Presented by

Inbox: Who will be next to make that jump?

190209-insider-inbox-2560

Eric from Stramproy, Netherlands

Hey Wes, just tell Cait she doesn't need to know anything about football to answer questions in II. She just needs to be a psychologist, psychiatrist, analyst, counselor, comedian, friend, foe and all the other regular parent-stuff. Cause basically, us fans, we're all just kids!

Part writers, part therapists. Good morning!

Mitch from Caledonia, WI

Wes, I think Favre to Rison to start Super Bowl XXXI needs to be on both the greatest TD and celebration list. To begin a Super Bowl that way was just so iconic and the image of Brett running around with his helmet raised in the air is one of the most beautiful, genuine things I have ever seen.

Not only was that a critical explosive play in a Super Bowl, but the touchdown also washed away whatever jitters the Packers may have felt competing in the big game for the first time in 29 years. If not for the players, then definitely the fans back in Green Bay.

Mike from Algoma, WI

Not sure where it ranks all time, but Tramon’s “no look” pick-six still blows me away!

Tramon Williams played out of his mind in 2010, but his postseason run was special. He was at the peak of his powers during those four playoff contests.

Alex from Skokie, IL

While I loved Raji’s TD (including beating the Bears and winning the Super Bowl), the most memorable TD for me has to be Antonio Freeman’s Monday night OT back-catch winner. I spent hours as a kid throwing footballs in the air, laying on my stomach, and trying to catch the ball after it hit me in the back. To do that in a game setting...outrageous.

It was a catch that had to be seen to be believed. It also ushered in an entire generation of young Packers fans who wanted their own “Freeman catch.”

Danny from Oceanside, NY

Hey guys, love the column. Wes, you’re really stepping up your game this week. With all the factors that go into a London game, do you think the league will force the Packers to move one of their home games before forcing another team’s home game?

The NFL won’t force the Packers to move a game. It means too much to the community. I wonder, though, whether the league will have to step in at some point and make it worth a team’s while to take the Packers overseas. Otherwise, I have no idea when it’s going to happen. AFC teams aren’t going to do it. NFC North teams aren’t going to do it. LA seemed like the best answer, but the Rams and Chargers obviously aren’t turning away those home gates.

Team photographer Evan Siegle shares some of his favorite images of the 2018 season.

Mike from Arlington, VA

Regarding Friday's remarks on Aaron Jones' pass protection, I saw a statistic on a fantasy site that mentioned Jones was one of three running backs this season (Kamara and Henry the other two) to pass block on more than 20 snaps without allowing a single sack. I was unable to back this up with further research, but it goes to show Aaron Jones has improved as a blocker.

Jones made a series of changes to his lower body last offseason to stand up to contact and I think he saw it pay dividends. Jones admits he isn’t a finished product yet, but he took another step towards becoming a complete three-down back in 2018.

Sam from Spokane Valley, WA

With all the young talent we have at cornerback, it seems like one individual who gets lost in the mix is Tony Brown. After a rocky start, he seemed to be on the rise towards the end of the season. What are your thoughts about his performance, and do you think he figures into the Packers’ plans for 2019?

Brown overcame a rough start with penalties to become a contributor on defense in the aftermath of the injuries at defensive back. He’s a smart guy and supremely talented cornerback. It’s hard to say how those spots will be sorted out in the Packers’ secondary, but Brown will get his chance to compete for a spot. Those second- and third-year jumps are pivotal. After watching Kyler Fackrell’s breakout, the question Brian Gutekunst will be asking this summer is who will be next to make that jump?

Brian from Katy, TX

Do you think that Uncle Dick is mad at our new assistant offensive line coach? I'll hang up and listen.

This is a big jump for Luke from Illinois to an assistant offensive line coach at the NFL level. I don’t want to speak for his uncle, but I’m guessing Dick gets it.

Dan from Lindenhurst, IL

Westershire, I have a final winning idea for this overtime debacle. It's 2019 and society is very sensitive. In case of a draw, both teams win. No one's feelings are hurt and no weird records to deal with. I can't be the first to bring this up.

I cannot wait for the first Super Bowl with two Lombardi Trophy presentations.

Dave from Coloma, MI

Seeing Evan's picture of Randall Cobb and Jamaal Williams in the hallway outside the locker room made me wonder if the NFL sets standards that stadiums must meet for the visitor's locker room. Also, what would be the best and worst you've seen?

I don’t know of any outside of the basics (restrooms, showers, training rooms, etc.). Off the top of my head, Arizona, Denver, Tennessee and Dallas have the best visiting locker rooms I can recall. Detroit, Washington and Buffalo are the most cramped.

Geoffrey from Rosemount, MN

What if the NFL backed up the Pro Bowl to Saturday, as well, so it would still be a full week for the Super Bowl? I assume they don’t want to lose any days of income, but figure maybe that would be the week to lose a day and play the Super Bowl on Saturday.

I don’t think one has anything to do with the other. Only recently did they move the Pro Bowl to the week before the Super Bowl. Plus, the games aren’t even played in the same place. I just feel like this entire narrative is a stretch. The Super Bowl has been played on Sunday since forever. It’s not changing.

Andy from Madison, WI

Sorry, Australia; 2:30 a.m. has to be the worst start time for a game. It's early enough that you think you can stay up until it starts, but 1:45 a.m. rolls around and you realize you'll never be able to stay up until the end of the game. So you try to get a quick power nap. Then, you wake up on the couch at 6:30 a.m. with a stiff neck, and the game is over and your day is ruined.

That takes serious passion, but let’s get to the real question – do you brew coffee for a 2:30 a.m. start?

