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Inbox: They'll find their way

Buckle up because it’s going to be a wild three days

DL Kingsley Keke
DL Kingsley Keke

Paul from Northglenn, CO

Curious if this was pilfered, or an original creation? "Conjecture based on speculation is just another layer removed from reality."

That's what they call "turning a phrase" in the industry. And that was one heck of a phrase by Spoff. Good morning!

Thomas from Beaver Dam, WI

Everyone talks about the jump from Year 1 to Year 2. I am wondering how the lack of a true offseason is going to impact the first-year players such as Jace Sternberger, Kingsley Keke and even the practice-squad players.

History is our greatest teacher. If you look back at how the 2010 draft class performed after the lockout, Bryan Bulaga, Morgan Burnett, Marshall Newhouse and James Starks all improved in Year 2. These guys are professionals. This is their job. They'll find their way, especially if the virtual offseason program comes into effect.

Wes from South Saint Paul, MN

Just saw the NFL All-Decade Team and was glad to see Aaron Rodgers listed. It does seem somewhat unbelievable that David Bakhtiari isn't.

It's a great honor for Rodgers and checks one of the last unchecked boxes in a career that will undoubtedly end in Canton, Ohio. Bakhtiari was a victim of being drafted in 2013 instead of 2011 or '12. He is worthy of being on that team. The tackles who made it either played the entire decade or were named Joe Thomas.

Juan from Miami, FL

What were your thoughts of the All-Decade Team? No Mike McCarthy? No Mason Crosby? What a joke...

I think an argument could be made for McCarthy over Pete Carroll but I didn't have any real big issues with the team. Rodgers, a two-time MVP, over Drew Brees was the right choice. I probably would've gone with Bakhtiari over Jason Peters or Tyron Smith. Those two have slowed down a touch since around 2015-16, whereas Bakhtiari has only gotten better.

James from Santa Maria, CA

My question is simple. I'm wondering with the draft upcoming and it being done remotely and the logistics of trying to work a trade over the Internet, Skype or cell phones, do you see them possibly allowing extra time on the clock so that technology doesn't interfere with the trade process?

No. Teams have negotiated trades over the phone since the draft came into existence. That part is nothing new.

Aditya from Princeton, NJ

Many Packers fans, and experts alike, are emphasizing WR, OT and ILB as impending needs for the team. While I agree, would it be unfair to say that IDL might be a bigger priority? While Tyler Lancaster, Dean Lowry, and Keke have shown promise, maybe it is time we consider using a high draft pick, like Blacklock, Gallimore or Madubuike, on a IDL which can free up Kenny Clark (second-most double-teamed DL) to operate like the beast he is. It could go a long way in helping our rush D. What do you guys think?

I've been a fan of Ross Blacklock since Spoff mentioned how his dad is the Harlem Globetrotters coach at the NFL Scouting Combine. The more important thing – Blacklock can play, too. Ted Thompson's old adage was God only made so many big people and even fewer are natural athletes. So defensive line could make sense for Green Bay.

Barb from Marengo, IL

Holy draft Batman! Is every team going to ask to borrow our Batphone? Seriously, I can't imagine how this year's draft is going to play out. Any thoughts?

Buckle up because it is going to be a wild three days. As much pushback as the league reportedly has received about keeping the draft on schedule, I think the NFL probably made the right move. We don't know when this COVID-19 storm is going to pass. So draft the players with the information you have, give them their contracts and get them playbooks. Every team is operating at a disadvantage and we gotta make the best out of an inconvenient reality.

Eric from Neenah, WI

For those questioning receiver separation, watch Greg Jennings' highlights when he was with the Packers. Regardless of his comments off the field regarding Green Bay and AR12, his production and route-running while in Green Bay was very good. He often created 3-5 yards of separation and was effective over the middle with YAC. I believe this is the type of receiver that is missing in the Green Bay offense. Agree or disagree?

Jennings never really bounced back after that core muscle injury in 2012 but his run from 2007-11 is one of the most dominant stretches by a Packers receiver in team history. It's hard for me to say a Jennings-type receiver is what's missing from the current offense. I feel like Davante Adams is that guy but certainly a complementary receiver of Jennings' ability would take this offense to another level.

Paul from London, Ontario

Hello II. Thanks to all at for the work you do so that transplants like myself can enjoy all Packer news. My question goes back to the game last season when GB was down to the last healthy, active O-lineman. Can Hunter Bradley fill in? Any added depth would be a plus.

I can say with a high degree of certainty Tyler Lancaster would have been the next man up. He was an interior offensive lineman throughout high school and almost played there at Northwestern. Bradley was a tight end before he was a long snapper.

Steven from Silver Spring, MD

Brian from Sussex brings up a really hot topic regarding schedule expansion. As the regular season and playoff schedule expands it dilutes the impact of early-season games. I realize that 17 is still not 82 or 162, but I can't ignore thinking that on those beautiful sunny days of the early season when your kids want to be outside, unless you are a 20-something male with no kids it is harder and harder to rationalize staying inside. Scarcity of product was a key driver for appointment viewing.

I'm not worried that the extra game will dilute things. My hesitation has always been how this alters what I felt was an optimal schedule – 32 teams, 16 games and eight divisions. There's so much natural synergy and fairness with that format. Having 17 games meddles with that, but I still think every game from September through December will be critical.

