I really hope Finley’s injury is not career ending. He is a valuable member of the team and the offense in particular. The match-up problems he causes helps to open up our offense probably more than most of us realize. But he is badly hurt and I think it’s safe to assume he will at least be out for the year. And that means Quarless, Bostik and Stonebrunner need to step up. (I won’t hold my breath for a Stonebrunner surprise – last week I counted one costly roughing the punter penalty and 2, yes 2 clear late hits that weren’t called. While I guess I appreciate the intensity, we don’t need a present-day Ken Stills especially now that that sort of stuff is usually penalized more than it used to be back in the day.)
I think in this game against Minnesota on Sunday, Rodgers and McCarthy should design a few plays specifically for Quarless to get him involved. (And maybe even for Bostik too.) There is a significant psychological factor (a sense of loss/diminished offensive capacity) at play when a team loses an elite player, and Finley was playing at close to an elite level. One way to counter that is by showing confidence in the replacements and getting them involved. I have never been too impressed with Quarless but sometimes when an opportunity like this presents itself, guys rise up. As this article mentions, this is his second chance at this for Quarless really – and I hope Quarless can do it this time.