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Inbox: You never see those iconic moments coming

The Packers are one good offseason away from being right back in this thing 


Matt from Waukesha, WI

Wes, I think it's time to hang up the Inbox and pass the torch onto Cait. She won Thursday's edition with that response.

This was by far the most popular submission for Friday's Inbox. She's truly one of a kind. Good morning!

Michael from THE Eau Claire, WI

Wes, I'm thinking you need to let your wife sit in and answer a few more of these questions for you in the future.

After she got home from work Thursday, I told her several fans wrote in saying she should take more questions. Her response? "But I know nothing about football." To which I replied, "That's optional for the most part."

Kevin from Louisville, KY

Hi Wes, in a week in which Spoff is on vacation and you have to answer all the II questions by yourself, do you find yourself having to change your practice schedule or increase your nutritional regimen? Seems like it could get taxing, especially over the course of a 52-week "season."

It's not easy, which is why I had to call in the "closer" Thursday. However, as the venerable James Jones used to say, "I gotta get that treatment" and press forward.

Benjamin from Evergreen Park, IL

With Matt LaFleur coming from the Titans and having experience with a back like Derrick Henry; do you foresee the Packers going with a tried-and-true power runner? I like Aaron Jones, but he doesn't pass protect well and he needs a favorable matchup to get most of his chunk runs.

LaFleur has a lot of experience in offenses featuring power backs – Alfred Morris, Todd Gurley and Henry just to name a few. In that regard, I believe LaFleur's system will complement Jamaal Williams well. At the same time, I don't think you're giving Jones enough credit. LaFleur's offense is versatile enough to maximize his talents. The Packers are in a good spot with their backfield. I don't feel like they need to overhaul it because of LaFleur.

Andy from Verona, WI

When you attend the scouting combine, which position group/drill do you pay the most attention to and what are you looking for?

Linemen doing the bench press. You can train and train for 40s and three-cone drills, but strength is strength. The bench isn't the only drill that matters, but it's no coincidence Corey Linsley (36 reps) and Tyler Lancaster (35) win in the trenches when you look at their bench numbers.

Thomas from Dunkerton, IA

Touchdown ranks in Packer history: (1) Starr sneak in the Ice Bowl, (2) Max McGee bobble catch and (3) Raji INT return. Celebration ranks in Packer history: (1) LeRoy Butler's Lambeau Leap to start the tradition, (2) Kramer carrying Lombardi off the field and (3) Raji after his INT return.

That's a great list. What's special is none of those individuals knew those moments would be encased in Packers' history when they stepped into the pre-snap huddle (or, in Kramer's case, a simple celebration with his coach). You never see those iconic moments coming. You just have to be ready for them when they're there.

Andrew from Shalimar, FL

Firstly, Cait's breakdown of sandwiches had me cracking up. As far as the Raji pick-six, I can't remember one single play that has brought me so much joy for so long. I'd have to put it in the Top 3, if not No. 1.

The image of Raji extending the football in the end zone and Nick Collins' slide during Super Bowl XLV are the two images I remember the most from the 2010 run.

Robert from Harris, MN

As a Packers fan since the early 60s, my initial response to your question about the Raji INT TD was "man that is unfair, way too much material." But it prompted an exhilarating stroll down memory lane which is wide and long. My memories have made me rich. Thanks for the reminder.

You bet. Also, I'm not saying it's one of the top five greatest moments in the team's 100-year history. I'm simply referring to plays/moments millions of fans watched in real time on television.

Eric from Greenville, WI

Can you let Scott in Fredonia know he's not alone? In the five years people have been trying to come up with OT solutions, not a single one sounds better. Just different at best, but mostly much worse. Also let Crag in Laramie know there are more of us out there. I loved that game. Complete game of football won. Stifling defense, great special teams and an offense that took advantage of both. Great example of the sum being so much greater than the parts. 

This is why I love the NFL. You may think you know how a game is going to play out, but you don't. Seriously, who predicted last year's game to break nearly every offensive Super Bowl record? I guarantee they're not the same people who saw this year's game producing 16 combined points.

Henry from Jackson, WY

The Packers had to beat the Bears just to make the playoffs in 2010. Lovie Smith played his starters the entire game in spite of having the playoffs and home field locked up. If you watch the handshake between Smith and McCarthy at the end of the game, you can hear Lovie say "See you in Chicago." Pretty cool moment caught on camera. I think both coaches knew they'd see one another again. If you own the commemorative 2010 Packer Super Bowl video, you can hear the comment.

