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The draft never unfolds as predicted

An overtime proposal to end all overtime proposals


Josh from Denver, CO

Insiders, I read an article on Monday that Mark Murphy wants the draft to come to Green Bay. Do you think that will happen any time soon?

I doubt it. It sure would be cool, but as Mark himself said, it's sort of a longshot.

Daniel from Davis, CA

As Ted Thompson transitioned the Packers' roster in his first few years, the number of Packers' own draft picks on the roster peaked in 2009 and 2010. In 2017, the Browns are in the midst of a great rebuilding, with 22 picks in the 2016-18 drafts. My question is this: will the Browns go to the Super Bowl in 2020?

Not if they don't find the right quarterback.

Quinton from Green Bay, WI

If you were to choose someone in the first round, who would it be?

Not to be rude, but everyone keeps asking some form of this question, and there's just no relevance to it because we don't know who will be available at No. 29. Likewise, the questions about "players A, B, and C are all on the board, who's the pick," just don't interest me until draft night. It's fascinating to me how the draft never unfolds the way anyone predicts it will, and decisions can be influenced not just by who's available, but which positions are getting wiped clean compared to the positions with a lot of top talent still around. I know everyone wants speculation and predictions, but that's just not how I look at it. I'm sorry to disappoint you.

J from Rice Lake, WI

Vic's response yesterday about the game tape not allowing players to hide, got me thinking ... what did they do before the days of game tape, which can be dissected and watched over and over? Was the game just simpler then, or did teams have other ways of determining who won the one-on-ones?

Positions, alignments and assignments didn't change as much in the pre-film days. Now they can change down by down. In the heat of the moment, I've heard coaches – including Mike McCarthy – say they keep their eyes on the line of scrimmage and they can tell who's got the edge.

Scott from Richfield, MN

What are your thoughts on the Lexi Thompson four-stroke penalty being imposed due to a spectator capturing the player error on their camera?

I think it's ridiculous. There are officials on the course, and the players have a responsibility to officiate the game amongst one another. I played on my high school and college golf teams, and I played against players (mostly in high school) who had to be watched very closely. It created some awkward moments, but that's the game. I'm not saying Thompson did anything intentionally devious, but if the players, caddies and officials involved on the course don't see anything worth mentioning, that should be the end of it.

In his second season with the Packers, LB Joe Thomas racked up 77 tackles and added eight passes defensed, an interception and a fumble recovery. Photos by Evan Siegle and Matt Becker,

Jeff from Green Bay, WI

Overtime without extra points, kickoffs, or any special teams at all. Each team possesses the ball with two minutes on the clock from the 50-yard line and must get into the end zone to continue playing. Defensive TD wins the game or a stop on down-and-distance with an offensive score wins. No need for commercials or for timeouts. Keep it simple and quick. Problem solved and both teams will go for broke without being able to play for a field goal. Go big or go home.

I'll one-up you. How about "Name That Tune" style? Ball is placed at midfield. No field goals. No down markers. No clock. A touchdown or defensive stop wins. The two quarterbacks stare at each other, with Joe Buck holding the microphone between them. The bidding starts. "I can score a touchdown in five plays." "I can score one in four." "OK, score that touchdown." The winning bidder waves his offense out onto the field. The other team's defense heads out. The game will be decided in the set number of plays, one way or another. Strategy, equal opportunity, definitive ending, player safety. Did I check all the boxes? Honestly, folks, this has already been debated too much. Let's move on.

Josh from Madison, WI

It's not a big thing, but thing questions seem to be a thing again. The thing about the thing is, it was a big thing, but stopped being a thing. Things have changed. There is no thing, and nothing can change that. Let's do the right thing, let go of the thing, and move on to better things. Something. Anything.

Yeah, this one, too.

Greg from Cuenca, Ecuador

Insiders, in my mind, to rise to a GM position in the NFL requires exceptional intelligence, discipline, integrity, communication skills, and a host of other positive attributes. Yet, going back to 2012, only 17 of the 32 GMs remain in their jobs today. That tells me draft day is far more complex and pressure-packed than most of us "average" guys can imagine.

It takes a village, and GMs who aren't surrounded by top-notch evaluators have a harder time making the right decisions. Good fortune doesn't hurt, either.

Anton from Roding, Germany

Can the draft please happen tomorrow? I really can't wait anymore, because I want to know which guys the Packers will take, which positions will be addressed. The whole waiting thing feels more annoying than being 4-6 right now.

One of my favorite restaurants back home has a sign by the bar that says, "Free beer tomorrow." The entire NFL offseason is like a sign that says, "Draft tomorrow."

Josh from Oshkosh, WI

When does the Packers' offseason program start? I see Bills players have already reported for voluntary workouts.

The Packers are starting on April 18. Teams with new head coaches can begin their offseason workouts sooner.

Brian from Mather, CA

Vic, the major colleges of South Carolina (Clemson and the U. of South Carolina) have experienced some uncanny sports success since you've made it your state of residence. Why didn't this happen for Wisconsin when you lived there?

