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Cory's Corner: The Packers defense needs answers

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Cory's Corner: The Packers defense needs answers

If the season started today, how confident would you be in the Packers defense?

I say that because the defensive warts were exposed last year. The lack of depth in the secondary, another edge rusher besides Nick Perry and someone else on the defensive line to take advantage of the double teams that Mike Daniels gets.

General manager Ted Thompson still has $27.7 million to play with. Now we all know how much Thompson loves his draft picks, but he has to ask himself if he would get the same value with a rookie as opposed to trading that pick to New England for Malcolm Butler. The Saints have been interested, but they don’t want to dole out an 11th overall pick – which is costly.

Butler will be entering his fourth season and was frustrated that his 2016 salary was $600,000. According to Pro Football Focus, the 27-year-old was the No. 2 cornerback last season after stepping into Darrelle Revis’ huge shoes.

T.J. Watt is currently pegged by CBS Sports as the Packers first round selection. I think that’s a great pick. Watt appears to be a high-energy guy like his brother and will punish NFL quarterbacks for a long time.

However, the question is timing. The Packers aren’t in a position to wait two years for a player to blossom and develop. They need impact players right now. They advanced to the NFC Championship Game thanks to the right arm of Aaron Rodgers and the most unreal six-game winning streak to close out the regular season.

So in order for this team to get any better, the Packers have to realize who they are without Rodgers. In 2013, Rodgers broke his collarbone and missed seven games. He came back in the season finale to win the division, but it was evident that this team desperately needs him.

If Rodgers isn’t playing for the Packers, Green Bay turns into the Bears. Rodgers can put a team on his back and drag them into the playoffs — which he has done five times. But he needs help to get through the postseason.

If Thompson doesn’t like what he sees in Butler, or if he cannot pull the trigger on trading a first round pick, then he needs to reexamine the Packers’ pass rushers. Can Clay Matthews be a consistent edge rusher? Because if he can’t, the Packers shouldn’t be taking a $15 million cap hit this year just because he was productive in the past. Does he bring in a guy like DeAndre Levy to add pass-rushing depth?

Thompson has made his decisions on Eddie Lacy, Datone Jones, T.J. Lang, JC Tretter, Julius Peppers, Jared Cook, Micah Hyde and Mike Pennel. Those guys aren’t coming back.

There’s a reason Rodgers said the Packers “can take a big step this offseason,” after getting routed by Atlanta in the NFC Championship Game. It’s because he knows that the Packers aren’t that far away from getting to another Super Bowl. But with the Cowboys infusion of young talent, it’s not going to get any easier when that team starts to peak.

With so many injuries in the secondary combined with spotty play by Matthews and Jones, there were many questions. The time has come for Thompson to come up with some answers. 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (141) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Bearmeat's picture

Corey,

You're only about 6 years behind on this article. This has been TT's MO since 2011. He's not going to get rid of any draft picks for any 27 year old corner, and cetainly not one in the first 3 rounds.

FA is done for GB. They got Bennett - be thankful for at least that. Meanwhile, everyone should consider sending letters to the board of directors imploring them to put pressure on Ted to either build his NFL via all available avenues, or to retire.

Nick Perry's picture

Rodgers is signed for 3 more years so barring any serious injury he'll be here through 2019. As unthinkable as this is, you have to wonder if he doesn't try and force the Packers hand and ask to be traded or just move on after 2019. He dropped a "BIG LUG" last season when he talked publically about "Going all In".

Losing Lang probably didn't sit well with Rodgers. Demovsky and others have mentioned more than once how the Packers "Not being in the same Ballpark" on their offer to Lang didn't sit well with some players in the Packers locker room. I COMPLETELY understand not giving Lang $19 million in guaranteed money. I can't and don't understand the Packers offer of only $6.5 guaranteed, not for a player like Lang. The message sent on the Lang offer wasn't a good one by TT. Not only in the Packers Locker Room but across the NFL.

Signing Bennett and Kendricks were nice moves, the handling of Lang was not. Christ at least ACT as though you wanted to keep him.

JacFrost's picture

The bigger question, and they guys looking to be drafted know it all via their agents and just correspondence, that if your picked by the Packers, expect cheap ball and expect to be let go to save bucks down the road. That can be a plus or minus to some of them.
I mean if you know the org doesn't pay big bucks other than to thee star, you may not want to play there or be drafted by them?

dobber's picture

Is it better to sign a huge deal with someone else and get cut before you can reap a large chunk of the value?

lambeau66's picture

agree

Michael Grunewald's picture

Agreed ... at least six years. For years, I have listened to Teddy's defenders so "Trust Teddy" as another crop of his draft picks is allowed to walk out the door minus a second contract because they haven't "developed" to the expectation. When a team is two or three impact players away today... you can't expect to plug them all through the draft. This team remains an impact player at each defensive level away from being a Super Bowl caliber team.

Nick Perry's picture

Too many "IF'S" right now on the Packers Defense to feel confident in it.

IF Clark, Frackrell, Martinez, and Lowry can make the 2nd year jump the Packers continue to count on so heavily that will go a long way in improving the front 7. IF Perry and Matthews could both stay healthy with Matthews at least looking somewhat like a $15 Million OLB that would go a long way in helping the defense.

The real "IF'S" will revolve around House, Randall, Rollins, and to a lesser degree Gunter. IF House can play like he did for the Jags in 2015 obviously that helps. But the real IF's revolve around Randall and Rollins. Both were ranked near the bottom of CB rankings in 2016. When opposing QB's threw at Randall, Rollins, Gunter, and Hyde they all gave up QB ratings of over 115. I believe Randall and Rollins were both closer to 122. Obviously injuries played a huge role in that, but Randall was giving up QB ratings like that before he hurt his groin. Hard to win in the NFL when QB's are near perfect against your defense.

