Rick from Alexandria, VA
Thanks (cue Patrick Bateman grin). Good morning!
Dean from Leavenworth, IN
I'm most interested in watching Jason Spriggs and Kyle Murphy on Thursday night. Last year the O-line play left much to be desired in the preseason when the QBs spent most of their time trying to stay upright and survive. We know sooner or later the backup OL will be needed. Your thoughts on this and also where will your focus be in the game?
It’s a big night for both tackles. All things considered, I thought Murphy played well before the foot injury. Spriggs filled out this offseason with good weight. Now, it’s about being functional and playing with it. My focus will be on Montravius Adams and Vince Biegel, two guys who missed the preseason as rookies. Adams has looked great in camp and could play a lot if Mike Daniels and Muhammad Wilkerson sit. I’m guessing the Packers will be smart with Clay Matthews, so I’m eager to see how far Biegel has come with a full offseason program and 10 training-camp practices. The wait is over. We’re about to learn a lot about these guys.
Josh from Denver, CO
In what ways can Mike Pettine use the strength of the defensive line to help the outside linebackers in pass rush?
A rising tide lifts all boats. The more impact the defensive line makes, the easier the pickings become for the outside rushers. I think the Packers are going to be multiple, varied and unpredictable with their looks on the defensive front.
Jim from Rock Port, MO
I have to agree the Rodgers pass down the seam to Jennings late in the Super Bowl is the best pass I have ever seen. The pressure of the moment and the precision of the pass are just too awesome to ignore. Was watching with two Steelers fans and that pass made them both hang their heads and admit what a tremendous throw and catch that was. My defining Rodgers moment.
For me, that’s when Rodgers arrived. Everyone knew he was going to be one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks. He’d been to a Pro Bowl, but that throw – and his performance on that stage – proved this guy was once-in-a-lifetime special.
Darren from Kingston, Ontario
I think most would agree AR12’s biggest legacy moments have occurred on the gridiron. But let us not forget the transformational leadership moments he had off the field. His R-E-L-A-X and “I feel like we can run the table, I really do” comments had an immediate and enormous impact on his teammates and it showed in the team's performance. What other off-field moments would you consider near the top of 12’s legacy?
How Rodgers stayed above the fray during the Favre fiasco in 2008. He shined in perhaps the most volatile predicament a young starting quarterback has ever encountered. Within a few years, Rodgers no longer was chasing Favre’s greatness. He was making his own.
Eric from Oshkosh, WI
I guess with all the change on kickoffs, I (and maybe many) missed the new slide rule emphasis. How will this work? In my opinion, QBs already wait too long to give themselves up.
It’s pretty straightforward. Quarterbacks now have protections if they give themselves up while diving forward. If the QB waits too long and the defender leaves the ground to make a tackle, there will be no foul. It’s just intended to eliminate some of the obvious riff-raff. I’m cool with it.
Jeremy from Lethbridge, Canada
I’m always struck at the level of access given to HBO’s “Hard Knocks” crew. Do you feel like you’d actually be learning new things about the Packers if they were on the show? Does watching it ever make you guys feel “I wish we were allowed to sit in on this or that meeting”?
Maybe for a meeting or two, but sometimes the behind-the-scenes stuff feels forced to me. It seemed that way with a lot of the Buccaneers footage last year. I’ve always found the undrafted storylines more compelling and seeing how the longshots fare. On a side note, one of my other favorite moments was James Harrison doing anything and everything to avoid the cameras in Cincinnati in 2013. Classic.
Robert from Joplin, MO
On defense, who all gets the mic? I know it's usually the middle linebacker, but is there a second player who gets the mic when Blake Martinez is off, such as his backup or an OLB. How many mic's are given to defensive players?
There’s one communication helmet. It’s given to an every-down linebacker or safety because they never leave the field. Martinez currently wears it, but the Packers have a backup in case of emergency. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix has worn it in the past and Oren Burks also has relayed calls this summer to get the rookie ready.
