Hi everyone, Let's get this thing going....
Don't tell me to "Get Over" Matt Stafford not being in the Pro Bowl. The game is a sham and a travesty. It should be boycotted.
I didn't tell you to get over it. I said to get over the Pro Bowl and everything that goes into it, and it looks like you're well on your way.
I know we say this evry year, but eventually the HOF voters have to get over hurt feelings and vote Cris Carter in right? It becomes a bigger joke every year they don't.
Eventually, yes. No idea if it will happen this year. He's again competing with two other receivers, Tim Brown and Andre Reed.
You did a post on the merit of moving Woodson to safety earlier this month. What about winfield getting moved there for the Vikings? They ahve been shakey at the position for years and he could be the sure tackling veteran that makes that area a non-cpncern.
I think that's a reasonable question and one I plan to explore in the Big Decision series. The same criteria will have to apply, though. You can't make that move if he's one of your top two cornerbacks. You need a credible replacement first. Even if you feel Winfield will be a Pro Bowl safety, don't you at least need an average cornerback to replace him?
What's happening with Jay Cutler's thumb? Did everything go according to plan? Weird we haven't heard much about it.
He had the pins removed near the end of the season. We haven't heard anything more about it because there really isn't a time issue anymore. It will be healed long before the 2012 season starts, if it isn't already now.
What is the air speed velocity of an unladen swallow?
Twice that of a laden swallow, I would imagine.
Any chance that the Vikings bring in Peyton Manning and groom C. Ponder for a couple years? Give them a QB that can compete with the other 3 QB's in the division.
I guess you couldn't rule that out given the Favre experiment, but I would say the chances of it are remote.
Over/Under 8 sacks for Suh next season?
I'll take the under. People don't realize how rare it is for a defensive tackle to have a high sack total like Suh did in 2010.
Please tell me that the Rams aren't going to take Kalil with the number 2 pick... if so, will I be okay with Blackmon or Claiborne?
They have a left tackle their previous regime was happy with, Roger Saffold. How Jeff Fisher's arrival changes that is yet to be determined.
Please get my fellow packer fans to quit barking about cliff avril. Been a very long time since the packers signed a free agent that wasn't off a down year or years. No chance Ted does it.
Well, he looks like he has the athletic ability to be a 3-4 outside linebacker. But you're right. History tells us it's not likely in Green Bay.
Are you going to be doing an All NFCN team soon I am interested in it. I feel there are some good people in the division with a few deep categories that will cause debate.
Yes I am. It will either be at the end of this week or the week after the Super Bowl. Haven't decided yet.
How much cheaper would a remodel of the Metrodome (as opposed to building a new facility) actually be?
Moot point. Vikings wouldn't agree to it, because the remodel wouldn't be able to provide enough club seats and luxury boxes.
How many packers coaches will be left by the time the off season is over?
Most of them. It sounds as if Dennis Allen is the Raiders' top choice, which means Moss and Capers would be back. The remaining question is Tom Clements. He is a candidate for Tampa Bay's head coaching job.
Where the packers over rated due to the fact that they had the worst passing defense in NFL history?
No. But I do think people got lulled into expecting elite, record-setting performances from their passing game on a weekly basis.
If the vikings only option is to rebuild on the metrodome site, will the chances of them leaving increase?
I don't think the NFL will allow them to leave if there is a credible and fair deal on the table, even if it's not the Vikings' first choice.
I think too many Lion fans are taking it for granted that the Lions should make the playoffs again next year. I personally think the team needs to improve both the secondary and O-line just to keep themselves in the conversation. It's not like the Eagles, Cowboys, Bears, or Cardinals are going to be sitting on their hands this offseason, and the team had to come back in a number of games.Do you think the Lions are playoff locks, or still a couple pieces away from being able to look ahead to any postseason games?
Oh, no one can be considered a lock in January. But the Stafford-Johnson connection is elite and there are a lot of other nice pieces as well in Detroit. There is reason to believe they're set up to challenge for the postseason on an annual basis. Best I can say at this point.
Should Bears fans be upset that a new GM wasn't in place for the Shrine Game, and now (most likely) the Senior Bowl? I'd say the scouting department could easily handle them all on their own, but given the Bears' recent history, I'm not so sure.
I don't think that it will doom the franchise, but if the Bears aren't waiting for another mystery candidate, it's fair to say they're moving slow. It didn't need to take 2 weeks to get 5 interviews done.
