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September 11, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Kevin Seifert

Kevin Seifert
  (1:58 PM)

Hi everyone. I'll be with you momentarily...

Kevin Seifert
  (2:02 PM)

Ok, here we go.

Tim (CA)

Is the media finally gonna give the Lions their proper respect when they dismantle the Niners on Sunday, or y'all still gonna hate?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:02 PM)

I covered the 49ers' victory over the Packers on Sunday. That's a really tough, physical, well-coached team. If the Lions "dismantle" them, I will give them all the credit in the world. It would be by far the best win of the Jim Schwartz era.

Eric (MI)

What's wrong with Megatron? He's only on pace for 1776 yds this year. Right, media?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:03 PM)

We're looking into it.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:03 PM)

I'm sensing some Lions angst off the top here.

Scooter, minny [via mobile]

U have seen tori gurley with the pack does he have a chance to be a good player 4 the vikings?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:04 PM)

He's a little on the slow side. For him, it will be whether he can play special teams. In two more games, the Vikings will get Jerome Simpson back and be a little deeper at WR.

Michelle (Oklahoma)

Do you think the Packers issue stems from arrogance. I think they were the more talented team in both Giants and 49ers game. But based on their post game comments it seems they think they are better instead of trying to be better.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:05 PM)

I don't think it's arrogance. I don't know that they even have an "issue." The 49ers are one of the best teams in football. Their problem, if they have one, is that they've been stymied in trying to get the ball downfield in the passing game. That's their bread and butter, and they haven't adjusted effectively yet.

Michael (Indiana)

How clutch do you think Matthew Stafford is? do you think he has what it takes to win a super bowl game winning drive?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:06 PM)

Absolutely. He's on his way to being this generation's John Elway. Totally cool and focused at the same time when the pressure is on. Definitely thrives on it.

Captainblue (Detroit)

Good Afternoon Mr. Seifert,I was wondering if you good post a clip of Bradford's slide. I keep reading about Fisher complaining about the clock glitch, but it looked to me like he was out of bounds. It would be nice to see from video. Perhaps, Fisher should be complain that his QB slid so close to the sideline. It was a bad play by his QB, not the clock operator.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:07 PM)

I will check that. Interesting if it's true. But even so, the clock operator shouldn't watch the QB. He/she should watch the officials. And according to the NFL, the officials never called for time to stop.

Bob (Wi.)

Are you smoking Crack? Packers #1 in the power rankings in the division? They are last in the division! 0-1

Kevin Seifert
  (2:08 PM)

I don't vote in the power rankings. But the voters didn't want to overreact to a loss to a really good team. The 49ers are now No. 2 overall in the power rankings.

Glenn (East Troy, WI)

Which players impressed you the most from the division? (Randall Cobb for me) Which were you most disappointed in? (Titus Young)

Kevin Seifert
  (2:09 PM)

Ponder showed us something on that final drive, even if it was only two passes. He got the ball back with 14 seconds. Also, it was good to see Alshon Jeffery follow through on the hype we've heard about him. As far as disappointment, Young and Cedric Benson are up there. Although Benson didn't get many chances.

Chris (FL)

Is everyone in the Vikings' organization as astounded privately as we all are publicly about how fast Peterson came back from his injuries?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:10 PM)

They felt like all along he was ahead of schedule. Once he got back to practice and they saw how he moved around, they were pretty encouraged. The know he's a special guy.

Jackson (Chicago)

The Bears are looking good on all sides of the ball. Can they stop the Packers in Lambeau this week?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:12 PM)

They've got a good chance. They've always played Aaron Rodgers relatively well in terms of limiting his big plays. And the Packers' pass defense is very much in flux and vulnerable to a team with as many weapons as the Bears.

Rick Spielman (Winter Park)

Offseason wishlist: Defense, Defense, Defense!Now that I have my youth injection, do I dare entertain the occasional established free agent to improve my roster, I wonder.....? Cortland Finnegan and Brandon Carr sure looked good this last week.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:14 PM)

I would think Spielman might dip his toes back into free agency when he thinks the Vikings are closer and have one or two big holes. For now, he's trying to develop players internally.

Milpool (612)

Serious defensive lapses for MN e.g. Cook's two no-look coverage gaffs, Greenway courteously escorting M. Lewis across field on drag route, 2 pt. conversion served up to Jags on silver platter. Obviously a little from column A,B, and C here, but u think this is more youth, playcalling or just plain lesser players?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:15 PM)

Cook didn't play well, and I saw Greenway a step behind Lewis on that play, but overall Greenway played pretty decently I thought. Overall on defense, the Vikings don't have as much talent as you would like. There are some holes at a number of positions still.