Joseph from Decatur, MI
I enjoy reading II during my lunch, it makes my day go by more quickly, thanks guys. I am curious to know if there has been a story that you wish you had been the one to write. Does not need to be football or even sports, just curious if there is that "Man, that would have been great to be the guy to write that..."
There are many and it’s those stories that push me. I think I’ve said this before, but Dan LeBatard’s story on Bernie Kosar in 2009 is what made me declare as a journalism major. It’s flawless. My best friend, Scott Venci, also wrote a phenomenal piece several years ago for the P-G on former Green Bay East High School AD Colette Kolstad and her battle with Alzheimer’s disease. The final five paragraphs of that column brought me to tears and showed me how powerful the written word can be. No medium could have told that story better.
Packers fields manager Allen Johnson and his crew prepare Lambeau Field for Thursday's preseason game against the Titans.
Gene from Midland, GA
Your predecessor often reminded us wins come from "players not plays.” Eventually, Vic convinced me. In that vein, lots of interest this camp stems from Mike Pettine's new defensive scheme. But if we hold true the Vic-ism "players not plays,” are you seeing enough from the talent to make a difference defensively irrespective of whatever scheme Pettine brings?
I agree with that assertion for the most part, but you need a key to start the car. I believe Pettine is that key. It’s the coaches’ job to develop players and get them to use their instincts when they’re on the field. Pettine simplified the defense this offseason, which should help players play faster.
Patrick from Milton, FL
I know everyone is excited for the Aaron Rodgers Revenge Tour, but I gotta say I’m pretty satisfied bearing witness to that Mike Spofford Savagery Tour in the last Inbox. Well-spoken on all accounts.
Feisty Spoff is best Spoff.
Steve from Montclair, NJ
Every preseason it seems one young player makes a name for himself such as Jayrone Elliott and Joe Callahan. If you had to choose one player who you would most expect to do that who would it be?
DeAngelo Yancey. I know he’s not an undrafted free agent, but I feel like folks are kind of sleeping on him. He’s in great shape and getting a lot of work in the slot with Randall Cobb coming back from the ankle injury. I see him taking a good chunk of offensive snaps against the Titans.
Jay from Land O’ Lakes, FL
Guys, I sensed more frustration in Aaron Rodgers’ last video about the perceived lack of effort he witnessed than in almost any other interview he has done. Is this a bad sign, re: new rookies’ work ethic, or is it Aaron's way to urge them to step up?
As I said on “Unscripted,” I interpreted the comments as Rodgers challenging the young receivers to step up and expend the type of effort a guy like Geronimo Allison did in 2016. I remember when we all wrote about Allison getting reps with Rodgers on the scout team going into the preseason. That’s a tremendous opportunity for a young receiver. Don’t take it for granted. It’s still early. Let’s see how these young WRs respond.
Marcus from Bloomington, MN
Of the players that don’t make a roster or practice squad for the season opener, do you know what percentage end up playing a snap in the NFL during that particular season? Maybe due to injury or suspensions? Thanks and love your work!
A handful. WR Max McCaffrey (five games), DT Brian Price (eight), LB Jordan Tripp (three) and QB Taysom Hill (five) are the four who played in the NFL last year after not making Green Bay’s 53-man roster. OL Geoff Gray and former seventh-round pick Malachi Dupre also finished the year on active rosters.
Trevor from Carmel, NY
It's incredible to think it's already been 10 years since the summer of 2008. What's your most vivid memory of the days leading up to that pivotal trade? Did you ever think in your wildest dream that the success would continue at the level it has?
I just remember chaos. I was a part-time sports clerk at the Press-Gazette at the time and angry calls constantly were flooding in. My favorite story, though, came after the trade when the PG flew Rob Demovsky and Evan Siegle to Cleveland, where the Jets were playing a preseason game, to attend the Favre introductory news conference. Rob and E had their game credentials, but were told by security at the news conference it was for New York media only. Evan, thinking on his feet, slipped the security guard $20 out of his pocket and he let them in at the exact moment Favre took the podium.
