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The grind requires a legitimate reward

The next game is a powerful entity


Adam from Saint Hyacinthe, Canada

2013's play of the year was that clutch pass from Rodgers to Cobb against the Bears, 2015's was that other clutch pass from Rodgers to Rodgers against the Lions (both away games). Do we get to see a pass that'll break many Vikings fans' hearts this year in their stadium? I hope so! (Pardon the grammar on that second to last sentence, I'm still learning the language.)

You're doing just fine.

Ron from Waukesha, WI

Roger Craig, RB San Francisco 49ers, 1985, 1,050 rushing yards and 1,016 receiving yards. I see the same skill set with Ty Montgomery. The problem in Green Bay is too many talented receivers and only one ball. That being said, do you still see Ty getting more passes out of the backfield this year?

Jerry Rice and Dwight Clark were pretty talented last I checked, but look, we need to stop getting carried away with Montgomery projections until he's played the position for a full season. I agree he has the skill set, and I do think he's going to catch plenty of passes out of the backfield. But production is not guaranteed, regardless of who else might get the ball. Montgomery has proven he can do it for a handful of games. Now he has to prove he can do it for 16-plus. Two different worlds. I'm rooting for him, and I believe in him, but I'm just being real.

Jeanne from Delavan, WI

No question but a comment. I was at the Billy Joel concert with some of my family on Saturday night. Thanks to the Packers organization for opening up Lambeau for such a great event. The concert was awesome and I got to visit my favorite place all at the same time.

It was a great show. The whole stage setup was impressive, and yes, Dan from Muskego, that was me in section 111 (I couldn't spring for the really pricey tickets). That was my first time at an actual stadium concert, and I'll be back.

Cody from Annawan, IL

Insiders, why hasn't Montravius Adams been signed yet? Is there something the coaches haven't seen from him yet, or is the salary cap or money an issue in this decision? Is there a deadline for him to be signed, and if not signed by then, what would happen?

I have no idea what the holdup is with Adams' contract, but there's no reason to be concerned right now. The draft-pick deals are slotted, so it's only a matter of time. He just needs to be signed by the start of training camp, which is still more than a month away.

Wick from Zeist, Netherlands

Hi Mike, Joe from Bloomington and Vic think it's a good idea to get rid of the bye in the postseason. It's an interesting idea, but I think the end of the regular season would suffer too much for it. What's your opinion?

I've disagreed with Vic on this one for a long time. Sixteen games is a grind, and it requires a greater reward than just home-field advantage for the teams that prove it over the long haul. I like fighting for that first-round bye. I like how much each regular-season game matters, and I don't want to see that diminished, which has happened to every sport that expands its postseason. I like things just the way they are.

Eric from Oshkosh, WI

Increase the field to 16 teams, Vic? Let half the league into the playoffs? Sure it will add two more playoff games, but then the regular-season games mean so much less. Just look at the NBA. Yuck.

Or what Eric said.

Tim from Lancaster, PA

How about we cut the preseason to three games, add in an extra bye week, and add two teams to the postseason so the 1 and 2 seeds don't have as much time off? We all want more playoff games, and having half the league still alive should increase fan engagement. Last year it would have added the Titans, Broncos, Redskins, and Bucs. Who wouldn't want to see the smashmouth Titans, the Broncos' defense, Cousins' aerial work, and the young Bucs trying to make the leap?

I'm all for cutting the preseason to three games, and if that means an extra bye week in the regular season, cool. But add three 9-7 teams plus an 8-7-1 squad to the playoff field? No thanks.

Casey from Dubuque, IA

Since football break is here let's ask an unrelated question. If you could play any sport professionally what would it be? Why?

Baseball all the way. Don't ask me why. OK, I'll stop now.

Kevin from Asbury Park, NJ

In the Eric Decker situation, why would the Jets announce they are going to release Decker if they can't trade him? Wouldn't most teams just wait for him to be released then?

I don't know and yes, especially when the last two years of his Jets contract were not exactly a bargain for another team to assume.

Justin from Jacksonville, FL

With the Packers signing both Bennett and Kendricks, I think it is pretty clear that they want to use more of their "12" package. For those that don't follow that's two WRs, two TEs and one RB. My question is where does that leave Cobb? He has been mentioned several times throughout the offseason when MM talked about things he is focused on and getting him the ball more, and using more of the "12" seems counterintuitive. Appreciate all the hard work you fine gentlemen do!

Cobb could certainly be one of the two receivers, along with either Nelson or Adams. He also could be the one back at times, and he'll be on the field anytime there aren't two tight ends out there. That should be plenty of snaps for Cobb to get the ball enough. For a guy who's had trouble staying healthy the last couple of years, maybe an adjusted workload can increase efficiency and production. Let's see how it plays out.

Douglas from Grand Rapids, MI

People always talk about the best undrafted QBs, but how about the best undrafted RBs?

