a REAL winter Packer home game, even if inclement weather was nothing compared to that awful Jets siren! But this submission is mainly to comment on Lazard's deep crossing route catch. You'd never know from TV just how far he ran from one side of the field to the other, which I confirmed on replay. Have a hunch it was another step in Lazard rapidly developing rapport with No. 12?

Without question. Considering Lazard didn’t arrive in Green Bay until the very end of last year, it’s incredible how quickly he’s managed to get in sync with QB1.

Mike from Augusta, GA

Is Tramon Williams a Packer HOF contender?

He’s not a contender. He’s a lock in my opinion.

Look inside the Packers' locker room as Mason Crosby receives the game ball after the snowy Week 13 win.

Jeff from Ogden, UT

Mason Crosby is another one of those guys I never want to see in another team’s uniform. Here's to hoping he retires in a Packer jersey. God bless ya Mason. We love you brother.

He’s one of the good ones. A lot of writers, including yours truly, were extremely critical of his poor 2012 season. He didn’t hold it against any of us. There was no “I told you so” moment when he turned things around – only professionalism. He’s a man of the highest character and continues to prove it with how he responds to adversity.

Jack from Wauwatosa, WI

The posting of the pictures today showing support for Mason are unbelievable. That looks like a locker room with a lot of love for each other. A key ingredient for success. Thanks for your work.

I can think of no one more deserving. For everything the Crosbys have battled off the field in 2019, Mason is having a career year on it.

Bruce from Lakewood, CO

If you haven’t seen Wes’s description of Mason Crosby and family on “Packers Unscripted,” it was deeply moving. As a cancer survivor, I can’t think of a better message than what Wes articulated.

Thank you for that, Bruce, because I felt like I clumsily stumbled through the entire thing. Brittany had such a beautiful soul and I cannot say enough about Rees, either. They put a lot of trust in me to tell their story two years ago. For that, I’ll forever be in their debt. Watching her transformation from a quiet, introverted young lady, who wasn’t sure if she wanted to talk for the story, to a powerful public speaker and advocate was so inspiring. The world is better for having Brittany Crosby journey through it.

Dylan from Belgrade, MT

It's the time of the year to be thankful. Let's be thankful that after every game the biggest story of our team isn't the interview with the owner/GM.

One of the biggest blessings of a community-owned team like the Packers is no meddling from above. Mark Murphy and Brian Gutekunst don’t create questions for the locker room or generate unnecessary headlines. Murphy helped advise the coaching search earlier this year – because spoiler: he has credentials – and then left the general manager and head coach to their work. With the Packers off to a 9-3 start, you know what you don’t hear? Murphy asking for a round of applause.

Bob from Winneconne, WI

As a fan, in what context should the Giants win be evaluated? Press clippings and ML say it was the most complete win we’ve had (best each of the three components played). But...the reality is the Giants were a 2-9 team and for the most part played like it. Will our level of play ratchet up with the quality of the opposition? Do we have what it takes to win out?

There’s only one way to find out. To get there, the Packers have to rise to occasion again this Sunday vs. Washington.

Michael from Montréal, Quebec

Blake Martinez continues to be a rock in the middle, but what of our other inside linebackers? Do you see evidence of progress among any of them? What about regression? Is there any hope that we'll be able to: (1) consistently stop the run; and, (2) cover TEs with this lot if the Pack make the playoffs?

Covering the tight ends isn’t the strict responsibility of the inside linebackers. A lot more goes into defending the middle of the field. But that position is essential to clogging holes against the run. Right now, that falls on Martinez and B.J. Goodson in base, and Ibraheim Campbell in nickel. They’re doing what’s being asked of them.

Agrim from Shakopee, MN

I will be honest, I was a little surprised to see Tremon Smith released from the 53-man roster. Was it the fumble during Sunday's game that was the last straw? Could this be leading to a Darrius Shepherd return to the roster?

Each day, Spoff and I open our emails and fans clamor for change and improvement on special teams. The Packers are trying, folks. This is another part of that. The corresponding move likely will be announced Tuesday.

Evan from Little Pine Lake, WI

Is Adrian Peterson the biggest threat on offense for the Redskins?

Peterson has given the Packers problems over the years, as recently as Week 3 of last season, but Terry McLaurin and Derrius Guice are dangerous, as well. Washington is 3-9 for a reason but that doesn’t mean it’s a team devoid of talent. They have playmakers who can hurt you.

Justin from Los Angeles, CA

Anyone lamenting that the Packers didn't beat the Giants badly enough need to just look at the rest of the league where the Dolphins, Bengals, and Redskins all won. There are no gimmes in the NFL. Speaking of which: What did the Redskins do well to beat the Panthers that we need to be prepared for?

Exactly. With the parity of a 32-team league, it’s not how you win – it’s did you win? Washington stopped Christian McCaffrey (relatively speaking) and got its own run game going (30 carries for 248 yards, 8.3 yards per carry, and three touchdowns). They made plays – not mistakes.

Cody from Neenah, WI

Do you know if there is a way to file a complaint or start a petition to the league and networks for them not to put the lame fake graphics of the hash marks and numbers on the field? A snow-covered football field is so majestic and they ruin the look of it by putting that stuff on. The line of scrimmage and first-down lines are OK, I suppose, but please let everything else look as natural as the fans in the stadium get to see it.

It’s like the neighbor who busts out the big, fancy snowblower with an inch of snow on the ground. It has a purpose but maybe not right now, though I did enjoy the players disappearing when they came in motion.