Tyler from Grantsburg, WI
Sad to see Jake Ryan is out for the season. He’s been a great player, but this is a contract year for him. If one or two of the rookie ILBs step up and play at a high level, would you see the Packers signing Ryan to a new contract or letting him walk?
You hate for any player to get injured, but Ryan is one of the good guys in the locker room. It’s a shame this happened in a contract year. There are so many hypotheticals attached to your question, but I wouldn’t write Ryan off. He’ll work his way back and everyone will respond accordingly.
Evan from Rochester, NY
Allow me to start the trade Khalil Mack movement. Seriously, how is everyone not in a frenzy over this kind of potential impact? What do you think the chances are Gutekunst goes for it and what would he have to give up?
I occasionally get excited thinking about buying a Porsche. Then, I look at the cost and get less excited.
Bret from Hertel, WI
Great story on JK Scott! Did he have a nickname? I have been calling him JK "The Sky" Scott for his high and long punts. His punting should help the defense and holding help Mason Crosby. Last year a few bad holds hurt Crosby.
No official nicknames yet, but having stability at punter is vital to the consistency of a special-teams unit. The Packers appear to have landed a good prospect in Scott. So much of his story is yet to be written, but the young man was exceptional at Alabama and looked the part of a fifth-round pick during his first summer in Green Bay. Now, it’s time to put all of that work into a preseason game.
The Packers conduct training camp practice on Tuesday at Ray Nitschke Field.
Tyler from Daytona Beach, FL
Is it possible to have a rock star for a punter? If so, I think that we just might have one in JK Scott. I like his swagger.
Nobody, Scott included, is putting the Packers’ rookie punter in the Hall of Fame quite yet, but I like his demeanor. You can have all the leg talent in the world, but it isn’t worth a hill of beans if you don’t have the mental side of the game down. Scott has the right attitude to succeed at this level.
Tom from Cornelius, NC
It amazes me how many Packers fans are in my Carolina area and the international community. Does Insider Inbox have technology that assures I will view questions answered from my area or region?
The beautiful thing about Inbox is it’s one unilateral entity. Inbox is for everybody.
Ashton from Bluffdale, UT
I feel like I am a lot like you guys, in the sense that I really like football and love to watch it and know all the stats, but I’m not too gifted athletically. Is there any advice for someone looking for a career as like an analyst or reporter?
Don’t let anyone tell you, “You can’t do it.” It’s a challenging industry. There are long days and climbing the ladder can be tough due to the changing landscape of journalism. If you really want to do it, don’t let anything stop you from pursuing your dream.
Chris from Minneapolis, MN
The other day, someone brought up sports betting. I can't think of anything worse to bet on than a preseason football game.
NBA Summer League basketball.
Johnny from San Antonio, TX
Biff, Spoff, and Rock play a game of man hands, alternating attempts in the same order. Who catches a ball off the JUGS machine first? Even with a 10-percent disadvantage, I pick the Rock!
Half my fingers would probably look like Larry’s pinky by the time I’d catch a ball.
Jeremy from Lethbridge, Canada
At the end of each “Three Things” segment, Larry asks for a final item using an expression I hadn't encountered before. Is it "for the good of the whole" or "hole"? And what does it mean?
For the good of the whole. I remember the first time Larry dropped that line on me in 2016 and we had to reshoot the taping because I just stared at him blankly. I’d never heard the expression before. My interpretation is it’s just a statement or observation benefitting everyone.
Derek from Appleton, WI
Is the Rock the Insiders’ version of Chuck Norris?
Or is Chuck Norris America’s version of the Rock?
Jessi from Sterling, KS
I hate to be the bearer of bad news to those who want you two to be paper, but it's already been taken. Evelyn is paper. 91 years and a mother to Larry the Rock, she wins.