Greg Bedard comes through with another edition of his “Mondays with Mikey’s Men,” which, the awful alliterative appellation notwithstanding, is one of the best features of Packer reporting available. Lots of questions answered, including a Justin Harrell update and a discussion of our problems defending the run against St. Louis. Great stuff. Read the whole thing, as they say.
Archive for December, 2007
Packernews notebook discusses an injury to Korey Hall that could put him out for the remainder of the season. That would be a big loss. This guy has flown under the radar all season long after making the transition from linebacker in college to fullback in the NFL. He has been a strong factor in Grant’s success running the ball, so this is not good news. Back-up John Kuhn, fortunately, has stepped in nicely when he’s needed to, but as the article indicates, Hall has been valuable on both offense and special teams. And, while McCarthy and company say that not having a back-up FB won’t be a big deal because a tight end could step in, I don’t like that – I think there would be a significant drop-off in run game production if (God forbid) Kuhn went down and we didn’t have a FB back there blocking for Grant. Hopefully, nobody else will get hurt until Hall returns.
As he is wont to do (wont is a great word), Steve is getting carried away here. I’ve stated throughout that I think Jennings is “very good”, to quote myself. He has a knack for getting to the endzone and he’s a great YAC player. No question. He’s smart and a top-flight #2 receiver. I don’t have a man-aversion, as it may be (alert: new verbal immunity expression), to Jennings. I just don’t have a suffocating mancrush on him like Steve does. The crux of my argument is simply that I think he seems to be working hard to get Favre to throw bombs to him and it may be leading to unnecessary turnovers. (Not just in St. Louis twice but also in the Dallas game and a few other games). And nowhere did I say or imply Favre is having a bad season. Obviously that’s not the case as he’s been outstanding – but he has thrown several picks. My argument hinges on my belief that at least several of the picks Favre has thrown this year were perhaps not caused, but at least affected, by Jennings’ overzealosity, if you like.
I’ll admit, I’m picking at a small thing but great teams (and their fans/bloggers) should be able to analyze the small things in an effort to zone in on perfection.
Tempting as it is to engage Andy on his nerf punting prowess, I’ll pass.
But on Greg Jennings, I’ll happily answer his rather bizarre claims. Andy has been a Jennings doubter since early last year, for no apparent reason. (Just as he is quick with his man-crushes, he is fast with his man-aversions, if you will. And speaking of man-crushes, as I’m writing this, Andy’s current man-crush, Tarvaris Jackson, threw his second interception of the first half.)
Back to Jennings. He is currently the 13th receiver in the NFL in yards per game. And he’s 4th — that’s right, 4th — in touchdown receptions. Did I mention that he missed two games? Factor that in and he’s scoring TDs at a better pace than any receiver in the league other than Randy Moss. All that, and Andy concedes Jennings “isn’t bad — he’s very good?” That’s it?
And here’s a question that should end this silly debate: If Jennings causes Favre to throw risky passes, why is Favre having his best season ever in terms of pass attempts to interception ratio? See this article, which reads, in relevant part: “He’s on pace to surpass his career marks in completion percentage, yards passing and fewest interceptions per attempts.”
I wouldn’t say Jennings was open on either of those 2 interceptions yesterday with a defensive back in tight coverage and a safety over to help. In fact, his unwideness, as it were, was clearly what led to the interceptions. And, adding to the frustration, he didn’t seem to do much in the way of trying to disrupt the picks either. Wuss. James Jones at least would have tried to break up the pass. And, Jennings’ smiling the whole time doesn’t mean much – a used car salesman smiles at you too, it’s a tool for persuasion. Again, Jennings isn’t bad – he’s very good, but it’s still likely he’s playing a role in some of Favre’s chancy throws into coverage.
Now more importantly, to ward off any concerns readers may have re my athletic prowess, I’ll immodestly share that my football career began as the 1st pick overall in the 1982 McKinley Elementary School Draft (3rd grade). I didn’t disappoint. I played all positions including handling the punting and kicking duties (20 yards per punt – nerf). But when I was the wideout, I just let my burning speed aided by my Zips and my wideopenness, if you like, do the talking. No need to badger the QB, the QB knew I was always “wide” and that I’d be money in the YAC department.
