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Will the Vikings reveal their quarterback?

Senior writer Mike Spofford answered your questions in his weekly chat


Hi everybody. Week 1 is in the books. I'll do my best to answer your questions over the next hour. Let's go.

Comment From Tony C

Hi Mike. What do we know this week that we did not know last week at this time, other than GB is 1-0??

The defensive line held up better against the run than expected given Pennel's suspension and the heat in Jax. Now it's can they do it again against Peterson?

Comment From Robert Schuknecht

Mike, I like the white color rush uniforms. What do you think?

I always assumed they were going to go all gold, because that's what would create a new jersey to sell. But marketing didn't triumph in this case. I have no problem with the white look, for one game.

Comment From Nathan

How hard will the Vikings try to keep their starting QB under wraps, like in the 2012 Joe Webb game?

I would think they'd do their best to not reveal it. I think Zimmer knows who he's going to start, but he's just not going to say.

Comment From Heather

How did the O-Line look to you? I was really surprised at Sitton being let go but I figured they had to have a contingent plan... Will 12 be just as well protected?

Lane Taylor was just fine at LG. Overall, I thought the line had a solid game. Rodgers was bummed he got tackled on that scramble at the line of scrimmage, because that went for a zero-yard sack. It was the only sack.

Comment From Edward

Very glad to see Adams have the presence of mind to roll onto his back to prove posession after catching a very low pass. :)

That was just a heck of a play on both ends. Even if Adams doesn't catch it, it was going to be first-and-goal on the 1 with the flag.

Comment From Max

I've heard some analysts saying the Packers still lack a deep vertical threat. I think that's jumping the gun just one week in. What do you think?

I'm willing to be patient.

Comment From Nate O

US Bank Stadium will be loud and rocking, no doubt there. Do the Packers do anything special during the week to prepare for the noise and fans?

McCarthy always has crowd noise pumping into practice when they're getting ready to play indoors. I've heard the new Vikes stadium might be louder than the Dome. I don't know how that's possible, but we'll see.

Comment From KD

How do you think the Ryan/Martinez combo performed on Sunday?

A good start. Thought they were active. Every week, teams are going to try some tough matchups against those guys with leaking RBs out of the backfield and such.

Comment From Joe

Hi Mike, Other than concussion suffered by Shields,were there any other minor or major injuries during the game?

Not that I'm aware of. Shields' concussion is the only issue. I hope he's going to be OK. He has a history of them.

Comment From Edward

I know you can't confirm, but hope the news of Bakhtiari signing a contract extension is true

I can confirm. It's on our website. Yes, it's true, he has an extension.

Comment From PUMA

I think the color rush jerseys are lame. Everyone likes tradition, but it's only one game, lets have a little fun. I get the most compliments from my camouflage jersey and my gold jersey. Even all black with green and gold highlights would have been pretty cool. Do you think they will change it up next year?

I doubt it, but I'd never say never.

Comment From Linda P

Hey Mike, Given the fact that Jordy didn't practice much, it seemed like once they got going so did the offense. Would you expect more from Cook this week, however??

I would. Cook is the guy you want to attack the middle of the field. It didn't seem the Packers did that much. Maybe just a game plan vs. Jax thing. Posluszny is a heck of a MLB, so his presence probably had something to do with that being taken away.

Comment From Christian Gibbons  

Do you think we're looking at Lane Taylor as the permanent starter at LG, or will JC Tretter slide to that spot when Corey Linsley is healthy?

I'm guessing that's up to how Taylor and Tretter perform until Linsley comes back. It's really in their hands, I think.

Comment From Joe

If shield can't go do you think we will see Hawkins if he is ready?

I think we'll see more of Gunter in the sub packages.

Comment From Mitch

Do you expect the Vikings to continue the trend of covering us with a single high safety?

The Vikings actually played a lot of two-deep in the game in Mpls. last year. I don't recall much from the film of the Week 17 matchup. Zimmer has a lot of pieces to do what he wants on defense. It's a strong unit.

Comment From Nick D

Mike, How was the crowd on Sunday? Pretty even? Did the Jaguars fans show out pretty well? It seemed as though they were pretty loud during big situations for the Jaguars. I was kind of surprised. But that team is on the rise, so their fans must have decided to hold onto the tickets.