Aaron from Scottsdale, AZ

Interesting thoughts regarding Jordy potentially winning Super Bowl MVP. For argument sake, give Jordy an additional 80 yards and another TD, giving him 220 (first all-time in the Super Bowl) along with two TDs. That would also have given Rodgers 384 yards with four TDs, the latter tying him at No. 3 all-time in the Super Bowl. I don't see how you don't honor both at that point. Co-MVPs for Nelson and Rodgers. #COVIDSportsDebates

And you get a Super Bowl MVP…and you get a Super Bowl MVP…and you get a Super Bowl MVP. The Packers hoisted the Lombardi Trophy for the fourth time that night. I think that's the only thing Rodgers and Nelson would've cared about.

Bret from Hertel, WI

Dear Wes, the 2010 Packers had a great team that peaked at the right time! It was fun to see that game again. With only two sure-fire HOF players on the Packers, there were at least 16 Packers Hall of Fame players with about eight on offense and eight on defense. They looked very strong, young and hungry.

That squad had it all – an emerging offense, suffocating defense and leaders across the board. Once the pieces fell into place, that team had championship written all over it.

Snapshots of Green Bay Packers WR Devin Funchess.

Andy from Lancaster, PA

Good morning Inbox! With the prospect of the start of the season, or at least the offseason programs, being shortened or even canceled, how much of a disadvantage is it for teams that rely on preparation and coaching more than the talent of their players? I would think a slightly less talented team with an excellent coach would maybe not gain the same benefits this year with less interaction with the team and less time to implement his coaching.

Coaching still comes down to preparation and teaching. That hasn't changed. So I'll echo what Mark Murphy told Larry in their interview this week – the coaches and organizations that adapt best to these challenging circumstances will benefit in the long run.

Jake from Athens, GA

With the free NFL Game Pass subscription, I'm going back and watching the 2009 season, and I gotta tell you, it is pretty dang funny hearing Jon Gruden say, "Y'know, I think this Aaron Rodgers kid is the real deal." It got me thinking, though. Here's the thing about reaching to draft a QB in the first round right now – what do you do when a player like Trevor Lawrence falls to 32 next year because of an injury or some weird off-the-field thing?

If Trevor Lawrence can play football, Trevor Lawrence is the No. 1 overall pick in 2021. That's not a prediction, that's a spoiler. So we can end that debate right there.

Travis from Oak Creek, WI

Having just watched "Draft Day" for the third time in three weeks....not exaggerating...the sports itch is real! It got me wondering. Do GMs really act that way towards player evaluation (e.g. diving into whether or not a player's teammates showed up to a past birthday party)? Or perhaps are there any known "tricks" they use in regards to evaluating a player's moral compass (slipping in $100 dollars into a playbook and then questioning them)?

I've watched "Draft Day" no less than 20 times. It's one of my favorite movies. By no means, however, is it an accurate reflection of how an actual NFL front office operates during the draft. It's more cartoon than non-fiction novel.

Joshua from Houston, TX

I'd be interested to see if rookie minicamps are done via Zoom meetings.

Good question. The answer depends on how soon they can put a structure into place for how to handle a virtual offseason program.

Darrin from Sparta, WI

I recently read there are only around 11 minutes of "live" football action during the game. Any truth to this? Eleven minutes of "live" action for a three-hour broadcast. They have us right where they want us, don't they?!

If the Packers didn't make it to the NFC title game, I had plans with my dad to go to Vegas and watch Conor McGregor fight Donald Cerrone at UFC 246. After Conor knocked Cowboy out in 40 seconds, my dad texted me and said, "Well, good thing we didn't go," and I told him, "No, absolutely not." Don't get me wrong – I was pleased to be in Palo Alto and preparing to cover my third NFC Championship Game, but I would have had no problem whatsoever flying to Vegas for a 40-second McGregor fight. Because it's not just what happens inside the Octagon or on that football field that makes an event fun or memorable. The build-up is half the fun and the same goes for the NFL. That's what makes football so great, in my opinion. There is waiting but anticipation only adds to the excitement – and drama.

Terry from Green Bay, WI

Gentlemen, are player contracts based on a year of service or to a specific date? If an MLB (or NFL) player has one year left on his contract and the season is cancelled, is he a free agent when play resumes in a year or does he still have a year under that contract?

It counts in MLB. The league and players union came to that agreement last week, I believe. So for example, Mookie Betts would end up hitting free agency again if the season is cancelled, despite never playing for the Dodgers. The NFL and NFLPA would have to hash that out. But as I've often said, we have a lot bigger problems than football if the NFL season cannot be played.

Nate from Pueblo, CO

If fans can't attend, how about having the fans cheer through their cellphones and playing it live in the stadiums?

That's an idea. Regardless, I'm sure there still would be some guy shouting "SIT DOWN!" into his speaker.

Ryan from Appleton, WI

When will fans have an idea of what the broadcast of the draft will look like? Is the NFL going to be releasing any information or will we not know until the day of the draft?

I'm sure ESPN and NFL Network will send out an advisory the week before the draft. They'll want as many eyeballs as possible on their coverage.

Scott from Lincoln City, OR

"Conjecture based on speculation is just another layer removed from reality." Do I have your permission to put this on a T-shirt?

Only if Spoff's face is on it where the TM mark is supposed to be.

Jim from McLean, VA

I know math isn't required for the II, but with challenges of home schooling for all of us I wanted to ask Mike, Wes, Spoff or Hod: What is the next number in the following sequence? 11, 22, 44…


Brad from Crofton, MD

No question, just a show of gratitude! II, you never fail to educate, elucidate, and entertain! Bravo, Mike and Wes, bravo!

We're doing the best we can. The plans calls for Spoff and me to get back into our usual routine with Inbox. I appreciate everyone for bearing with us over the past month as we squeezed in some PTO and adjusted to our new lives. Talk to you soon.