Packers GM Ted Thompson is in a Slump

ALLGBP.com All Green Bay Packers All the Time
Maybe the shades are one way Packers GM Ted Thompson is trying to snap out of his slump

If Packers general manager Ted Thompson was a baseball player, he’d pull up his socks higher, hop over the foul line whenever he ran onto the field, put his hat on backwards, take four warm-up swings before each at-bat instead of three — anything to help change his luck and snap him out of this nasty slump.

Slumps are a combination of human ineptitude and a streak of poor luck. Good players eventually snap out of them, but every now and then, a long, nasty, confidence-killing slump can wreck a once promising career.

Thompson will snap out of the rut he’s currently in. It’s been a rough one, though, marked by a slew of injuries, questionable draft decisions and ill-timed contract extensions. Here’s who and what Thompson can blame for his slump

Himself
Thompson did nothing to upgrade the safety and backup quarterback position this offseason, both obvious positions of need. Instead of drafting a safety or dipping into free agency, Thompson stuck with his current players and the results have been dismal. It got so bad that Thompson cut Jerron McMillian last week, a fourth-round pick  a season ago.

As far as backup quarterback, I usually don’t get all wound up about that position because, in my opinion, if Rodgers goes down for an extended stretch, the Packers are screwed. Well, Rodgers went down and the Packers fell flat on their face. Where I fault Thompson here is for not recognizing just how bad B.J. Coleman and Graham Harrell were. The time to cut bait with both of them was the offseason, not training camp after all the other decent backup QBs were off the market and it was too late to draft another one.

The football Gods
I know every team deals with injuries, but what the Packers go through every season is ridiculous. It’d be easy to pick at Thompson’s recent draft classes coming up short, but it’s hard because most of the players have been injured.

Thompson has drafted 36 players since 2010. Of that group, 18 have suffered significant injuries at some point during their career. That list of 18 includes guys like Bryan Bulaga, Nick Perry, Derek Sherrod, Randall Cobb, Casey Hayward, and Jerel Worthy.

I’d like to declare Bulaga and Perry good players, but can’t because they’re hurt so often. Cobb and Hayward also established track records of success, but they’ve gone down this season. Sherrod and Worthy have both been cut down with serious injuries right about the time we were going to find out if they actually could play or not.

This list could go on and on.

I suppose you could say Thompson needs to do a better job researching the medical history of his draft choices, but I don’t think that’s a very fair criticism. The injuries are the bad luck portion of his slump.

Contract extension timing
Thompson opens up his wallet, clears away the cobwebs, and gives out giant contracts to Aaron Rodgers, Clay Matthews and Morgan Burnett. Rodgers gets hurt, Matthews gets hurt, returns, and is nowhere near the same player, and Burnett gets hurt, returns, and is suddenly the second worst safety in the NFL (behind M.D. Jennings).

The Rodgers and Matthews contracts are poor luck. The jury is still out on Burnett, but it looks like Thompson may have misjudged how good he is.

Imagine if B.J. Raji would have signed Thompson’s offer for $8 million per season….

Jeremy Ross
Seriously, you know you’re in a slump when you cut Jeremy freaking Ross and he suddenly morphs into the second coming of Devin Hester.

Hopefully Ross coming back to haunt the Packers is the peak of Thompson’s slump and it will only get better from here. With a little better injury luck and a fresh draft class, hopefully we’ll get back to saying “In Ted we trust” instead of “Dammit Ted, what were you thinking?”

——————

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.

——————

  • Razer

    I don’t have a problem with TT drafting and developing. Fundamentally, I think that it is the way of cap era. You do still need to augment your D&D with so free agent talent to cover for the gaps. Ted refuses to go there until it is too late and the gamble is lost.

    The other end of draft and develop is of course develop. The coaches need to do a better job of assessing the talent and its development. Hanging onto projects that are low percentage is a killer if you are relying on this to fill your roster. The Packers have gotten better at this in recent years but it still can bite us (see backup QB).

    The last thing that I will put at TT’s feet is this drafting out of position and hope that a guy can be retrained to a team need. Our O-line is suspect and has been that way for Rodgers career. Enough of the UDFA or tackles playing center. Our linebackers, the key to a 3-4 are all remapped other than Hawk. How is our LB corps?

    TT and MM need to scrutinize some of these philosophies so that we don’t lose all of Aaron Rodgers career.