It was hard to gauge because so many people seemed to leave their seats and look for shade throughout the game. There were a lot of Packers fans, for sure, but the Jags fans got pretty loud when they needed to. I give credit to any fan who braved that weather for 3 hours. I was in an air-conditioned press box, but I was on the field a couple hours before kickoff, and it was already scorching hot.

Comment From Max

What was the most surprising result from this weeks games?

I never thought the new QBs in Denver and New England would come out on top against the two teams from the NFC title game last year. Both of those were shockers to me.

Comment From Charlie

Do you expect the Pack to play more in the box to stop AP even if Sam is out, or do they protect the young corners?

You can't let Peterson get going. He's Job 1. The corners might be on their own a lot. You have to make the Vikes beat you through the air.

Comment From Nate O

Besides AP, which Vikings players worry you the most for this Sunday's matchup?

It's not as much about individual players for me as it is protecting the ball from that defense. The Vikes scored two TDs on defense in Tennessee. Protect the football from those playmakers.

Comment From Nathan

Do you think Bakh's new contract was already in the works before the decision to release Sitton?

I would imagine some discussions had already started. You don't reach a big contract agreement like that overnight.

Comment From Matt

Is Cobb injured? Sure looked like it after a few plays on Sunday.

He hobbled off with what looked like a bum ankle at one point, but he came back in. I thought he got some tough yards and made a couple of key third-down catches for Rodgers.

Comment From Jake

What would you say is the Packers biggest weakness right now? Area that needs the most improvement? (understanding it's only after week one)

Consistency in the run game and the big plays on defense were the issues to me. Once Lacy got a couple of 4, 5-yard runs in a row, the offense took off. The defense gave up six 20-plus pass plays, and that's too many. The Jags led the league in that category last year, so they knew they'd have their hands full.

Comment From Dan in MN

This seems a critical game to me, even though it is only week 2. Don't want the Vikings to get momentum. Maybe I think that way because I live in Minneapolis. It's not a must-win game, but how critical to you believe this game to be?

It establishes the front runner in the division, but not much more than that because it's so early and the Vikings are figuring out their QB situation. Long way to go.

Comment From KD

Damarious Randall is a lot of fun to watch. He appears to be a freakish athlete with great body control. I hope he really makes his way into the conversation as one of the top corners in the league this year.

I thought he was outstanding on Sunday, and yeah, he is fun to watch. Looks like the Packers really hit on a first-round pick there.

Comment From Joe

I thought the secondary coverage was much better than the critics thought. On most plays they were all in position to make a play. What did you see?

Two of the big plays were Rollins and Gunter getting beat on stop-and-go moves. They'll learn from those. The TD over top of Rollins was a perfect throw and catch. Would have been tough for anyone to break up. The long screen pass to the TE was good misdirection and play design by the Jags. They had a ton of blockers out there and took advantage. That's a team that was going to make some plays, but holding them to 23 points was a solid effort.

Comment From Al B.

Packers have held AP down in the past by forcing him to stay inside the tackles. Nick Perry is likely the best at holding the edge for the Packers. Who would be the best candidate for the other side - Datone?

Matthews and Perry are very good at setting the edge, and Datone is getting better at it. Last year, the Packers really swarmed Peterson on a number of plays, with Matthews and Daniels leading the way inside. This will be a big game for Martinez and Ryan against the run.

Comment From Edward

I hope Coach Mike is encourage by the Raiders winning a tough game against the Saints by having the guts to go for two at the end, which I think Coach should have done against Arizona in the playoffs, given their awful W-L record in overtime under McCarthy

For those still hung up on Arizona, McCarthy told reporters in a side session last week that Janis hurt his back on the Hail Mary, and the two-point plays they had practiced that week were in 3-WR sets. They didn't have 3 WR to line up with. So can we let that go now?

Comment From Dale

Mike, Seemed like some of the same problems from 2015 reared there head again with receivers struggling to get off the line and the play clock issues. What were you seeing from up top as far as receivers getting off the line? It would be nice to see more passes on time and Rodgers not having to consistently extend plays.

I agree. I think it's going to be a work in progress, because Jacksonville played mostly single high to stack up against the run, so the timing needs to be there for the quick passes.

Comment From JB

Were you surprised the rookie's on the DL played just 16 snaps.