Two of the classiest coaches in the game.

Collin from La Crosse, WI

Hey Wes, you said that if you were in charge of the competition committee you would make 15-yard and spot-of fouls penalties reviewable, but what about the lack of one? Would the Robey-Coleman hit be reviewable in your NFL?

Ultimately, what I want to accomplish here is abolishing game-changing flags in the final minutes of a game because a pass-rusher slapped Tom Brady's shoulder pad. But yes, it was a personal foul for contact to the head, so I say let the coach throw the flag.

Rick from Pacifica, CA

I keep reading about how the Packers have too many pieces to add before they're a Super Bowl team again. Then, I read about how New England should just be placed in the Super Bowl because it's inevitable. During the season, NE's defense was maligned, its receiving corps isn't a top-notch unit, the offensive line isn't considered elite, etc. Yet, they make it to the playoffs and are like a different team. Like you two always say, just get to the playoffs and then anything can happen, right?

Belichick gets his guys to the dance every year, and once they're there, the Patriots know all moves to all the music. You wanna polka? Fine. Someone get Gronk a concertina.

Bruce from Arbor Vitae, WI

"Culture is the soil from which championships are grown." I love that statement, and boy, does it apply to a variety of settings.

You could have the best job in the world. If you don't respect your boss or enjoy who you work with, it won't matter. The Packers have won 13 world championships. As talented as those teams may have been, they wouldn't have won those titles if they weren't rowing in the same direction.

Dan from Kenosha, WI

If the Packers go to four more Super Bowls with Rodgers and win them all, is Aaron's 5-0 better than Brady's 6-3? (Just want the G.O.A.T. to fill space again. Plus, I like Aaron better).

If Rodgers could go 5-0 in Super Bowls, that's a pretty remarkable feat. He has time left for a run here with the Packers. Hey, Brady won three Super Bowls after his 37th birthday. Plus, 2019 is an odd year, so I like the NFC's chances.

Don from London, Ontario, Canada

Every day reader of II (and Saturdays, if I remember) and faithful Packer fan since the 60s. I'm not sure I have seen anyone comment on the biggest difference with our young new coach and the comparisons with the Rams/Sean McVay. Matt is taking a team that already has a franchise QB1 and former MVP. I think the chances of getting into the playoffs in his first year as head coach are higher. But as always, injuries, roster changes and "breaks" will weigh in as usual. Thanks Mike and Wes!

It goes back to what I've been saying – the Packers are one good offseason away from being right back in this thing. McVay had some great pieces to work with in LA, but the puzzle is much more complete than where the Rams were two years ago in terms of proven talent and playmakers on the offensive side of the ball.

Nick from Benton, MO

During the regular season, how long is the typical Green Bay Packers practice session? Two hours? Four? Eight? All day/night?

Thursday padded practices are the longest. They're usually around two hours long (that's not counting stretching and pre-practice walkthroughs). Wednesdays are usually around 1 hour, 45 minutes. Saturday's final run-through isn't open to the media, but I believe it's a little more than hour.

Ben from Pensacola, FL

I'm inclined to agree with keeping the same OT rules. And I hate myself for saying that - I'm thinking of the Arizona playoff game a couple years back - AR has the ball to start with, we win. But...we shouldn't have put ourselves in that position. I'm confident in our defense for possible situations like that moving forward.

Considering the alternatives – kicker-offs, full quarters, each team getting a possession, etc. – the current system is the best option at this point in time. If I'm the league, I'm more concerned right now about penalties this offseason.

Larry from Chubbuck, ID

Why would moving the Super Bowl to Saturday cost a day of activities? Would Friday cease to exist?

Because a six-day Super Bowl week is less than a seven-day Super Bowl week.

Andrew from Birmingham, England

The reason I watch the NFL is because of the lateness of it in the UK. It gave me something to watch while doing late night duties with my kids when they were babies. Fifteen years later, that panned out as me jumping up and down like a kid in Lambeau last September when beat The Bears.

That's an awesome memory. Hopefully, you and the kids can enjoy (or already have enjoyed) a game here together.

Luke from Manchester, United Kingdom

Your point about not letting two kickers decide a game played by so many people has brought about a natural extension to the idea re: penalty shootouts. How about setting a mandatory distance and then having five different players having to make the kick, like in an actual penalty shootout? If it is tied at five, keep going sudden death style. I'd personally love to see us win a game from a Corey Linsley 30-yard field goal.

I can already hear Joe Buck's voice proclaiming with anticipation – "And here we go, with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line, Mike Daniels lines up for the kick."