    • James

      O-Line is a part of that “bad luck” the article mentions. 1st round draft picks like Bulaga, and Sherrod are good tackles. They just haven’t stayed on the field long enough to improve their abilities (or in Sherrod’s case, even show his abilities). Your going to get good linemen drafted in the first couple of rounds. The problem with our drafted linemen, is that there’s a drop off to the mid rounds, or later with the other guys. Bakhtiari, and J.C. Tretter are yet to prove themselves. Bakhtiari has given a sampling this season that he might be a good value pick from the 4th round. We got lucky with Josh Sitton picked in the fourth round too. I don’t see any other fantiastic plays from any of the other guys. EDS has been good but not as consistent as I would like to see. Plus he’s been injured.

      As far as your comment of FA, I think this season is a little unfair to be critical of Thompson decision. Big contracts for Rodgers and Matthews were due. Add to the fact that there really wasn’t any player out there this time to throw big money at. Why cut Woodson only to sign Ed Reed for a bigger contract? Do you pay Steven Jackson big bucks to get him? Not from what I seen this season from him.

      • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

        Agree with Stroh. OT is the most athletically talented position at every level. James contradicts himself by asserting that Bulaga and Sherrod are good tackles and in the very next sentence stating that Sherrod has not even been able to show his abilities. I like Sherrod, and at the time he was a logical choice, but no one knows whether he can play tackle, or any other position. Bakh, Sitton, and Lang were all 4th round picks, and all were good picks. EDS was an UDFA, Barclay was a 6th, and Newhouse a 5th. There’s a lot of good value there. Still, TT knew he had no proven C behind EDS, and knew when Bulaga went down in preseason that he had no proven LOT, and a bad ROT, but he made no moves. When more college teams play 3/4 defenses, there will be more OLB plug in type players. TT has been in a bit of a slump in 2011 and 12 drafts, but last year’s draft looks very good, especially is D. Jones comes around-develops.

    • Savage57

      There’s no argument that in the salary cap era draft and develop is how you populate a roster.

      Wishful thinking probably, but I wish that TT could find more ‘draft and play’ type guys.

    • JC

      But let’s be real honest here if Rodgers doesn’t go down the Packers easily win the North and everyone marvels at the mid-round fill ins that McCarthy stole in the last few drafts. And everyone remarks at the amazing depth of the Packers and how they overcame all of the high draft pick injuries. That is the truth.

      • JC

        I meant to say Thompson stole.

      • Stroh

        Very true. Lets be honest, If Rodgers isn’t unjured what the Packers record right now? Most likely 11-2 or 10-3. If you believe that to be true and I think almost every Packer fan would say w/ Rodgers it is, suddenly we are in the playoffs and very possibly fighting w/ NO and possibly Seattle for a 1st rd bye and home field advantage and wondering how they are w/ even the injuries they have suffered throughout the lineup.

        And you are right… That is the truth!

        • http://yardbarker Bob Thomas

          If we had Rodgers,Cobb,Bulaga,Finley and kept Woodson, then we are the caliber of a really good team.But that’s not the case.I may sound a little critical here but it’s hard to argue that even if we were all healthy that it still would be tough hanging with Seahawks and S.F. That’s been a proven fact given the last 2 years in the playoffs.Even if we made th eplayoffs this year,seriously how do think the success would be? We need to get stronger on “D” and we hav’nt.

          • http://FOXSPORTS.COM BOBO

            I AGREE THE PACKERS NEED DEFENSE TO COMPETE WITH ELITE NFL TEAMS. TT NEEDS TO GO TO FREE AGENCY TO SUPPLEMENT THE DRAFT. (REALLY LIKE WIHAT THE BEARS DID FOR THEIR OFFENSE USING BOTH). GOOD TEAMS HAVE GOOD LINES – HOPE TT IF HE IS STILL AROUND REALIZES THAT IN NEXT DRAFT.

    • Stroh

      Your specific examples of OL and OLB are both flawed due to the fact that’s how all teams basically operate. Most college OT move to the NFL and become OG. And College OG move on to be NFL Centers. The reality is that OT is the position on the OL that requires the most athletic ability. That is true at every level. If you go up each level of competition you would see that transition is most common. In the NFL the best OG have generally been college OT. Looking only at the Pro Bowl OG, it is literally littered w/ players that played OT and moved to OG in the NFL. In fact the majority of the Pro Bowl OG were college OT.