Bearmeat's picture

It's not going to happen Nick.

I have to say that I will never root for my team to fail. I learned that lesson last year. I thought the season was over at 4-6. I thought it would be better for them to miss the playoffs so there would be massive change instead of cosmetic change. Instead, the team turned it around marvelously. It was a great run, but it still ended up short of the goal.

What I will say is that if this team has yet another routine exit from the playoffs, I really hope it will be as plain as day that it wasn't injuries, it wasn't ARod having a bad game, nor was it a bad bounce or bad luck. No, I will be hoping that it was a lack of talent. A lack of 2nd year players "making the jump." And that this becomes so simply obvious that TT's "draft and develop only" mantra does NOT work to get a team over the hump to winning a super bowl.

I want ALL that pressure on his head. And I want him to change. But I don't believe he will, so I want him gone.

stockholder's picture

It is time, TT just retire. I am not looking for any jump by the Lbs. Frackrell or martinez. (Couple of splash plays only) It still will be Mathews , Perry, and Ryan. The guy that I would keep an eye on is Lowrey. He will make the jump. And I believe his play at the end of the year showed promise.

Nick Perry's picture

Agreed. At some point ALL fingers need to start pointing at TT. Even this offseason as exciting as the Bennett and Kendricks signings were, Thompson hasn't done much of anything to improve the Packers defense. Glad he resigned Perry and added House but what else has he done. Elliott Wolf was said to be "Pissed Off" last season after Thompson's lack of involvement in FA, even to the point where there were heated words between the two. Murphy needs to tear himself away from Titletown long enough to put some pressure on Thompson to win a SB and NOW. Instead Murphy seems satisfied with just making the playoffs and HUGE profits, and it's been that way too long.

Since '61's picture

Nick - Murphy's focus is on revenue streams, (e.g., Titletown). The stadium is sold out win or lose. As you correctly state TT's role is to build the team. While lack of Lombardi trophies is disappointing for us as fans if you compare the Packers record for the last 8 seasons versus any team except the Cheatalots TT has done a great job in the eyes of Murphy and the Packers BODs. So we have a situation where the $$$ is rolling in, the stadium is full and there is no sense of urgency to rock the boat. Having said that, I don't see any justification why TT would sit on about $15 -18 million of cap space even after covering our draft picks. That fact alone is giving me some hope (misguided though I may be) that TT still has an FA signing or two in mind but I can't see who at this point. Many of the big corporations that I work with will usually sit on a boatload of cash before the right acquisition, or infrastructure investment, or stock buy back takes place. Maybe, hopefully, TT is expecting an experienced defender to be released like Peppers was a few years back, who knows? I do know that if he does sit on all that cash and we fall short of the SB again, then TT should be held accountable. Give him his "Golden Parachute" and move on. Thanks, Since '61

croatpackfan's picture

Maybe TT has Aaron paycheck in mind when he keep all that money... Who knows. I think TT knows...

Matt Gonzales's picture

We have some 2014 draft picks that will require superstar money should we not be able to extend them during the year (plus both our starting Ss are hitting FA at the same team should GB not pick up HHCDs fifth year option.

Draft picks pricing themselves out of GB from their performance is evidence we can develop, not evidence the system is flawed. SEA (and maybe NY???) is the only NFC team since GBs last SB appearance to get there more than once, and they're on the verge of total mediocrity. SF is a dumpster fire just a few short years after their run. Ditto for Big Blue, Carolina, etc... Superbowl appearances or victories are usually the death knell for an NFC team but GB is relevant year after year. If you aren't satisfied with that root for the Pats, because they are the exception to the rule.

Tundraboy's picture

Could not say it any better. Thanks Bear meat.

Let's just hope for one season we get lucky and hit on a pick or two that make a big impact. We win it all and Capers and TT ride off into the sunset.

That and hitting Lotto would make my year and then some.

GBPack's picture

The IF's are what Ted counts on because he believes in his picks and the for the coaching staff to get the most out of the them. As you said, if Martinez, Lowry, Clark and Fackrell improve in some capacity next year the front 7 could be in fine shape.

The secondary needs a Davante Adams-like turnaround. From wanting the guy cut in year two to a breakout year 3. Need that from all 3 of the young corners. Add a couple defensive picks into the mix and we might not be as bad off as we think. That is, if we want to look at things as optimistically as possible. :)

pooch's picture

Well if the past is any indication these players will regress or stagnate

badaxed's picture

There is only one guarantee , Matthews will pull a hammy!

JacFrost's picture

I love the answer Jimmy Johnson gave about his Miami and Dallas teams: "You can't coach speed you have to draft it". Either you go out and find guys with speed and quickness or you dont but the so so guys are never going to become fast and quick. Rollins Randle and Gunther are not going to be faster and better next year, they are what they are

Hematite's picture

As it stands right now, the Packers defense is worse than it was the day they walked off the field after being slaughtered by the Falcons in the NFCCG.
It should have been imperative for Thompson to use all avenues to improve the defense during the off season.
Looking at Perry's history, he is still a question mark.
House is just a guy but he came cheap.
A trade for a top notch corner could probably have been swung but Thompson has neither the imagination or the communication skills to pull off such a trade.
2017 will likely be another year where Aaron Rodgers drags the Packers into the playoffs but the defense will fail again.

porupack's picture

Well, there were options before having to sacrifice a draft pick. Cash and draft picks are the two bits of capital for getting talent. Between the two, Cash available is useless if not used, whereas losing a draft pick results in an immediate tradeoff by losing out on a #1 draft pick.
Still, I'm not totally sold on MButler succeeding elsewhere like he did in NE. I attribute some of his success to BB's schemes....and smart that NE is...to know that he has inflated value and they're trying to leverage it now. If they thought he was a true #1 corner, they wouldn't be playin games with him, nor invested so heavily in Gilmore.

