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What is the plan for this preseason?

Without football, I'm nothing


Mark from Ann Arbor, MI

Vic, I can't believe there are so many baseball teams willing to give up multiple promising prospects in a trade for a veteran who will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year. Why are baseball teams so willing to give up young talent for short-term returns?

If they have a surplus of young hitters in their farm system, they can deal one or two for a pitcher. Football teams don't have farm systems, and in the salary cap era, it's difficult for any team to develop a stockpile of talent at any one position.

Steve from Mt. Clare, WV

You can answer a dumb lion question but give no response to my two attempts to have you elaborate on the Packers/'Skins games when Vince left the Packers for the 'Skins head coach job. Are you too stupid or just plain lazy with a second-rate staff?

I've got a first-rate staff, and that allows me to be stupid and lazy.

Ned from Chippewa Falls, WI

Vic, are you telling me Jack Tatum was afraid of Franco "Run out of Bounds" Harris? Please!

He was on that play. He wanted no part of those knees that were way up in the air and headed for the end zone; rolled right out of the block away from the ball. Nobody called him "Assassin" on that play. Look at the tape.

Jim from Naugatuck, CT

Vic, I was looking at Green Bay on the map. Do the kids and players really ride five miles from St. Norbert's to the practice field, or am I missing something?

They just ride from the locker room to Nitschke Field.

Vishnu from Granite Bay, CA

Vic, has there ever been an ambidextrous quarterback at the college/NFL level?

George Mira was the closest thing I've seen to it.

Stephen from Chicago, IL

"I was wrong to put my faith in the league." Not exactly leaguethink. Are you surprised by that comment from Robert Kraft?

Yes. He'll regret those words and it wouldn't surprise me if he offers an apology.

Alen from Tilburg, The Netherlands

Vic, what are you expecting from the upcoming preseason games?

I'm expecting the Packers to use the preseason to prepare for the start of the regular season and to evaluate young talent for development. You have to do both and you need to have a plan that'll allow you to do both. The Packers want to start faster than they have in recent years. That might require more playing time for the regulars, or maybe more playing time late in the preseason. We'll find out what the plan is when we see it executed.

Caleb from Eau Claire, WI

Vic, have you covered a tight end that wasn't targeted much as a receiver but would have thrived as one in today's game?

Randy Grossman wasn't big enough to be an every-downs, in-line blocker in the smash-mouth '70s, but he had outstanding hands and was the kind of slithery route-runner that would've made him a perfect motion tight end in today's game.

Chadd from Antigo, WI

How different would the NFL be right now if guys like Mara couldn't be sold on the leaguethink idea? We've talked about some teams not surviving, but how would the league have been impacted as a whole? Would any of the expansion teams from the past 30 years exist?

The Packers might not be here and I doubt Jacksonville would've gotten a team. All small-market teams would've been at risk.

Mitch from Sheboygan Falls, WI

What is it about Coach McCarthy that makes him such an outstanding leader?

His commitment is total. His players can see he has no agenda other than winning. He is a man without pretense. He is exactly as he appears to be and he demands the same kind of transparency from his players. It's innocence and innocence is pure. Coach McCarthy is pure football.

Steve from Lake Stevens, WA

Are there any second or third-year players on the roster that it wouldn't surprise you to see them make a big jump this season?

I have expectations for Josh Boyd.

Bob from Chicago, IL

Isn't the leaguethink mentality socialist?

I tend to think of it in terms of teamwork. The pioneer owners that built this league operated as a team. There was nothing socialist about the game they put on the field; it was ultra-competitive. They shared revenue to grow the game. Life is a blend of many philosophies.

Mark from Appleton, WI

Buddy Ryan's 1985 Bears defense featured the blitz like no team before. How would his defense fare with today's teams against QBs like Rodgers, who reads blitzes like a book?

Reading Buddy's blitzes wasn't the problem. He all but announced what was coming. The problem was finding enough time to allow the outside receivers to get off the jam and get downfield, which was the way you attacked the "46 defense"; you beat it deep. Buddy's defense would've struggled in today's game; the emphasis on the no-chuck rule wouldn't have allowed Buddy's cornerbacks to stay on their jams long enough to be effective.

Rob from Webb City, MO

Vic, did any player's performance stand out to you during yesterday's practice?

LaDarius Gunter was the star of the first day.

Jerry from Wilmington, NC

Vic, shark attack at your favorite beach. Don't retire there too soon.

I said I like the beach; I didn't say anything about the water. I never go into the water. The last time I was there, a guy surf-fishing caught a ray the size of a car hood. It took him an hour to drag the thing into shore. I like the sand and the sights; the water is for fish.

Kyle from Osceola, WI

Vic, how much does last year's team being relatively injury free help this year's team at the starting gate?

Success provides a plan that can be repeated. You try it again. If it works again, you keep doing it. When it stops working, you try something else.

Nick from Mauston, WI

This talk about Joe Greene got me to watch "A Football Life" featuring him. At one part, I noticed a familiar voice ask him a question after a game saying, "So where did all this dirt go that you kicked?" It's cool see your humor hasn't changed over the years.

When I heard that voice, it did something to me. I turned off the TV when the show was over and I spent the rest of the night sitting in the chair and thinking about the years I've spent asking questions about football games. I thought of Joe and all of the Joes since then, and what all of it has meant to me and my family. I love this game for reasons fans don't understand. They love it for winning. I love it for my very existence. The sad fact of my life is that without football I'm nothing.

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