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It'll show up on the film

Coaches must be genuine or NFL players will see right through them


Kyle from Baldwin, WI

So, should the Inbox questions be limited to L words or less?

And we're off …

Brian from Pleasant Prairie, WI

The striped socks reminded me, a couple years ago the "Tailgate Tour" came to Kenosha, and I was able to have the guys sign some photos I took at a game. Jordy and Mason were able to identify what season I took the photos based on the socks they were wearing in the pictures. I find it very interesting how detailed these guys' memories can be. I don't remember what I had for lunch yesterday.

Interesting. I had no idea they've worn different socks some years.

Scott from Palatine, IL

Joe Whitt has an excellent demeanor for a coach. How much does demeanor play into the way a coach is received by his players? There are a ton of different personalities in the NFL. What personality traits make a good coach?

There isn't one tried-and-true set. A coach has to get his players to respond to him. That's really all that matters, and the best coaches have different ways to get different players to respond. As for the personality, it has to be genuine. A coach at this level has to be who he really is. By this time, players have been with enough coaches to see through anything phony.

Justin from Richland Center, WI

Something just hit me, and I need help processing it. I was looking forward to October 22, hearing "KUUUUUUUUHN!" at Lambeau Field once again, but then it dawned on me that he'll be blocking for someone who has gashed us more times then I care to remember in A.P. Immediate buzzkill. Help me separate the two, if it's possible.

I don't believe Peterson runs very often behind a lead fullback. More from single-back sets.

Tucker from Temple, WI

In an interview Jamaal Williams said, "I love contact, contact is my favorite part." That's the attitude I want in a running back. I can't wait for the pads to come on.

As much anticipation as there is for the start of training camp, I always have to temper my enthusiasm because the first two practices in late July will be without pads. Day 3 is when we finally get to real (practice) football.

Jordan from North Charleston, SC

Larry and Vic challenge Wes and Mike to an egg toss. What happens?

Mike brings his camp stove and has two scrambled by the time Larry and Vic finish making their Bloody Marys.

Ryan from Sturgeon Bay, WI

I've now seen several predictions that Kenny Clark is going to have a breakout year. Given the less-than-glamorous position, what would a breakout year look like for him?

A handful of sacks, maybe, but it won't show up on the stat sheet as much as on the film in the form of double-teams.

Dan from Madison, AL

I read an interesting article about NFL training camps in Wisconsin and Platteville in particular (Cheese League will remain just a fond memory). Wisconsin has hosted training camps for the Packers, Bears, Rams, Jaguars, Saints and Chiefs. The story explains why the trend reversed as teams upgraded facilities, stayed closer to home and made more money. I am wondering what made Wisconsin so attractive to all of those teams in the first place?

Good summer weather without debilitating heat, the opportunity for secluded focus, and the chance to practice/scrimmage with other teams training nearby, including the Vikings in Mankato.

Steve from Terre Haute, IN

Please discuss the punter situation. What happened and what will likely happen?

Schum injured himself to such an extent that, apparently, he won't be able to effectively compete for the job in training camp. So Vogel is the lone guy left, and he'll be competing with every punter on an NFL roster, plus a few unsigned ones, for the gig.

Chuck from Charlottesville, VA

I often wonder how the defense substitutes so much and in a timely manner. Can you outline how it works from the time Capers calls the defense to how each sub is made?

Your order of operations is out of whack. The coaches look at the offensive personnel coming into the huddle and Capers calls for the defensive personnel package he wants to match up against it. As the right players are getting on the field, he makes the scheme call to the player with the helmet speaker, who relays it to the rest of the defense. In a no-huddle or hurry-up situation, of course, substitutions are rare if not non-existent.

Adrian from Winston Salem, NC

Every year Vic would have a game circled for what he thought might end up being a game that was significant or would add up to the playoff picture. My question is what game do you feel that is? For me it's the Saints. Every time we meet it's an offensive scoring fest and I honestly feel AP will have a bounce-back kind of year; along with Kuhn and Brees that offense could be sneaky good. With the NFC South becoming stronger, because I think the Panthers will bounce back as well and the Bucs being about to take off, I want to go with the Saints.

Your own argument just put more emphasis on the Panthers and Bucs games, though, because they're in December.

Joycel from River Falls, WI

If they're in a so-called "rebuilding year," tell me, why is it so much fun to be a Brewers fan right now?

Because you had no expectations.

Ron from Waukesha, WI

First off, this is not a Dom Capers-bashing question. But the Packers' roster has been consistently young and even getting younger this year. And Dom's defense is both complex and difficult to learn. The many, many miscues on defense make this one of the obvious causes. So if we're keeping Dom, what's the solution here?

Thanks for the thoughtfully worded query. I understand where you're coming from, but I don't totally buy your premise. Early in every season there are difficulties to iron out with young players, but for most fans your take stems from Randall's blown assignment on Fitzgerald in overtime two years ago in the playoffs. While there's no denying that one, the youth-mistake narrative has been broadly applied to the Packers' playoff exits across Capers' tenure, and I don't think it holds up. Those weren't young defenses that permitted the Giants to complete a Hail Mary at the end of the first half in '11 or allowed Kaepernick to rush for 181 in '12. With the game on the line in '13, it was an eighth-year fill-in DB who left his feet on the third-down slot blitz. In Seattle in '14, I only recall two young defenders on the field in the late collapse, Barrington and Clinton-Dix, and the latter had two INTs that day. Last year, Gunter-Jones was a bad matchup, but injuries left the Packers with no other options. The same defense the previous two weeks gave up only one TD to the Giants and held the top-seeded Cowboys to 13 points on the road through three quarters. Forgive me for this answer's length, but while there's some truth to your assertion, to believe it's the big-blanket reason I think is misguided.