Savage57's picture

Rodgers is learning the same lesson Favre had to. No matter how much you plead with the guy to at least make an effort to surround you with a couple more guys to carry some of the load, Ted's not going to do it.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Well with all do respect DPF: When you make a STUPID POST like this, someone ought to tell you, You don't know what the hell you're talking about. Favre was FROZEN STIFF in that game. Why didn't they give AR A series for Favre to get WARM. If you want to Blame The Player who lost that game for us, BLAME CROSBY. He Missed the FG that cost us that game, as he's done many times since. AND DON'T GIVE ME ANY OF YOUR B.S., or you'll get it Right Back!!
LVT

dobber's picture

Sure...let's take our HOF QB off the field and put an absolute unknown in the game. That's a gamble I'm going to take...

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

UNKNOWN?? He played well that year from what I can remember. He could of had a series during Regulation. Crosby gets a pass but Favre don't?
I'm a Big Fan Of MM, but he's at fault as well. He had the team in doors all week. Favre took the Bullet for that loss, but if Crosby makes the Damn FG, we don't get to the INT.
LVT

dobber's picture

Aaron Rodgers logged a significant number of snaps against Dallas (ONE game) that season and did look good. Aside from that, his performance was very spotty and mostly in relief roles. He had little extended play time and zero playoff experience. He likely took very few reps with the starters in practice in preparation for the game because, you know, backup QB.

I don't know what you're referring to regarding Crosby's FG...

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

dobber, All of what you say is true. However, unless you watched that game on TV, you couldn't see how Frozen Solid Favre was. He needed to come out, at least for a series. It would have made a difference, in my opinion. He was so cold, he was having trouble breathing. I remember him holding that small piece of cloth in front of his nose.

In the final analysis, he gets the Big Bucks, & takes The Blame for the loss, but not all of it. I looked for stats on the game, but couldn't find any. From what I can remember, Crosby missed an easy FG at some point in that game, that would have wound up being the game winner in regulation.

If that didn't happen, then I had more to drink than you did, & I apologize.
LVT

dobber's picture

I was in the south endzone at that game. It was cold enough that the people around us couldn't drink their beers fast enough...they were quite literally beer slushies.

Nick Perry's picture

Hmmmm.... I haven't indulged in years and years but that game certainly called for a flask of hot apple cider, brandy, and cinnamon sticks. Growing up in Minneapolis and going to Packers / Vikings games at the old Metropolitan Stadium (What a dump) I can say you didn't need to worry about "Beer Slushies" when you had a flash of that! : )

Gotta love those dedicated Packers fans and their Beer though!

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Manning was a lot younger than Favre. Favre needed relief in that game. It was easy enough to see. I'm not surprised, that you couldn't see it. Obviously Manning at his age could handle Cold better. There was plenty of blame to go around for that loss, not just the INT. How would you know anyway?
LVT

Tundraboy's picture

As I remember. Farve was bundled up like an Eskimo and Eli didn't even have a turtleneck. In the end Brett made one of his most bone headed attempts to be a hero when less was more. I'm still pissed.

Nick Perry's picture

Pretty sure Favre was "Begging" Thompson to sign players just about every year including 2006 when he signed Pickett and Woodson. Matter of fact Favre had made it known he wanted Thompson to sign some "High Profile FA". Just saying.....

pooch's picture

Teds a turd

badaxed's picture

What kind of a turd? The kind you can't expel? bound up? a stinky one? a slimy one? or just plain diarrhea.

pooch's picture

The big D

fthisJack's picture

TT will now wait until after the draft and try to scoop up some high price veteran that has been cut from his team. that's what we can look forward to. waiting for scraps to hit the floor, Ted.

Bert's picture

Still a long way to TC but as it stands today the defense just any good. Way too many "ifs" to be optimistic with this group. I don't count on the draft providing any help for 2017. Unless Ted can make a trade or sign another FA or two we are pretty much counting on an injury-free season and lots of "ifs".

pooch's picture

Were f ked

Lphill's picture

No the defense is not improved the entire football world knows how bad the Packers defense is , strange stat tho the packers were ranked 23 rd in forcing 3 and outs yet the Falcons were 24 th and the steelers 25 th.

egbertsouse's picture

Notwithstanding the stats, you could look at the Falcon and Steeler D and see they were better than GB. Falcons were faster and Steelers were more physical. Packers were soft and slow. The eye-test clearly showed that.