Zach from Chesapeake, VA

Just had to renew my vehicle registration online and was given the option of adding personalized plates for $10. Luckily my wife bailed me out and came up with a gem, but I'm curious, what's the best custom Packers plate you guys have seen?

The Sterling Sharpe-themed license plate I saw in line at McDonalds the other day. I don't think I can legally say the plate number.

Steven from Ladysmith, WI

Do you think the ghosts of Lombardi's Packers would cringe if they found out the team hired someone with the last name of Butkus.

Jim McMahon wore a Bears jersey to the White House after the Packers won Super Bowl XXXI. I think we're good.

Mike from Hastings, MN

When you go into Lambeau, how often do you run into one of the new coaches and do they recognize you?

I haven't had the pleasure of meeting the new coaches yet, but it's not uncommon to see the staff around the building. You haven't lived until you've worked out next to Ron Zook and Darren Perry.

Gary from Davenport, IA

Josh from Kentucky said the Super Bowl sounded like it was being played at Gillette Stadium. I think it sounded like it was being played at the Los Angeles Coliseum. Remember the Packer game this year?

I've never experienced anything like that before. I hope the stadium galvanizes the LA fan base. If you build it, they will come…hopefully.

Col from Ludlow, UK

Hi Wes, while I admire a 3 a.m. alarm for whatever it is you watch, that seems like a walk in the park. Bed at 10 gives you a good five hours. I reckon a 1:20 a.m. kick off, 4:30ish finish in the UK is tougher than 2:20 start in Europe, but better minds than mine could tell you who has it toughest. I can't guess where in the world is the worst place to be an NFL fan, but some student out there must be able to answer this one before the season starts. Tough schedules for tough fans.

First, I laughed pretty hard at the first part of your submission. Secondly, that's a great question. Which country has the most problematic time zone for watching NFL games live? UK? Australia? China?

LeeAnn from Corydon, IN

Really Weston? You set the alarm for 3 a.m. for UFC, ONE, and Rizin. You should seek professional help! Your wife must be a very understanding woman.

Those are the nights I have to sleep on the couch.

Gary from Chippewa Falls, WI

When Vic was here he had a Cenex gas card give away. Was that a short-term promotion?

Well, it definitely wasn't a long-term one. I've been here three years.

Sean from Glen Ellyn, IL

Wes, I've seen this question thrown around the internet recently: Would you rather your favorite team not make the playoffs or lose in the championship? I apologize in advance for potentially poking the II beehive.

It hurts to lose. I'm still not completely over the 2011 NLCS, but it's still a heckuva lot more fun to go along for the ride than sit at home with the dog.

Ryan from Sun Prairie, WI

Why did the change get made from daily to weekly on earning Perk points for II questions?

There were way too many folks abusing the privilege. Instead of asking questions, they were submitting periods and 'X' to get the points. We have a few who still do it, but at least it's not daily. So blame them.

Charlie from Cameron, NC

Westminster, Thursday's II was so good I want to comment on 10 or more Q/As! I'll pick two. First, when I read Craig from Laramie's comment, I heard Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson from Parks and Rec, which made it my favorite from a very crowded field of great quotes from this young offseason. Two, if the young Mrs. Hod did an entire II, how many articulate responses would we see before she hated us and answered OK to the rest?

Quite a few. Caiti has a lot of strengths, but her patience is out of this world. It's almost a prerequisite to put up with me for 13½ years.

Jesus from El Paso, TX

I'm drawn to this site because of the confidence and humility with which you and Spoff carry yourselves. Even cranky Ol' Ketchman never had illusions of grandeur. Why are some people drawn to arrogance? I don't understand.

I'll never understand arrogance in this profession because we, as writers, control nothing. We're reliant on subjects being willing to talk to us and readers clicking on our stories. While Caiti and I were on vacation in 2015, I remember being in a terrible mood because a high-profile subject (who shall remain nameless) stood me up on a prearranged interview. On our way home, I got a call from a radio guy asking if I'd be a guest on his show. Still brooding, I didn't respond at first. When Caiti found out, she laid into me. "You're upset (Player A) didn't call you, but you're not going to respond to this guy? Think how he's feeling right now." I called the producer back and did the show.

Jessi from Sterling, KS

Cait's answer may have been my favorite of the week! Excellent backup you got there, watch out, she could steal the show.

Move over, Wally Pipp. I'm afraid 10 years from now they'll be saying, 'Don't get Wes Hod'ed'