What are your thoughts on the two remaining GM candidates for Chicago. Is Emery the front runner as initial reports suggest?
It's kind of a battle of a career scout versus a younger up-and-comer. It depends on what kind of leader the Bears want. Emery would be the least disruptive to the Bears' current structure, that's for sure.
Is Joe Webb under contract next season? I think he'd be the perfect backup to a Tim Tebow-centric offense... Trade?
He is under contract, but are we sure that a "Tebow-centric" offense can take a team any further than Tebow did this year?
What do you think the chances the Lions sign Kevin Smith this season? I know Leshoure will be back and Best says he will be healthy but man Smith pulled his weight when they needed him.
He certainly deserves another chance in training camp after the way he jumped into the fray and immediately produced. I'm not sure he's a starting-caliber running back, but obviously he can jump onto the field cold and give his team a decent showing.
Do you really expect the packers to be as successful next year considering they had the worst pass defense in NFL history?
They're going to have to take a hard look at it, that's for sure. Pass rush has to be considered the top priority of their offseason.
When will we find out what happens to Flynn? Or really, when does that process start?
The process starts now, technically, if the Packers wanted to sign him to a long-term deal. Otherwise, free agency begins March 13.
What's the most critical base the Lions need to cover to take a step forward next year?
They need to upgrade their secondary, one way or the other.
We all know Calvin is worth his weight in gold, but when is enough enough? The guy has a huge rookie contract, so he should be set for life, wouldn't you think that taking less to build a winner would come in to play some time?
And it's possible he'll take a hometown discount, or that he'll realize there aren't too many other teams with a 23-year-old quarterback who can throw the way Stafford does. With that said, it's not fair to put pressure on Johnson to take less than his market value. It's up to the Lions to figure out a way to get it done.
Since the Vikings new D-coordinator is a former defensive back coach does that mean the Vikes will maybe approach double digit INTs this year?
Low blow. 15 yards, loss of down.
Kevin, Are "good" special teams coaches a rare commodity in the NFL? Both Championship games decided by a special teams faux pas would indicate that they are.... thoughts?
Well, the 49ers' coach -- Brad Seely -- is one of the best in the NFL. Do we blame a coach when a backup returner fumbles once and allows a ball to bounce off him on another punt? But yes, like any other job, there are a lot of average special teams coaches and a few excellent ones.
I am a season ticket holding Viking fan but what in the world happened to the Packer defense compared to last year? They lost Nick Collins and the league discovered Clay Matthews wasn't a secret anymore. Largely with the same defense: they couldn't cover, tackle, or rush the passer. What gives...or what gave??
Losing Cullen Jenkins played a big role in the decrease of the pass rush. B.J. Raji wasn't as effective as he was in 2010. Collins' loss was significant. No one stepped up to take the pass rusher role opposite of Matthews, and Tramon Williams wasn't the same player in 2011. That should about cover it...
If the Packers were to franchise Flynn. What do you expect them to get back in return? 1st round, 2nd round, multiple picks?
You would probably have to look at the Kevin Kolb trade for guidance. The Eagles got CB Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie and a second-round pick from Arizona for him. And Kolb had more starting experience than Flynn does. So if the Packers could get a second-round pick and another asset, either a player or a lower pick, then they will have done well.
where do you believe peyton is going?
I don't know, but it seems everyone always thinks Redskins when pairing aging superstars with desperate teams.
Any update regarding Donald Driver? What are the chances he stays in Green Bay and at the same time, we see some new receivers from the practice squad make the team?
It's generally assumed he will need to take a pay cut to match what would be a part-time role. You know that Jennings, Jones, Nelson and Cobb will be back. So that's four receivers. How many more do you keep? Driver and one of the youngsters from the practice squad? That's the question the Packers must answer.
Of all the sighnings that need to happen this year locking Tulloch up into a longterm deal has to be a priority for the Lions, he was to me the best defensive player on the team.
I thought his presence definitely made them a better defense. He would also be cheaper to sign than, say, defensive end Cliff Avril.
Do you want to write an article about my impact on the NFC North? I don't feel like the press has been fair to me in the past 7 days.
And your name again was?
Will the Packers defensive priority be finding a replacement for Cullen Jenkins or LB in the offseason?
It should be.