Since '61's picture

Cory - the Packers defense needs players, that's the answer. We need better players at CB, LB and DL. Expecting players to make their second or third year leap is fine when you have the luxury of having solid position groups. But we don't have solidity at CB, OLB and DL in particular. We need at least one guy who can play consistently in each of those groups and as of today we still don't have them. We need Clark and Lowry to make leaps, plus Martinez, Ryan, Elliot, Fackrell, Randall, and Rollins. That's 8 defensive players and way too much leaping to expect. This issue gets compounded due to injuries as we very painfully learned last season. We don't need HOF guys but we need guys who know how to play and who can get off the field on third and long in particular. Now I realize that we're not done yet. We could find a CB or a pass rusher in the draft but drafting at 29 we would be lucky to pick a player who can step in and start right away. But you never know, HHCD was starting in his first year but we was #21 IIRC. As for DL unless we pick Bob Lilly or Alan Page we probably have a 2-3 year developmental window there. As an example, it has taken 3 years for Clowney to make an impact. We can still pick up one or two released players to help out after the draft but the reality is, if they are released they are not likely to be much better than the players we have. UDFAs may provide help as well. As I mentioned in a previous post, the offense will carry the team again, as for the defense, it's a big question with a TBD, unless and until we add one or two better players. Thanks, Since '61

Tarynfor12's picture

" But we don't have solidity at CB, OLB and DL in particular. We need at least one guy who can play consistently in each of those groups and as of today we still don't have them."

Yet we gave Perry a 5 year deal, didn't try to trade Fabio to Cleveland along with Hundley, made no significant attempt to get any of the better position players of note here. But, come camp when any of our previously failed guys makes one play...all this frustration by many, less myself, will become extreme optimism while in denial again until...January.

Since '61's picture

Taryn - I wasn't crazy about re-signing Perry either but at least the deal is reasonably team friendly. Now it's up to Perry to deliver. If he doesn't either because of his inconsistent play and/or injury that should be on TT and somewhere, someday, someone should hold him accountable. But for now the playoffs and the $$$ keep rolling in. Fine for Murphy and the BOD, but disappointing for us fans expecting more Lombardi's in the trophy case. My concern is will TT sit on about $15 - 18 million of cap space even after covering our draft picks? And if so why? As for trading CM3 and Hundley to the Browns, I'm assuming that you mean for their #1 pick? If so, it would take more than CM3 and Hundley. We would probably need to give them at least our #1 and #2 pick as well, maybe more. Hundley has proven nothing and CM3, who knows what's left in the tank. Now that the Browns have Osweiler they can hold out for even more picks. Like you, I believe that pre-season performances mean nothing and I've seen too many pre-seasons now to get optimistic over some over achieving UDFA or draft pick. As usual I will reserve my thoughts about the 2017 Packers until we get past the final pre-season game and we see who is healthy and on the final 53. A lot can happen between now and then. Thanks, Since '61

Tarynfor12's picture

I'd take their first 2nd rd for Matthews and Hundley and use it to move in the 1st. Deals can be made as long as you accept everyone isn't worth another teams 1st rd pick.

Tarynfor12's picture

Let me ask....the way Matthews is playing and has the last couple of seasons, do you ir would you value him a 1st rd value.
Just because he was doesn't equate automatically he still is.

Bearmeat's picture

CM3 hasn't had a 1st round value since mid 2013. Maybe even 2012. Right around the time he probably stopped taking HGH and/or steroids.

I know I'm going to get hammered for this, but it makes a ton of sense.

Nick Perry's picture

What exactly do you think Hundley is going to bring? Granted he showed something 2 years ago against a bunch of guys who aren't even in the NFL anymore or worse yet never made it to the NFL. Thankfully we haven't had to see him in the regular season much but when we have he's far from impressive.

slit's picture

It's not a 5 year deal - NFL contracts are all relative based on guaranteed money; it's a two year deal, and then a year to year deal after that. Perry could be cut in year 3 with a minimal cap hit. And the Matthews/Hundley trade to Cleveland is laughable. Even the Browns know that CM3 is extremely overpaid & overrated. Hundley went in the 5th rd, and hasn't shown enough development to warrant much more than that in a trade now. IF the Packers ate a significant portion of CM3's contract, THEN you might be able to get their last 2nd rd pick.

Tarynfor12's picture

I didn't say a 1st rd should be the price, but would take a 2nd...champ.

slit's picture

I'm sure you would. Too bad it would never happen. Keep dreaming, arm-chair GM!

dobber's picture

"It's not a 5 year deal - NFL contracts are all relative based on guaranteed money; it's a two year deal, and then a year to year deal after that. Perry could be cut in year 3 with a minimal cap hit."

You'll have to explain to me how it's only a minimal cap hit in year 3. There's at least $11.1M to count against the cap if he's cut after the 2nd year of his deal (but before his guaranteed roster bonus kicks in). $11.1M against a single year is a pretty harsh hit.

"And the Matthews/Hundley trade to Cleveland is laughable....THEN you might be able to get their last 2nd rd pick.

With all due respect, the more laughable thing is that we pretend to know enough about how the league operates or how GMs--even TT--evaluate talent or ascribe values to players or draft picks to make these kinds of statements.

slit's picture

*After year 3.

Oh, I think we all know how TT ascribes value to draft picks.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

It is still a $7.4M dead money hit to cut Perry after season 3 and before season 4 of his contract. It is possible that the cap grows so rapidly that $7.4M won't seem as large as it does now. But you've said it is a 2 or a 3 year contract, and you won't budge.

pooch's picture

The Falconc defense trended up during the season bad to good,Green Bays did the opposite especially after Dallas exposed there run defense

MarkinMadison's picture

The Falcons defense was also loaded with young guys who started coming on towards the end of the year. And I posted this a while ago but I think it is worth repeating - when you pull the numbers for CM3 and Peppers, but were at or above their career averages in sacks in their rookie years. Either a guy can get to the QB or he can't. Sure, technique can get better, but the raw explosiveness of youth is the cornerstone. There is no reason that TT can't draft a pass rusher and improve the defense this year - except that you are relying on someone capable to fall.

pooch's picture

TJ Watt for sure,he best not take another basketball pkayer in the 1st

dobber's picture

Which basketball player did he take in the 1st round?