      Specifically in the 34 D, the OLB have always been college 43 DE. Find the smaller college DE’s and make them 34 OLB. They then don’t have to take on OL and possibly be double teamed. They usually have by far the most athletic ability/size ratio. Also the fact is there are precious few college teams that employ the 34 D, so the LB and DL that play in an NFL 34 have to come from colleges that used the 43.

  • Big O

    No way would I want TTs job, win consistently, use my ESP at draft time usually the lower rounds, draft people I know are going to be injured, wait, I don’t have ESP!!! Oh, but TT does RIGHT!! Whatever, Go Pack!!!

    • Archie

      Seriously dude? ESP? That’s how GMs draft players? And I thought Packer fans were supposed to be smart.

      • marpag

        If YOU were smart, you wouldn’t have to ask if he was really serious about having ESP. But you’re obviously not here to be smart now, are you?

        • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

          Don’t feed the trolls!

  • John

    The rest of the NFL does not rely on 5,6,7 round draft picks and rookie free agents to fill the gaps. Thompson does and it causes the Packers to fall short of what they could have been.

    • Bearmeat

      That is just not correct John. Go look at the rosters of every team that is successful. You will find a LOT of 5/6/7/UDFA’s on the roster.. many starting.

      • http://allgbp.com Charlie

        Is there some easy way to do this? I figured every team would have a list like packers.com, but I started with the Seahawks and never made any progress. Not interested enough to list their roster and then get ‘how obtained’ for each individual.

        • Cyde

          2013 opening day Packers had least number of 1-3 round draft picks (15)and lowest number of veteran free agents in NFL(1). Draftmetrics had tons of draft data and team building info. Thompson started with 63 draft picks in 9 drafts: 29 in round 1-3 (2 extra), 57 in rounds 4-7 (21 extra) and tends to trade down rather than up.

          • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

            When you take into consideration the number of injuries TT has had from his high draft picks, this does not surprise me in the least.

            Not that he’s infallible either. He’s certainly had his misses. But he is a good to very good GM – despite his insecurities about Free Agency/Trades/Waivers.

          • http://allpackers.com Nick Perry

            He loves stacking those 7th rounders.

        • jtmax

          Off the top of my head Hawks got 2 key players that Packers could have gotten and needed-Zach Miller and Marshawn Lynch. Hawks does a great job with balance between FA and draft and take risks in FA. They don’t always work out but if you don’t try you can’t gain.

  • J204

    Rarely does signing big money free agents work out the way it should in the NFL. But you still need to at least sign a middle of the line veteran guy to fill a hole for you instead of UDFA. Just out of curiosity is Kerry Rhodes that terrible that he is still a FA? I know it is too late now to get him.. He would have been better than what GB is rolling out there now I would imagine??

  • Bearmeat

    I remember McGinn saying that everything TT touched in 08 turned to stone too. These things happen. It’ll turn around next year (if not this year).

    The ONLY reason NE and IND were able to sustain success for so long is that their divisions both had 3 versions of the 2000′s Detroit Lions in them.

    Notice – how consistent has N.O. been under Loomis/Payton/Brees? That’s an elite franchise I’d put on par with GB.

    Answer: Not as consistent as GB. And they dip into FA. Just sayin…

    Haters gonna hate. :D

  • gamer

    20/20 is so “ho-hum”. You can “buy ‘em books ‘n send ‘em to school”, but it doesn’t guarantee that players will respond to coaching and experience. There’s a considerable investment in every player which needs to be severed only after all other remedies are exhausted. Place accountability on those players responsible. They need to learn and develop; adjusting to maturity and character issues such as fame, fortune and fortitude.

  • James

    Jeremy Ross must have been under contract with the Lions all this time, even when playing for the Packers;)

  • QOTSA1

    I contend that the biggest reason for the decline in quality of Thompson’s recent drafts, is due to the loss of John Schneider to Seattle.

    Since hiring Schneider, the Seahawks went from being a pretty average team, to the best team in the league, based largely on Schneider hitting on a lot of his draft picks, but also making some smart free agent pick ups as well, something TT refuses to do. The trade for Harvin isn’t looking particularly smart right now, but at least he sees that this team could win a Super Bowl, and took a chance.