He never warmed up to the cold.

Samuel from Healy, AK

I've been passionate about the Packers and the NFL since I was born. Finding fellow fans can prove to be difficult in Alaska. I really want a future in football, whether I report or analyze. What advice do you have for a high-school student looking to get into a football career?

If you're talking about the media business, my advice would be to not focus on football early on. Cover all sports, as many as you can. Learn how to write, analyze, produce, blog, etc., about all kinds of sports, and then try to find the right football job later on. You never know which avenue might lead you to your passion.

Emmett from Monahans, TX

I understand how important pass-rushing is and taking the highest guy on your board, but could you really see the Packers taking a pass-rusher in the first round, since we already have a lot of money tied up between Matthews and Perry?

Could I see it? Absolutely. Did the presence of Donald Driver, Greg Jennings and James Jones on the roster heading into 2008 prevent the first pick from being Jordy Nelson?

Charlie from Cameron, NC

Having been unable to fully enjoy college football the past few years due to work and life, I really enjoy the "Prospect Primers" as a way to introduce me to some of the upcoming talent. I think I remember seeing Kenny Clark's, but after the draft. Have the Packers ever drafted a prospect whose feature was published on their website before the draft?

We didn't have one on Clark last year, but we did hit on Fackrell, Martinez and Murphy. That was one of our better years. In 2015, our only hit was Hundley. To be honest, it's mostly luck.

Barton from Tulum, Mexico

Totally agree with you about coaches' challenge ability to continue if correct, two incorrect challenges and no more. Great way to reduce impact of errors by officials. Has this been brought up at rules' meetings?

I believe a team proposed something along those lines to the competition committee this year, but it didn't get anywhere. I think the resistance is in the potential for more delays. I would argue the fans don't mind delays when incorrect calls get fixed.

Anton from Green Bay, WI

As much as I would like the Packers to draft T.J. Watt, it seems like a too good story to happen in today's NFL.

We have an ongoing joke around the office about things that might "blow up the internet." The Packers drafting T.J. Watt could qualify.

Brian from Champaign, IL

Mike, are you a Potter fan? Or just your kids? If you are, do you have a favorite character? We're getting a dog next week and naming it Hermione.

We watched all of the movies with the kids this winter before the Universal trip over spring break. I'm not a pet person, but name your second dog Hagrid for me.

Julie from Duluth, MN

When is TT going to sign Allison, Jackson and Ringo? Or is he going to trade them on draft day?

All three of those players were offered contracts as exclusive-rights free agents by the appropriate deadline. They just have to sign them, and they will. Maybe they haven't been in town to sign yet.

Steve from Cape Coral, FL

With two new tight ends and Montgomery trying to get off to strong start as a premier back, do you anticipate Rodgers playing a little more in the preseason to allow this adjusted offense the extra time to gel, or will the need to stay healthy keep him to limited snaps?

This will be a hot topic in a few months, and I'll reiterate my agreement with Rodgers from last summer, that preseason game reps are borderline useless for veteran players, regardless of how the regular season starts. Defenses play vanilla calls in August, which won't help Rodgers or his new tight ends enough to offset the injury risk. They'll do far more adjusting and gelling in practice.

Don from Cedar Rapids, IA

Playing sandlot football many years ago, one of our favorite trick plays was the "center sneak." The center would start to hike the ball (making sure it touched the quarterback's hands), but keep the ball himself and run up the middle. This often resulted in a touchdown, raising protests from the defense of "You can't do that!" answered with "We just did!" The play was especially effective with a "pee-wee" football, which hardly anyone could see in the first place. Do you have any fond memories of your sandlot football days?

Every playground game of football I ever played began with someone shouting, "No fake punts, no center sneaks!" I obviously missed out.

Corey from Kings Park, NY

Clemson WRs. Miami TEs. Ohio State and Florida State DBs. I noticed these schools year after year produce Round 1-worthy players at these specific positions. Does this play into any role of how teams draft players? What other schools produce certain NFL-caliber positions?

LSU likes to call itself DBU these days, and Penn State was Linebacker U. a while back. Programs have those pedigrees, and they lead to scouting trends, but scouts who do their jobs best are watching film without regard for the helmet the player is wearing.

Reed from York, PA

Being a huge fan of both the Packers and John Kuhn (I'm from his hometown in York, PA, and watched him back in the Dover HS days), I'm extremely excited to see that he should make his return to Lambeau this season with the Saints. How excited do you think the Cheeseheads will be for this? What are some of the most memorable return visits you've witnessed?

Nothing will ever compare to Nov. 1, 2009, but regarding Kuhn, I think the ultimate for Packers fans would be to chant his name on fourth-and-goal for New Orleans as he jogs into the huddle, and for Green Bay's defense to stuff him.

David from San Francisco, CA

Do current players get anxious or excited during draft day? If I were Cobb, I think I'd be worried about my third contract (think Lang) if the Packers draft a WR in the first three rounds. BAP philosophy only adds to the chaos.

If worry supersedes motivation in your scenario, the player is replacing himself.

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