If you'll recall, Julius Peppers was a basketball player taken in round 1. He turned out just fine.

dobber's picture

...Tony Gonzalez?

MITM's picture

I believe he was talking about Rollins who was a secound rounder not a first rounfer. We took a baseball player that year in the first round. That was the confusion.

MITM's picture

I believe he was talking about Rollins who was a secound rounder not a first rounfer. We took a baseball player that year in the first round. That was the confusion.

Bert's picture

I know Ted would never consider it but.......A Brandon Cooks type trade where he trades a couple draft picks for an immediate starter on defense isn't such a bad idea.

croatpackfan's picture

It is very, very bad idea...

Bert's picture

Terrible idea. Heaven forbid we trade a first round pick for a guy who may put us in position to actually win a SB. Only an idiot like Belichick would something that stupid.

Tundraboy's picture

That is a great idea. In reality thats what we should do more often. Stockpiling mid round picks is OK but should not be the ironclad rule, every dam year.

egbertsouse's picture

I think that Ted's plan for the defense is to have the offense average 40 points a game. Otherwise, he has done diddly-squat.

badaxed's picture

I like Pooch's "Turd" comment. Time for some ex-lax and "Dump" TT.

Nick Perry's picture

"But with the Cowboys infusion of young talent, it’s not going to get any easier when that team starts to peak."

The Cowboys have lost Carr, Claiborne, Wilcox, and Church. All 4 of those players were starters in the Cowboys base or nickel defense and all played in the secondary. I can't wait to see Jerry try to navigate through that.

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

Agreed. I'm also only frustrated by 2 FA's leaving--Tretter and Jones.

Thrilled to see we didn't overpay for Hyde or Lang. Those were big, big wins in my book. Huge.

pooch's picture

Iam thrilled we didnt sign D.Jones or Peppers.Not so thrilled we lost Lang and Tretter,should have held on to Tretter.As bad as the defensive is and not signing 3 players how do we get better? Oh yeash we have Elliot coming back pencil him in for 12 sacks Ted

pooch's picture

dont think he would of bitch at 4-5 mil a year to play guard

dobber's picture

When he could be making almost $6M/yr to play his natural position?

(Hand on chin) "Hmmm, play the position I've been shown to be good at for more money or play a position I have no track record at for less money and a legitimate shot at getting cut if it turns out I suck...hmm, what...to...do..."

slit's picture

Yeah, Teddy loves to cut his own guys... Tretter would have to be a colossal failure to get cut.

slit's picture

1 - How can you make the assertion that Tretter "would definitely bitch" about playing G?! Do you know him personally? Did he tell you he Would only be happy if at C? Why do you make dumbass comments all the time?

2 - Explain to me how Tretter isn't good at G. How many games how you seen him play there? Again, just a random assumption, with no facts to back it up. Dumbass.

MITM's picture

Tretter should have been the center and Linsley moved to guard if they knew they were most likely going to lose Lang, Linsley certainly has the better body for guard than Tretter. That being said Im not too heated about not paying Tretter what Cleveland ultimately did.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

MITM - even if Linsley/Tretter can play guard at a high level (which I doubt), Tretter and Linsley were never healthy at the same time such that one could play OC and the other could try to play guard.

MITM's picture

But somehow Don Barclay who sucks at every position on the offensive line is able to "pull off" the distinction of being a guy who can play both? Please. I have a hard time believing Linsley couldnt and has NEVER AT ANY POINT in his football career had to take a snap at guard. Meanwhile some people on here suggest that Bulaga should move to guard so Spriggs can start. I think in the hypothetical scenario we kept Tretter that Linsley playing guard would have left us WAY better off. Thats ALL i was saying.

Tundraboy's picture

Bingo

Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

Trading a 1st for Butler when he's about to get paid big is quite possibly the DUMBEST IDEA I'VE HEARD THIS ENTIRE OFF-SEASON.

dobber's picture

I suspect that a team that trades for Butler or Trumaine Johnson (who I think I would rather have than Butler in a sign/trade scenario) puts themselves in a very difficult negotiating position. You've just dealt a high pick for a talented guy at a premium position on a one-year deal...you NEED to recoup value on that pick or you just screwed the pooch. You're in a spot where the player holds all the cards...not good.

Bert's picture

kinda depends on where your team is Dobber. I think if you can get a player via trading a #1 pick that will put you in a position to win a SB now you should go for it. Most of these draft picks will not pan out anyhow. When you get close and have a QB like Rodgers I think maybe taking the short term view with an established player may be more valuable than more draft picks for the future. IMHO.

pooch's picture

Okay guys quit with trade talk,Ted the Turd does not trade

marpag1's picture

Teams will work out a long term contract extension BEFORE the trade is actually made, or else you don't make the trade.

To be clear, I would definitely NOT trade my first round pick for Butler.

Bert's picture

I think you only trade your #1 for Butler, or anybody, if you feel like he's the missing piece that would bring you a SB. If Ted or any GM sees a missing piece available then they should gladly trade their #1. Or be content to stand pat and hope.

dobber's picture

I agree...and at this stage we all seem to be saying this defense is more than one piece away from being championship quality.

Not only are you trading away a 1st round pick, you're trading 4-5 years of cheap contracts on a guy you're counting on to be a key contributor. Not only are you losing that, but you're adding a big cap hit at the same time. It's a double-whammy.

