Cory’s Corner: Thompson must lock up Jolly from 14

ALLGBP.com All Green Bay Packers All the Time
There's been a spring in Johnny Jolly's step after missing three years due to a codeine addiction.
There’s been a spring in Johnny Jolly’s step after missing three years due to a codeine addiction.

As if Ted Thompson hasn’t been stressing enough about this season.

Fourteen Packers’ contracts expire in the offseason and Thompson has to make some important decisions.

This season has been one of the worst of recent memory. I’m not saying that purely based on Green Bay’s record but also based on competitiveness of the entire team. There have clearly been moments when players mailed it in and took plays off this season.

The first expiring contract that comes to mind is James Jones. He’s been stricken with alligator arms ever since he became a Packer in 2007. Despite Aaron Rodgers’ insistence that Green Bay sign Jones in 2011, Rodgers still has been known to verbally dress down Jones for running the route or not hauling in a catchable pass.

Now I realize that ever since Jones was a Packer he has had to battle for catches. When he first got here out of San Jose State it was Donald Driver and now it’s Jordy Nelson. But he’s a 6-foot-1, 208-pound wideout and I’ve always said that he has to be more assertive in the offense instead of just letting the defense or the situation dictate how he plays.

Another guy that caught my attention was Andrew Quarless. I think it’s pretty safe to say that Jermichael Finley will not be a Packer in 2014 after suffering a devastating head injury that bruised his spinal cord. Most people thought that would leave the door open for Quarless to grab the tight end reins. But he has started six games this season and in those games he has caught just 12 passes. Very underwhelming numbers for a guy that had so much promise coming out of college as the career record holder for receptions by a tight end at Penn State.

When Finley was healthy, he proved how much this offense can thrive with a solid pass-catching tight end. The Packers do not have a dynamic tight end currently on the roster, which means Thompson is going to have to address that.

The final guy that Thompson needs to think about this offseason is Johnny Jolly. Now I didn’t think Jolly was going to produce after being out of the game for three years thanks to his codeine addiction. But he has been a big part of the defensive line and has exceeded expectations by starting six games.

But what separates Jolly is that hidden gem that you cannot measure. Because of his mistake that landed him in jail, the 30-year-old has been playing with a little bit of an attitude and a fire that’s more than needed on defense. Jolly isn’t afraid to call out a teammate if he knows he’s dogging it.

Thompson has been looking for a way to bring a swagger back to the defense ever since it evaporated when LeRoy Butler and Charles Woodson left the Packers. Jolly has that and his intangibles are monumental for a team that is perennially one of the youngest in the league.

This is a big offseason for Thompson. He must bolster a team that fell apart like a house of cards after Rodgers went down. He doesn’t just need to add competitiveness at a good price he also needs to add confidence. Because there aren’t a lot of free agents that will want to set up shop in Green Bay only to pack it in if the game’s No. 1 player goes down again.

The players may be getting ready for their golf games, but the Packers front office certainly is not. And that hit home when safety Jerron McMillian was cut — and he started a couple games this year.

Thompson will be giving every player extra attention to make sure either the player or position is being used properly. For example, if the Packers have a battering ram style running back, a fullback like John Kuhn seems pretty pointless.

Thompson has been rightly accused of being shrewd and short-sighted, but he’s also one of the best talent evaluators in the league.

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Cory Jennerjohn is from Wisconsin and has been in sports media for over 10 years. To contact Cory e-mail him at jeobs -at- yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter: Cory Jennerjohn

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  • Big T

    Maybe TT could get Tony Mandarich to come back to replace his secret lover Newhouse…

    • Two Bears, One Cup

      I can’t imagine how many thumbs down you and Archie would have if most people hadn’t stopped reading your comments and just skipped past them altogether (Mental note . . . .)

      • Dobber

        I do that to my own posts now…especially this one.

  • PkrBkrJer

    James Jones has been a rock the last 2 years with several spectacular catches and among the fewest drops on the team.

    • Cow42

      His catches have to be “spectacular” because he’s always completely covered up by his defender.

      Zero separation.

      On both great catches he had on Turkey-Day he was smothered… once by an ILB.

      I like the guy… but I wouldn’t mind seeing Boykins take his role and get a young ankle-breaker to develop.

      • Gary

        I agree about Boykin,But the way JJ’s last contract played out I expect he will accept a reasonable deal. The Packers work best with 5 good receivers and are short one now.

