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Inbox: They're not there yet

It’s a play that has to be made

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RB Aaron Jones

Gretchen from Dousman, WI

Mike Spofford does it again! Great prediction, Mike.

Breaking the long run finally, right? The offense was due for that, and it came at an opportune time.

Sue from Tomah, WI

Congrats to Aaron Rodgers on his 400th career TD pass. Amazing. Kudos to DA for his "presentation" of the ball to the "king." It's obvious those two have a lot of admiration for each other.

George from North Mankato, MN

No question. Just wanted to remind those who downplay Rodgers' greatness, he is the only QB to throw 400 career TDs with less than 100 interceptions. In fact, none of the other QBs to reach 300 TD passes had less than 100 interceptions when they reached that milestone. Just enjoy his career while we have the opportunity.

I didn't know that about the 300 club. Wow. I focused my postgame editorial on Rodgers' comment about trying to get to 500 TDs before 100 INTs because it's not actually out of the question. He threw 14 picks between TDs 300 and 400 and he's at 88 INTs for his career. He just might be able to do it.

Kyle from Tonganoxie, KS

Maybe the best game Aaron has ever thrown? The incompletions were incredible passes.

A few of them were pretty good, yeah.

Lori from Heredia, Costa Rica

Hey Spoff, AR has played in 193 career games in the regular season. How many games are included from when he was playing as Favre's backup before the 2008 season?

Seven, during which he threw one TD pass. Rodgers has 399 TD passes in 186 career starts. I think that's pretty good.

Graeme from Tucson, AZ

As the Eagles' punt return went for a touchdown I was all set to write in and say that this Packers team struggles to close out games. But then both the offense and defense brought it home with great plays. Although It felt like the game should have been over a lot sooner, I suppose it doesn't matter when it's over so long as it happens, right?

The Packers can't have the lapses on the fourth-and-18 and the punt return. They just can't. Moments like that could prove very costly down the stretch here in the quest for a title. For those wondering where this reaction was from me last Monday, there's a huge difference between 41-10 and 23-3, so my reaction is different. Both sides of the ball did respond well when the game started to go sideways, and they stemmed the tide much sooner than two weeks ago in Indy. But that's also the difference between teams like the Colts and Eagles, and the Packers are going to be playing teams more like the Colts in January. There's plenty for the coaches to keep the players focused.

Courtney from Butte, MT

The Packers are okay at 9-3 and have a chance at the No. 1 seed but need to win out and get some help with a Saints loss. I worry though because I am waiting for them to put together all 4Qs. They let up and don't keep the throttle going. When do you think they will start that and begin to peak?

Great question. They're not there yet. There's no guarantee they'll get there. But you just keep pushing and working, and then you take your chances when everything's on the line.

Justin from Los Angeles, CA

In case anyone was wondering whether David Bakhtiari is going to coast now that he's the highest paid OT in the NFL, I think we got the answer on Aaron Jones' 77-yard touchdown run.

This was by far the most popular postgame Inbox comment, and I agree it was pretty cool. He didn't even really have to block anybody. He just kept running.

Jim from McLean, VA

Hi, Mike! Did your family start the Wave?! My favorite play of the game: the incredible catch by Davante Adams when we were backed up to our 1-yard line after the Eagles punted. Which was yours?

The same one. It's funny, someone asked me in the live blog if I thought that was the best catch of Adams' career, and I said no, pointing out his sliding grab in the back of the end zone at Philly on a Monday night in '16 was, in my opinion, his best catch. Then when I asked Adams about Sunday's play after the game, he brought up the other Philly catch, unprompted. Now my wife (who did not start the wave, as far as I know) will only shake her head at how I can remember that stuff and not remember what time my daughter's piano lessons are, but that's another story.

Will from Glendale, AZ

I don't know what the analytics will say but to me the 40-plus-yard connection from Rodgers to Adams on first-and-10 from our 1 was the play of the game. What a throw and an even better catch. If the teams were reversed on that play it'd feel like a gut punch.

That's a good way to look at it. Those back-to-back possessions in the third quarter were the turning point for me. The Eagles hit a 41-yard pass to get out of a deep hole, but the Packers' defense held them to a three-and-out from there. The Packers hit the big play to get out of the hole and ended up going 99 yards in all for the touchdown. Defensively, it's tough to recover from big plays. When you can, it's huge.

Bob from Myrtle Beach, SC

How is the MVP determined? It seems like the press crowned Wilson and Mahomes the MVP front-runners, before the season started.

The AP voters will cast their votes at the end of the regular season. Wilson threw 14 TD passes in the first three games, so it was easy to call him an early candidate. But barring a final three games that mirror his first three, I don't think he can win it. For my money, it's between Rodgers and Mahomes, and there isn't a wrong answer at the moment. Four games left, let's see what happens.

Nathan from New Berlin, WI

I love JK Scott, I really do, but someone has to teach him how to tackle.

Him being put in that position twice in a month is the larger issue. The Packers have work to do there.

Matthew from Sheboygan, WI

What special teams news needs to happen, or rather un-happen, so that special teams can go back to being no news, which is to say, good news?

Punt/kick coverage is about lane discipline and tackling. The Jacksonville one was all lane discipline. This one, at first glance, appeared to be both. Better hang time is needed, too. Now it's not just fixing the problems, it's being ready for anything because the bad film is out there and opponents will look to scheme something up.

John from Livermore, CA

Guys, Reggie White was the most impactful free-agent signing for many reasons. Who do you think was the next most impactful signing and why?

For the Packers? Charles Woodson. League-wide? Either Drew Brees signing with the Saints or Peyton Manning with the Broncos.