I was. The workload Daniels and Guion handled in those conditions was impressive. They really battled.

Comment From Tim

New stadium for the Vikes, have to wonder how many Packer fans will be in attendance. Could the Packers finally have a true away game in Mpls, as opposed to the last few seasons where they were almost as dominant as the Viking fans?

I would imagine this is a tough ticket for GB fans to get their hands on.

Comment From eric

Thoughts on our new punter?

He was solid until his last punt. The two punts from the back of the end zone were good ones. He didn't give the Jags a gimme short field. But the last one, after the three-and-out with the game in the balance, needs to be better than 34 yards. At least it went out of bounds so it wasn't returnable, but you need a better clutch punt there.

Comment From Jake C.

How much do you think the sun, (not relating to the heat) played a factor in the game on Sunday? On both Punts that pinned us back inside the 10, the returner just let them go.

It was the factor in the kicking game. Ron Zook said yesterday that the back judge told him the sun was really bad looking that direction on returns. When the quarter ended and the teams switched sides, the Jags punt returner did the same thing Hyde did. It must have been impossible.

Comment From daire

Clinton dix developing into a stud, made a few huge plays particularly the tackle on a deep pass, causing the receiver to spill the ball after he caught it

That was a great hit he put on Robinson to get that ball out. You can see him being moved around even more than he was last year, from centerfield to the line of scrimmage. He's a really intense player. I thought he was going to lose it when he was hopping up and down and pointing at the play clock for delay of game. He didn't know that call is made by the back judge, who was behind him.

Comment From PUMA

Are you looking forward to checking out the new stadium?

Most definitely. The pictures I've seen look pretty cool. I will say it was neat to visit the UM campus stadium for a couple years. Nice place.

Comment From Jumbo

What's the book on Sam Bradford say, in terms of limiting his effectiveness? And do you think Minnwill be fairly vanilla with their offense cuz he's so new to it?

If they would need to be that vanilla with Bradford, he won't play and they'll go with Hill.

Comment From Abhi

Do you think Rodgers can throw 300 yards passing versus Vikings D?

Sure, he can, but if he doesn't have to because the Packers can get Lacy and Starks going, all the better.

Comment From Zach

How impressed were you with Richard Rodgers in week 1? A few dropped lbs seems to have given him a little more twitch on his route running. The idea of 2 TE that can make plays would bode well for the offense as the temperatures drop.

His catch on the deep out along the sideline was a nice play. He almost made another tough catch but couldn't quite secure it. The two TE stuff will be matchup based, for the most part. It's all in the film study and how they expect the defense to play them.

Comment From eric

With the new touchback rule, how well do you think the specials teams adjusted for it?

I think we saw more deep kicks for touchbacks on Sunday to save the wear and tear on the players in those conditions. We'll see how things change moving forward. I would have preferred that Montgomery let that bouncing kick go in the fourth quarter on Sunday, so the Packers would have started at the 25. Zook didn't like that decision either.

Comment From Linda P

Mike, Were you able to see any other games or the highlights? I didn't see any team that looked scary after the first week did you? I am guessing that not playing your starters much in the preseason contributed to that. What do you think? Any teams standing out after one game?

Nobody seems to take the league by storm anymore, and the reduced preseason action for starters is probably the main reason. September football is its own animal now, and even moreso than in past years, we really don't know what teams look like until we get closer to Nov. and Dec.

Comment From Scott

Does Burnett owe HHC-D anything for the holding penalty that took away a game ending interception? Also, what's your opinion on the automatic first down aspect of a defensive holding penalty? I think the penalty yardage should determine the down, otherwise the offense gets bailed out of some long distance situations.

I understand the penalty logic. If it's third-and-15 and a DB feels like he's beat and he can just grab some jersey for a 5-yard penalty that doesn't allow the first down, that wouldn't seem right. I don't think Burnett owes HHCD anything because without Burnett's hold, that ball probably isn't picked off. It was an obvious call right in the middle of the field.

Comment From Ross

Hi Mike, Going to be a tough one Sunday night - what's your prediction?

If the Packers don't turn the ball over, I think they'll win. Minnesota's QB issues put a lot on that defense right now, and if the Vikes defense doesn't control the game, the Packers should have the upper hand.

