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Rodgers is right; he had nothing to prove

Give the running game time; it'll come around


Ross from Ankeny, IA

Vic, your Ketch phrases are solid gold: "Ban Bifurcating Week." What will you think of next?

Tomorrow begins Victoberfest.

Moose from Seattle, WA

It's fourth and one to go for a TD. Back in the day, Marcus Allen would get the ball and just dive over top of everyone for a touchdown. We don't see this play anymore, do we? Why doesn't a team sign an heir of Dick Fosbury and just leap over top of everybody?

Sam "The Bam" Cunningham was the best at it. If I was a coach and I could find a guy that could do that, even if it's only that, I'd sign him and he'd be my fourth-and-1 guy, and not just on the goal line.

Eric from Baker, FL

Vic, Jordy Nelson said, "There's no reason to beat our head against a wall and try to run it when we have matchups outside and that's what the numbers give you. We'll continue to just adjust to what they're doing and be sound in what we're doing." Which do you think we should do, impose our will on offense or take what the defense gives us? Or is it a mixture of the two?

Do whatever it takes, but if you get away from the running game and lose balance, you'll regret it.

Tyler from Silverdale, WA

Vic, I'm just curious, what happens if we win the rest of our games and the only other game the Lions lose is the last game of the season to us? How would it be determined who wins the division?

Two-way tie? I'm not going to do the math. The tie-breaking order is: 1) head to head. 2) division games. 3) common games. 4) conference (NFC) games. 5) strength of victory in all games. 6) strength of schedule in all games. After that, you get into some really out-there stuff: points differentials and even touchdowns scored. I'm going to take a stab at this, so please correct me if I'm wrong. If the Packers were to win out and the Lions lost only to the Packers, then wouldn't the Carolina game decide the NFC North title? It's a common game the Lions lost and the Packers would've won. The Lions don't play Seattle. This is a good question for debate in our comments section.

Mike from Upham, ND

Vic, in watching MNF games this year, I noticed they're celebrating 45 years. Take us back to that first MNF game and its effect on the NFL.

The league played some games on Monday night in the 1960s – Pete Rozelle was a visionary and he accurately saw the prime-time potential – but 1970 is credited as the official start to the MNF series. I was a sophomore at Kent State and some of the guys in the dorm were going up to Cleveland that night to see the Browns and Jets play. I remember how excited they were when they came back. They talked about what a great game it was. I think we all knew then Monday Night Football was here to stay, and so was Howard Cosell. That's the No. 1 effect. MNF launched Cosell and Cosell launched a new way of presenting football to television viewers.

Derek from Ellsworth, WI

After finally watching a recording of the game, it seems to me the Packers had much more production on offense because Aaron Rodgers had plenty of time in the pocket. From what I saw, he had time to look at his second, third looks.

I agree. I touched on it in my analysis of the Lions game. Rodgers didn't have time to let his receivers come open, so it wasn't just about the Lions crowding the passing lanes, it was also about a pass rush that didn't allow the Packers' receivers time to find the open spots in a crowded secondary.

Brian from Albertville, AL

Does Tom Brady have a more serious problem, or should he tell his followers to relax as well?

Time and the passage of it is a problem for all of us.

Nic from La Porte, IN

Watching that last game against the Bears, I heard one of the announcers say Rodgers seems to trust only Nelson. Maybe he's just getting open constantly.

Rodgers rediscovered Randall Cobb on Sunday. It had to happen for this offense to hit its stride.

Adam from Oshkosh, WI

Have you ever covered another quarterback that was as calm and collected as Rodgers was after that terrible loss to the Lions, made a statement, and then absolutely confirmed his statement as much as Rodgers did?

Terry Bradshaw was awful in a loss in Seattle in 1981. The next week, he threw five touchdown passes in Atlanta, but I don't remember any statements. What Rodgers did last week was pretty dramatic.

Joe from Dallas, TX

Vic, sometimes you don't like our questions, and sometimes we don't like your answers. As I see it, your column is a partnership. You need us, but do we really need you? Something to ponder, Bro.

As I pen these words, there are 1,138 questions in my inbox. Something to ponder, Joe.

Jon from Vilseck, Germany

Aaron Rodgers said he has nothing to prove. While this may be true, why is he still playing the game then? Usually, when someone says something like that, it means they have no drive or care to win at all, that they are just in it to play the game and not worry about the result.

In this case, I think it was a shot at all of the people last week that were quick to throw under the bus the guy that has carried this team for the past seven years. The overreaction to the loss to the Lions was embarrassing. Rodgers had every right to say what he said.

Chris from Coquitlam, BC

These are the scores from the last seven prime-time games: 41-14, 38-17, 45-14, 56-14, 37-19, 27-19 and 26-6. This can't be what the NFL wants is it?

Only four games this past weekend didn't produce lopsided scores. That's an early-season trend and a problem that demands investigation.

Mark from Ann Arbor, MI

Vic, with the news of Dennis Allen being let go, what is your opinion on firing a head coach at midseason? How often is it a sensible move that is good for the team?

They're statement fires. They're meant to send a statement to the fan base that losing is not acceptable and the team is committed to change in the pursuit of victory. They're also white flags meant to quiet the wolves so the team can go about its business of developing the talent it has. When it gets that bad, does it really matter when you pull the plug?

Roy from Seattle, WA

In his post-Ryder Cup press conference, Phil Mickelson suggested Tom Watson's scheme was incorrect and that's why the U.S. lost (again). Phil obviously doesn't read your column. He should. They simply got outplayed.

Pods, not players? Or is it you benched me and I don't like you? I guess it wasn't bad enough they played like hacks, Mickelson felt a need to embarrass American golf one more time before he left foreign soil.

Don from Weaverville, CA

While watching the Chiefs destroy the Patriots, what most impressed me was the imaginative offensive scheme Andy Reid devised. Scheme can make a profound impact on a single game. As a long time Packers fan, one of my most cherished Packers memories is their 1995 playoff win over the 49ers, where scheme mattered. The Packers' two-tight-end set totally confused the 49ers and on defense the Packers had one of the master schemers of all time in Fritz Schurmur. Scheme won't win in the NFL every week, but when it succeeds, it can win big.

I love scheme.

Matt from Billings, MT

Vic, as a reporter, doesn't Bill Belichick make you want to pull your hair out?

No, his hair out.

Bob from Orlando, FL

Vic, I am so glad the Packers are back on track, but I have to ask you, what's wrong with the running game?

The running game requires coordination between the runner and his blockers that often causes it to start the season slow. Give it time. It'll come around. Running the ball is for December and the postseason. That's when the power teams take what they want because they can run it and pass it, and that's when offense dictates to defense, not the other way around.

Matt from Cupar, Scotland

In the Falcons game against the Vikings on Sunday, the Falcons ended up having to play a TE at the RT position because their offensive line had suffered so many injuries. Do you have any stories you could share of other times you've seen a team forced to play someone so badly out of position due to injuries?

I covered a game in 1977 in which Tony Dungy had to play quarterback. He didn't win, but he did pretty well.

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