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Inbox: This day belongs to him

Aaron Rodgers’ throw Thursday was an instant training-camp classic


Ken from Jupiter, FL

Mars may have Wi-Fi issues, but we are tracking the Packers in Jupiter!

I immediately thought of you, Ken, while reading Spoff's Inbox on Friday. Thanks for not disappointing. Good morning!

Jamey from St. Croix, Virgin Islands

Good morning Wes, I love that you end your first reply to the Inbox with, "Good morning." Down here in the Virgin Islands, we greet everyone with good morning, good afternoon and good night. When I walk into the bank, with 10 people in line for the teller, I say good morning, and 10 people reply, "Good morning." So to you sir, I say good morning! Thanks for the great work.

Full disclosure: It's a gesture I lifted from former NFL player/agent Ralph Cindrich. I just think it's a great phrase and a table-setter. I mean who doesn't love a solid "Good morning!" every now and then?

Bill from Menominee, MI

Seeing the Hall of Fame photos of Jerry Kramer and the rest of the class was great. I couldn't help but be pleased that Terrell Owens wasn't present. The class being inducted looks so classy, proud and honored to be there. Congrats on a terrific career Jerry, and thanks for the coverage, Mike!

T.O. or no T.O., I think it's going to be an extra special weekend. Honestly, I cannot wait to read Spoff's Inbox Monday. I'm sure it'll be full of interesting stories from Canton. Fifty years later, the moment has finally arrived for Jerry Kramer. This day belongs to him.

Packers great Jerry Kramer received his gold jacket from the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton on Friday.

Matthew from High Point, NC

Morning amigos! The posed pictures from Jerry Kramer's playing career made me laugh a little. Looks like he's coming around the corner about to throw a haymaker. I got a feeling if I was that linebacker coming up to stop the sweep I wouldn't be laughing.

True legends are those you can picture in your mind, performing the play or moment they're known for on endless replay. Brett Favre running downfield with his helmet in the air in the Super Bowl. Jim Valvano looking for someone to hug after NC State won the national championship. Michael Jordan drifting in the air as he drains a bucket over Craig Ehlo. Jerry Kramer sprinting wide on the sweep is also one of those iconic moments to me. I still remember my grandfather describing it to me when I was a child. It gives you chills.

Venny from Montgomery, AL

One week and one day into training camp. Any surprises?

How well players who spent time on the Packers' practice squad last year are performing. Jake Kumerow, Jermaine Whitehead, Ahmad Thomas and Emanuel Byrd have all had their moments early in camp.

Josh from Fargo, ND


Every year, there are darlings early in camp. I remember Tyrone Walker, Jarrett Boykin, Tori Gurley and even Geronimo Allison putting themselves in the conversation for a roster spot with strong starts. I don't know if I can recall anyone who has started as fast as Jake Kumerow through the first week. He's not a rookie. This is his fourth NFL camp. He's been around the block and you can tell how much this opportunity means to him.

Dennis from Ottawa, IL

With all the talk about Aaron's no-look pass and MM commenting on the video about it, I haven't seen it posted anywhere where the fans can see it. My question is since this is something exceptional that Aaron can do, is it not being shown so other teams can't get that look until it actually happens in a game? If not that, what is the reason it's not out there?

The two-minute team period occurred during a non-shooting portion of practice. That's why you haven't seen video of the play. I'd draw a picture for you, but I'm pretty sure it would turn out worse than that Tom Brady courtroom sketch.

Steve from Ankeny, IA

I read about Rodgers' "no-look" pass to Geronimo during training camp. Sure wish there would have been a video of that! Was it as amazing as it sounded in the story?

I've been racking my brain trying to think of a better sequence during my time on the beat. I couldn't come up with one. The pressure of the situation, drawing a defender offside to earn a free play and then throwing an absolute rocket across the field (without looking) to Allison makes it an instant training-camp classic in my book. I wish Spoff would have seen it. I would be interested if he could remember a better pound-for-pound pass ever in practice.