    • Stroh

      Schneider did what Thompson did… Made a couple moves in his first couple seasons to get players at key positions that were needed to compete immediately. Thompson got a press CB to play opposite Harris and a run stuffing NT that wasn’t on the roster. It allowed the Packers to be competitive very quickly. Schneider did the same thing getting a couple players that were needed to make Seattle competitive quickly. Lets see if he continues to use all that or like Thompson become almost entirely draft and develop from here on.

      One last thing is that Thompson has ALWAYS had a lot of money tied up in a QB. Schneider has never had a lot of money tied up in a QB. We’ll see if he’s able to make moves when he is paying Wilson 1/6 of the salary cap. Its would be nice if you looked at the big picture instead of being a micro manager. It helps to see the forrest for the trees doesn’t it?!

      • Bearmeat

        Great point about the QB Stroh. But it’s not worth denying that TT has lost a lot of front office talent in the past few years. The price of being successful… Those guys HAVE to be replaced soon. No 1 man can run a franchise effectively by himself in this day and age of NFL big business.

        • Stroh

          No doubt the Packers lost some front office talent. Schneider, Dorsey and McKenzie were Thompson’s top lieutenants. Eliot Wolf has been making his way up the ladder and IMO is the next GM after Thompson retires. He is one of Thompson’s top men now. We don’t know who the other guys are just yet, but we will. Packers and only developmental w/ the roster, its the coaches and FO too. Its a organizational philosophy.

    • Jourdan

      I agree with most of what you said, but I think it should be pointed out that the Seahawks are in a particularly advantageous position when it comes to signing free agents and trading for players (salaries). The Seahawks carry Russel Wilson at the mark of a 3rd round QB on his rookie contract. A whopping $817,300. Brandon Browner is another player at a premier position making only $774,000. Rodgers alone makes $12,000,000. The day is going to come when the Seahawks have to spend the money and pay Wilson and other players like Browner. That will mean saying goodbye to some of the players on their roster and the splash free agents and trades. The Packers are in this phase. They’re paying out maximum level contracts to players on their 2nd and 3rd deals a la Rodgers/Matthews. Makes it slightly more difficult for a team to maneuver in the free agent and trade markets. Not that I don’t think there are some free agents who could’ve have been of value that Ted chose to leave on the table. Such is life as a fan of a draft and develop team.

  • Archie

    TT = ass-clown
    MM = ass-clown

    Packer fans need to wake up and smell the coffee.

    • Bearmeat

      Archie – I don’t normally name call..

      But you sir, are the one being the “ass-clown” (Your word)

      • Rob

        Archie never got so far as to graduate to the clown level. He’s just a plain old…

        • Archie

          I give my opinion of the Packer brain trust and you attack me personally for it? These two clowns are ass-clowns, pure and simple. I have paid close attention to their every move since taking their Packer jobs and even before. My studied opinion is they are ass-clowns. If you disagree me, fine, but I won’t call you names for that. I might call you names for calling me names, ass-clown.

          • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

            Look – my point is that you clearly despise TT/MM’s work. Fine. Feel free to do so. But you in your “ass-clown” comment, clearly went over the line into a personal attack on TT/MM/SS the people. And this is NOT the first time you’ve done it. I finally got sick of it and called you out.

            There is a way to constructively criticize from your POV WITHOUT name-calling, or being otherwise offensive.

            1. State your opinion

            2. Bring to light FACTS which back up your opinion

            3. When others disagree with you and have a better point, then admit it and move on as a more educated fan.

            4. When you can’t agree with someone, then agree to disagree. Civilly.

            Don’t just shout the same drivel for months in the same manner and expect people to respect your opinion and listen to you.

            As for me, I will continue to read your posts – for awhile, not forever, in hopes that you will in time be able to grow as an educated fan.

            Again, I state this all is IMO. If you disagree, fine. Just do so in a civil manner.

            • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

              And also notice Archie – I said “you sir, are BEING the (redacted).” NOT that you ARE (redacted).

              Big difference. 1 is an action that is changeable and the other is an identity that is not changeable.

            • Two Bears, One Cup

              Can we add “if you don’t have anything new to say, just let it be, no need to repeat the same statement ad nauseam” to the list? Every post, very day, it’s the same statement. Never anything new.

          • marpag

            I find it laughable (and sadly pathetic) that the people are who horribly offended by “personal attacks” are the very same people who see no problem calling MM and TT “ass clowns.”

            Grow up and stop being hypocrites. No one will respect you until you do.

        • Robert Patreus

          …Archie, we love ya, but, be honest…did you go to Washington, D.C. public schools?…That may be the true issue.

