Tue, 04 Aug 2020

Inbox: It's going to be some story

Packers
14 Jul 2020, 18:12 GMT+10

No one ever has definitive answers

Todd from Brighton, MI

Monday. So many questions. So few answers.

I'm back, even though I never really left. So there's that. I guess.

Bennett from Green Bay, WI

When can we expect the Packers Yearbook to come out?

Right now, the plan is for it to be available in mid-August.

Kenton from Rochester, MN

I just saw an interesting statistic: Apparently the OROY (Offensive Rookie of the Year) has been won by an NFC rookie for the last 13 seasons. The chances of that happening by chance is less than 1 in 8,000, so something seems to be going on. What do you think that could be? Why would NFC rookies be selected so much more often for this award in the last few years over their AFC counterparts? Thank you for any insight you can provide.

That's a truly strange streak. Looking at the list, which dates back to Adrian Peterson in 2007, six of the 13 were rookie QBs, so that probably says something about QB scouting, opportunity and early development in the NFC. As for the other seven backs and receivers, it's really hard to say why. In any event, it's going to be some story when an offensive lineman wins that award for the first time.

William from Plymouth, IN

If memory serves me correctly, the comment "(Lombardi) treats us all the same - like dogs," was from Henry Jordan, not Jerry Kramer.

Several readers wanted the record corrected, so there you go.

Jeff from Tucson, AZ

Beginning to think there will be no football this year.

It sounds like the coming week will be an important one in the ongoing negotiations between the league and the players' union over safety protocols, economics, etc. Let's see if they can get things worked out, and if by the end of the month the news changes for the better on the virus. All we can do is wait and see.

Jim from Woodbury, MN

Any chance a return to football and COVID-19 becomes a divisive issue for the players or union? How ugly could it get?

I don't see the union dividing, if that's what you're asking. There's going to have to be an opt-out provision of some kind, and I think players will respect any decisions other players make.

Justin from Los Angeles, CA

Did Wes just throw down the gauntlet on noodles in chili and then leave Spoff to handle the aftermath? I gotta say, I thought it was perfectly normal until I moved out of Wisconsin and realized everyone else thinks it's weird. Where do you land on it, Mike? What's your preferred chili style?

I grew up in my little corner of the state with no noodles in chili (I'd crumble crackers in it instead), and the inclusion of noodles changed the dish's name to goulash. Then I married someone from a different part of the state who made me try it her way. Twenty-one years (and counting) of marriage later, I've honestly come around to preferring noodles to crackers, and I never thought I would.

Richard from Racine, WI

How many quarterbacks have played starting roles for the Packers in regular-season games?

I believe when Brett Hundley started those handful of games in 2017 he became the 46th different starting QB for the Packers in official league games (which began in 1921). Since Brett Favre's first start in 1992, there have been just six.

Ron from Bethesda, MD

Will the Packers sell stock to make up for the lower number of fans?

The Packers can sell stock only if the proceeds are to be used for stadium improvements, which the last two stock sales (1997, 2011) supported. They can no longer do so as just a general fundraiser.

Michael from Morrison, IL

To appreciate how rare Cecil Isbell's 24 TD passes in 1942 were, consider that his mark stood as the franchise's single-season record until Lynn Dickey threw 32 in 1983. In fact, Isbell's mark was still in the top five in team history as recently as 1995.

Isbell and Hutson were playing a different game than everyone else.

Barb from Marengo, IL

Two questions from two sides of the coin: Is there an advantage to being overlooked for some of these "lists"? For example, "Z" being underrated and Aaron Jones on not being a top 10 running back. On the other side, is there a risk in having Davante Adams sharing his route-running secrets?

Regarding lists, I share Wes's sentiments, so I won't repeat them. As for Adams, as enlightening as those video segments were, he didn't say anything that coaches and other players couldn't figure out by dissecting the film. It's just a question of whether they can stop it.

Richard from Eagle River, WI

Wes seemed to agree with Andrew from Green Bay that the Chiefs greatly overpaid Mahomes in the 10-year extension. Pat Kirwan of "Moving the Chains" on NFL radio was of the opposite opinion. His take on breaking down the contract that it was tremendously team-friendly with this perspective: It will take Mahomes eight years into the contract for his average annual salary to reach $35 million. That number is what Russell Wilson is making this year! Your thoughts?