Mark from Minneapolis, MN

II has mentioned several times about the NFL being a "week-to-week" league. The best confirmation would be how poorly the Chargers and Eagles played yesterday, and those two teams represent two of the Packers’ three losses with the potential downstream ramifications for home field and seeding. Back to that week-to-week thing, now is not the time to look past teams like Washington and Chicago with the Dec. 23 showdown looming.

The Eagles have been flat-out inconsistent, while the Chargers are that 4-8 team in your fantasy league that has scored the third-most points but just can’t quite get over the hump. You can’t look past either Washington (winners of back-to-back games) or the Bears, who have won three of their last four and are on the verge of getting Akiem Hicks back. These are two big games coming up for Green Bay.

Brian from Schertz, TX

I have often wondered what the players day-to-day lives are like in Green Bay. For example, are they mobbed for autographs and selfies when they are at the store or the movies? Do the people in Green Bay treat them like everyone else? Do the players, for the most part, enjoy living in Green Bay? Are there old articles and interviews about this in the archives?

From my experience, Packers fans tend to leave players alone. There was one moment I witnessed this season when a woman went to a player at dinner and had him take a picture with her baby. I thought that was a bit bold but the player was a good sport about it and obliged.

Kyle from Minneapolis, MN

Saw an interesting "Next Gen Stat" graphic during the Sunday night game indicating that Packers WRs have the most yards of separation per passing target. Do you believe this stat speaks more to Rodgers' ability to buy time for WRs to get separation, or more to Rodgers' risk-averse decision making? Earlier in his career, it seemed as if Rodgers threw more contested passes to his guys (Jones, Jennings, etc.), giving them a chance to go make a play, as opposed to running around to buy time for WRs.

I don’t know all the ins and outs of that stat, but I think it’s more a product of guys making big plays at big moments. Rodgers didn’t have to buy much time on his two passes for 80 yards to Lazard or the touchdown passes to Davante Adams. Both had solid separation time per target. Even the fourth-and-10 pass to Geronimo Allison was a product of Rodgers getting the ball out quickly.

Keith from Dodgeville, WI

Does Martinez get fined for the bogus personal foul call? I thought this was not powder puff football.

I really hope not. That would be more ridiculous than the penalty itself. Fines typically are announced on Fridays.

Elizabeth from Sylvania, OH

I am a Michigan fan living on the Ohio/Michigan border in Ohio. Ohio State fans are some of the most obnoxious people I’ve ever encountered and because of it, I have made it a mission to never ever behave that way as a fan. I was at the Miracle in Motown game in Detroit and leaving the stadium, there were non-stop loud “Go Pack Go” chants after a heartbreaker for the Lions. You’ve seen a lot more fan bases than me. Would you consider this obnoxious or playful and harmless?

First, I think our intern Ana would like a word with you on the Ohio State-Michigan debate. There also are a lot more obnoxious things that happen throughout the NFL on a weekly basis than “Go Pack Go” chants after a massively emotional game. Harmless and playful.

Patrick from Rockford, IL

Answer to the last time New England and Alabama lost in the same weekend: Nov. 5-6, 2011. No. 2 Alabama lost at home in OT, 9-6, to No. 1 LSU, and NE lost at home to the Giants, 24-20.

Leave it to Inbox.

Tom from Birmingham, MI

After the Patriots lost last night I awaited the pundits to discuss Tom Brady's decline. I wasn't disappointed. It puts in perspective the criticism heaped on Aaron Rodgers after the loss to the 49ers. Thank you both for being an oasis of reason in the crazy world of reporting on the NFL.

I think what some pundits forget is when your coverage is constant turbulence, fans grow tired of the ride. Like most things, there will be enough time to reflect on Brady’s career once it’s over…and it’s not over.

Caleb from Knoxville, TN

What's your opinion on the Bills? I asked this question earlier in the season but it didn't make it on the board. Perhaps now is a better time to discuss it.

The Bills play to their strengths. I think they found something in Josh Allen. When the offense isn’t clicking fully, they still have a defense that can win games, too. I feel like Buffalo made a statement playing as well as it did on the road on a short week.

Zachery from Clarkfield, MN

Thoughts on the DPI against Casey Hayward?

Bad call on Casey but a heads-up play by Courtland Sutton to make something out of nothing.

Packers RB Jamaal Williams, CB Jaire Alexander, and DL Kenny Clark signed autographs at Lambeau Field Monday night in exchange for donations to the Salvation Army.

Dan from Cromwell, CT

What do you think is the most visually appealing uniform matchup the NFL could produce?

The Packers’ all-white uniforms are pretty slick, I have to say. I also was a huge fan of the Carolina Panthers’ black and light blue when it was introduced in 1996. That’s still a longtime favorite of mine.

Jay from Brookfield, CT

I was disappointed to not read about your long-awaited NYC dinner on Saturday night. How was it?

Molto bene. It was a terrific night. That’s my hidden gem in NYC – endorsed and approved.

Aaron from Maryville, MO

Can the Packers win the NFC?

Is a Spofford dangerous near the snack table?

Bruce from Green Bay, WI

I am sorry to hear of the loss of a loved one in the Crosby family. There are some thing that no amount of success can replace. Appreciate every minute you have with friends and family, time does not repeat itself.

It certainly does not. As Brittany always said, “Live life on purpose.” Make the most of today, folks.

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