Arian Foster would be the most recent star who comes to mind. Priest Holmes was awfully good, too.

Nathan from New York, NY

Why do quarterbacks wear red shirts when they practice?

For the force-field effect.

Cliff from Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia

Lots of analysts are lauding TT for his more aggressive free-agent approach this year. Can you shed some light on this, as the more abundant FA signings may have more to do with good luck and an abundance of FAs with sensible salary expectations than a deliberate effort to spend more money on vets (which the Pack doesn't appear to have done based on their present cap space).

Despite being much more active in free agency, the Packers didn't break the bank by any means. Three of the five outside veterans were brought in on one-year deals, and the two tight ends are signed for three and two years, respectively. The only "expensive" free agent is Bennett. But I think it was obvious when the Packers began losing both the quantity and quality of snaps that were departing in free agency (Lang, Cook, Peppers among the examples, plus Shields due to injury), draft-and-develop couldn't account for all the gaps. Thompson didn't go crazy, but he didn't let the team get too young.

T.J. from Tampa, FL

I do believe the "rimshot" Spoff is wont to credit people with ("ba-dum-tss" sound) after they make a joke is actually called a "sting" in drummer terminology.

Duly noted, but you obviously knew what I meant, and I don't think the meaning of your word would be as clear, so if I have to explain myself, that takes all the fun out of it, and this run-on explanation is already too long.

Chris from Marshfield, WI

I see a lot of fans talking about King as though he is our best corner, or even a starter. Is it because of the coverage concerns from last year? We're jumping the gun a little; yes, he should become a starter, but come Week 2 I'm more comfortable with Randall or Rollins on Jones. They're both high picks too, and have more experience.

I think Aaron Rodgers said it best this spring. It's a legitimate competition at corner for all the spots, 1-4 (and beyond) on the depth chart. Nothing's been decided this early, certainly not with Joe Whitt as the position coach. I think multiple players will take their turn against Jones in Week 2, but right now, my money is on House to get the bulk of the duty.

Dean from Leavenworth, IN

Mike, the Packers will face Julio Jones, A.J. Green, and Dez Bryant in the first five weeks of the season. Considering the struggles last season, do you think facing three of the best is a good opportunity for the DBs to build confidence, or something that might have the opposite effect?

Let's be honest, it could go either way, right? The more important factor is whichever way it does go, it can't consume their thoughts because two-thirds of the season will still remain. The next game can humble the most confident player as quickly as it can revive a struggling one. Those early challenges will tell them where they stand at that moment, but either way, it won't write the book on the season.

Robert from Omaha, NE

Mike, you mentioned that Schum injured himself. If I recall, the Packers cut him, which I didn't think they could do due to injury. What exactly is the rule?

Schum was waived injured, and once he cleared waivers, he became entitled to an injury settlement.

Eugene from Citrus Heights, CA

Why do people expect thought-provoking analysis of football players before pads are involved? Also, who are the Insiders most intrigued to finally see with pads on?

For me it's the running backs.

Jesse from Byron Center, MI

The throwback uniform game should be against Tampa Bay...if (if and only if) they wear their orange throwbacks also!

You realize, don't you, that the only pick-six Rodgers has ever thrown was to a player wearing that creamsicle orange, and that was also the last time he threw three interceptions in a game, eight years ago? Care to revise your request?

Joe from St. Charles, MO

Hi Vic, Mike, and Wes. I had a question about the O-line/QB relationship. Great O-line play certainly helps Aaron play his best. Does having a QB like Rodgers elevate the level of play from Bakh and company?

I think it can have a slight effect, but it doesn't allow a player who doesn't belong to suddenly succeed, or for a solid player to become a star. The talent has to be there first.

Jason from Toronto, Ontario

Hi Mike, the offseason is a good time for silly questions with no right answers. Which non-QB player is the most indispensable to their team? A case could easily be made for A.J. Green (given how poorly the Bengals play without him), but perhaps Ezekiel Elliott or Khalil Mack is in the conversation. What player comes to mind for you?

I won't quibble with your three suggestions. I might throw Bobby Wagner into that mix.

Chris from Cedar Rapids, IA

Mike, there was an article about a Packers fan suing the Bears for not letting him wear Packers gear on the field during pregame warm-ups. The article also reveals he has been a longtime Packers AND Bears season-ticket holder. My question is, how can a true Packers fan possibly be a season-ticket holder for both?

Methinks this fan sounds more like a businessman.

Mike from Cibolo, TX

Hey Spoff, I'm headed home to see the family next week. I'll be sure to have a slice of pizza try to get some of that free beer tomorrow for you.

You'll never find it, but somewhere on the walls of Uno's (I think in the upstairs bar), there's a picture of me in a Little League uniform. Maroon, gold lettering, with the restaurant name spelled wrong. How fitting, right?

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