    • Big T

      I like that word— azz clown

      • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

        you would. I wonder if you and Archie are the same person… or if you just hang out all the time.

        • Big T

          Bearmeat, you really like personal attacks… I don’t remember saying anything about or to you. I will have to agree with Archie and say Bearmeat is an azz clown…

          • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

            lol. whatever.

            • Big T

              bearmeat are you in 6th grade?

    • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

      He is a troll. Don’t feed the trolls.

  • Bedroske

    Somebody help me, but weren’t the special teams looking improved to start the season? Then injuries started moving our special teams players onto the starting D and O…and the subs of special teams haven’t been as good. Jeremy Ross…I think is a case of a coach not knowing how to build enough confidence in that boy.

    • Stroh

      I think Ross is a case of a guy realizing that he got released by his 2nd team in 2 seasons and was on his 3rd and FINAL chance! Ross was one more release from being out of the NFL for good and making 20K instead of hundreds of thousands a year.

      • Cow42

        Ross – had a huge game vs a garbage Packers’ ST, then went out and had a monster game IN A FREAKING SNOW PIT.

        I kinda think he’s just found himself in two perfect storms in back to back weeks.

        Doubt this little explosion is going to continue.

        • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

          I think that’s a really great point Cow.

        • http://allpackers.com Nick Perry

          That and actually hanging on to the ball! We had a taste of how explosive Ross could be, that was the reason MM stayed with him. A few fumbles later and he’s gone.

    • Archie

      Slocum – another ass-clown.

  • Big T

    The whole franchise is in a slump. We need someone to kick azz and take names…

    • Archie

      At least it easy to make money with this defense and no AROD/back-up QB, back-up C, S etc. Hope everyone is riding the gravy train and betting against these ass-clowns every week. I’m a little nervous about Rodgers coming back this week. If not this week, I think next week for sure. of course, then the bet just switches from against Pack to Over.

      Wouldn’t it be amazing if AROD were able to carry this ass-clown team and coaching staff and GM to another SB?! I don’t rule it out. AROD is that good.

      • Big T

        I belieive that Arod is done for the season

        • Cow42

          I though this too.

          But then why would he even be practicing?

          If they were gonna shut him down they could easily use a lack of “medical clearance” to hold him out of practice altogether.

          • Big T

            that is true cow, however, they are not telling the whole story.

      • BradHTX

        Archie, we all get that you found a favorite new “funny word.” Ass clown! Assclownassclownassclown!

        Give it (and us) a rest, OK?

      • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

        I think GB will and arguably should put Rodgers on IR if we are eliminated from the playoffs this week. And yes, it would be interesting to see how far Rodgers can carry this team into the playoffs if he returns and GB sneaks in.

  • Since ’61

    To me, the premise of this article is incorrect. If Rodgers doesn’t get hurt our team is 10-3 or 9-4 at the worst and Adam is writing about whether we clinch the division this week or next and our chances for a bye with the #2 seed. No one, except maybe Archie is complaining about TT, and there is no slump. Yes, we can debate TT success or failure with draft picks, especially on defense, but again, the bottom line is winning and TT’s won- lost record is over .600 prior to Rodgers injury and will probably go back over .600 when he returns. This is why it’s best to evaluate player and management performance when the season is over. And it ain’t over ’til it’s over. Thanks, Since ’61

  • BubbaOne

    IIRC, I read GM’s are successful roughly 40% of the time. Parity, forcing successful teams to draft at the end of the rounds makes it harder to maintain let alone improve their talent levels. TT had picks 23, 26, 28, and 32 in the first round of the last 4 drafts. Some think a better way to view this as not having a first round pick but instead drafting at the top of the second round.

    Maintaining a competitive team after having success is the sign of a great GM. The team has a .641 winning percentage during the TT/MM era and is 47-17 in the last 4 yrs entering this season. I’m more than happy w/ this.

    I don’t view players who don’t pan out because of injuries as “busts”. “Busts” to me are players who don’t have talent and shouldn’t have been picked. The most notable player fans have labeled a bust was Justin Harrell. Yes, he had a history of injuries in college. There weren’t too many difference makers at DT in that draft. I read he was mentioned in the same breathe as Reggie White and would have been a top 5 pick if not for the injuries. TT took a chance at pick 16 hoping Harrell could overcome his past. He couldn’t, so be it. You take calculated risks; some work, some don’t.