That eighth year, 2027, is when Mahomes is projected to have a cap number of around $60 million. A restructure at some point is a decent bet.

Scotty from Lombard, IL

Insiders, Vic should be in the Packers Hall of Fame. Mark Murphy will be inducted in the Packers Hall of Fame. If you two keep doing the great work you have done, you both deserve to be in the Packers Hall of Fame.

And you get a car! And you get a car! Listen, that's flattering and all, but I'll never give it a minute's thought. I just hope I'll be closing the door myself on the way out, if you know what I mean. That'll be good enough for me.

Tom from Green Lake, WI

I thought Wes's insight on Saturday, about Lombardi, was very enlightening. "On the football field, Lombardi only saw players. Off of it, he only saw human beings." It would be nice if all of us only saw human beings and treated everyone equally. I hope this can begin to happen very shortly. We all play a role in this.

As a society we'll get a lot further if we step away from our worst instinct, which is to make everything political. It would be nice if mask-wearing were not political. It would be nice if striving for equality weren't political. Those who support or oppose an idea with that mindset don't help society, in my opinion. Just because we may need the political apparatus to enact change or make progress on an issue doesn't de facto make said issue political. Or at least it shouldn't be viewed that way, whether we're talking about health and safety measures or guaranteeing equal treatment under the law. But I realize that utopian communal ship sailed long ago. I'll stop now.

Mike from Fort Wayne, IN

I really look forward to watching the "Alumni Spotlight" segments. Two things really stand out for me: the character and class the players show and how they remember games and plays within games in detail as if the game was played yesterday.

Not all players have such detailed recall, but the ones that do are fascinating to interview. The moments that are seared in their brains tell us about both their careers and their personalities.

Zach from Hoagland, IN

Spoff, that interview with Eugene Robinson was outstanding. It has to be my favorite in the series thus far. Mr. Robinson comes off as a terrific fella with a mind reminiscent of our very own AR12. It is no wonder why he was such an integral part of our two-year Super Bowl run...but I didn't realize that until this past week! After a Wiki search, those kids at Charlotte Christian School today sure are lucky to have him as head coach. I'm sure he was a great color analyst for the Panthers as well!

I remember interviewing Robinson as a player, when I was first breaking into this business. It was so obvious he really knew the game, and I think he loved outsmarting other players more than anything else. When I think of Green Bay safety tandems, it's Butler-Robinson first in terms of those I watched play.

Bill from Iowa City, IA

I see that all three of the free agents the Packers signed this offseason did not play a full season last year: Wagner (12 games played), Kirksey (two games played) and Funchess (one game played). What are the primary considerations a GM has to evaluate when seeking to sign a player coming off injury? Type of injury? Player injury history? Other factors?

All of the above, and particularly with veteran players it's important to ask whether the most recent injury is a blip in his career, or a sign his body may be starting to break down. No one ever has definitive answers. In the 1990s, all signs indicated Robert Brooks had a long career ahead of him, but one injury led to another and another and his time was cut short. On the flip side, this past decade, no one would have predicted after dealing with two ACLs and a significant hip injury in his first eight seasons that Bryan Bulaga would have his best season in Year 10. There's no way around the lack of predictability.

Dennis from Parrish, FL

Let's face it, Ahman Green played way faster than a guy who ran 4.44 at the combine!

Green had the ability to shift gears when he hit the hole, and shift again in the open field.

Steve from Bloomington, IL

Suppose Brian G. calls you up and says he authorizes you to make one roster move (trade, contract extension, free-agent signing, etc.) on behalf of the fans. Assuming it's done at a "fair market value," what move do you make?

Sign Kenny Clark to a long-term extension

David from Fairmont, WV

What do the Packers need to do to relegate their NFC North foes?

Relegate: consign or dismiss to an inferior rank or position. It would start by winning at Minnesota in Week 1, otherwise it's Green Bay being relegated initially. It'll be a long season (hopefully) regardless, but the result in the opener will define the rivals' early roles in the race.

Richard from Menasha, WI

Did you see "Celebrity Family Feud"? Is Aaron Jones that small or is Bruce Smith that huge?

Is it any wonder running backs have the shortest careers in the NFL?

Darren from Alice Springs, Australia

They've done studies you know? 60% of the time Insider Inbox pleases every time.

So I've got that going for me, which is nice. Happy Monday.

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