Category Archives: Don Barclay

11

June

Offensive Linemen Musical Chairs, 2014 Edition: who stays, who goes?

Outside of special teams, nothing is more confusing, more obfuscated or more esoteric than offensive line play; We all know that Joe Thomas is supposed to be one of the best offensive linemen in the NFL right now, but do you or I really know that?  I’ve never watched a game specifically focused on Thomas (which would of course require me to watch a Browns game…..so no thanks), and I suspect that even Browns fans probably haven’t really paid all that much attention to him.  The only real reason I know of Joe Thomas at all is 1) he went to Wisconsin and 2) I’ve been told he’s one of the best offensive linemen in the NFL today.  At least with other positions, there are splash plays or statistics we can fall back on whether it be sacks, yards after the catch, Dwight Freeney’s spin move, the back shoulder catch etc.  But for offensive linemen, none of that really exists; the “pancake” has never really gotten off the ground as a established metric of offensive linemen success nor does a great block ever make the Sportscenter highlight reel.  Add on top of that there are actually 5 positions on the offensive line, and we get a confusing mess of contradictory statements; offensive linemen must all work together, but each have different jobs.  Tackles are tackles and guards are guards, except some are left tackles but not right tackles and some are right guards but not left guards.  Center is a unique position, unless it isn’t and you put a guard in there.  There is a distinct difference between “interior” linemen and “bookend” offensive linemen, unless of course you kick your tackle to play guard.

In all of that, the Packers are faced with a conundrum; there are 5 positions and traditionally 2 backup positions, making 7 offensive linemen total.  What I’ve done is made a mental excercise of some combinations of offensive linemen that are likely to happen when the Packers roster is reduced to 53.  A couple rules: I’d highly doubt the Packers carry any more since offensive linemen aren’t all that useful on special teams meaning they’d almost always be on the inactive list.  Of course the Packers have had more than 7 offensive linemen in the middle of the season due to injuries and what not, but its obviously not their first choice.  Also there needs to be a backup for both tackle and guard; supposedly there is a significance between the two but Ted Thompson probably disagrees since the vast majority of offensive linemen that have been on the Packer’s roster were college left tackles.

---- Get AddToAny
14

March

Evan Dietrich-Smith Signs With The Buccaneers

Packers C Evan Dietrich-Smith

Packers C Evan Dietrich-Smith

Tom Silverstein has been a busy guy, first reporting on the resigning of defensive end/nose tackle BJ Raji and now reporting that center Evan Dietrich-Smith has signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

 

 

With that, the Packers now have a big question to answer this offseason, much like they did when they let Scott Wells sign with the St. Louis Rams.   JC Tretter becomes perhaps the de facto starter, which is a little scary considering he was a left tackle in college and broke his foot during rookie orientation last year, essentially giving him a redshirt rookie season.  Other options might include Don Barclay, who practiced at center during training camp last year with somewhat disastrous results or TJ Lang, who is rumored to be the emergency center (or at least Josh Sitton jokes that he is). Luckily, the Packers have some other options on the offensive line, with both Bryan Bulaga and Derek Sherrod likely being in the mix at tackle, either Don Barclay and/or David Bakhtiari could slide into the interior.

In terms of the draft, the Packers have never thought very highly of centers (Wells was a 6th round draft choice while EDS was a undrafted free agent), so it’s unlikely that they would draft a center high, rather they like to draft tackles who likely wouldn’t make it in the NFL and convert them to interior linemen.

The top free agent center is Alex Mack, who was designated the transition franchise tag for the Browns, likely meaning that the Packers will not try to pry Mack away from the Browns.  Again going back to Thompson’s history drafting and retaining centers, it appears as if the Packers front office views centers as largely fungible, meaning the Packers backup likely will be another low round draft pick or an undrafted free agent.  Another option might be to run the “Jeff Saturday” play, where the Packers sign a veteran center while they hope JC Tretter or Don Barclay gain enough experience at center to play next there next season.

12

February

Don Barclay 2013 Green Bay Packers Evaluation and Report Card

 

Packers Offensive Lineman Don Barclay

Packers Offensive Lineman Don Barclay

1) Introduction: The Packers started the 2012 season with only seven offensive linemen on the roster, showing a tremendous amount of faith in unheralded Evan Dietrich-Smith and Don Barclay. As we now know, both of those players became starters a year later; one could say out of necessity, but with little doubt they earned their spots. Barclay had competition for his spot and won out with blue collar work ethic and a never-say die determination.

2) Profile:

Don Barclay

  • Age: 24
  • Born: 4/18/1989 in Newport News, VA
  • Height: 6’4″
  • Weight: 305
  • College: West Virginia
  • Rookie Year: 2012
  • NFL Experience: 2 years

Career Stats and more

3) Expectations coming into the season:   Having ended the 2012 season with 4 starts at right tackle and Bryan Bulaga being moved to left tackle, Barclay would be challenged by Marshall Newhouse and David Bakhtiari for the starting right tackle job.When Bulaga went down and Sherrod proved still not ready to play, Bakhtiari became the starting left tackle and Barclay was left to compete with Marshall Newhouse for the right tackle job.

