Archive for August, 2013

Vince Young, Alex Green and DJ Williams released so far

August 31, 2013
  • While I’m a bit surprised we parted with Young, his last effort in preseason game #4 was pretty bad. The fumbles and missed passes hurt his cause. My guess is something is afoot here – I think we’re going to pick someone up who gets released or trade for someone. (If Matt Moore ends up getting cut I wouldn’t mind picking him up – or working something out with Oakland if Matt Flynn gets demoted.) I will be frustrated if Coleman is the backup.
  • Alex Green simply didn’t deserve to be on this team. He had opportunities in the last couple years to show himself and failed. And he was not good in the preseason.
  • Williams also did not show much.
  • I thought Tyrone Walker showed enough to make the team – but apparently not. He was cut too. I’m still not too comfortable with our WR group. I think we’ll feel the losses of Jennings and Driver more than people seem to be talking about. If Rodgers can make this group excel, he’s THAT good.

2013 NFL Predictions

August 30, 2013

(Note this is not all worked out perfectly with W-L records etc. Just general thoughts on how teams will finish.)

  • NFC East  – Dal 10-6, Phil 9-7, NYG 7-9, Wash 6-10
  • NFC South – NO 11-5, Atl 10-6, Car 8-8, TB 6-10,
  • NFC West – SF 10-6,  Sea 9-7, StL 9-7, AZ 6-10
  • NFC North – Chic 10-6, GB 9-7, Det 8-8, MN 5-11
  • AFC East – NE 13-3, Mia 7-9, Buff 6-10, NYJ 2-14
  • AFC South – Hou 11-5, Tenn 9-7, Indy 8-8, Jax 4-12
  • AFC West – Den 11-5, KC 7-9, SD 6-10, Oak 5-11
  • AFC North – Pitt 10-6, Balt 8-8, Cleve 7-9, Cincy 6-10

NFC Playoffs – NO, Dal, SF, Chic…Wildcards Atl, Sea  —  No over SF for NFC Champ

AFC Playoff – NE, Hou, Den, Pitt…Wildcards Tenn, Balt    —  Hou over Pitt for AFC Champ

Hou over NO for Super Bowl

Thoughts from final meaningless preseason game

August 30, 2013
  • Vince Young looked shaky out there last night – and BJ Coleman didn’t look much better though he didn’t get much of a chance to play. I’m thinking practice squad for Coleman. It’s interesting – on the one hand I like how Young appears to be poised back there and seemed to have command of the huddle/the team. But he fumbled twice and otherwise was not throwing that well. I don’t think it will affect his standing though as the #2 QB.
  • LB Nate Palmer had a couple nice plays – including a sack/fumble.
  • Jolly had a boneheaded late hit, but also had a sack. I think the guy has done enough to make the roster.
  • KC’s backup Bray looked pretty good to me. They haven’t had good quarterbacking there for years.
  • Tim Masthay is a good punter.

Glad preseason is over. Will be interested to see who makes the team.

Ted Thompson scratch golfer?

August 29, 2013

Read here. Interesting interview with TT by Mike Vandermause. A few things I thought were noteworthy:

