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Passer rating will be the measuring stick


Tom from Newville, PA

Vic, from here on out I'm watching the efficiency of red-zone scoring. It seems not having James Jones was the reason. Time will tell if this was the case. I think it was. As Aaron Rodgers tilts the field, James Jones tilts the red zone area. What do you think? Please give me a sarcastic answer. I like that stuff.

Sorry to disappoint you. Maybe you're right. Maybe Jones was the missing red-zone link. Others agree with you. Here's what I would add: There isn't a team in the league that doesn't have a weakness, yet, every fan base in the league expects perfection. That's not today's game. The salary cap era is all about finding ways to coach and manage around your weaknesses. If you really want to acquire an appreciation for today's game, identify teams' weaknesses and observe what they do to overcome them.

Cheryl from Marathon, WI

Vic, I wish it was Sunday night. That's right, I'm actually wishing my weekend away because I'm so excited for this game. This rarely happens. I'll be stopping at Lambeau on my way to Door County for vacation. No specific reason. I've been there three or four times this past summer, so I'm all stocked up with my Packers gear; I just love being there. I get goosebumps when the stadium comes into view, excitement as I park, awe as I stop and stare on my walk in, and a feeling of deep contentment as I walk around inside. It's true love.

It's an absolute delight to write about a football team that's as loved as this one is. It warms my heart to know a lot of good people are reading these words.

Paul from El Paso, TX

Tonight I had a chance to watch a high school football game for the first time in several years. The bright lights and pageantry of a small-town homecoming game reminded me of the great event each game can become when we slow down and appreciate it moment by moment. It deepened my anticipation for Sunday night's game and left me with a craving for the kind of dramatic finish you've taught the infected among us to embrace. In the end, it was a hard-fought but lopsided loss for our team. Would you tell us more about the painful loss to McKeesport in 1963?

I began hanging around my high school's football field when I was seven years old. My first favorite player was a running back named McKinley Combs. When I was 12, my high school team was loaded. We knew it was going to be a big year. In those days, you had to win all of your games to be the champion. If there was no undefeated, untied team, there was no champion. Namath's Beaver Falls team won the 1960 title without having to play a title game because it was the only undefeated, untied team. Anyhow, in the summer of '63, I began every day at the high school watching the guys work out. They all knew me by name. Chet Foster was our quarterback; he would later coach me. LaVern Manley was the star running back. One day, the coach, a man named John Karrs, asked me if I wanted to be waterboy. I was numb with excitement. Going into the season, we knew McKeesport was the team to beat. They had a top quarterback named Bob Bazylak, and McKeesport's star player was a guy named Jim Beirne, who would later play for the Oilers. McKeesport was a powerhouse program fed by a legendary midget football program, the McKeesport Little Tigers, which claimed a mythical national title at about that time with a star running back named Puddin' Grayson. Mike McCarthy and I talked about this once; he told me he had a chance to play for another legendary midget program, the Morningside Bulldogs. Our game at McKeesport was late in the season. We were undefeated, as expected. The final score wasn't close; I think it was something like 28-7. I don't think I spoke for two days.

Kasper from Aalborg, Denmark

I love hard-hitting football and I have a time machine. What year should I travel to?

Set it for 1975, but prepare yourself for what you'll see. The head slap was still legal and the game was full of headhunters. Joe Greene kicked a fallen Browns lineman between the legs. Two years later he would punch Broncos lineman Paul Howard in the belly during a playoff game. Tatum and Atkinson targeted Lynn Swann, and Mel Blount targeted Cliff Branch. Sunday was a day of pure violence. In Super Bowl X, Golden Richards intentionally dived at Glen Edwards' knees, and Edwards retaliated by bouncing on his knee on Golden Richards' neck. Richards was injured and didn't return to the game. No flag. Ndamukong Suh is a choir boy compared to what those guys did.

Dakota from Jensen Beach, FL

Do you enjoy questions more from those you've infected or from those that resist your infection?

Those that resist the infection. By the way, I had a great time doing yesterday's chat.

Chris from Wyoming, OH

Websites constantly steer me toward the videos, but I want to read the text. I want the stories, and I want to form the images in my mind. What is wrong with me?

There's nothing wrong with you.

Jonathon from Eden Prairie, MN

Is the adolescent level of football becoming consumed by passing fever as well?

Seven-on-seven passing camps are all the rage. The colleges recruit from them.

Tim from Portage, WI

I love how you have the time on the clock change for "Ask Vic Extra." Which is more important Sunday, QB rating or feature back yardage?

If the Packers win, passer rating will be the measuring stick. If the Seahawks win, rushing yardage will be the barometer. I think it'll be passer rating.

Don from Albuquerque, NM

Us Packers fans really need a big blowout on Sunday! I can almost smell dead Seahawk road kill on a warm fall evening.

Chuck Noll said the worst thing you can do to a team is beat them.

Steve from Lake Stevens, WA

Packers-Seahawks, Lambeau Field, national television.  Care to make it perfect and freeze the tundra for us, Vic?

That's for later.

Mary from St. Leonard, MD

Just listened to "McCarthy Unplugged." What a great idea. Coach has gone to the Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac, as well as Kenny Chesney. My kind of music. What's yours?

The Drifters, Sam Cooke, Ben E. King. I also like some narcotics music from my college days.

Mike from Mount Prospect, IL

Vic, do you ever get a sense of the game by watching players during pregame?

Yeah, I do, and it's almost always a mistake to do it. Last Sunday, I watched Robbie Gould bounce an extra-point kick off an upright, and Gould didn't seem to be comfortable during his kicking warmup. His kicks had a tilt to them. Then he went out and booted field goals of 28, 50 and 44 yards in the game.

Cliff from Denver, CO

Vic, the Seahawks offense got whipped for all but four minutes of our last meeting. Do you think they are as nervous as Packernation?

Not nervous, but every bit as respectful of the Packers as the Packers and their fans are of the Seahawks. If you don't have respect for the Seahawks, then you don't appreciate football because the Seahawks play it and they play it well.

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