4) Player’s highlights/low-lights: Barclay’s season lowlight was in the playoff game against the 49ers.  He was on his heels early and often, allowing a good amount of pressure on Aaron Rodgers. Barclay’s cleanest game was against the Cowboys. Barclay pitched a shutout in that game – no sacks, no QB hits and no QB pressures.

5) Player’s contribution to the overall team success: In terms of pass protection, Barclay was the most ineffective of the Packers starters. In 15 games, according to ProFootballFocus, Barclay surrendered 9 sacks, 6 GB Hits and 27 QB Hurries. Barclay’s tenacity as a run blocker was a big asset to the Packers’ new found running game with Eddie Lacy.

6) Player’s contributions in the playoffs: As stated previously, Barclay had a tough time in the playoffs against the 49ers. Ahmad Brooks was able to get consistent pressure on Rodgers and Barclay was ”
credited” with giving up 1.5 sacks and five quarterback hurries.

Season Report Card:

(B-) Level of expectations met during the season

(C) Contributions to team’s overall success.

(C-) Contributions to team during the playoffs

Overall Grade:  C

26

December

Cory’s Corner: Time is running out for Derek Sherrod

Offensive lineman Derek Sherrod has missed over a year-and-a-half since being selected as the 32nd player in the 2011 draft.

Offensive lineman Derek Sherrod has missed over a year-and-a-half since being selected as the 32nd player in the 2011 NFL Draft.

While the rest of the nation seems affixed to the Aaron Rodgers watch, there is another injury concern that needs more attention.

Enter Derek Sherrod.

The 6-foot-6, 321-pound offensive lineman came to the Packers with a mountain of promise as the 32nd selection in the 2011 NFL Draft. He was supposed to be the next offensive line anchor that would protect franchise quarterback Aaron Rodgers as long as he wore that G on the side of his helmet.

But then he broke his right leg in December 2011 causing him to miss the entire 2012 season. He began this season on the physically unable to play list and wasn’t added to the 53-man roster until Nov. 5.

He has gotten scant playing time the last four weeks but hasn’t been able to really do anything of note. The Packers have a club option for 2015 before he becomes a free agent the following season.

So that puts the Packers in a precarious situation. Over a year-and-a-half has been lost already and if he cannot crack the starting lineup against guys like T.J. Lang or Don Barclay, then the Packers should be concerned.

Bryan Bulaga will come back next season and should quickly become the best lineman that has allowed jailbreak pressure for all four quarterbacks the Packers have started this year.

I doubt it’s time to give up on Sherrod just yet, but if he continues to struggle next August and into next season, how many more chances can the Packers give and afford? Ted Thompson got lucky with David Bakhtiari as a fourth round pick this past spring. Right after Bulaga went down with an ACL tear in the Family Night scrimmage, Bakhtiari has been inserted into the starting lineup and has protected the Packers’ quarterback’s blind side each week.

Even if Sherrod cannot get back to the college player that started 35 games at tackle for Mississippi State, including all 25 his junior and seasons, the Packers must try and forecast the future. Obviously, the Packers cannot continue to pay him first round money when his time in the trainer’s room outnumbers his time on the field. But if they can come to a compromise and rework his deal that suits both parties, Sherrod could find new life in Green Bay.

26

November

Packers News: Rodgers, Shields, Barclay, Jolly back at practice

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers practiced Nov. 26. / Photo by Wes Hodkiewicz via Twitter

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers practiced Nov. 26. / Photo by Wes Hodkiewicz via Twitter

For the first time since suffering a broken collarbone Nov. 4, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was on the field throwing Tuesday at practice.

Per Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com via Twitter, Rodgers participated in all the individual drills open to the media before being “kicked out” for the team portion of practice. Packers head coach Mike McCarthy previously said Rodgers’ chances of playing Thursday against the Lions were “slim to none,” but it appears the quarterback has made some sort of progress in his rehab.

It’s worth noting that while Rodgers was able to throw the ball at practice, he was taking snaps from Garth Gerhart and not starter Evan Dietrich-Smith. But as Jason Wilde points out on Twitter, Rodgers and Dietrich-Smith have plenty of reps together.

Along with Rodgers’ return, cornerback Sam Shields, defensive end Johnny Jolly and right tackle Don Barclay were also both practicing. The Packers have struggled to compensate for each player being out the last two weeks.

Marshall Newhouse has been a train wreck filling in for Barclay at right tackle, while the once-deep secondary is now scrambling to fill holes, as they’re without Casey Hayward for the rest of the season and Shields has missed the past two games. The defensive line has been dominated without Jolly in the lineup.

One has to wonder whether Rodgers’ availability will be directly tied to Barclay. Allowing Rodgers to play three weeks after breaking his collarbone would be risky with Newhouse at right tackle against the Detroit Lions’ front four.