        • Stroh

          Jones is gone. His recent contract was very favorable for the Packers. He didn’t get the response in FA he hoped, due to the drop issue, which by the way is no longer and issue. He won’t be a big FA signing but someone wanting a solid #2 for a couple years will sign him. Boykin is more than ready to step into Jones’s spot, just like he was last year when Driver stuck around a year too long. Thompson won’t sign Jones to a 3rd contract.

    • Two Bears, One Cup

      Yeah, I don’t get the comments denigrating Jones (especially his hands). Also, he’s been the ultimate teammate and is a prime example of “Packer People” that we like to have on the team.

      • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

        I like Jones, but he is a #3 receiver. He doesn’t get a lot of separation. Could be I am spoiled by GB receivers over the years. He might be a #2 for some teams. He has strong hands, and is over the drops.

  • Wayne Crannell

    But the Packers DO have a pass-catching TE in Thompson’s world: Quarless. By saying Thompson must address the situation, I think you imply he will dip into the FA market. I think that is unlikely because he believes the guy he chose at that spot is fine.

    Ted Thompson fills roster spots with people who play those positions. He doesn’t always fill those spots with people who play those positions at the pro level. I wish he saw the second half of that.

    • Bubbaloo

      No $hit! Well said Wayne!

    • http://allpackers.com Nick Perry

      Several Mock Drafts have the Packers taking Jace Amaro out of Texas Tech, a 6’5″ 260 Lbs TE that is the number one TE in the country. 92 catches for 1157 yards and 6 TD’s. That is if he declares and most think he will. He catches the ball well, is a decent blocker too. Be a interesting pick. So would Dix, the Safety from Alabama.

  • Bubbaloo

    I agree with the Jolly part, and TT needs to lock him up. But the part about TT being one of the best talent evaluators is beginning to fall on deaf ears a bit. Where is this talent, certainly not on defense? Not in the offensive play calling! There have been times in recent weeks when it looked Rodgers, Matthews, and a handful of others were riding on a sinking ship.

    • Skeezix

      Tell me how these guys are not talented:
      Cobb
      Nelson
      James Jones
      Lacy
      Sitton
      Bulaga
      Shields
      Raji
      Hayward
      Burnett

      • Savage57

        You make an irrelevant, TT apologist point, like someone saying they don’t like taxes and you counter with how wonderful Christmas is.

        What the legion of defenders needs to consider is that when your list of talented players numbers 10 over a period of 7 years, and when that’s the only pipe you have bringing water to the well, your water table is going to drop.

        The presence of ‘hits’ doesn’t obviate the cost of a far greater number of ‘misses’.

  • Razer

    14 free agents is a whack of contracts, especially after dumping a ton of money into Rodgers and Matthews. Not an easy task ahead. If you add back all those guys on IR and get to next year with some key draft additions we could once again be optimistic Packer fans. That is until, as you point, we consider the subtraction factor of not resigning our own FAs.

    I agree that Johnny Jolly has not disappointed since coming back. He probably needs a little more conditioning and game speed to really be effective. I am hoping a re-up is in the works. I am hoping that Jolly will keep climbing and not slide back to a more comfortable Jolly.

    I can’t see us throwing big money at Quarless, Neal, Jones, Finley, EDS, Newhouse, Kuhn, Seneca Wallace, Starks, Wilson, Francois or Jennings.

    It is Sam Shields, Ryan Pickett and BJ Raji that present any problems. We already offered Raji 8 million – wtf. Shields can cover and in a bad secondary that counts for something. Pickett, despite his age, gives us a big man for a bridge year until the next guy is ready to step in (which we don’t have). Losing Raji and Pickett in the same year won’t help an already average D-line.

    2014 may be another rebuild year and another lost year of Aaron Rodger’s career. Of course, we could pick up a good, ready-to-go, free agent to accelerate this process.

    • Bubbaloo

      A good, ready to go, free agent? TT can’t even spell Free Agent!

      • Two Bears, One Cup

        How quickly we forget the Jeff Saturdays, the Anthony Hargroves, the Daniel Muirs of the world. Be careful what you wish for when it comes to free agents.

        • JimR_in_DC

          Yeah, who knows, we might end up with more crappy FA’s like C. Woodson or R. Pickett.

          Seriously, TT has a poor FA record lately, but he started out pretty well, if you forget M. Manuel. Perhaps his Pro Player Personnel department is depleted of talent evaluators.

        • BartySmith

          Very good post.

          TT’s recent foray into free agency was absolutely PATHETIC.

          $3M+ for Jeff Saturday? Ridiculous. Hard to believe last years starting offensive line included Saturday and Newhouse. Ouch.

          No big deal regarding Hargrove or Muir they were just the typical street guys TT loves to sign and cost nothing.