  • TT used to be a scratch golfer in high school. Very impressive. As a golfer whose best handicap was a 3, I know just how hard it is to get that handicap down to scratch. That somewhat modifies my overall opinion of TT – impressive. (I can also guess at how TT plays the game – probably hits lots of irons off the tees in the name of “course management”. Decidedly not exciting but probably sensible. Brother Steve would frown upon that.)
  • TT’s comments about the ideal job being an area scout were interesting. When coupled with the comments about wanting to travel more (leisure travel, not scouting travel), it makes me wonder if he’ll hang it up when his contract expires in 2015. This would be about the right time frame for Brother Steve and I to prepare for our bid to take over as GMs.
  • His description of his relationship with McCarthy sounds like a healthy one. Again, not sure what else he’d say in a public interview, but it’s not hard to imagine their communication being as he described it – and it sounds positive.
  • I don’t agree with his take on the O-Line. Not sure what else he’d really say in a public interview I suppose, but our O-Line has been a bigger problem over the last few years than he seems to realize. Yes, it’s really hard to have a good O-Line in the NFL these days considering the talent of the defensive players etc. And yes, some of the sacks etc have simply been Rodgers fault – not the line’s fault. But our O-Lines of the past few years have been average at best at pass protection and they’ve been poor at opening holes in the running game. Even if some of the fault lies with poor running decisions by RBs, again, these O-Line groups have been below average overall and I think this is an area of the team that needs more attention from TT. (I know there are several of you that agree with this – RayMidge among them.) Remember how good the O-Lines were for the Giants and Patriots during their big years?  I think TT and staff need to do a better job of both sourcing O-Line talent and adding helpful free agents.
  • His comments about the defense also didn’t make much sense to me. To pretty much dismiss the question about the last 3 playoff losses and the role the defense played – just doesn’t make sense. Regardless of the metrics they are using to assess the defense, the defense has been a problem in the last few years. Throw in there now that we lost 2 defensive leaders in Bishop and Woodson and I think we as fans have very good reason to believe that the defense this year could be pretty bad. We’re going to have to rely on Rodgers and the offense to build leads changing the way opposing offenses play us.

Sad news re DuJuan Harris – out for the season

August 27, 2013

This is really too bad. I thought Harris really could have been a good featured back for the Packers. He is very talented, had a special combination of both strength and wiggle. This is a blow for the Packers. Yes, we have Green, Starks, Franklin and Lacy – but from what I’ve seen, none of those guys have the talent that Harris does. The reason this hurts the team is that I really believed for the first time in years, the Pack had a chance to have a legit running game – with Harris as the lead guy and the others filling in nicely behind him.

Well – here’s to hoping that Lacy can improve upon his most recent 8 carry, -5 yard output from the last game. Ugh.

Packer Thoughts

August 26, 2013

I’m pleased that the Packers have decided to apparently move forward with Vince Young over Harrell. While I can’t pretend to know what kind of development potential Harrell showed in practice, he was not impressive in the games (including the last one) and the bottom line is that Vince Young gives the team a better chance at winning if Rodgers were to get hurt.

I’ll be interested to see the team’s final roster. I was not overly impressed by the team from the small part of the game I saw last week. Even though I know preseason REALLY doesn’t matter for the Packers because Rodgers is only out there for a limited time – I remain skeptical as far as the team’s prospects overall this year. Usually at this time of year I am forced to temper my overly optimistic tendencies. Just not thinking that way this year. I really hope I’m way off here.

 

 

Packers/Cardinals game in review

August 12, 2013

I took my son to his first Packer game Friday – and he loved it. Lambeau really gets the Packer fan experience right. The product on the field, however, was a different story. I wasn’t able to watch as analytically as I usually would but from what I did see, the Packers looked awful. There was very little positive going on. I wasn’t impressed by the running game, the passing game, the defense or even special teams. Here are some more specific thoughts:

