Week 1 Packers Stock Report: Masthay on the Rise, Jones Falling

ALLGBP.com All Green Bay Packers All the Time
Punter Tim Masthay falls into the rising category.

The final preseason game has been played, the final cuts have been made and the final 53-man roster has been set. It’s time to play football. Finally.

The Green Bay Packers head into the 2011 season with a roster led by superstars and backed up by role players that gained valuable experience filling in during last season’s Super Bowl run. Packers fans now think Ted Thompson is a personnel genius instead of a GM that is too stubborn to ever win a title. Mike McCarthy is no longer viewed as a coach that chokes away close games, he’s viewed as a coach that has the ability to turn a young roster filled with injuries into Super Bowl winners. The Packers are no longer an intriguing pick to win it all every preseason, they’re a legitimate favorite.

Unlike the stock market in America (and the rest of the world), the Packers are one the rise. If shares in the Packers were being sold on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Jim Cramer would be on your television screen nightly, pounding his fist and imploring you to BUY! BUY! BUY!

Unfortunately, we’ve all learned that the stock market can come crashing down at any moment. Just when you think you have everything figured out and you buy a bigger house, a fancier car and book that luxurious vacation, your portfolio flops and you’re broke.

The Packers portfolio is currently filled with blue chip stocks and other steady investments. But it still needs to be monitored. Which players are on the rise? Which are falling? Which are playing at a steady and consistent level? The Packers Stock Report will be a regular midweek feature here at AllGreenBayPackers.com. It’s an opportunity to step back from the game-by-game emotions and discuss how players are performing in the big picture.

Each week, I will select players in three categories:

  • Rising: Playing well, and likely will continue to get even better.
  • Falling: Struggling, or showing signs of a downward trend.
  • Steady: Not surging up or free-falling down, just consistent and reliable.

Rising

Aaron Rodgers
Savvy investors buy low and sell high, but Rodgers is becoming one of those stocks, like Google or Microsoft, that keeps rising. Even though the price is already sky high, and most people can only afford a share or two, it’s still a good investment. After rising to elite status through the final six games of 2010, Rodgers threw for 375 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions this preseason. When he’s not getting sacked, he’s been unstoppable. Even if you can only afford one or two shares, Rodgers is a good investment right now.

Vic So’oto
Jersey Al was one of the initial investors in So’oto and others have followed his lead. So far the returns have been impressive with 2.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception in the preseason. So’oto made the final 53-man roster and with the uncertainty at outside LB opposite of Clay Matthews, he’ll probably get a shot at some playing time.

Tim Masthay
Masthay caught fire at the end of 2010 and that hot streak carried into the 2011 preseason. Packers fans aren’t used to seeing a punter launch booming punts and pin opponents inside the 20-yard line, but that’s what Masthay is doing. In four exhibition games, Masthay averaged 48.8 yards per punt and pinned seven kicks inside the 20. He’s played so well, that he’s being included in talks of Packers that could get a contract extension.

Falling

Chad Clifton
Here we go again. Investors are panicking and trying to dump their Clifton stock. It happens every preseason. Sometimes it even lasts a few weeks into the regular season. But the veteran always recovers and ends up posting a gain by the end of the season. Clifton has looked old and broken down again this preseason. Is this the year he’s finally finished? I doubt it. Clifton’s stock might be falling now, but I’d buy a few shares if I had some spare change to invest. There’s a good chance he’ll end up in the steady or rising category later in the season.

James Jones
Jones is usually a good investment every preseason. Everyone remembers his boneheaded plays and forgets that he actually isn’t all that bad. Often, when everyone is down on an investment, that’s the best time to buy. But after dropping touchdown passes in the wild card round and Super Bowl, then disappearing this preseason, it might be best to spend your money on someone else besides Jones.

Pat Lee
If you were one of the unfortunate souls that bought stock in Lee after he was drafted in the second round back in 2008, you might want to sell now and try to recoup at least a fraction of your losses. He managed to make the team, but he didn’t look all that great in doing so. I know he’s a backup and (hopefully) won’t see much playing time, but he’s a player that definitely belongs in the falling category.