          • Stroh

            I don’t have a problem w/ Saturday either. IMO he was signed for being able to make the OL calls, snap the ball and help develop EDS. He did very well at those 3 things. They knew his best days as a blocker were behind him, they just wanted a bridge till EDS was ready, which Saturday provided very well.

            • JimR_in_DC

              Saturday was a complete fail.

              • Stroh

                In YOUR opinion!

          • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

            Agree on Saturday, although I suspect that GB thought he would be below average rather than the tank being empty. TT is very good at evaluating: CBs (Shields & Williams UDFA, House (4th), Hyde (5th), Hayward (2nd 61st); WRs, RBs (good for where selected), O-line (starters are 4th, 4th, UFDA, 4th, 6th Rd draft choices). He seems to be more problematic at S, ILB, OLB, DE and NT, , and Free Agency too, but I don’t think he is terrible at those spots, just more hit and miss than at WR and CB and other positions.

            • JimR_in_DC

              Why would any GM bring in a below average FA to compete for a starting position?

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      Name me the last time GB finished below 8-8 for 2 years in a row…

      1990-1991.

      Next year will NOT be a rebuild year.

      • Barutan Seijin

        Picture this: Rodgers gets hurt in Week 1 next year. All of a sudden you’re looking at 0-16.

        Beyond Rodgers, this team is mostly just guys. Even if TT drafts a bunch of superheroes next spring, they’re probably not going to be playing at HOF level in their rookie year.

        • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

          Sounds to me like you are describing the Pats sans Brady, Colts sans Peyton (and now Broncos), and Saints sans Brees. Perhaps even the Chargers sans Rivers and Steelers sans Ben.

          Any team without their franchise QB is going to struggle.

          • BartySmith

            And here I thought the Pats went 11-5 when Brady went down on opening day.

            • Two Bears, One Cup

              11-5 is a big drop off from 16-0 the year before.

            • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

              Yeah. The Pats went 11-5. And didn’t win their division that year. In the AFC East. That division has had the Patriots and 3 Lions Look Alikes since the Dan Marino and Jim Kelly days ended.

              Real. Impressive.

              • Two Bears, One Cup

                Not to mention, they went from absolutely blowing out most opponents to an early playoff exit. I think the rest of Cassel’s career shows what a red herring he was.

              • Two Bears, One Cup

                Correction: they didn’t make the playoffs that year. Probably should have fired Belichick and Co.!

    • Nopainnogain

      I think EDS will be re-signed as he has had a solid season when on the field and the oline disintegrates when he is out. Raji has done nothing this year, and it’s entirely possible he will ask for too much and jump ship. Pickett & Shields will be back and I wouldn’t mind Starks, Wilson, and Quarless returning on the cheap for depth. Kuhn is bordline

      • Two Bears, One Cup

        Kuhn has looked better as a blocker this year, though perhaps Lacy just makes all run-blocking look better. I don’t think I’d sign him for much more than veteran minimum.

  • Big T

    TT time is of the essence please don’t piss down your leg anymore, your wasting the most talented qb ever to play.

  • Big T

    Jolly is a beast who wants to be on the field. Wouldn’t surprise me if TT lets him go.

  • Mel

    Problem is with free agents is that they are free agents for a reason. Usually are way over paid for how they produce. I want a FA too but I don’t to throw 9mil a year for Jennings… look a crossed the league happns all the time. Steven Jackson… Glad he isn’t here…

  • francesco

    TT needs to wake up. after SB year he has done crucial errors.

  • John

    Thompson as one of the best talent evaluators in the league. Where is the proof?

    • Barutan Seijin

      Considering that he drafted the immortal Brian Brohm in the 2nd round in 2008, (the first year after Favre) i don’t think he even knew what he had with Rodgers.

      Yes, they needed a backup — that’s what the Matt Flynn pick was about.

  • Big T

    All I want for Christmas is for TT and MM to get their heads out of their azzes.

    • Stroh

      All I want for Christmas is for you to get your head out of your ASS!

      • JimR_in_DC

        Stay classy.

  • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

    All I want for Christmas is for fans to have some objectivity about the Packers. I am not a rah-rah guy in general. But GB has a GOOD team with some GREAT players.

    In this era of a hard and flat cap, TT has his work cut out for him. Especially with Rodgers and CM3′s (deserved) contract extensions.

    But it can (and will) be done. S/TE/WR/DL/CB/ILB in that order in the draft. (Assuming Raji/Pickett/Jones/Tramon/Hawk are let go).

    • Barutan Seijin

      Maybe it won’t be a rebuilding year.