Bert's picture

I dunno. We have been re-building, re-tooling, re-animating the defense via the draft for the last 6 years. Maybe time to at least consider a different approach besides trying to win with a bunch of "cheap" rookie contracts and Clay's huge cap hit. Not working.

dobber's picture

...and I thumb-upped you marpag because you're absolutely right. I stand down.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Marpag is correct. Teams can trade future guaranteed money, so there are several ways of signing a player and then immediately trading the player without having to eat guaranteed money. One way is instead of a signing bonus the guaranteed money comes in the form of a reporting bonus with GB negotiating the contract directly with the player's agent. GB could be responsible for all of the guaranteed money.

That said, I don't like the idea of trading a high pick for an expensive CB.

marpag1's picture

"Trading a 1st for Butler when he's about to get paid big is quite possibly the DUMBEST IDEA I'VE HEARD THIS ENTIRE OFF-SEASON."

Could be. But a close second would have to be the notion of "bringing in a guy like DeAndre Levy to add pass-rushing depth."

Levy has 3.5 sacks in his eight year career. In six of eight years he had zero sacks. But yeah... 0.4375 sacks per year. "Pass rushing depth," you know. lol

Tundraboy's picture

No Butler for me that smells like disaster. Levy.??? 4 years ago yes. Now. No way

cheesehead1's picture

We need to add some veteran leadership and experience on defense. Hoping TT can add a free agent or two to bolster our pathetic defense, and then hit on a couple of draft picks. I know, a lot of if's, but now's time to take a chance or two and turn this defense around! Even when we were fairly healthy early last season, the D still got lit up time and again. Unfair to rely on Aaron and the offense to put up 30 plus just to have a chance to win.

Bert's picture

Good points. I think a team is either A) Trying to win now B) Building for the future or C) Sitting on the fence. The Packers seem to be stuck on B & C. Afraid to make the big move to get to A but hoping to hit the jackpot with a draft choice to two to get them there.

Dzehren's picture

We need a shut down corner & all pro type edge OLB and put Matthews at ILB. FA is not over yet. TT's contract expires in 2 years & may be more aggressive moving forward ( House- Bennett- Kendricks is a good start)

cheesehead1's picture

Hope I'm wrong, but just can't see Mathews staying healthy. His track record pretty well confirms that. Still have faith in TT. He's hit and missed big time in the draft over the years, but I'm sure you could say the same for every GM. Just hoping he goes all in to fix the D. Last years D was an embarrassment, with or without injuries.

pooch's picture

Well he better get his shit togeher quick or there wont be anyone left

pooch's picture

Well he better get his shit togeher quick or there wont be anyone left

Dzehren's picture

For some reason, CM3 stays healthier when playing ILB vs OLB-

dobber's picture

There are no answers in March. Only speculation and hope...or despair.

...answers come in September.

abad467's picture

Is the defense scheme (Capers) or is there not enough talent (Ted)? I lean towards the latter. This defense doesn't have enough playmakers. Teams like Seattle and New England are able to work around cap space to sign guys to fill holes, which leads me to believe the Packers can too. Ted simply doesn't want to. He would rather risk on the "ifs" of his young players than to sign a veteran. None of the FA contracts signed this year were ridiculous numbers that the Packers couldn't afford. Ted doesn't use free agency enough and until he or the next GM does, this team won't make it back to another Super Bowl.

abad467's picture

Seattle traded for Graham and then he toar his achilles tendon. They had an offer very similar to Detroit's for Lang and they have way less cap space than the Packers.

4thand1's picture

To the Aaron Rodgers haters (viqueen trolls mostly), he has proven the Packers are shit without him. If he plays like himself, automatic playoff birth. He needs a defense to get him the ball back.

croatpackfan's picture

Who kept Packers in the hunt when Aaron was playing like shit? That shitted D! Remember? No? Well, that is life...

4thand1's picture

Playing like shit? Because he wasn't all world he still was better than most nfl qb's. He had over 20 td's with like 5ints when they went 4-6. That D did nothing to help them win.

dobber's picture

I would point to most of 2015 when the defense was good and the offense was not.

Since '61's picture

In 5 of the 6 Packers losses the defense gave up 36.6 points per game or 186 points in 5 games. That's more points allowed in 5 games that many teams including Packers teams have allowed in an entire season. How is that keeping the team in the hunt? It just verifies what we already know about this team for last 6 seasons, which is, that if Rodgers and the offense don't score 40 points per game we're likely to lose. That's not NFL football but it is very bad defense. As for the Packers 17-14 loss to the Vikings I would agree that the offense failed that day and the defense played well enough to win. Even with that our defense still allowed Viking QB Bradford, starting his first game as a Viking, to have one of the best days of his career and that was long before we were besieged with injuries on the defense. Further than that it has been long overdue for the defense to carry this team for a few games. Rodgers may not have a great game every week but he doesn't play alone either. Imagine the team we would have if the defense ever played at a level close to the Packers offense. Thanks, Since '61

Tundraboy's picture

Thanks since 61 for bringing reality back. This D is a joke, no defending it!. Healthy or not. If you can't hold on crucial downs your nothing.

JacFrost's picture

Ted T is already on the" gee I want to spend my time looking at the possible undrafteds out there" to fill needed holes.
Ted and MIke et al ,are saying, hey we got to the playoffs we must be doing it right why change?
If we allow 30 pts and score 31 whats the issue

pooch's picture

Falcon signed Poe.Thanks Ted the Turd for going all in

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

$8M for one year, up to $10M with incentives. Too rich for my blood., especially with Poe's play slipping a bit.