Jim from Beaver Dam, WI

This is not a question, merely a response. In response to William from Newburg, Wes replied, "Nearly every pass is thrown with intent and purpose." To that I say, "Slow down Professor."

Gentlemen, this is a football.

Eric from Green Bay, WI

Example No. 87,569,431 this is a week-to-week league: Las Vegas dominates KC in KC and NO at home but gets smashed by Atlanta and needs a miracle to beat the NYJ. No matter where I go I see nothing but negativity over this Packers win. Defense only gives up nine points. Offense scores 30. Philly didn't run all over us like last year or like the teams who've beaten us this year. Enjoy the win people!

There was a lot more to like than dislike about this game. No question about that. The offense was explosive and hit several big plays. The defense racked up seven sacks. The Packers thoroughly dominated the second and third quarters. But the lapses early in the fourth quarter weren't small. They were significant. It's December now. Stop a fourth-and-18 and this game is put away. It's a play that has to be made.

TK from Grafton, WI

If fans were privy to the inner workings of what goes on in the locker room, in meetings, etc., what do you think they'd find to be the most surprising?

How little time players, unlike fans, spend talking about the previous game.

Shilo from Murrieta, CA

Big Bob Robert Tonyan for Pro Bowl! His numbers are already very Bubba Franks-like, with four games left.

He's as good a pick as any from the NFC right now.

Wes from South St. Paul, MN

Mike, during the offseason ML said he wanted to do more no-huddle offense, but we haven't seen it. What do you think changed?

I think the lack of a physical offseason and then limited training camp forced the offense to focus on other priorities, and the no-huddle was down the list. There were only so many 11-on-11 reps to go around. I also think the way the season started, with the offense showing so much explosiveness by constantly changing personnel groups and letting Rodgers work the matchups accordingly, it became more important to develop that rather than dedicate time to newer ventures.

Larry from Carney, MI

There should be a stat for most facemask non-calls. Aaron Jones would lead the league.

How are those missed? I don't get it.

Dale from New Holstein, WI

With the playoffs looming, do you think teams will do anything different with players, coaches, and other employees to help ensure there is not any outbreak on a team for the playoffs? Will the NFL push games around more if there is an outbreak during the playoffs, or will they tell teams, tough luck, you should have been smarter and more diligent?

There's a lot of talk at the league level about having teams in a local bubble during the playoffs to further limit any exposure in their communities. Stay tuned.

David from San Antonio, TX

Hey Mike, is Kingsley Keke earning more playing time for the stretch run?

He's giving the coaches confidence that keeping an active rotation up front is the way to go.

Barry from De Pere, WI

Two more former Packers served in WWII also. Howard "Smiley" Johnson, who played guard, 1939-41. He left the team to enlist in the Marines and is the only Packer to be killed in combat. Harold "Hal" Van Every, a RB and DB, 1940-41. He left the Packers to become a B-17 pilot, was shot down over Germany, injured his back, and served out the remainder of the war in a POW camp. Lived to be 89. As a disabled vet myself, I've felt immense pride in their service.

Appreciate the history lesson, and your own sacrifice for our country.

Lambeau Field hosted a Week 13 matchup between the Green Bay Packers and Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020.

Jon from Guttenberg, IA

It was tough to see Marquez Valdes-Scantling drop that long pass but did you also see him catch up to Jones on his long run and spring him into the end zone with some key blocking? Great hustle!

MVS deserves credit for always being a team player and not letting his struggles affect his play in other areas. But he has to catch that pass.

Brian from Urbana, IL

I felt bad for Daniel, Marv, Elyse, and Taylor. Why don't they have nicknames? Does Wes have nicknames for them?

Marv is a nickname. The other three haven't been here long enough yet. Give me time.

Dennis from Parrish, FL

I saw a list of which 40 players caught the 397 touchdowns from Aaron Rodgers (before Sunday). Of course some interesting nuggets. The legendary Travis Havner with seven career catches and four touchdowns!

So legendary his first name is actually Spencer. Travis Hafner played 1B/DH for 10 years for the Cleveland Indians.

Dwight from Brooklyn, NY

Not that I'm complaining, mind you, but what in the world happened to Seattle?

Looking at the play-by-play, two things. Wayne Gallman Jr. and a big fourth-down stop at midfield changed that game in the third quarter. You absolutely never know in this league.

Brandon from Margate, FL

Rashan Gary might be turning into a star before our eyes! Is his "motor" reminding you at all of a young Clay Matthews?

Somewhat, though Matthews was playing more snaps per game and rarely seemed to get tired. He could, almost literally, go all game. Matthews was a natural the day they put him on the edge. Gary is developing, growing into the role. Very different players at this stage.

Dan from Chicago, IL

Are the fans who want FULL CONSISTENCY watching the NFL this week?

Those were some wild finishes in the early games. What a day, and there are still three games to go in Week 13.

Jack from Charleston, SC

Happy Monday! Feels good to be 9-3. Question, how much of a factor do you think home-field advantage will be come playoff time? I think it's hard to ignore how limited Lambeau has been this year and that crowd noise can be such a momentum changer. On the flip side, the weather has always been a benefit for the Packers especially against dome teams.

Green Bay isn't going to play its best in bad weather. We've seen that. But I think on balance the winter weather would affect teams like the Saints, Rams and Bucs more than the Packers, so I think it would still matter to be playing at Lambeau in January.

Marin from West Lawn, PA

Any signs in the seats mentioning how Philly uses fake cheese?

I need to check with my sources for a full report, but they were sleeping when I got home. Happy Monday.

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