      But you see this scenario play out often with sports franchises all the time. Injuries coincide with poor play. Fans, media & management tell themselves “we’ll be fine when we get Smith & Jones back next year.” The next year comes around, Smith & Jones play, but the team does poorly again. Smith & Jones aren’t the difference makers that people make them out to be. And by invoking their names as magical talismans, fans, media & management end up ignoring the weaknesses of the team.

      I’d argue that this scenario probably doesn’t apply to Rodgers & the Packers because, if anything, Rodgers is undervalued. If Rodgers can play a whole season, there’s a good chance the Packers can make the playoffs no matter how crappy the rest of the team is. (And it is pretty crappy, as this season demonstrates.) Number one priority should be protecting Rodgers. The Moneyball OL isn’t working.

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        In this flat salary cap era there are 3 types of teams:

        1. Those who have a franchise QB. They gear their entire team around this 1 difference maker and get to the playoffs 9 out of 10 years.

        2. Those who don’t have a franchise QB. They gear their entire team around running the ball and playing good defense and they make the playoffs about 5 out of every 10 years.

        3. Those who have drafted a franchise QB and haven’t had to pay him like one yet. They’re in the best spot – but it doesn’t last.

        You can’t have it all. GB’s D WAS NEVER intended to be on the field for 40 minutes a game. Is it a surprise that it’s not holding up? GB’s O WAS NEVER intended to have a 300 carry back. Is it a surprise that the “moneyball” OL isn’t able to run against 8 man boxes?

        Good grief man. If Rodgers was here, Lacy would be running wild. The Defense (while not great) would be servicable. And we’d be talking about a 1st round bye.

        • Barutan Seijin

          I think we agree on most if not all of your points. Even the Packer D is built around fielding a good offense.

          I’d only add that if the team is built around Rodgers, they need to put a higher priority on protecting him.

          • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

            They did. Bulaga, Sherrod, EDS, Tretter and all the guys out there right now.

            They all got injured. There’s only so many draft picks and so much $ to go around. What do you want? A 1980′s 49ers team? A 1960′s Packer team?

            Not going to happen in this era.

            • http://Allpackers.com Nick Perry

              Bearmeat I think we’re all just as frustrated as you. Obviously you’re a huge TT supporter, others are starting to wonder, and some just don’t believe in him anymore. He’s excellent at managing a cap and we’re all aware he dug us out of cap hell from Mike Sherman. With that said what’s he done the last few years? I’ll give him the 2013 draft, I think he did a excellent job. Every team has injuries, some more than others. The Denver Broncos but the lost 2 All Pros on their offensive line yet Manning is hardly touched. Rodgers has been getting pounded for years, the defense shredded for years and finally we have a running game for the first time since 2009. Why? Missed draft picks, lots of them. 58% of them are gone just from 2011 and 12. It’s not TT fault Sherrod suffered that gruesome injury, nor is it his fault that Bulaga has missed the last 23 games by seasons end. At the end of the day he’s ultimately responsible for the product on the field. Obviously the product minus Rodgers has truly been exposed.

              He saved quite a bit of cap space this season to carry over. Signing Raji for 8 million a year is not money well spent IMO. Does it create a hole in the middle of the Packers defense? Seems pretty damn big to me already. He’ll save cap space with Neal, Kuhn, Tramon Williams, Pickett, and maybe Hawk all gone. Signing Jolly would be a good move and won’t break the bank. Lattimore played his ass off when in the lineup, make sure he’s kept. At the end of the day they have to draft a TE, S, WR, ILB and DT. Maybe just maybe some of these needs could be addressed through Free Agency because like you said, the team has talent in places. Maybe 2 mid level free agents…..

              • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

                That’s fair Nick.

                But I would say that the NFL is designed for parity. With the exception of one 9-7 Tebow year, before Peyton showed up, the Horsies were B.A.D. for a long time. The Packers haven’t sniffed a talent like Von Miller since Raji was drafted #9 overall in 2009. Instead they’ve had a lot of 25 and after picks. Every round. That puts a GM at a big cumulative disadvantage. Also, regarding hits, Manning (like Favre) has always gotten rid of the ball quickly. ARod does not do that. That explains at least 1/3rd of the hits on him.

                I won’t deny that TT has missed some. Especially when he was picking 32nd in 2011 and 27th in 2012. Plus, no GM bats more than .500 over an extended period of time.

                Bottom line: We have a top 5 GM who gives his team the tools to win most years. And a top 7 head coach who does the same.