  • I know it was the first mostly meaningless preseason game and I know Rodgers barely played. And I know he obviously makes a huge difference for any game. But I came away concerned by exactly that – without Rodgers, this team right now seems really weak. I think this will be one of those years where Rodgers will be forced to squeeze the talent out of everyone for the Packers to even make the playoffs. Ugh.
  • While Tyrone Walker showed some potential, with the loss of Jennings and Driver, our WR corps suddenly seems to lack depth. If Cobb, Nelson or Jones suffer an injury (or subpar play) this year, we could really end up being limited by our WR group.
  • The running game looks like it is in process. Neither Starks, Franklin or Green inspired much confidence. I expect this to be the case as McCarthy continues to try to develop a more threatening running game. I won’t rule out the possibility of some positive development here with Lacy and DuJuan Harris in the mix (and the potential for Franklin). We’ll see.
  • The defense could be a real problem this year. It hasn’t been that good now for a while as it is but now what I’m really worried about is leadership. I think letting Woodson go, while it may have made sense financially, will prove to be one of those quiet intangible losses – because he was a leader. I’m not sure who will step up to be a leader – but one key for becoming a leader is quality play. That’s why when Capers/MM talk about Hawk being a defensive leader I just don’t think it works out quite…because he’s just not good enough.
  • We seriously lack depth at LB. I think this will dog us all year especially in light of the fact that those starting (with the exception of Matthews) are average or below. Not good.
  • I think we may be seeing the end of the Graham Harrell era. I kind of liked him coming out of college but he still seems hesitant to me or something out there. I still am not sure how he didn’t see the rusher coming on the sack/fumble situation. Wasn’t a blind-side hit – I think he must have been locked onto a WR. I just get the sense that he’s overwhelmed by what’s going on out there and is still several beats away from playing with the instinct that probably got him to this level.
  • Vince Young didn’t do a whole lot out there but one thing he did seem to bring instantly was a sense of respect and command. And of course, the threat of running. The players playing with him looked at him differently than the players playing with Harrell. As I’ve said before, I would feel better with Young as the backup if Rodgers got hurt. I’d feel like there would at least be a chance the team could pull off a victory.
  • This Packer team felt very different to me. Again, I know it’s preseason but we’re missing some huge personalities and I feel a general personality void going on or something. While some personalities may not be “missed” (like Jennings…wow…), when guys like Driver and Woodson and even Bishop are gone, it just feels like there is a void now. While the lack of personalities may help the team fly under the radar a bit, I worry that it will more than anything, effectively dump the entire “leadership” burden onto Rodgers – who has plenty to do already.
  • I think this season could essentially end up being a rebuilding year – I thought this before the preseason game and now I believe this even more.

Datone Jones – great quote about Rodgers

August 6, 2013

Read the following excerpt from this article at si.com. Jones sounds promising – and it sounds like he “gets it”:

Now only if Jones could chase down Aaron Rodgers out on the field. The first-round draft pick has been wowed by what the team’s star quarterback can pull off even in practice. “Practicing against Aaron Rodgers is tough,” Jones said. “That’s the hardest game I’ve ever played, and it was at practice.” Jones has befriended Rodgers, the Packers’ first-round draft choice in 2005 who is now the team’s longest-tenured active player.   “I talk to Aaron Rodgers a lot,” Jones said. “I told him one time, I almost intercepted one of his passes, and he was like, `No, I saw you the whole time.’ I was like, `You weren’t even looking at me.’ He said, `Trust me, I know your assignment before you even did it.’ I was like, `This guy is incredible.”’

Read More: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2013/football/nfl/wires/08/02/2020.ap.fbn.packers.datone.jones.0784/index.html#ixzz2bCuRsFIH

 

 

Vince Young to Packers?

August 5, 2013

That’s the word. I know Brother Steve would probably disagree with me on this, as would many Packer fans, but I think this is a good idea. Young has most likely moved beyond his immaturity issues and could be at that point in his career when he realizes it’s all or nothing. He knows that if he wants to make it somewhere he has to work his tail off and be committed. But the main reason why I wouldn’t mind Vince Young being a Packer is that the guy is a winner. He just wins. (Most people are surprised to learn that his NFL career W-L record is 29-21). I know he wasn’t stellar in his stint with the Eagles back in 2011, but I can’t shake the thought that when someone becomes accustomed to winning like Young has for most of his career, it becomes habit. Throw in there that he’d have the opportunity to learn from the best QB in the NFL, and from a good QB developer with an impressive offensive system in McCarthy – and this idea becomes interesting. I say give it a try – nothing to lose. (That said, I think Tyler Thigpen is also available – and he’s a guy I’ve always thought had talent. Might be a good backup to have around.)

 

Bulaga news not good

August 5, 2013

Bulaga is apparently out for the season with torn ACL. This is not good. I have already been concerned about the switching of players on the O-line and our relatively lack of depth on the O-Line. This could hurt.


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