Kid A (Reality)

Yeah, the Pack beat themselves by being absolutely man handled and physically unable to counter the niners pushing them around. With that logic, I guess if I played Lebron 1 on 1, he wouldn't beat me, but rather Id beat myself cause I'm not 6'8" 270 and a world class basketball player, right?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:15 PM)

Yeah, the Packers didn't beat themselves. I agree. They got beat by a better team at the moment.

Tom (Brooklyn)

I asked you in the pre-season if Alshon Jeffery was ready to make an impact right away. You said yes. Kudos. So, are you taking the over/under on 1000 receiving yds and 8 TDs on the season?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:16 PM)

Ha. Given how many players they have who deserve the ball, I'll take the under.

Bob (Wi.)

Does Aaron Rogers give ESPN the "Discount Double Check" for promoting him so much?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:17 PM)

Wait, who are we talking about again?

Mark (Minneapolis)

Interesting article today about the Packers. Although they did excel at deep passes through the SB run and most of last year, they also won games without them. For example, they only completed 3 (of 7) in the last 3 games against the Bears combined, yet won all of them. Rodgers play has not been MVP level in those 3 losses but it seems this run is more about terrible Packer D contrasted with excellent Niner, KC and Giants D performances - all of whom got pressure with 4 rushers, leaving 7 to blanket the field. Am I crazy?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:18 PM)

My feeling is that every team has an identity and a prescription for how it's built to win. The Packers are built to win with downfield passing. They don't need an elite defense to win. It would help to get better play than they gotten, but to me that's like blaming the appetizer for an overall bad meal. It's based on the main course, I would think. Or something like that.

Zack (Macomb, IL)

Kevin, what?s your thought on this weeks power rankings? GB (5), CHI (8), DET (13) and MIN (28) Anyone too low? too high?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:20 PM)

Tough for Detroit to fall after a win, but such is life. Otherwise, everything seems fair to me. Can't overreact to a Week 1 loss to the 49ers. Bears beat a bad team. Vikings beat a bad team.

dc (tucson)

i heard something about scott wells on the ir with a broken foot ...any news on this rumor?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:20 PM)

It's accurate. He needs surgery and is going on IR. But the Rams are expected to use the version of IR that lets him come back after Week 6.

Tim (Middle USA)

What's your take on the replacement officials so far? I don't think they've changed the outcome of games, but they're gaffes are sometimes annoying.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:21 PM)

Pace of the game is a little slower while they work things out, and it's always worrisome when you realize they don't know all the rules. That's not a shot at them. The NFL rule book is huge with a lot of nuance and many exceptions. Hard to have it all at the tip of your tongue during a game.

Craig (Braintree, MA)

I see that Percy Harvin had more carries than Gerhart. I didn't get to see the game. Were they lining him up in the backfield? How did they get him carries?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:22 PM)

Yes, he was lined up in the backfield for those carries, much as they did last year. Makes sense on a controlled basis.

Tim (Middle USA)

I saw Aaron Rodgers' helmet Sunday and it doesn't look that bad. In fact, the only reason I knew it was different was because he switched 2 years ago after concussions. Why doesn't the NFL mandate these helmets? They're not "ugly" by any means.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:23 PM)

This is something I've railed on for years. Is it a personal preference, or are these helmets documented to protect better against concussions? If it's the latter, it seems to be that the course of action should be self-evident.

James (Utica, NY)

Urlacher looked fine...just needs to break the rust off. Agree?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:24 PM)

Eh, I'm not sure about that. Fine line between rusty and stiff.

Ben (Sandy, UT)

The NFL rule book is indeed huge, but missing at least 4 false start penalties (there are videos of these) on the Packers game has nothing to do with a rule book.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:24 PM)

Agree with that 100 percent. Also not sure what they thought they saw when they picked up the flag on Cobb's return.

Eric (Chicago)

Power rankings mean nothing. The games are what matter! The Packers look like they haven't changed one iota from last year. Any team with a run game and above average passing game can control the clock (Giants, 49ers) and the Bears will do the same...Bears 34, Packers 24 You heard it here first!

Kevin Seifert
  (2:25 PM)

Ok, thanks. You saved me a trip to Lambeau.

Pete (Work)

If you were Jim Schwartz would you bench Titus Young this week to set an example or are we kidding ourselves and is winning bigger than proving a point

Kevin Seifert
  (2:26 PM)

I honestly don't know what I'd do with him. Such a disappointment. He seemed to have gotten himself straightened out since the Delmas issue. They didn't bench him after the New Orleans game last year. But it's also clear they haven't gotten through to him yet. Maybe it's worth a shot.

Brad Davis (Nanaimo, BC (via St. Paul, MN!))

Did the 49ers help highlight the problems with a team focusing almost exclusively on their passing game and ignoring their running game? Will it help keep more teams honest about having a legitimate ground game? How much better would a reliable RB have made to the Pack's game?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:28 PM)

That's part of it. If a team is working to defend the deep pass, the running game should benefit. Even Cedric Benson should get some yards in those situations. They just didn't stick with it Sunday. They only had a RB on the field for 30 of their 61 plays.

Carrie (Arizona)

I was not impressed with the Bears on Sunday. They struggled against a bad team and pulled away at the end. I also did not think Mike Tice had a great play calling day...???

Kevin Seifert
  (2:29 PM)

I guess you would be in the minority. They definitely started slow and benefited from Freeney's injury. But they made big plays in the running game and the passing game, and Cutler was almost perfect after the first quarter.

Wendell (Michigan)

Brandon Pettigrew looks like an all-pro one minute then butter fingers the next. Whats up with this guy?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:30 PM)

One of the hardest players in the NFC North to figure out. He's really good as is, but could be the best in the NFL (all-around) if he minimized the drops.

Craig (Braintree, MA)

Carlson didn't have any catches on Sunday. When might he be back to full strength?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:31 PM)

He missed the whole preseason, so it could take a few weeks.

Lewis (Flint)

Status of Houston, Delmas and Bentley for Sunday night's game?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:32 PM)

Won't know anything until Wednesday. Houston says he will practice, which would be a big step. Bentley has a concussion. Obviously teams are slow with those now. And Delmas hasn't practiced at all since July. Usually it takes more than a few days to come back from an absence that long.

Steve (Chicago)

I know people on the internet like to overreact to every game but it really is laughable that "the Packers look like they haven't changed one iota from last year" can be meant as an insult.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:35 PM)

Well, they ended last season having trouble getting the ball downfield and they started this one the same way. I understand where people are coming from.

Jon (SLC)

I think in regards to the ref's the thing that troubled me was inconsistency in Pass Interference. Maybe I am used to it a different way with the regular ref's. Do you see that getting better or do I just need to learn to adjust?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:36 PM)

It's almost like a pitcher with balls and strikes. Every official is going to have his own judgment of the "strike zone." This is an entirely new set of judgments.

Da Bear (school)

How big is the game in greeb bay for the division?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:37 PM)

It's one of six games they'll have that will decide a playoff spot. That's the way to look at it.

Mike (USA)

Is Randall Cobb the Packer's version of Percy Harvin? Can he ever be as good as Harvin?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:38 PM)

Different styles. Harvin is a more physical open-field runner. Cobb tries to get around you. But both very effective.

Eric (Memphis)

If Jennings and Tillman both are out for Thursday's game, which team suffers the bigger disadvantage?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:41 PM)

Like most teams, the Packers are deeper at WR than the Bears are at CB. Kelvin Hayden isn't a typical backup, but I would rather go from Jennings to Donald Driver or James Jones than Tillman to Hayden.

GIL (San Antonio)

How about that one arm tackle Suh made on S. Jackson? He looked back in rookie form and did a much better job in run support. How improved do you think the LIONs run D is? I think it will be the diff Sunday and the Lions win with a 2 TD difference. 24 - 10 Lions over 9ers.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:42 PM)

I thought all three of their DTs played well. Corey Williams and Fairley both made big plays, too. Their defensive line is no joke.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Will Rudolph be Ponder's #2 option even when Simpson comes back?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:43 PM)

Quite possibly, assuming Harvin is No. 1? Rudolph is such a security blanket. You throw it anywhere near him and he'll catch it.

Scorpio (Indiana)

Lions should just deactivate Titus and activate Broyles and let Titus learn a lesson. I love watching him play but he needs to grow up.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:44 PM)

It's a nice option to have, even if he isn't 100 percent at full speed. That might not be a bad idea for one week. Kind of give Titus a last-chance warning.

Dustin (South Dakota)

How about Blair Walsh...props to Spielman for cutting Longwell and taking a chance with a rookie kicker. Now let's just hope he doesn't have a Gary Anderson like season...off to a good start none the less.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:44 PM)

Definitely a good start, but a little early to say they made the right decision. It can take years for a kicker to establish himself. If Walsh does it from the get-go, he'll prove to be way ahead of the curve.

Steve (Detroit)

Am I missing something? The local media yesterday made a huge fuss about the handshake being the 'major story' of this week. IF that's the case, why? Why is an aftergame incident from last year the major story for this year?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:45 PM)

It's hard to avoid mentioning, but you're right, it figures to have no impact on this weeks' game.

Nolan (La Crosse, WI)

Rodgers missed a couple downfield throws Sunday, think this will be a trend or each just needs a week or two get back to his true timing?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:46 PM)

I don't know. You're talking about the passes to Jones? The windows were awfully tight there. Not a lot of separation and pretty good coverage.

Nick (Marshfield, WI)

What was the reaction at Lambeau to the 63-yarder that Akers hit? Stunned silence?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:46 PM)

Pretty much exactly what it was like after the Giants scored on that Hail Mary in the playoffs.

Nolan (La Crosse, WI)

What was the most promising thing you saw from Packers D on sunday?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:47 PM)

The return of Clay Matthews to the sack column. He was pretty active.

James (Utica, NY)

To Carrie (Arizona): The Bears were up 20 with 12 minutes to go in the 3rd quarter when they rested Urlacher. How exactly is that pulling away at the end? Watch the game before posting lunacy

Kevin Seifert
  (2:47 PM)

My view is that everyone gets the right to a view.

Eric (Berkeley)

Does Woodson really deserve that much credit for his non-coverage skills? How much skill does it really take to be an unblocked rusher coming off the corner?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:49 PM)

There's timing involved in when you show blitz, and also in accelerating to the quarterback. There are definitely some cornerbacks better at pass rushing than others.

MDK (Los Angels)

Can you explain Quarterback a??action playsa?? For instance, Matthew Stafford was graded with 50 such a??action playsa? but the offense only had 32 completions and 18 rushing plays (50 total plays not including incompletions) and one of the rushing plays lost yardage, 2 of the pass plays net only a total of 3 yards and 2 of the pass plays netted a total of 7 yards. How does Stafford grade out at 50 a??action playsa? with those stats?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:51 PM)

I don't have all the figures in front of me, but action plays are plays that impact a win or loss. The Lions ran more than 50 plays, including Stafford's incompletions. An action play could be an interception, for instance. It's not a grade. It's a measure of how involved the quarterback was in the flow of the game, if that makes sense.

Nick (MN)

I read a quote about Forte talking about Goal line carries and how he "lacks" them. It didn't seem like he was mad, but seemed irritated. Is this something to monitor or no big deal? Also do you know any specific reason why the Bears haven't really given Forte the chance to be their goal line back? I know the Ravens did that with Rice last year and it paid off...

Kevin Seifert
  (2:52 PM)

I'm going to do a post on it later this week, but in short Forte has not been a very good goal-to-go guy in his career. Bush has much better numbers. It's about the team. It's better for Bush to be out there in those situations than Forte. Plain and simple.

Toni (Park Ridge, IL)

What will ESPN do when the Packers start the season 0-2? I mean they seem to be their only super bowl pick from the NFC.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:53 PM)

We'll shut 'er down. Why wait around for the next 14 games?

Donny (D)

Analysis of Perry? Looked pretty lost in coverage. Was he able to create any pressure?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:55 PM)

He got in there a few times, but he seems to be a longer-term project. Will be interesting to see if they get Walden in there at all this week.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:55 PM)

OK a few more, folks.

Viking J (West Bend Iowa)

Any reports on how the Vikes OLine played? I was at the game, and my non-expert view is this is a massive improvement from last year.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:55 PM)

Generally positive, especially for Kalil. And it sounds as if Fusco was throwing some people around as well.

KING Kevin (Fandom)

Any possibility Ryan Broyles ends up starting opposite Calvin once healthy and Titus Young gets regulated to #3 WR.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:56 PM)

Don't forget about Burleson. But if your question is if Broyles will overtake Young on the depth chart, I would be surprised and assume it would be because of Young's maturity issues. He is by all accounts an excellent player, and Broyles is still working his way back from the knee injury.

James (Utica, NY)

Packers cant stop the run. Bears should pound Forte and Bush and use playaction...Packers cant stop it

Kevin Seifert
  (2:57 PM)

They might not need to use play action to get the passing game going. The Packers are unsettled in their secondary.

Michael (Indiana)

WHere would you place Stafford arm strength

Kevin Seifert
  (2:57 PM)

There isn't a throw he can't make. Can't say anything better about a quarterback.

Ben (Charlotte)

w/o their two best players in the secondary the Lions D held StL to 170 yards passing ... stock up on the Lions pass D?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:58 PM)

Against a pretty weak offense, and they did give up a go-ahead touchdown to Gibson. The Rams were smart and found the rookie in coverage.

Tony (Atlanta)

Musgrave must go. He coaches not to win. He did it in Atlanta also. 1:30 left on the clock, 3 run plays up the middle. In the NFL pass happy offense you need to close out games when you can, not run 3 plays up the middle.

Kevin Seifert
  (3:00 PM)

And if he had let Ponder throw an incompletion, everyone would have been screaming then, too. You have to include Frazier there. The head coach weighs in on those types of play calls late in a game.

Kevin Seifert
  (3:00 PM)

OK everyone, thanks so much. Chat with you next week!