More information will follow when McCarthy talks to reporters after practice, as it’s still unclear whether or not Rodgers will be cleared for contact in time for Thursday’s game. However, Rodgers needed to practice today to have even the slightest of chances to play, and he did just that.

(UPDATE: McCarthy said he’s not expecting Rodgers to play this week. Asked if his chances were still “slim to none,” McCarthy said, “Closer to none.” McCarthy also said he expects Sam Shields and Johnny Jolly to play Thursday. The team is still preparing both Matt Flynn and Scott Tolzien, although Flynn took the starter reps today.)

But hey, there’s finally some positive injury news on the Packers front. At least for today.

3

November

Packers Barclay and McMillian Help Raise $30,000 at Levi’s Challenge

Don Barclay, Mark Mayfield, Jerron McMillian and Levi Biestle

Don Barclay, Mark Mayfield, Jerron McMillian and Levi Biestle

Once again, the Packers community has shown how it rallies around one of its own in need.

Levi Biestle is a 3 1/2 yr old young boy who was involved in a tragic lawn tractor accident. He has had 11 surgeries and three toes and part of a foot amputated. More surgeries will be needed, as will be money to help pay for these medical expenses.  (To read about this in more detail, visit levischallenge.com)

This past Saturday, Packers players Don Barclay, Jerron McMillian and a host of volunteers and local businesses got together to donate their time, money, services and raffle items in a concerted effort to raise money for this young Wisconsinite.

The Newburgh Fire department hosted the event, spearheaded by Wayne Sargent and Steve Tate of the “Ultimate Packer Fan Connection.” There were raffles, auctions, food and beverage sales with all proceeds going to the cause.

LS Limo of Appleton provided free transportation for the players. Mayfield Sports Marketing donated items for the raffles and auctions. Too many others to mention were volunteers that helped run the day-long event.

News of the event was spread via social media by the players, fans and members of the Packers Talk Radio Network and Mayfield Sports Marketing.

But of course, the biggest draw were the appearances by Packers’ players Don Barclay and Jerron McMillian, who both cleared time in their schedules to be there to support the fund raising event.

The players signed items that were then auctioned or raffled off. All event attendees received free autographs from the players, but were encouraged to make a donation if they were able to.

In all, it was a huge success; the day’s events raised close to $30,000 to help Levi and his family with the medical expenses they face.

Many thanks go to all involved, but it was the appearance of the Packers’ players that brought in the masses. The players appeared courtesy of Mayfield Sports Marketing, who has been successfully booking player appearances for fund-raisers and other events throughout Wisconsin.

If you want to make your next event a major success, you can contact Mayfield Sports Marketing here.

31

October

Packers Don Barclay to Support Levi’s Challenge: Wisconsin Toddler Needs Your Help

Levi's Challenge - Levi Beastle

Levi’s Challenge – Levi Beastle

Levi Beastle is a young Wisconsin 3-year old who was involved in a tragic lawn mower accident resulting in amputation of three toes and part of his foot. He has been through 11 surgeries in two months and more will be needed.

Packers offensive lineman Don Barclay has thrown his support to Levi’s cause and will appear at a fund-raising event this Saturday, November 2nd at the Newburgh Fire Station in Newburgh, Wisconsin.

ALLGBP.COM will be donating $100.0o the cause and if at all possible, we hope you can make a donation of any amount. But if you can’t, all we ask is one thing: please spread the word however you can so the message hopefully reaches more people who can help with monetary donations. Share the news though social networks like Facebook and Twitter, on Packers Forums, call your wealthy friends, put a sign on your lawn, whatever you’re comfortable with. Just help us spread the word and help this family out.

You can donate or get more information on their website, levischallenge.com. If you share on Facebook or Twitter, please use the hashtag #LevisChallenge.

Details:

On September 3rd Levi was involved in a lawn mower accident at home in Town of West Bend, he was attend to by the Allenton Fire Department who subsequently sent him by Flight for Life to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. There his three small toes and a segment of the side of his right foot were amputated due to the significant amount of damage and the great concern for infection that could lead to further amputation. Five days later his great grandmother and aunt were killed in a head on collision on highway 16 near Oconomowoc Wi. Levi spent 30 days in Children’s Hospital with 11 surgeries to clean the wound sites and 1 surgery to transfer muscle from his back, skin grafts from his thigh and closure to the top of his foot.

On October 3rd he was discharged from Children’s Hospital still on IV antibiotics just in time to attend his mother and fathers wedding held on October 5. His mother, father, grandmother and grandfather were trained to attend to the IV infusions, wound dressing and pain drug administration, of which he remains on for an additional 3 weeks to date.  Subsequent known surgeries will include 3 pin removal from his foot and tendon relocation from the left side of his foot to the right side to allow straightening of the foot due to the loss of those lost in the accident, it is still unknown how much rehabilitation, prosthetics or assisting devices will be required to try to return him to his new normal state of mobility.