                We should be thankful and understanding. Especially since this is the first time since 2008 that this team has been under .500 after 11/1

              • Stroh

                Bear… I would say getting Matthews at #26 is every bit, and actually better than the donkeys getting Von Miller at #2 overall. As an overall player all aspects of the game Matthews is the better all around NFL player.

              • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

                I keep waiting to hear that EDS and Shields have signed extensions. they will only get more expensive. Maybe TT has put offers on the table. When EDS had his knee and ankle injuries, I hoped that would prompt him to sign. Every NFL player is one injury away from not getting the big contract, or big bonus.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

     I don’t know how escalating contracts will effect things, but there’s some good news in the list of upcoming FA. Finley, Pickett & Kuhn are all looking at leaving or being paid significantly less. I would like to see pickett back but at way less $. And something has got to be done with tramon Williams salary. That will free up some cash to work with. I don’t see anyone throwing much more money at any FAs other than shields and Jolly. Signing shields, jolly & eds to me is priority. I like him, but Jones is the same guy as Boykins. Neal & Starks I think have value, and shouldn’t cost a lot. Raji is good, not $8 million a year good though. Sign any of them if they aren’t asking a lot more. They need to get better almost everywhere, but especially TE, S, ILB and return guy. They need to go outside or draft for these. Need to save a little for that.

    • Stroh

      Kuhn is gone. Finley is up in the air. His injury is the major issue. Even if the Packers clear him to play medically its 50/50 that he’s back in GB. Pickett could come back. He and his family love GB and he can’t command much on the open market. Tramon either accepts a major pay cut or is releaed.

      Jolly has been exactly what I said he would be. Everyone said I was crazy last spring when I said Jolly was going to be very helpful. Most everyone had written him off. He’ll get resigned to a 2 or 3 year deal.

      James Jones won’t be back and the Packer won’t miss a beat w/ Boykin stepping into his role. Packers will use a 2nd or 3rd on WR in the draft.

      Neal will likely be back. He isn’t a DL anymore and he’s just learning the OLB spot. I can’t see him drawing a lot of interest in FA, but then again Walden got 4M per from Indy so who knows.

      I cant see any reason EDS isn’t the starting Center next year. That might have been a spot for Tretter, but him missing a full year will make it essential EDS returns.

      Raji will likely take the 8M offer at some point. He’ll be moved to full time NT instead of DE, where he needs to play.

      Richardson needs to get on the field so the Packer know what they have in him. If he shows up the Packers won’t spend a high pick on a Safety in the draft. Dumping McMillan will get him more snaps.

      • JimR_in_DC

        What makes you think UDFA S Richardson is anything but just a guy?

        • Stroh

          I don’t know. But he’s on the roster due to his outstanding athleticism and prototypical size. What I said is that Richardson needs to get some playing time so the Packers know what he is, so they can make a good decision when to draft a Safety. If he has too many limitations in coverage they should use a high draft pick on Safety. If Richardson shows he can be good in coverage they may not need to draft a safety high, just later for depth.

          Richardson was used similarly to McMillan in college, albeit at a much higher level of competition. Richardson was used almost like a LB and we know he’ll be very good in run support. He showed that last week when he attacked a lions RB in the open field and brought him down w/ no problem. If he can play coverage he’ll have a chance to be a very good safety. He’s got size, speed and overall athleticism at Safety and we know he is a very good tackler. If he shows the coverage part won’t be a problem he will be our starter next year. That’s IF, he’s good in coverage!

          • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

            I agree it is important or very helpful if Richardson could get on the field and play to help evaluate him and GB’s needs. Same thing for Sherrod (he played 6 snaps last week), Perry, Tretter (otherwise have to consider drafting a back-up Center), Worthy.

            I don’t want to pay Raji $8 million. I realize I don’t have a lot of facts to support my position. I don’t see much fire in his play. I don’t think he wants to play NT. I fear he will eat his way out of the league. Yet, he played 80% of snaps and has always seemed to do what he was asked to do. I just don’t see $8 million in production.

        • Stroh

          Just checked his combine numbers for comparison. Richardsons measurable are almost identical and slightly better than Eric Reid drafted #19 overall to SF.

          Paraphrasing CBS and NFL he has outstanding size, speed athleticism and is strong in run support and good ball skills. Has major issues in coverage due to lack of experience in that aspect. If he gets his coverage ready for NFL he’ll be a very good starting NFL safety.

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        Stroh,

        IMO Neal jumps ship as fast as he can. I would if I were him.

        He is a born and bred prototypical 43 DE. 285 is his best playing weight.