Matthias from Hartford, WI

I am good friends with Steve Pyne who at one time worked in the locker room at Lambeau Field. Is he still employed there?

I'm not sure. Have you tried asking him?

Jared from Manassas, VA

I found the new leading-with-the-helmet rule really disrupted the Hall of Fame Game for me. I understand it's for player safety, but the officials really seemed to struggle with how to apply the rule consistently. Most of the penalties looked questionable to say the least. The game was hard to watch after a few of these.

It's my experience referees tend to over-officiate preseason games after a rule change or point of emphasis. We heard a similar outcry a couple years ago after the increased emphasis the league placed on defensive pass interference. In the end, it wasn't a narrative once the season began. It's one game. Let's see what happens during the next few weeks.

Tom from Grafton, WI

We hear all the time about new players needing to adjust to the NFL game physically as well as mentally. Other than specialists, what position group do you think has the easiest adjustment from college to the pros?

Running back. Not that it's easy, but it seems the most natural for a college player to transition into the pros.

Neal from Fort Worth, TX

Many veteran corners have easily made the transition to safety as they aged and lost a step. How difficult would the change come to a younger player (Quinten Rollins) with very little NFL experience? Which physical or mental characteristics would lead one to believe he may or may not be able to make the transition?

It depends on the player. I think Rollins is a smart guy, which is why the Packers have tested his versatility this offseason. I'm going to be writing a story on the long road back of Rollins and Demetri Goodson soon. I think it'll be worth your time.

Jack from Indianapolis, IN

After watching the "Rock Report," I just wanted to shout out Rip! He's a real stud when it comes to pass pro.

Mr. Steady-As-It-Goes, himself.

Ashton from Zeeman, UT

When I was watching the Hall of Fame Game, I was happy to see that the new kick rules did keep the excitement of the play, and did lower risk of injury in my opinion. My only concern is that returners seemed to be tackled behind the 25-yard line. Is that just because it's the Hall of Fame Game, or is it a design flaw in the play?

Great question, but I don't draw any conclusions from the preseason. What I want to see is what happens when some of the league's top returners get their shot. Kickoffs are going to look different, but in the end, I think the average line of scrimmage will be the same. On a side note, Spoff brought back so many memories for me when he mentioned Michael Lewis in Friday's Inbox. I was a huge fan of his growing up.

Nate from Amherst, WI

Is there a good article to delineate and explain the rules changes? I just popped the top on a tasty new brew and would like to whet my football palate with some up-to-date rules-change info.

This question was submitted at 10:25 a.m. CT. Live your best life, Nate. If you haven't read it yet, I'd check out **this story we put together on the upcoming rule changes** and how they relate to the Packers.

Quinton from Nashville, TN

I watched the video of the new kickoff rules. Looks straightforward enough, except for one item that I have inferred but is not specifically stated. There is now a 15-yard, no-blocking zone between the kicking and receiving teams. Does that mean the ball must travel 15 yards before the kicking team can recover and possess it?

It's still 10 yards. Kickoffs are still at the 35-yard line. The receiving team has a 15-yard "set-up zone" between its 40 and opponent's 45, but the restraining line is still 10 yards from the kicking team.

Josh from Hackensack, NJ

Will the new helmet rule be reviewable? Please tell me no. I want the game to be safe but ultimately it comes down to the players respecting their peers. Watch Thomas Davis, a highly regard individual and his hit last year on Davante. He clearly targeted, took his time and delivered a blind-side hit to the head. Until that stops the concussions will continue.

It's my understanding the only part that will be reviewable is whether the player is ejected. NFL referee Alex Kemp told reporters Thursday night there will be a break in the action for the officials and league office in New York to discuss a possible disqualification, but it's his hope it wouldn't take any longer than a huddle you've seen with officials in the past.

Marin from West Lawn, PA

How often does the league assign referees to the training camps to assist players and coaches in understanding any new rule changes?

Every training camp. The Packers always arrange to have them in town during the week of Family Night.

