Why ILB is NOT a problem for the Packers


Read here from Tom Silverstein at jsonline. He talks about why the lack of depth/personnel presently at inside linebacker could be a problem for the Packers. I get where he’s coming from for sure and there are pieces of the article I agree with. But the basic notion that this is a problem for the Packers right now, is something I disagree with. Why?

Because the Packers have been poor at the ILB position since Desmond Bishop left – so at ILB, there is nowhere for the team to go but up. Brad Jones and AJ Hawk were poor ILBs. Period. And they used up key roster spots and lots of playing time (until the end of last season). The emergence of Sam Barrington last year brought some hope to the position, as did moving Matthews to ILB on occasion. I am convinced that almost ANY combination we go with at ILB next year (likely Barrington, occasionally withMatthews and occasionally with a newer guy) will do more than Hawk and Jones have. Even if Capers’ scheme tends to render ILBs less valuable or something (as some have contended in the past), I am convinced we will see more productivity from the ILB position next year than we’ve seen since Bishop manned the middle.

2 Responses to “Why ILB is NOT a problem for the Packers”

  1. Dave K Says:

    I absolutely agree with your thoughts on this. I think the group think from fans this off-season is that ILB is a need position and MUST be addressed in free agency or early in the draft. The roster seems thin at ILB but I doubt that is how TT and Capers see it. One, Capers can scheme around it and they only play with one ILB on the field a bunch of the time. Two, they have Matthews who was more effective and disruptive at ILB then OLB last year. Three, they have Barrington who became an effective three down ILB towards the end of the season. So, they have two quality starters if needed at ILB and I think they hope Bradford can take a big year 2 step.

    That all being said, I am sure they would love to add a fast thumping ILB in the draft that could start next to Barrington which would allow Clay to move back outside full time. If a guy doesn’t all their way in the draft they may sign a veteran one year insurance policy. No doubt they want more talent or at least depth at ILB. But, I would say that D-line and CB have higher needs going into the season. A disruptive NT paired with Daniels would do more for this defense then an upgrade at ILB. Same with CB as you just can’t cover up mediocre CB play with scheme for very long in this league. Heck, I may even put OLB as a bigger need going forward then ILB. Peppers is long in the tooth and Perry/Neal are free agents next year.

    This Packer roster in my opinion doesn’t have a lot of true needs but in my opinion the needs in order would be D-Line, CB, OLB, ILB, and then TE. And, of course you never ever pass over a starting caliber OT if you can find one in the draft.

  2. Dave k Says:


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