        • Stroh

          We’ll see. But he hasn’t played as a 43 DE ever. He was a DT in college for the most part, played as a 34 DE and now 34 OLB for the Packers. So while 43 DE might be his most natural position, its also a position he has no experience playing. I think he likes being trimmed down to the 275 he was at and will probably drop another 5-10 lbs to be even better fit for OLB.

          Kinda hard to say if his best position is 43 DE if he has never played it don’t you think?

          • Two Bears, One Cup

            Just because a player has experience at one position doesn’t mean it’s his natural or best position. Just think of Tim Tebow as a QB vs. as a TE.

            I actually like Neal and consider him a good player for the most part, I just don’t think he’s agile enough to be a 3-4 OLB. I realize the transition was likely made because of OLB depth concerns, but I don’t think it’s his best spot.

            • Stroh

              Teams don’t usually sign FA to play positions unless they’ve seen him play that position. That effectively takes all the 43 defense teams out of the equation. And if they do they won’t spend a lot on him which would make it more likely and more sensical for him to re-sign in GB.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

    Also agree with bearmeat, next year will not be a rebuilding year. Lots of injured talent returns, and those leaving should be replaceable for a reasonable price. Fill a few holes, dump a little dead weight and go. To me the wildcards are if Capers or Slocum leaves, will there be a new system & what will that mean? Probably not a huge deal for Slocum.

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      Right on tim. I’d also agree TT needs to dip into FA. But for maybe 1 or (at most) 2 of the needs.

      Usually FA means you don’t pay your players who are leaving.

  • Katsuya

    With both Jordy and Cobb going into the last year of their contracts, I don’t see Jones coming back unless he signs for cheap. As for Jolly, TT should sign him to a 1 year deal.

  • Archie

    TT has gotten value with two defensive picks in 9 years: Nick Collins and CMIII. Neither pick was his idea, nor was AROD. The guy can pick WRs, after that, not so much. Taking Packer Nation 9 years to figure this out. SEA fans already knew. Aside from Marcus Trufant, he experienced the same failure on defense. Wolf gave him Matt Hasselback for a song.

    • Barutan Seijin

      Hmm… I don’t necessarily disagree, but i need some convincing. How were the Collins & Matthews picks not his idea?

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        Don’t bother. Archie hasn’t been basing his opinion on facts lately. He’s mad about the way this season has gone and has decided that come hell or high water that it’s TT/MM’s fault.

        • Stroh

          Lately? He’s never based much on facts.

  • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

    Look guys – I’m not saying TT/MM are not at fault for this mess.

    1. TT should have had a better backup QB plan

    2. MM should have seen the writing on the wall with Capers.

    3. TT should have gotten a mid or low level FA to compete with McMuffin and the Dr. in case they blew it (which they have)

    4. MM should have had competition at KR/PR for Ross in case he couldn’t put it all together.

    5. TT needed a better answer inside to replace Bishop’s injury. Never has happened.

    But all told – this is NOT BAD for an NFL team in the salary cap era! 26 or more of the teams in the NFL would LOVE to have these be their main problems!

    All I ask is for a bit of perspective.

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      Because of the injuries and the mistakes above, this was never going to be a super bowl winning team.

      But it still would have been a playoff team. That’s not half bad! And it’s not a far leap from 2nd round playoff team to Super Bowl team.

      • Two Bears, One Cup

        I think without injuries this team had an outside shot at a Super Bowl. Just like the Ravens did last year.

      • JimR_in_DC

        I hope the Packers’ team goal isn’t to just be a playoff team. That’s gotten a number of head coaches and GM’s fired in the NFL.

    • Dobber

      ” TT needed a better answer inside to replace Bishop’s injury. Never has happened.”

      They potentially have this guy…if they can decide to put Lattimore on the field.

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        Yeah. But remember we were saying the same thing about Jones too last year. Puzzling why he hasn’t done well this year. Maybe he was a flash in the pan? Or maybe his hamstring still isn’t right?

        IMO a Jones/Lattimore would be the best pairing.

    • Stroh

      Bearmeat.
      1. The plan for backup w/ Coleman to develop. When that didn’t happen, Thompson cut his losses and move forward. Minor mistake missing on a 6th rd draft pick.

      2. The D went from last in the NFL to #12 overall last year. There were a lot of reasons to believe it would get even better. I don’t blame McCarthy for keeping Capers last year. This year I would.

      3. When your a draft and develop team you don’t sign mid level FA to backup young safeties, you give those young safeties the chance to improve. McMillan didn’t and is gone. Minor mistake missing on an end of the 4th rd pick.

      5. Cobb should still be the KR/PR. That’s a major reason why he was drafted. McCarthy should have monitored his offensive snaps and kept Cobb on KR/PR duties imo.