    • Bedroske

      Bust also implies having unrealized talent. No talent or unused, both are busts. But injuries…
      There’s also a difference in saying the player was a bust and the pick was a bust.

    • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

      GB drafted 23, 26, 28 and 32 in the last 4 drafts. Yes, you can think of that as drafting in the high 2nd round. But there are tiers of players in every draft. Some drafts are stronger or deeper than others. Often enough there are 1-3 top rated prospects (tier 1). Then 6 to 10 somewhat less highly regarded players (tier 2). And then another tier of perhaps a dozen players (tier 3), and then 20 or 30 players comprise tier 4. I remember the commentators suggesting that the talent level dropped around pick 25 in one of the last couple of drafts, and in another that there wasn’t too much difference in raw talent between pick 20 and 50 in another draft. Generally TT has to draft in Tier 4. Sometimes he drafted in Tier 3, and sometimes due to teams reaching for a QB for eg., a player might drop from Tier 3 to 4.

  • Adam Czech

    As I said in the post, bad injury luck is part of the slump.

  • Big T

    TT was the right person in the right place at the right time. He took the team to the superbowl and everyone is forever grateful. Times have changed and we need a change if we ever want to go to another superbowl. TT did a fine job but it is time for CHANGE. He should hold his head up high and ride off into the sunset…

  • Tarynfor12

    We can all say that with Rodgers we may be 9-4 or 10-3 or even 8-5,,who knows for sure.The only thing that we have learned for sure with Rodgers being out is this team on both sides of the ball have some very inferior talent and even using the word talent is/could be a stretch.

    Draft and Develop is and has been a great tool and has had its up and downs,however,the largest glaring problem of it is the growth of certain players/positions hasn’t been reached and we got backlogged on graduation of too many.

    • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

      Which is EXACTLY where NE, DEN, and NO (to name a few) would be without their elite QB’s.

      Only so much salary cap $ to go around. If you’ve got an elite QB, you have to pay him like it, and there ain’t much more room for another whole cast of elite talents. You get to pay 3-4 elite guys. At most.

      • Barutan Seijin

        One word:

        2008

  • Chuck from Atlanta

    You are blaming TT for injuries, really? That’s like blaming Bush for Katrina. I live in Atlanta. Everyone hailed Thomas Demitroff (Falcons GM) as a savior. He traded away high draft picks for Julio Jones. They were picked by many to go to the Super Bowl this year. Their injuries are fewer than the Packers. What’s their record? 3-10 and have been out of playoff contention for some time. The packers without so many players are still in the hunt. I say “Awesome job TT, keep it up!”

    • jtmax

      I agree that injuries are the main reason why we struggle. They happen so much every season that it can’t be bad luck. There is something wrong in the way we train and prepare for games. Muscle strains are way too common.

  • larry valdes

    The only beef I have with ted is no drafting a safety last draft and keeping Jennings McMillan and Newhouse in the roster for so long and no getting a kicked returner.

  • Icebowler

    The new CBA agreement has really hurt the draft and develop teams like the Packers. Even before that, it seems that half of the rookies in the league get hurt in the first year or two. I think the Packers need to adjust and start picking up a few key free agents who have proven their durability over a few years. I have faith that TT will have learned a few lessons this year and will adjust. Our scouting team did get raided the past few years, but I hope we will overcome that with the new guys getting more experience. I would also like to see a new strength and conditioning crew brought in that doesn’t think that “stretching” is over-rated.

    • Herb the Bitter

      Not trying to be a smartass, but google “stretching and injury”.

  • Aaronqb

    I don’t agree with this article at all. It looks to me like the 2013 draft may be one of Thompson’s best. Lacy could OROY, Bakhtiari is the steal of the draft, Hyde has been very good, and Datone Jones will be a starter. Tretter just got added to the active roster after suffering a terrible injury.

    The team is .500 and in the hunt for the playoffs after being decimated by injuries including Rodgers at 6 weeks and counting.

    IMO, Thompson is doing his best work.

    He let Jennings leave in UFA and cut Bishop loose. The Packers sand to get two compensatory picks next year and the salary cap is under control. They are perennial contenders. With average injuries, they would be pushing for the #1 seed in the NFC.

  • marpag

    Kick returners are consistently overrated, and Jeremy Ross is massively overrated after two decent games.