Bob from Melbourne, Australia

Wes, you don’t know if you could sign off on a physical and strategic game with 92 active players being determined by two kickers? Are you saying you've decided to completely write off the myriad of games decided by field goals?

Not at all, but the reason why it all falls on the kicker is because the offense advanced the ball to that point of the field for a game-winning or game-tying kick. That takes strategy and team competition. To me, having two kickers alternate kicks in lieu of overtime isn’t what American football is about.

Tom from Vista, CA

Could the goal post lasers also be used to keep the snow melted?

The Torched Tundra.

Abz from Riverton, UT

Now that Flores is the Dolphins new head coach, will there be some competition in the AFC East? Those pesky Pats have strolled through that inferior division for far too long. Also, nice job on the Inbox! I quite enjoy it!

I mean Belichick and Brady can’t do it forever, right?

Right?

Riggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhttttttttttt?

Dan from Colorado Springs, CO

Why does the NFL make us wait so long to tell us what the schedule will be for next season?

It takes time to put the schedule together…and there’s also nothing else going on in the middle of April.

Dean from Vienna, VA

Been a Foreign Service Officer for 18 years. I sympathize with those who had to wake up/stay up into the wee hours to watch as I did in Jerusalem and Spain the last few years. But you can take a nap. From 2000-2007 in Abuja and Kathmandu, there were no options to watch. Thankfully, mom and mother-in-law teamed up to tape most of the games (49ers, too, for my wife), and once they arrived through the pouch, usually 6-8 weeks later, I'd get to plug back into the Pack.

I can only imagine how thrilled you must have been when those tapes came in the mail. It’s also incredible how far technology has come over the last two decades.

Jeff from Elk Mound, WI

One last Madison question…Let’s say he doesn’t come to play this year or any other. Would the Pack get the draft pick back? Seems only fair they should get the pick back. Not their fault he decided not to play.

No. Madison signed a contract.

Chris from Saint Louis Park, MN

You stated Kapri Bibbs is a free agent. Everywhere else I look I'm seeing that he's signed through the 2019 season. Can you clarify?

Bibbs is under contract for next season. I had a conversation with him at the end of the year in which he talked about the prospect of free agency, but neglected to actually check in on his contract. I apologize for the oversight.

Gary from Davenport, IA

I have enjoyed reading the accounts of people in Europe who watch the NFL late at night and wanted to share my experience from the opposite side. I was in Honolulu on vacation and watched the Badgers play on ESPN at 6:00 a.m. and the next day the Packers played at 7 a.m. That was awesome because by the time I was done watching my football teams, I still had the whole day to be outside in the great weather in Hawaii.

I can’t remember if I’ve told this story before or not, but I once met North Carolina men’s basketball coach Roy Williams in a Hawaii hotel hallway in 2007. I immediately called a few of my friends back home in Green Bay. Needless to say, they didn’t appreciate the 3 a.m. CT wake-up call.

The Green Bay Packers continued the “Empower" leadership event for the second day in Milwaukee for middle school students.

Allen from Birmingham, AL

The question about the gas card giveaway years ago made me smile. Nobody remembers the asterisk and the caveat: *Winners have to agree to pump gas for Vic's car when the temperature is below 50 degrees.

Always read the fine print.

David from Minneapolis, MN

Wes, I've never questioned your authenticity until you mentioned you work out...wait...you're serious! My apologies. On a serious note, do you ever get to work out with the players or get to take advantage of the strength and conditioning coaches?

Ha. I run enough to keep the diabetes that runs in my family away. Employees have access to the main workout room after hours, but I stay in the staff area. My lack of athleticism fits in well there.

Jacob from Ironwood, MI

When Mike returns, will we have some new editions of “Unscripted?” I've been jogging a fair amount lately, and “Unscripted” helps me chug through a boring treadmill run. Lately I've had to just listen to music like a normal person, ugh. If I get fat, it's your fault. 

That comment means a great deal to me, Jacob, because I, too, listen to an array of podcasts to get through runs. So thank you for following along. I’ll talk with Spoff Monday. We’ll shoot to knock one or two out next week before I leave for vacation.

Tom from New York, NY

Ghostbusters 2 or Caddyshack II: Which bad sequel to a great movie do you think is worse?

Caddyshack II. At the very least, Ghostbusters 2 had mainly the same actors and actually made money.

Lori from Brookfield, WI

Wes, please tell us the story of your puppy.

I think I might have mentioned this before, but Kevin is a rescue from Mississippi who was sent up to the Bay Area Humane Society. Caiti adopted him while I was covering state basketball in Madison back in 2014. She called and told me she fell in love with this dog, but didn’t adopt it on the spot. She’s not an impulsive person, so I knew he must be something special. She went back, signed the papers and I met my new puppy when I got back to Green Bay.

Scott from Martinez, GA

Weston, your wife doesn't know anything about football despite that being the content of your career? Interesting. My wife knew nothing about football when we first met and took the time to learn about it and let me teach her things. Her thinking was since it is such an important aspect of my life, she should invest in it to be able to spend that time with me. What women do for their husbands…

That’s awfully nice of her. I wouldn’t have it any other way with Caiti, though. Believe it or not, I have passions outside of my job and Cait fully embraces those hobbies. When I’m working, all I do is live, breath and write football from the moment I wake up until the time I get home. My parents want to talk football. My extended family wants to talk football. I cannot tell you how refreshing it is to come home, plop down on our sofa and flip on “Dr. Pimple Popper.”

Travis from Stoughton, WI

Wes, great job on holding the fort down while Spoff was on vacation! You need a break!

It was a fun week and a special thanks to my wife for the assist. I also want to take a quick moment to wish her happy anniversary. Have a great weekend, everybody. 

Advertising