4thand1's picture

Poe = Hainsworth

pooch's picture

Zach Brown still available....oh never mind we have Ted theTurd as GM

Lphill's picture

I am not so sure Clay is done, I think he has been playing hurt because their was nobody else to play plus maybe he has been on the field too much not enough rest , again no depth , I think a healthy Clay with some support is still a threat. And I really like moving him around.

lou's picture

It's still way too early for doom and gloom even though obvious holes exist in the defense. Let the rest of free agency and the draft play out. In reference to trades involving our veterans that is a huge long shot, Ted's history when trading is trading current (very seldom a future) draft picks to move up or down on draft day. Outside of sending a 6th round for Ryan Grant who can come up with a trade for a veteran he has made ? Mike Hart of the Journal/Sentinel had this to say after both tight ends were surprisingly acquired, "Dom Capers has scheduled surgery to remove his hands from his face:" RELAX GUYS.

Pack12's picture

How good would the Packers be without Aaron Rodgers? Not too good. Rodgers has masked the lack of talent on this team for a long time. TT has not provided enough talent, specially on defense for this team to be competitive. Contrast this with New England where Jimmy Garoppolo went 3-1 during Brady's 4 game suspension. Would the Packers go 3-1 without Rodgers? I doubt it. TT refuses to play all his options in acquiring talent. While I agree with the draft and develop philosophy there has to be some flexibility in adding key pieces in free agency. TT still has a job because the Packers do not have a single owner and are a small market team with little media pressure. My point is that because of Rodgers the Packers look a lot better than they really are. This only works until they get into the playoffs and have to face teams that are more talented.

dobber's picture

Congratulations on wrapping up every trite "I think TT sucks" argument in one single entry.

UmpireMark's picture

Wow.

Nick Perry's picture

Pack12 is absolutely correct but it's not something several others have said. Nonetheless it's an excellent post because it's right on the money. As quiet as it's kept EVERY team "Drafts & Develops" or least tries to do it. Other teams explore other avenues to improve their teams though, something that completely escapes TT. And yes, put Thompson on a team with an owner and he would have been gone long ago.

MarkinMadison's picture

There are more holes this year than we are used to seeing. But if you think about it TT has generally replaced one OL per year and the unit has been very consistent.

I'm not convinced that the Packers are in dire need of a RB. Rip was much more efficient than Kuhn had been in many years. Throw in two excellent veteran tight ends and the Packers simply may not need to run the ball a ton, and when they do the guys they have should be up to the task.

Yes, the defense has holes, but there was one above average defense in the championship games this year. The rest were poor. So I don't know. I'm not thrilled about where things are right now, but I'm not at all ready to run TT out of town.

pooch's picture

and if montgomery gets hurt your down to one tailback

dobber's picture

It's a good thing they don't play games in March.

marpag1's picture

But the UW Badgers BB team does play games in March.

dobber's picture

Woo hoo!

UmpireMark's picture

If we played today, yes.

Who thinks Monty will be the only RB on the roster in September?

pooch's picture

and if montgomery gets hurt your down to one tailback

pooch's picture

so your saying Woodson ,Peppers and Pickett were a bust?Saturday ,Hargrove and a linebacker cant think of his name they signed didnt pan out all though those 3 were low risk f.a.

akeemthedream's picture

Don't want top 20 free agents.
Just want players that are 1) better than the guys currently on the defensive roster and 2) capable of contributing right away (not 3 years from now - maybe).

Do you have any "little tidbits" on teams that use mid-level FA's to fill obvious holes in their rosters? I bet there are a couple teams that do this and are successful.

Nice try.

dobber's picture

That would likely include Davon House, but many of us are relatively unimpressed with him...

pooch's picture

hmm tell that to New England.Lot of fa signings are deperation moves by sub par teams,now put that in your breakdown and report again

UmpireMark's picture

How many of the 20 you sampled had outrageous week 1 FA contracts?

No one wants Ted to chase smoke with stupid FA signings. But like was said before, using FA to upgrade a vet on your team who currently has less talent than a potential FA might bring to your line up.

stockholder's picture

Nineteen different franchises, including teams that relocated to another city, have won the Super Bowl. The Pittsburgh Steelers (6–2) have won the most Super Bowls with six championships, while the New England Patriots (5-4), the Dallas Cowboys (5–3), and the San Francisco 49ers (5–1) have five wins.
You needed to know.

pooch's picture

Seatrle

pooch's picture

Seatrle

pacman's picture

Nothing will change with this management - BOD and TT. They are satisfied keeping the team in playoff contention every year. It is OBVIOUS that they see that as their job.

As a fan, I would rather see another SB or two and spend a few lean years rebuilding. A single owner would have more pride to go down in history as one of the greatest teams with multiple SB's.

That is the choice.
They control things.
SB fans lose this one.

I wonder what the players would like. I'm guessing a SB.
Ergo - management does not care about fans or players.

Since '61's picture

Pacman - they never have cared and probably never will. Business is about the money, The players are the product and the fans provide the revenue. Players and fans come and go (even old- timers like me) but the money is constant and now comes from many streams such as a sold out stadium, league revenue sharing, memorabilia, glorified thank yous sold as shares of stock and soon year round from Packer World. As fans we want winning but the business wants the money. For the business winning is a nice to have but money is a must have. Thanks, Since '61

pacman's picture

That's sort of the strange thing about this. If there was an owner, he would be balancing $ vs SB. Practicality vs pride. After all, why buy a sports team in the first place.