      5. Bishop’s injury was difficult situation. By the time we knew if he would be back or not training camp was starting. Jones was re-signed as insurance for Bishop.

      Mostly I think your one of the few rational people commenting. Just a few explanations for the situations you mentioned from my perspective.

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        Thank you Stroh. But I do disagree with you about a couple things.

        The second Coleman began sucking in minicamp – it should have been veteran FA time. And yet TT still waited… that’s on him

        Starting positions need to have their bets hedged where possible. Bringing in a veteran OLB to compete with Perry would have been a mistake.

        But bringing in a vet as fire insurance for a 4th round pick who is penciled in as a starter in just his 2nd year? That could easily have been done.

        Agreed on Cobb.

        RE: Jones. If you’re right and that’s all he was, he was vastly overpaid. I think either last year was a flash in the pan and TT swung and missed.. or Jones’ hammy still isn’t right.

        • Stroh

          Like I said earlier. If your a draft and develop team you don’t sign FA to move in and take opportunities away from young players trying to accend. You can’t tell in offseason workouts if a player is progressing. You can’t do that till you get the pads on in training camp. Maybe in the past you could have, but w/ the new CBA your not allowed to practice in pads enough to know if a 6th rd QB has progressed or not until training camp starts.

          Jones has been a decent and earned his salary. Guys on 2nd contracts don’t go down in value. Jones is only getting about 2.75M as a starter. That’s not a lot of money. If Bishop had returned, which IMO was unlikely Jones might be getting overpaid as a ST ace and valuable backup. As a starter he’s not overpaid.

          • Two Bears, One Cup

            I agree completely, and I think it’s a point that gets missed a lot. Signing the mid-level FA takes important practice time away from the young guys. I just want to add that they cost more, too.

        • Dobber

          “The second Coleman began sucking in minicamp – it should have been veteran FA time. And yet TT still waited… that’s on him”

          Minicamp doesn’t mean very much. If he did suck in shorts (that sounds dirty) I don’t believe he would’ve made it to July. When he showed after a year-plus that he wasn’t improving in game situations, it was time to move on. They made that call on Harrell when he continued to be a spaz.

          I can understand not bringing in a journeyman at the start of camp, and VY, who they brought in when the writing was on the wall, turned out to be a dud (although I liked that reach when they tried it).

          • Stroh

            I don’t remember if Coleman played poorly in offseason and minicamps. He may have I just don’t remember… IF he did then you might have a point about not getting a vet sooner. Really only the coaches and scouts would know. Some of the better beat writers might too. If you can find something about his performance in minicamp that would settle it.

            • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

              I just looked.. it seems you are right. He was great in minicamp. It was TC that wasn’t good..

              Still.. bummed about the backup QB situation.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

    I’m thinking we’re lucky to have tt and mm. They’ve made mistakes but who hasn’t? We’ve been a good team for a long time under those guys, as good as any. I’m thinking the pack will be in the mix again next year. It will be interesting to see how things play out for the rest of the year, and going into next year. We’ll see new faces that will be the faces of the franchise in the future. Ryan Taylor, Boyd, the d-end from Michigan state (forget his name), Lattimore, Richardson and Bostick especially intrigue me. If a couple of these guys could be ok, it would help with decision-making going into next year.

  • francesco

    o line is too poor. every year so many sacks that is why rodgers is out now. so TT failed in protecting his best player. that is a great mistake by TT.

    • Stroh

      Rodgers is out because our starting OT are out for the year and we have a backup OT playing in their place. Barclay should not be a starting OT and in reality he isn’t in GB either! When Sherrod and Bulaga are back next year Barclay will be where he belongs. In a backup role and probably backup OG, not OT! Rodgers is injured cuz we had a backup OT forced to play far too much. Not for any other reason!!!

      • Two Bears, One Cup

        Also, Rodgers’ injury – and many of his sacks – are due to his attempts to extend plays. It’s not strictly a poor blocking problem. He continues to look for receivers well after Manning would have thrown the ball away. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it isn’t. I only wish he’d just take off running more, like he did in 2010.

        People are used to Peyton Manning, who gets rid of the ball quickly and makes his linemen look better than they are. It might not hurt him to occasionally hold the ball a little longer. For example, on a third where taking a sack isn’t much worse than an incompletion.

        Brett Favre had such a quick release and, especially in the early and late years, threw too many picks. That’s part of the reason he didn’t take many sacks. Personally, I think he became mentally weak in his later years and was afraid of getting hit (and playing in the cold) and made faaaaaar too many bad throws because of his desire to not get hit, but that’s a conversation for another post.