When I look at the stats, Brandon Pettigrew seems near-elite. However a lot of scouts and pay-services out there that provide a lot more in-depth stats seem to say he isnt that great at all and more a product of volume in a good offense. Which do you think is more accurate?
The production is the production, regardless of how it happened. It's true the Lions threw him a lot of high-percentage short passes to compensate for a lack of running game, but that shouldn't detract from what Pettigrew did. To take the final step, however, he's got to get better at making the tough catches consistently. He lets too many catchable balls hit the ground, whether or not they are classified officially as drops.
Do you think the Dolphins view the Philbin hire as a Flynn/Philbin hire?
No, but I'm sure they liked the fact that Philbin was a part of the development of young quarterbacks in Green Bay. That's what the Dolphins need, one way or the other.
Having formally covered the Vikings for so many years, whats your thoughts on Tice as OC?
I think it means they will be aggressive, play with an edge and take some chances downfield. Obviously he hasn't called plays before, so I can't make a call on that. But they will absolutely take on his personality and be a good match for what Lovie Smith wants from an offense.
I read your article a few days ago about the Lion's tough situation with Jeff Backus because of his salary and age. Considering how low they're drafting, do they have any other option but to keep him?
I think they'll have to find a way to get it done, unless they can get an instant starter in the draft.
what are the chances DeAndre Levy gets resigned by the lions?
Pretty high. You need four years of experience to make unrestricted free agency.
I'm not saying the pressure should be on Calvin to make the offer, and I know there's pressure from the union not to go less than value, but it would be refreshing to see an athlete say 'you know, I made $60 million with my last contract. I really don't need that much.' Just sayin'.
Understood. It would also be good if the government said, you know what, I took 30 percent of your earnings last year. That ought to hold me for a while.
Just read from Tom Pelissero that Dayton pulled a 180 on the Lyndan Ave Site cause the church nearby said they would start a lawsuit. Your thoughts?
Politics (and religion) are a dirty game. We knew something had spurred such a quick change of plans.
Which would you say is closer to the truth: Cliff Avril is a star DE ready to grab double digit sacks and force a handful of fumbles every year; Cliff Avril is a one-trick speed rusher who had a lot of luck creating sacks and turnover thanks to his more talented teammates?
His teammates definitely helped him in that regard, but I think he has been a pretty consistent havoc wreaker for a good part of the past few years. I don't know if he's an annual Pro Bowl player, but he's more than a one-trick pass rusher.
What sort of salary will Avril command? Could the Bears sign him?
I've got a post coming up on that, but you probably have to use the Charles Johnson contract as your guide. The Panthers gave him a six-year,$72 million deal last summer. It included $34 million in guarantees.
If Kalil is gone at three, would you (if you were Spielman) stand pat and draft Claiborne or Blackmon, or would you try and trade down for more assets?
I would go for an elite player if I had a chance, so no, I wouldn't be looking to trade down.
Is Matt Flynn for real or will this be another Scott Mitchell situation where an organization put too much weight on one or two tremendous performances?
I think he has a chance to be a good starting quarterback for a strong team. Training and development are a huge part of becoming successful, and he got the best in Green Bay. I think I would trust him to be my starter.
I like the picks for Any-Era team so far in the NFC North... I don't understand the Tebow pick but maybe that just circumstantial. Who else form the NFC North do you see making this team? Peterson, KVB, Rodgers, Urlacher?
I've seen the entire list but can't reveal it. I will say you're on the right track, though.
Kevin, do you think there's a good possibility that Chris Cook comes back to the Vikings in 2012?
I have to assume yes. Otherwise, why keep him on the active roster for the second half of the season? Seems to me that at least some people in the organization absolutely want him back.
OK, a few more here and then I have to pop loose.
Does gb have to pay finley top dollar or given his relative age still very young should they try to get him back cheaper?
If they don't use the franchise tag on Flynn, they can use it on Finley and get him for a relatively cheap $5.5 million or so in 2012.
Do you call it soda or pop?
Soda. Even after 12 years in the midwest, I can't bring myself to call it "pop."
Why would they franchise a backup QB? Top five salary?
To eventually trade him.
I didn't think you'd post that.
I'm all about the oddball questions.
Kind of risky at that price, don't ya think?
Yes, if he signs it, it's a $14 million hit on your salary cap. So the Packers would need to have a pretty good sense they could get a deal done.
OK everyone, thanks so much. Chat with you soon.