Cory’s Corner: NFC North is ganging up to stop Packers

ALLGBP.com All Green Bay Packers All the Time
Kyle Fuller (17) was one of the best cornerbacks in the draft and the Bears took him 14th overall.
Kyle Fuller (17) was the second cornerback off the board, taken 14th overall by the Bears.

Taking a peek at the rest of the draft picks in the NFC North, it’s apparent where the priorities lie.

Of the Packers nine picks, four of them were offensive skill players. Green Bay went with defense to open up the draft but then quickly reloaded Aaron Rodgers with capable weapons.

While Green Bay’s defense wasn’t exactly dynamite last year, the addition of Julius Peppers is going to change the pass rush and pass coverage.

The Bears knew exactly which way they had to go after suffering through the humiliating 48-yard Rodgers bomb to Randall Cobb — defense. And that’s exactly what Chicago did. The Bears only picked two offensive skill positions and they waited until the fourth round to pick their first one.

While everyone was dogging Detroit for making the questionable first round selection of tight Eric Ebron, the Lions responded after that. They addressed their defensive and offensive lines, secondary and linebacking corps. Just like Chicago, Detroit only picked two offensive skill positions.

That brings me to the worst team in the NFC North last year. The Vikings have a lot of holes — namely at quarterback. But after taking Teddy Bridgewater at the end of the first round, Minnesota only took one more offensive skill position but really stressed its pass rush after losing Jared Allen to Chicago.

So what does this all mean? Everyone, as they should, respects the heck out of the Packers’ offense. They are sick and tired of watching Eddie Lacy run through them and Rodgers pass over them.

Which is why it’s pretty comical that when the other teams in the division collectively loaded up to stop the formidable Green Bay offense, the Packers simply shrug and add even more offense.

And that is why Ted Thompson will always keep you guessing. You may think you have an idea of what direction he is going to go, but he was throwing curveballs for two days — after the obvious Ha Ha Clinton-Dix pick to kick things off.

Obviously the X-factor is Peppers. Without acquiring Peppers prior to the draft, Thompson would have likely beefed up the defensive line or probably traded up to make sure that Ryan Shazier or C.J. Mosley secured the defensive front seven.

So, Thompson did what he rarely does and signs a free agent. Then, he goes against the grain and puts more bullets into Rodgers’ gun when everyone thought he was going to continue to stress defense like he has done the last two drafts.

But then again, if you could predict what Thompson is thinking, you’d be a very rich man.

——————

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

——————

  • Kevin Hull

    I cant totally agree w/ the concept of the other teams gearing up just to stop the Packers/Rodgers. The NFL has turned into a passing league, everyone knows it, and they know they have to improve their defense to address it. I understand those teams play us twice a year, but they also have to play other high powered offenses too.

  • Big T

    “Peppers is the X-factor” Slow down there big boy. Peppers is more like the “I hope we didn’t just make a huge mistake and pay an old has been a lot of money” Peppers didn’t scare to many people last year. Hope I am wrong on this, however, seems to me he was on reserve fuel last year.

    • Scheny Schen

      You hope you’re wrong, but will you admit you’re wrong IF he plays well? Will you recognize TT for having actually addressed something in a successful manner or will you just claim that “player X” would have helped more or that TT got lucky? I guess we’ll all find out together. GoPack!

      • Sven

        If you look at his carreer stats, Peppers had a down year last year. It was not unlike 3 or 4 other years in his carreer though. The defense also was is in a real state of change ladt yearvwith lots of players missing from before and alot of new schemes, and he finished the season strong, it was really the start of the season that saw lower stats.

        To me doubting Peppers is more an act of pessimism, than any thing based in hard fact.

      • Big T

        Scheny, of course I will admit if I am wrong. They must see something different in Peppers. All I saw was someone that didn’t even want to be on the field last year. Maybe MM will kick him in the ballsack and fire him up a bit. I want it to work out, just have my doubts.

        • Scheny Schen

          Fair enough.

          • Scheny Schen

            Oh, and I will gladly do the same if he stinks and is washed up. I think he will be a good addition though.

  • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

    Of course they are. In the past 5 years, GB has won a Super Bowl, (which only 1 other team in our division has ever done, and that was when most of the current players weren’t even born yet.)4 Division titles, and generally made them all look like fools.

    CHI, MIN and DET’s organizations begrudgingly respect GB. And their fans hate GB.

    And they should. We’ve made them look beyond foolish for the better part of a decade.

    Want to know the good news? It’s not likely to stop. Our combination of the best QB in the world at the most important position in sports, a dynamite collection of skill players, a solid OL, and an average defense (with the distinct possibility of being good this year) isn’t likely to stop anytime soon.

    GB is the NFCN’s Patriots. The other teams are the Jets, Bills, and Dolphins.

    • Sven

      Right on!

  • http://grizzlymitch@bresnan.net grizzlymitch

    Name one cornerback in the NFC North that has slowed Rodgers down. None. I would be more worried about the new tight end at Detroit than any of their D rookies. They have such a great D, but have only beaten us once in five years. As long as the Bears have Cutler, we are good. He is a slow footed baby. Health is the only thing that will catch the Packers this year, not any of the other NFC bums.

    • Big T

      Cutler has definately been a huge asset to Green Bay. He is perfect for the Bears, complete whiny little biatch…

  • Sven

    If the gear up for the pass, we can run. If they play the run, we pass. It is so great that we got Lacy!

  • Mojo

    I don’t see it as the NFC North targeting players to specifically beat the Packers. Just like any other team, they’re looking for the BPA who will hopefully at the same time fill a need.

    If teams pick players based on the desire to get better as a team, win the division and do well in the playoffs, then yes, they’re all doing that. Because the Pack have recently been winning the division, then yes, technically speaking the other NFC teams are drafting players so that they can get ahead of them. But not so much to counter GB players specifically.

  • Nopainnogain

    I agree, it’s obvious the Vikings and Lions are still playing catch-up on offense, though I think they are not far behind. if Bridgewater pans out, Minnesota could immediately be legit on that side of the ball. look at just about any site and you’ll see the NFCN has arguably the best offense from top to bottom. every single offensive position group is graded highly, except for the tight ends and Minnesota’s QB. Should be alot of fireworks next season. all the defenses in the division have their work cut out for them

  • Big T

    They keep saying NFC West is the best division. I say look out for the NFC north. Could be 4 very good teams going at it.

  • B.J. Rassam

    The Packers will get a good run at the NFC North from the Lions and the Bears.