        • francesco

          all thhese injuries are e big problem…something is wrong. it’s not a normal situation and is going on for years. team is poor of talent, without rodgers we are by far the worse team in nfl, something like garbage

          • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

            Have you been visiting the Italian Bears and Vikings fan sites? lol.

            Try again.

          • Stroh

            Bullshit! The Packers don’t suffer from a lack of talent. On Offense w/o the trigger man nobody will look good. On Defense I think Capers lacks the leadership needed. Dumb Capers and the D will be very good again.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

    A good KR/PR game on a good team is huge. Being able to force turnovers when you have a good team even more so. Unfortunately, the team took a dive, largely because of injuries, and they’ve never had the returns or turnovers. I think a return guy, whether a wr or db is a big must, and a ball hawk or two also a must going to next year. Cobb and or Hayward might be one part of the answer, but draft/FA as a place to find these guys is another. Those kind of guys change games. I remember being killed by Mel gray, or neon deion, or Hester… I also remember what Allen rossum or Desmond Howard could do. We have guys like Kuhn, and Francois, stoneburner, Harper, bush, Taylor …etc. taking up a number of roster spots. Nothing against them, they’re important, but save just one spot for a Howard, or Rossum, or t-buck…etc. they’re often laying on other team’s scrapheaps. I think that alone would be huge.

    • Stroh

      Cobb should never have been taken off KR/PR. Just monitor his snaps on offense a bit if you have too. Dieon was a full time starting CB and KR/PR why can’t Cobb? Cobb was drafted in large part for his return abilility. Clearly they expected him to be integral as a WR too, but his returns had a lot to do w/ drafting him. The answer at KR/PR is already on the roster.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

    I think tt has put a lot of picks into the o-line, and many look good. Can’t fault him for the injuries

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      Yep.

    • Two Bears, One Cup

      Agreed. And the longer a line can play together the better they function. I hope in the future we have enough healthy o-linemen so we don’t have to shuffle positions when someone does go down.

  • http://GV889@aol.com Jerry

    Raji turning down 8 mill per year leads me to believe he’s looking to get out of Green Bay. He’s from the NY metro area and would like to play for a bigger market team. Thats one of the reasons Ted T doesn’t sign big name free agents. Most of them just don’t want to play in Wisconsin(Their loss Anyway)

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      IMO he’d prefer to play Suh’s role in a 43 too.

      He might be better at that…

      • Stroh

        Actually in an article printed about Raji’s contract extension offer, Raji said he preferred to play NT, his natural position.

        • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

          In THIS defense, yes. But throughout his career, it’s been pretty clear that he wants carte blanc to rush the QB from the interior line.

          • Stroh

            He had the chance to make it perfectly clear he wanted to leave and become a 43 DT, yet he said he wants to stay in GB and play his natural 34 NT. If he gets to FA he’ll have both 34 and 43 teams interested in him and he’ll be a hot commodity.

            BTW Raji’s offer of 8M is slightly less than the projectd franchise number for DT at 8.4M. Franchise is average of top 10 at each position w/ the new CBA. I would say Raji ranks 15th or so overall for NT/DT in the NFL. So the 8M is pretty fair.

    • Dobber

      My suspicion is that he’s being advised to test the waters unless the Packers open up the bank to him. FA potentially gets you more suitors. It can backfire…just ask Greg Jennings.

  • http://jersyal.com tim

    Raji could go and the packers would not be worse off if the keep Pickett. If Raji does go however, it would make keeping jolly a must.

  • Two Bears, One Cup

    The comments section on this website has been out-performed by the Packers in the last few weeks. Glad to see there’s some better remarks today – I was about to give up on reading the comments.

    Perhaps the most annoying problem has been sifting through 20 comments that have been repeated ad nauseam over the last few weeks in hopes of finding a new thought.

  • Since ’61

    On the defense the Packers should resign Jolly, Shields, and Pickett. As for Raji, I would not sign resign him for $8 mil. We need to see if Lattimore can play, that would help make a decision on Jones. As for T. Williams, if he doesn’t take less money he should be released. On the offense, I would resign Quarless. If Finley comes back, which I doubt, Quarless is a quality backup who knows the offense. If Finley does not come back Quarless can hold the fort while a TE from the draft develops early in 2014. Plus Quarless should not expensive to keep. I believe that we should resign J Jones, unless we draft a game break type receiver. Kuhn is done and we won’t need Starks if D. Harris is ready to return next season. Then we need to draft a Safety, DL, Shutdown corner, ILB, probably a TE, and OL. Thanks, Since ’61