    The overwhelming majority of special teams success in the return game is blocking. If you have great blocking, even Jeremy Ross looks good.

  • marpag

    I find it awfully hard to criticize TT for his contract extensions, or even to call them “bad luck.” Should we wait until ARod and CM3′s contracts are over, or until the players become offended by their low salary? How do we know that TT didn’t avert disaster by signing them now? The odds of some bonehead owner (oh, let’s say, from Washington, perhaps) signing them to stupid money is almost a certainty if they get to free agency. It’s bad luck that they got injured, but how is it bad to have them locked up under contract?

    The article doesn’t really have a clear focus. What does it even mean that Thompson is “in a slump?” And what evidence does the article really provide that pins much of anything on Thompson?

    I assume the “Jeremy Ross argument” was intended as a joke.

    The contract extensions should be considered a point in TT’s favor. Both Arod’s and CM3′s contracts were considered to be relatively team and cap friendly considering the caliber of the players.

    The injuries are something TT obviously isn’t responsible for.

    And as for the drafting/signing, the only positions the article talks about are safety and backup QB. And that’s fair enough. But a more balanced approach certainly should have mentioned that TT used the draft to find a stud and potential OROY at RB, filled a gaping hole at left tackle, and got decent backup material at defensive back and D-line.

    So what exactly shows that “TT is in a slump?”

    • Stroh

      “The article doesn’t really have a clear focus.”

      Couldn’t agree more! I’ll go one further… I think the article is completely squat. Was a waste of my time to read (even partially). Utter non-sensical.

      • marpag

        Hmm, I’m not sure we’re EXACTLY agreed, Stroh… The article does present some reasons why the Packers organization as a whole is having a rough stretch… I just don’t see that recent struggles really implicate TT.

        “Utter non-sensical” is going a bit far, methinks.

  • Adam Czech

    I agree, Stroh. Terrible.

    • Stroh

      You agree your own aricle is terrible?! So why did you write it or improve it? Of course that would start w/ changing your premise and I don’t know if your willing to do that. Guessing you wouldn’t or you wouldn’t have written this garbage.

  • http://allgbp.com Thegreatreynoldo

    The article fails to present any facts. i looked up the last 3 drafts (but not UDFAs).

    2009: Raji (1-9th), CM3 (1), Lang/4, Q. Johnson/5, Jamon Meredith/5, Jarius Wynn/6, B Underwood/6, B. Jones/7. Elite player in CM3. Good starters in Lang, B. Jones, and Raji (though Raji has underwhelmed given his #9 pick status). Very good draft.

    2010: Bulaga/1, Neal/2, Burnett/3, Quarless/5, Newhouse/5, Starks/6, C.J. Wilson/7. I believe Shields was an UDFA. Neal and Quarless had tons of injuries (& Bulaga to a lesser extent). All have been starters. Bulaga and Shields are probably above average starters. All showed talent. Darn good draft.

    2011: Perry/1, worthy/2, Hayward/2, Daniels/4, McMillian/4, Terrell Manning/5, Datko/7, Coleman/7. Jury is out on Perry & worthy. Hayward & Daniels look like good picks. Bottom 4 picks were rejects. Only Daniels (as a sub but hoping he can become more stout against the run) and Perry contributed in 2013. No stars, below average result.

    2012: Sherrod/1, Cobb/2, alex Green/3, Davon House/4, D.J. Williams/5, Schlauderaff/6, D.J. Smith/6, ricky Elmore/6, Ryan Taylor/7, Lawrence Guy/7. Sherrod & Green got injured. Jury is out on Sherrod and House. Elmore, Schlauderaff & Guy were rejects. Cobb is an impact player. Rest are shouldn’t see the field except on STs. Below average draft at this point.

    The article starts a train of thought but fails to adduce facts in support or to follow through on the thought. The contract extensions for eg.: Rodgers and CM look good, reasonably cap friendly. Jury is out on Burnett’s. B. Jone’s looks reasonable. I think offering $8 million to Raji is too much. I also think failing to re-sign Shields before the season and failing to re-sign EDS much earlier in the season are large mistakes. Restructure of Hawk is reasonable. TT looks like an above average GM to me. One might say that he has been in a mini-slump in 2011 and 2012. I like his 2013 draft, but time will tell.

  • Mark E. Bye

    There’s nothing wrong with Ted Thompson that couldn’t be cured by Mark Murphy simply telling him “you *can* spend some money, Ted.”