How were you, Steve in elementary football – or were you already sidelined by Osgood Schlatter’s?
next year. Hopefully they will be returning to Lambeau for the second time in a year.
One of the cool things about having a blog is that we can see which posts have generated the most interest. We can also see what kind of internet searches have sent readers to PackerGeeks.
Here’s why that’s interesting: Almost every single day someone — presumably some of you — conducts a search wanting more information on Larry McCarren’s messed up pinky. (It’s basically a right angle.) Andy wrote about it here.
(We also get a lot of traffic because of Elizabeth Hurley searches. I’m guessing this, ahem, is not what most guys are looking for.)
Back to McCarren’s pinky. Someone wrote about it this summer. And this guy has come up with a smart proposal:
We gathered together to watch the Green Bay Packers pre-season game when Heidi and I came to a startling conclusion — no matter when Larry McCarren is on the television giving commentary, whatever he says is completely overshadowed because we’re staring at his grossly disfigured dislocated left pinky finger.
I completely understand that Mr. McCarren’s pinky, which is permanently bent at a 90-degree left angle, is sort of a badge of honor for him, showing he was one tough SOB when he played center for the Green Bay Packers from 1973-1984. I have always been a big Larry McCarren fan and think he is a smart football guy with a great radio voice.
Packer fans should take up a collection to send money to Larry so he can get his pinky fixed.
If we can’t raise a lot of money, we thought of several options. I suggested he get some tape from the Packers training room and simply tape his left pinky finger to his left ring finger. Heidi went one step further saying that Larry could use a popsicle stick as a splint and then secure it with flesh-colored Band-Aids. That would straighten out his pinky and depending on how close the camera was, we wouldn’t even notice.
In any regard, Larry’s got to do something about that distracting pinky finger. He talks so much with his hands that it is mesmerizing.
Given that it’s responsible for half of our traffic just because of that one post, I think Andy should contact McCarren himself and try to get a picture of it so that we can post it here. Good idea, no?
The fact is, Greg Jennings is open so often that he probably doesn’t need to remind Favre. (If you need more details about Jennings’ breakout season, see here.) And Jennings is always smiling when he’s talking to Favre, something that suggests his quarterback isn’t aggravated by whatever their discussions are.
In any case, the annoying kid in high school wasn’t the guy who was open and reminded the quarterback, but the guy who told the quarterback that he was open when he wasn’t.
For reasons I probably don’t need to explain, Andy should understand this.
Because CBS, Fox and the NFL Network focus 90% of their broadcasts on the Packers and often just on Favre, we as fans have the benefit of seeing lots of Favre’s sideline interactions. Over the course of the season I’ve watched these interactions and have been particularly interested in Favre’s frequent discussions with Greg Jennings. Brother Steve astutely called the overtime bomb in Denver that Favre heaved to Jennings because throughout that game, there were several shots of Jennings talking to Favre and Steve surmised that something was brewing. Nice call Steve. However, I’ve noticed that several of Favre’s picks this year have been on passes thrown to Jennings (not just the 2 yesterday) and I’ve begun to worry a bit that Favre is being lured into these throws by an overzealous Greg Jennings.
Is Jennings that kid in grade school who comes back to the huddle proclaiming after each play that he was “wide” and that the QB should just “throw a bomb” because he’ll just get it. I think so. I do like Jennings and think he’s a high quality receiver (though I don’t have the mancrush on him that Steve does). I’m just concerned that he may have the power of persuasion with Favre that could be causing some unnecessary turnovers. The same play has worked in other games, but opponents may be catching on.
Yes. Nall was not with the team last year when McCarthy and his high-octane offense arrived – so arguments that Nall already knew the system don’t really fly. Arguments that Nall knows the Green Bay culture well and cold-weather play well are decent, but not adequate. I think the only real reason Nall was brought back was because he’s a good friend of Favre’s (hunting buddy etc). Let’s face it, he’s not a steal of a pick-up for anyone (as evidenced by Nall being cut by several teams). I’m sure there were other QBs sitting out there who at the very least could have brought more potential to the table. But why do that when Rodgers should be OK to back Favre up going forward (until Rodgers gets another Paul Molitor-like injury) and Nall has a good connection with our most important player? I think this was an intentional signing just for Favre and a smart one psychologically.