Tyler from Marion, IN

What number will be stitched on the Ty Montgomery pillows?

Rimshot for Tyler.

Bradley from Tucson, AZ

Since it looks as though Derek Carr will be signed soon to a long-term contract with a new QB ceiling, do you envision the Packers being proactive and re-upping with Rodgers? QB rates aren't going down and doing a deal now, before Carr, may be a way to stay ahead of the curve.

Not to pick on you, but how many times do I have to say contract issues are a two-way street? Always look at the situation from both sides. At this point, why in the world would Rodgers sign anything before Carr's new deal? He has zero incentive. He'd be an idiot to do so, frankly.

Ed from Henryville, IN

Do you know if the NFL is doing a mandatory color-rush game this season? If so, when do we find out what game it will be and what games will be throwback?

I believe Thursday nights will feature the color-rush uniforms again. I have not yet heard when the Packers will be wearing their throwbacks in 2017.

George from Hutchinson, MN

Once again during this time of the year, I'll be attending my annual, Dead Zone therapy group sessions. Basically, it's a group of NFL diehard fans sitting in a circle throwing Nerf footballs to one another as we try to express our emotions over the vacuum of NFL stimuli besieged upon our lives. I guess I could take the wife and kids on a long vacation, but that would make me feel better. What should I do?

I don't know, man, jumping jacks?

Sean from Portland, ME

I liked the article about Randall's ability to play on the inside. Is House also better at playing on the inside? Leaving King and Rollins as the most likely outside corners? I know they will all likely play everywhere, but are those their strengths?

I see House as a boundary corner. Same with Gunter. At his size, I think that's where King will fit best, too, but it's early. Randall and Rollins can play both, but they're likely to get slot duty before the other three, and it may be their better spot.

JD from Palm Bay, FL

Spoff, as a baseball fan, I hope you saw the quotes from some of the Tampa Bay Rays players this past weekend. For the first time in 20-some years, a true doubleheader (not a day/night) was scheduled and the players called it "ridiculous" and "high-schoolish." C'mon, when did pro athletes get so lazy? Don't they know a Hall of Famer is best known for saying, "Let's play two." I'm so disappointed.

Me, too. When I was a kid, the first thing I looked for when I got my hands on the newest Brewers pocket schedule was when they had a double-dip, and I begged my dad to get us tickets to County Stadium for that day. Couldn't beat it. I saw an old-fashioned doubleheader at Wrigley once, too, and even sat through multiple rain delays to take in both games.

Malte from Odense, Denmark

If you should choose between having a Pro Bowl center/guard or a Pro Bowl defensive tackle, who would you choose and why?

I'll take the D-lineman. He can occupy two men. Even the best blocker will only rarely take two guys out on the same play. On paper, football will always be a numbers game.

Joe from Milwaukee, WI

With Biff out on vacation, will there be any "Unscripted" episodes in his absence?

"Unscripted" will succumb to the dead zone as well and return the week training camp opens, but thanks for your interest.

Greg from Riverside, OH

Say, Mike, since Vic has given a couple of subtle hints that soccer isn't his favorite sport, do you think he might enjoy Australian Rules Football? A bunch of burly guys in shorts and T-shirts running and kicking an oblong ball around, but with blocking, tackling, lots of bloody noses, and mandatory fumbling. Our friends down under have created a sport that might be right up his alley.

As soon as he'd hear the announcer's accent, he'd turn it off.

Jim from Bluffton, SC

In a preseason where compliments flow generously, I have heard nothing about Montravius Adams. How did he look?

Like a big defensive lineman without pads.

Matty from Durango, CO

If every player changed numbers every year the Packers could make millions more on fan jersey sales. Spoff, I see a big raise in your future when you bring this idea up to management. You're welcome! Sincerely, George Costanza

Trades, Jerry, I'm a heartbeat away!

Ethan from El Dorado Springs, MO

Do you guys pick questions that have spelling errors and fix them, or do you just pick questions with no spelling errors.

I usually make sure the questions at least end with a question mark.

Matt from Greensboro, NC

I've been submitting well-thought-out questions for two years without a reply and Paul from London gets into the mix two days in a row because you chopped off his text the first go-round. Way to avoid the tough questions, bloggers.

As you can see, beginning my two straight weeks of Inbox duty, it wasn't too tough to make the cut today.

Paul from Farnborough, UK

Why not cut preseason games to three, which would free up time for a bye week between Game 16 and Wild Card weekend? I know it's only a week but players can rest and get healthier ready for the last big push.

But then the teams that get first-round byes take two weeks off. No thanks.

Mitch from Bettendorf, IA

Biff is taking his talents to West Beach. I hope he is also taking plenty of sunscreen. He looks like he burns easily.

In honor of his nickname, his parting line should have been, "I'm gonna make like a tree, and get outta here."

John from Crivitz, WI

Is the Billy Joel concert sold out and do the Insiders have any plans to attend?

I will be there tonight. You may be right, I may be crazy, but it just may be a lunatic you're looking for. Have a good weekend, everybody.

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