At this point in the NFL offseason, what would you say is your biggest concern about the 2014 Packers?
For me, it’s the safety position. When Morgan Burnett is the best safety on the roster, there are issues. Yes, the draft is right around the corner, but you never know if a) the Packers will be in a position to draft a safety who can start right away or b) if whatever safety they draft will be any good.
But forget about your biggest concern for the time being. What do you see as potential concerns that few people are talking about?
Because those are probably the concerns that will come to fruition in 2014. With all the roster turnover and other unknowns from year-to-year in today’s NFL, it’s impossible to predict in March what an NFL team might be scrambling to try and fix in November.
At this time last year, we were all worried about the Packers not being big enough to stand toe-to-toe with physical teams like the 49ers or Seahawks. Then halfway through the season, we were worried about the Packers being too big to compete with teams like the 49ers and Seahawks.
I remember back before the 2010 season being worried about an undrafted rookie named Sam Shields serving as the Packers nickel cornerback. An undrafted rookie playing a key role on a team with Super Bowl aspirations. That’s insane!
Then Shields goes out and has a good season and picks off two passes in the NFC Championship to send the Packers to the Super Bowl.
I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Burnett is playing well once November comes around, a young safety is holding his own next to Burnett, and the Packers problems at safety are problems no more.
Teams can make grand plans to plug holes in March, and fans can do the same on blogs and social media, but once the season starts, all bets are off. A few key injuries or important players underperforming ruins the most thought-out plans.
My under-the-radar concern for the Packers is offensive tackle.
David Bakhtiari had a good rookie season, but what if he doesn’t take a step forward in 2014? Or what if the injury bug strikes him down in his second year like it did to Casey Hayward in his second season?
Bryan Bulaga is coming off a nasty knee injury and hasn’t been able to stay healthy his entire career. Derek Sherrod has only been healthy for a handful of games. Don Barclay battles hard, but he’s far from a sure-thing at tackle. Plus, Barclay could be in the mix to take over at center.
It’s perfectly fine to worry about the Packers safety position. Ditto for center and tight end. But keep in mind, it’s only March. There’s a good chance we’ll have other worries come November.
Packers news, notes and links
- It sounds like the Packers might want to use Micah Hyde at multiple positions. There’s also been talk of using Julius Peppers, Nick Perry and/or Mike Neal in multiple spots. If part of the Packers problems on defense is an over-complicated scheme, is asking guys to learn multiple spots really such a good idea?
- Mike McCarthy thinks he’s only at halftime of his Packers coaching career. I hope he’s right. If he’s around for another nine years, it means the Packers are winning. Like with any coach, we like to pick at McCarthy for playcalling and clock management decisions. Often, that criticism is deserved. But McCarthy is a helluva coach. The Packers rarely have to deal with team drama and keep winning despite being wiped out by injuries more often than McCarthy and any of us would like. Give me the even-keeled, focused and no-nonesne McCarthy over someone who is emotional, whiny and confrontational like Jim Harbaugh.
- What was your favorite C.J. Wilson moment?
- Several mock drafts have the Packers taking TE Eric Ebron, LB C.J. Mosley or S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in the first round of the NFL draft. All three are talented players, but all three also have possible red flags. Brian Carriveau at CheeseheadTV has more details.
- Be sure to check out this week’s “From the Benches” podcast at PackersTalk.com.
- The Packers brought in free agent G/C Mike McGlynn for a visit this week. Fortunately, McGlynn has been signed by the Redskins.
- I’m sure you’ve all seen this already, but it’s worth watching again: Aaron Rodgers celebrates with the Wisconsin Badgers after their Sweet 16 victory.
Non-Packers links and other nonsense
- The new version of Action PC Football is out. If you’re looking for an addicting replay text sim, this game fits the bill.
- I’ve enjoyed Nate Silver’s new Fivethirtyeight.com website, but it’s very similar to what Wonkblog was at the Washington Post. Also, why is Silver so damn petty and sensitive?
- 49ers CB Chris Culliver has been charged with felony possession of brass knuckles. They’ve been using brass knuckles in professional wrestling for as long as I can remember and nobody has ever gotten charged with a felony. Sheesh.
- Book recommendation: “Up, Up and Away” Jonah Keri’s history of the Montreal Expos.
Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .