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Wimbush broke hand

Join senior editor Vic Ketchman as he tackles the fans' tough questions.

Michael from Jacksonville Beach, FL:
So I hear the NFL is changing the rules about the footballs used during the playoffs. I think I heard the QB will not have to use brand-new footballs so they can grip better in the cold. I gather the league will not stop changing the rules for Peyton until he wins a Super Bowl. His passer rating is dramatically lower in the playoffs, out in the cold.

Vic: Wasn't the newness of the ball the excuse for three interceptions in the first quarter of the Pro Bowl, which was played in the "cold" of Honolulu?

David from Jacksonville:
What's with Derrick Wimbush's injury? I saw something about it in the paper last week but I haven't read anything about it from you.

Vic: I asked the Jaguars for an official prognosis on Derrick Wimbush's injury. Here it is: "Broken hand; two weeks with no activity and two weeks of active recovery. No surgery required and full go for training camp."

William from Savannah, GA:
I agree with Chris from Jax Beach on the Steelers fans. I met a lot of great Steelers fans that night and hold them right up there with the "Cheeseheads" when they visited for a night game a few years ago. In your opinion, who are the best fans and worst fans in the league? I say Packers and Eagles respectively.

Vic: Packers fans are great, win or lose. The worst fans are the ones of the teams that have trouble selling tickets.

Jason from Abilene, TX:
I loved the can't-cut-you-if-they-can't-find-you story. Now I'm curious, how did Johnnie Dirden's story end?

Vic: He made it into the regular season for a few games, then they found him.

Jim from Irvona, PA:
Your column the other day prompted me to look up and read some articles by Shirley Povich. I really enjoyed it but one article on Bronko Nagurski got me thinking. I knew his name but did not know that he was first team All-America on both sides of the ball. I know people don't do that nowadays but, in your opinion, are there any current NFL players that you could see excelling on the other side of the ball?

Vic: There are plenty of them. Troy Brown taught us that. Look at how many offensive linemen began their college careers as defensive linemen, and vice versa. Mo Williams and Khalif Barnes were defensive linemen in college. Today's players are better equipped to be two-way players than Nagurski and Chuck Bednarik were, mostly because today's players are better-conditioned than players of 50 years ago. The game of today, however, won't allow that kind of lack of specialization. Today's players have to attend intense position meetings and are fit into specific roles. I don't agree with the purists who believe specialization has hurt the game. I think it has made the game better. I like the idea of a pounder coming into the game in short-yardage. Here's the best we have, now stop him.

Dane from Melbourne, Australia:
After picking up Mike Williams, we have three starting tackles. Is it clear who gets the two starting tackle positions or will it be worked out in camp?

Vic: Jack Del Rio said on "Jaguars This Week" last night that Mike Williams is not pushing for a starting job.

Cody from Jacksonville:
When a player retires, does he count toward a team's compensatory picks that they receive the following year?

Vic: No. Only players lost in unrestricted free agency count toward compensatory pick consideration.

Josh from Nashville, TN:
What do you think of the new-look Baltimore Titans?

Vic: Rule of thumb is that you don't get better by getting older.

Mark from St. Augustine, FL:
Could you please give us an update on season ticket sales?

Vic: An official update is forthcoming within the next couple of weeks and the news will be uplifting.

Trey from Jacksonville:
Could you tell me some guys that play today who have the same athleticism or close to the same as Bo Jackson?

Vic: There is no one in the game today who can run through tacklers and away from them as Bo Jackson could.

Joey from Hays, KS:
I have heard James Harris is the first black quarterback to open the regular season as the starter. Is that true?

Vic: That's true. It was 1969 and James Harris was a rookie, eighth-round draft choice in the Buffalo Bills' training camp. The '69 season was the final year of the AFL as the next season began the AFL-NFL merger. Harris had the hot hand through training camp and the preseason and coach John Rauch named Harris the starter for the team's season-opener, making Harris the first black quarterback in AFL or NFL history to open the season as his team's starting quarterback. Harris won the job over Jack Kemp and Tom Flores. Kemp won the job back for the bulk of the season but Harris had etched his name in history. In '74, Harris became the Rams' starting quarterback after John Hadl was traded to Green Bay following a 3-2 start. Harris held the job the remainder of the season and played in the Pro Bowl, becoming the first black quarterback in Pro Bowl history. He was the MVP of that game. Harris started 13 games in each of the '75 and '76 seasons. Pat Haden became the Rams' starter in '77.

Ricky from Jacksonville:
I read that Matt Jones was watching film on Randy Moss. Why don't they take the same approach and let Reggie Williams watch tape on T.O.?

Vic: So let me get this straight: You are who you watch? I guess I haven't seen enough Robert Redford movies.

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