Comment From LambeauLeaper

I hate that when a timeout is called to "ice" a kicker on a FG attempt, they can just snap it and practice kick it anyway. Do you think there should be a rule prohibiting teams from doing that, like a delay of game?

Why? I don't see a problem with it. It worked perfectly for the Broncos last Thursday. Gano's practice kick deflected off the right upright and in, and then he overcompensated and yanked it left on the real one. Sometimes practice in a clutch situation doesn't help.

Comment From Dale

Rollins had a feast or famine day. Has Joe Whitt said anything since the game?

He has not, but I think we get to hear from Joe on Thursday.

Comment From Ross

What makes Mike Zimmer defenses so tough?

He has wrinkles to systems that not everybody has mastered, and his players are extremely disciplined and well-coached in how to make the wrinkles work.

Comment From Sam

Have you had a chance to look at the tape much? I heard that Cook was open a number of times, but didn't get the ball thrown his way. Is this true? And do you think that they will look at this week?

If it's on the tape, Rodgers will notice. I didn't notice that in particular, but I was looking at the video more for the O-line play.

Comment From Jake

Any other teams really surprise you this week, either positively or negatively?

I was surprised the Seahawks didn't score a TD at home against the Dolphins until the very end. Miami almost pulled that off.

Comment From Matt

I'm excited for Gunter to put it together. He's a big dude.

He's physically a different type of corner than Randall, Rollins, yes. I'm interested to see how he plays as his second year rolls along.

Comment From Paul

Continued incosistency of O with 3 straight 3 and outs, your thoughts.

The offense needs to get a first down to get out of those field position holes. One first down seems to be all the offense needs to get going. If they move the chains once, they're off and running. It's such a rhythm thing.

Comment From Joe

Why do you think that most teams in the league can't cover Tight ends with any regularity? I watch 5 games this weekend and it seems to me they are always open. This is my biggest fear for Sunday.

Certain TEs are tough matchups, when they can run too fast for LBs and when they're too big for a CB or S to cover. Not many TEs had the size-speed combination of Gronk or Finley, etc., decades ago. It's changed the game.

Comment From jj

Do you type this quickly or are you speaking?

I can type pretty fast.

Comment From garrett

possible to sweep any nfc north team this year for us?

Of course it's possible, but division games are always entities unto their own. The Lions lost Megatron and looked unstoppable on Sunday. You never know.

Comment From Matt

What would it take for the Packers to play more noon games? Losing football?


Comment From Tyler

Not sure if you're a power rankings guys. ESPN had the Packers jump from 6 to 1 after WK 1. As much as I love to believe we have the best team in the league, was our performance that amazing to jump ahead of the Pats, Hawks, and Steelers?

The Steelers might have been most impressive to me. That was a playoff team from last year that added a Pro Bowl CB in free agency and Pittsburgh took it to them, at their place, in prime time.

OK, folks, I have to go soon. A few more. Thanks for all the questions.

Comment From Will from Lexington, KY

Did the Packers have any players protesting during the anthem? It was tough to tell from the broadcast.

No. Everyone stood. In fact, a handful of players -- Nelson, Bulaga, Cobb I think and a couple others -- joined in holding the football-field size flag with all the service people.

Comment From Dan

We know all about Adrian Peterson. Who's the big name to watch on the Vikings young defense?

Take your pick. Smith, Kendricks, Barr, Floyd. Lot of talent on that side.

Comment From Ray N

Any observations on the long snapper-holder-kicker exchanges / sequences ??

No issues, which was good news. How'd you like to be that rookie long snapper for the Cardinals? Tough week for him.

Comment From Gary

What did you think of the penalties called, or not called, on the Packers in JAX? I think they got away with a few "No-Calls."

That crew was letting them play, and I don't mind that for the most part. Not every crew is the same, however.

Comment From Ben C

Does any part of the concussion protocol concern players who have frequent concussions? Sam Shields' multiple concussions seems a concern.

It's definitely a concern, but that's why they have the testing and everything is recorded. There's a lot of science behind the protocol.

Comment From Roger

Does that mean WYMHM is coming this week?

Yes, it's going up shortly. New format this year, just to warn you. Text and pictures rather than video. I hope everyone still enjoys it. That's all for today folks. Gotta run. Thanks and talk to you again next week. --Mike

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