Now that Favre has firmly confirmed his retirement and appears set on a new path, we at packergeeks, along with GB management, need to start looking forward. It’s still hard to accept, but we need to start looking forward.
That begins today. As GM, I would have already called Takeo Spikes and Chad Pennington. I’m not sure the extent of Spikes shoulder injury, but he was more than quality last year for the Eagles and would bring a talented veteran presence to the defense replacing Poppinga (Spikes is a strong-side linebacker now).
Brother Steve will no doubt rip my lobbying to trade for Chad Pennington. Aaron Rodgers would too. But the fact is, Rodgers is mostly unproven. While many of us feel sorry for him having to sit his first 3 years etc, I don’t think it’s healthy for everyone to assume he should be our next quarterback. He does seem smart, knows the offense, played well in Dallas and it’s fine that he’s considered the first (and only) quarterback we have right now. But I think some veteran competition would be good and Pennington is just the guy. Chad Pennington has not been that great in NY recently, but he is a very good quarterback. Pennington, in a system like ours surrounded by the developing receiving talent we have could be unstoppable (like Eli Manning’s watch commercial). The Clemens guy the Jets replaced him with is atrocious. Anyway, in addition to offering solid competition for Rodgers, Pennington would be a tremendous asset to have ready-and-waiting when Rodgers gets hurt calling him mom on his cell phone before the first game. He probably wouldn’t cost much – maybe a 3rd/4th round pick and he’d be worth it.
Now, I know how much TT values picks, but one flaw with his draft-first mentality is the assumption by him before the draft that all of his draft picks will pan out. What I mean by this is, TT guards all of his draft picks and adds more through trades etc almost as though he believes every one of the draft picks he makes will turn out to be successful. Where’s David Clowney? Couldn’t we have had Randy Moss last year instead of David Clowney? TT, drop a 4th rounder and pick up Pennington.
UPDATE: Steve writes: Andy’s hitting the crack pipe again. If Chad Pennington provides competition for Aaron Rodgers we don’t want anything to do with either one of them. I’d give up a 7th round pick for him, nothing more. When people described Brett Favre’s passes, they talked about a “laser” or a “rope” or a “rocket.” When I see Chad Pennington, the first thing that comes to mind is “wet noodle.” Even in a short passing game, his balls don’t have enough zip to get to receivers without getting picked off. When we went to see the Jets-Packers game at the Meadowlands a few years back, I remember thinking, after one Pennington throw twenty yards down the field, that if I broke on the ball when he released it, I might have been able to pick it off. I was in a luxury box at the time.
Spikes, on the other hand, is intriguing. He is not the player he once was, to be sure, but he’s probably better than Brady Poppinga. And, if Justin Harrell doesn’t pan out, the Packers could ask Spikes to use his neck to stop the run. It’s wider than Gilbert Brown.