Steady

Greg Jennings
Jennings has elevated himself to the upper-echelon of NFL receivers. Judging by his two back-shoulder touchdown grabs in the preseason, it looks like he’ll stay there.

Scott Wells
Wells is overshadowed on the offensive line by guys like Clifton, Sitton, Bulaga and Sherrod, but he’s been solid throughout his entire career. The less you hear Wells’ name called, the better he is probably playing. Even though you might not hear much about his play, Wells definitely belongs in the steady category.

Mike McCarthy
If the Packers are playing well, McCarthy should remain in the steady category throughout the season. You want your coach to keep an even keel, whether the team is playing well or struggling. McCarthy also deserves credit for his flexibility. When the offense struggled early in 2010 after injuries to Ryan Grant and Jermichael Finley, McCarthy kept experiementing with new sets and formations to get the most out of his running game and franchise QB. He also adjusted the training camp schedule this season to make sure his players didn’t wear down before week one. 

——————

Adam Czech is a freelance reporter and a Packers fan living in the Twin Cities. Follow Adam on Twitter. Read more of Adam's writing on the Packers here.

——————

  • FireMMNow

    The only reason to be down on Jones is if you had higher earning expectations than the rest of the market. I would put him in the steady category. He will be the 3rd or 4th leading WR receiver this year and that is about what I expected. With limited first team reps in the pre season it is hard to say where he is really at. I would not say he is a buy, but he is a hold if you bought him cheap.

    Mashtay is good man. TT should just lock him up to a seven year deal so we do not have to look for a punter until the end of the decade.

  • Adam Czech

    I’ve always been higher on Jones than everyone else, but he’s yet to return me a profit. This year I’m saying the hell w/ it and selling all of my Jones shares.

    • http://allgbp.com Jersey Al

      I’ve been buying Nelson stock for the last dew years. I’m ready for it to make a big move upwards…

  • Ron LC

    Buy Gold! And Green too!

    • Adam Czech

      Buy Gold? Who are you? Glenn Beck? :)

  • Mojo

    Getting So’oto off the Pink Sheets will pay handsomely.

    Other risers (in alpha order) I would say would be Bishop, Bulaga, Burnett, Cobb, Green, Lang, Lattimore, Masthay, Neal, Nelson, Quarless, Raji, Smith, Starks, Taylor and Wynn.

    Falling: Clifton, Grant, Jones(Brad),Lee,Peprah, Pickett, Woodson

    Steady: Everyone else.

    So the good news is the Pack, IMO, have much more players potentially rising vs falling. Also many of the Steady guys are already bluechippers who are near the top of their respective positions already.

    Let the debates begin.

    • FireMMNow

      interesting you put woodson on the falling list. I see where you are coming from, but I would put him in the steady category. His play as a cover man is certainly falling, but his role in the defense seems to always be expanding has Capers moves him around. His physical ability may be falling, but I think his ability to impact a game is steady.

      side note: Capers brought a ton of pressure from secondary guys in the pre season. it seemed like woodson was just an extra LB half of the time. I love capers, but I hope he sticks with his MO and continues to show a solid mix of pressure and coverage.

      • Mojo

        Yeah Dan, I know CW’s role has expanded but he was getting burned in coverage more last year than ever before plus his big plays were down. Still like Charles though.

        Also forgot to put DD on the falling list. Once again like DD but….

        • Adam Czech

          I’m reserving judgement on Driver. His health might be a reason to sell, but if he stays on the field, I still think he’ll contribute.

          Also, I’m only going to include two or three players in each category. I’m poor and don’t have that much money to invest, so I have to choose wisely.

      • http://andreayfhall.livejournal.com/ Louis Pet

        Thanks for your marvelous posting! I truly enjoyed reading it, you may be a great author.I will ensure that I bookmark your blog and definitely will come back later on. I want to encourage you to ultimately continue your great writing, have a nice morning!

  • Mojo

    Regarding So’oto sell, sell, sell.(He’s out of the opener with back injury.) He’s obviously the latest Ponzi scheme out there.

  • http://none GalaxyM81

    I really would like to see Crosby stock take a real rise up. Maybe that game winner against the Colts is what he needed to get going.

  • Ron LC

    So’oto injured in the weight room yesterday. Stock falls!