But the Packers don't have a single owner. So what drives them? It's not their money anyway. I guess for the BOD and TT, it is bonus $ vs SB. If they were independently wealthy like all the owners, they would say - I have enough money and I bought this team for pride. But maybe the BOD and TT aren't wealthy enough to give up on bonus $ and salary that come along with perennial playoff appearances.

I've been around quite a while (60's) and I don't change my teams just because I changed locations. I'm now in NY area, came from Chicago but I'm a Packers and Cubs fan always. Through the rough 70's and 80's and all. But I've never been so upset with management. They have (had?) the chance to achieve greatness and are settling for being very good. I really don't care if every other team except NE would rather be the Packers. There doesn't seem to be the fire to win in any of them. Just more of Capers bend but don't break defense.

dobber's picture

For every owner who is balanced in their approach and good for both the football and business sides of the organization, there seems to be an equal number who are disinterested in the football side and treat their teams as investments or status symbols, and an equal number who are so meddlesome that they can't get out of their team's way long enough to let football guys make football decisions. We could argue how likely each would be, but to invoke an enigmatic billionaire as a reason why the Packers would immediately be a better team is a shaky argument at best. Mark Murphy played football, but his professional training (finanace, law) has nothing to do with player personnel at any level.

Can we put the BOD "salary and bonus $$$" as an argument to bed once and for all? As per wikipedia (yes, I know, wikipedia...but): "The elected president, currently Mark H. Murphy, represents the corporation at the NFL owners meetings and other league functions. The president is the only officer who receives compensation. The balance of the committee is sitting gratis." I have found no evidence that Mark Murphy receives any compensation (bonus) beyond his salary. I'll be glad to be proven wrong if there's evidence out there.

pacman's picture

Honestly, I have not investigated this. It was an assumption. So thanks for the info. But the BOD hires the president and gives him direction of what they want. So if it isn't compensation, it's just their mindset.
It comes down to what I mentioned in my post above - if we took a poll of fans, I'm guessing that the vast majority would like a SB or 2 and a few lean years rebuilding rather than continuing this path. Obviously, no guarantee any set of players will get it done. But if you've got the cap space, go for it.

Ex: unless they knew something about Lacy's injury, I was in favor of signing him with incentives.

Too frustrating to comment more. Back to regular life until the draft or other significant news.

Since '61's picture

Pacman - like you I have a Packers fan since the '60s, (obviously from my moniker) and I am a native New Yorker and have never lived any farther west than my current home in New Jersey. I have been a NY Yankee fan longer than I have been a Packers fan, so we have loyalty to our teams in common. The issue isn't about bonus money because the BOD are probably paid a stipend at most based on the corporate charter. Murphy probably receives a salary and bonus. But for Murphy, TT and MM the issue is job security and how their performance and success is measured. When you are the only team besides NE that has reached the playoffs for 8 consecutive seasons you're doing extremely well compared with your other 30 peers. Add to that a stable financial situation for the foreseeable future and the edge, or need to win, or the sense of urgency maybe is a little less than it needs to be, just like the Packers are usually a player or two, or a play or two short of the SB. Thanks, Since '61

WKUPackFan's picture

"A single owner would have more pride to go down in history as one of the greatest teams with multiple super bowls".

Respectfully disagree. There is not an individual owner who places pride over profit, with the slight possible exception of Kraft. Pride simply does not even enter their minds.

There are very few instances of an individual owner making a positive football decision. In contrast, there are countless examples of individual owners making horrendous football decisions. Meanwhile, the Packers structure has produced 20 years of winning football and two SBs.

blue eyes's picture

It really does stink that Ted isn't into trading and free agency that much. It's a copycat league now and if you don't keep up with the trends you fall behind even if you have an amazing qb.

Lphill's picture

Kevin Minter signed one year by the Bengals , good inside linebacker hard hitter probably would have loved coming to a contender . Oh well

Rossonero's picture

I'm not surprised that Ted didn't make any trades or big FA signings on defense. What surprised me was that we didn't bother to keep the guys we drafted from 2013.

Here's what I want for 2017: HEALTH. Although young guys like Brandon Bostick in 2014 and Demarious Randall in 2015 screw up their assignments at the most crucial times, what have we lacked in those games?

Health!! We were down to Jeff Janis vs. Arizona and the offensive line was a patchwork quilt. In 2016, guys started dropping like flies again. Although we won it all in 2010 with a bunch of guys on IR, in general, you need health.

Consequently, McCarthy should not have them practicing on Saturdays, that's stupid. I think he's going to change that or at least look at it.

canadapacker's picture

I just hate these guys who are experts but not really experts. So far I really like what the Pack has done. I wouldnt mind getting Peterson or Charles for the right price ( there is not indication that either of them can stay healthy but with only 20% of the carries required it wouldnt really matter). But our offense should be back to being our best defense. Keep the ball away from the other team with 2 possession type of TE's along with some of the best receivers in the league. The Oline will be OK ( everybody dumped on Ted when he let Rivera and Wahle go a decade ago and neither earned their salary with their new teams). As far as the D is concerned, we got the most out of Peppers ( he can go and sit on the bench at Carolina and see if he can get back to a SBowl there). Our rookies played big time and I think that all of them will be factors and it is not a stretch to think that they will be much better. Factor that in with some new picks and a little bit of injury luck ( we hopefully wont have the same streak back to back years). The back end is better when we get pressure on the other teams QB and that needs to be our focus. Our linebackers are good enough and I would hope that we draft some fast guys as this draft is supposed to strong there. The only place where I am concerned is with the punting. Teds big mistake letting Ryan go.

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