Jim from Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Since it is Hall of Fame weekend, I am wondering about this. There are quarterbacks in the Hall Of Fame who did not win a Super Bowl. Is it possible for a QB to win a Super Bowl but not make it to the Hall of Fame? Specifically, is Nick Foles a lock for the HOF?

There are plenty of quarterbacks who have won a Super Bowl who aren't in the Pro Football Hall of Fame – Jim Plunkett (2), Trent Dilfer, Brad Johnson, Mark Rypien, Phil Simms and the list goes on. If there are questions about whether Eli Manning is a Hall of Famer, I'd say Foles has a lot to do to be considered a "lock" for the Hall of Fame.

Ethan from La Crosse, WI

What are your thoughts on Andrew Sendejo's "Make football violent again" hat?

I think there's a fine line between the physical game we know and love, and a growing emphasis on player safety. I also believe there's room for a middle ground. We just need to find it. The NFL and NFLPA are working to get there.

Gabe from Atlanta, GA

What is NFLGSIS and how do you use it?

It's a website for media and NFL teams. It's not accessible to the public. Generally, there aren't major differences between that and NFL.com. For some reason, there has been for individual tackles last season.

The Packers practiced Friday at Ray Nitschke Field

Joshua from Waterville, ME

To make a long story short, I heard there was a CB in the draft named Josh Jackson, so I decided to keep an eye on where he landed. Well, I was absolutely floored when I heard his name picked by the Pack, but now I haven't heard a peep about him since. Just looking to check in on our fellow second-rounder.

Let Larry and I enlighten you in our **most recent edition of “Three Things.”**

Vinny from Arlington, VA

For the many fans outside Wisconsin, is there any way to catch Family Night live or on video? I realize it is a glorified scrimmage but still an opportunity to catch the team prior to preseason games kick off.

We won't be streaming the practice, but our social media maven, Ryan Hartwig, and his crew will have you covered with content on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We'll also have content flowing on the site throughout the event.

Sam from Eau Claire, WI

Other than stay healthy, what would you consider to be a successful Family Night?

No rain, good practice tempo and my getting to bed at a reasonable hour. Oh, and Aaron Rodgers and the starting offensive line performing their trademark Family Night Lambeau Leap.

Aaron from Reno, NV

I'm wondering if the Packers Family Night practice will be televised at all, and what way someone out west would be able to watch it?

I think they have to buy a ticket.

Take a look back at photos from 2017 Family Night. The 2018 Packers Family Night presented by Bellin Health, will take place Aug. 4.

Tony from River Falls, WI

Once the NFL season begins, are there any "slow times" for you as writers or is it pretty much go-go-go for you until the end of the Packers season? Thank you for all you do.

The only true slow time for the NFL is those five weeks between the end of minicamp and training camp. Even then, Spoff and I have quite a bit on our plate with the Packers Yearbook and Gameday program.

Charlie from Rochester, MN

I was listening to PA and former Vikings linebacker Ben Leber the other day on KFAN, and the topic came up of what the atmosphere is like at Lambeau Field. Leber's answer was that he was unimpressed with the atmosphere. He said something along the lines of it not being very loud at all on game days and that fans sort of sit on their hands.

Says the guy whose team uses a massive horn and has stereo speakers mounted to the roof. I've had hot takes on fans at Lambeau in the past (getting loud when the Packers' offense is on the field), but it's all natural at least.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

Wes, does Baby Hod get to attend his first Family Night at Lambeau?

I think he might drop by Lambeau for a game this year, but he's still a little too little for the noise and fireworks of Family Night. Maybe next year, though.

Katie from West Chester, PA

Wes got to do two of the three things, and two days in a row at that? Looks like he remembered that paper always beats (the) rock. Love all of your coverage and can't wait to hear about Family Night!

I don't know if paper beat the rock as much as the rock pitied the paper.

Dave from Minneapolis, MN

If Larry McCarren were made into a beer, what would it be?

A domestic.

Eddie from La Crosse, WI

Hey Wes, I can totally relate to what you said about "seeing the signs." I refused to believe that my father was stealing from his job on the road crew, but when I got home, all the signs were there.

At least you have some cool signs to decorate your room.


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