It’s been tough being a Green Bay Packers blogger these last couple of weeks. A pair of blowout victories and a Packers team that is doing next to nothing wrong doesn’t leave us a lot to write about.
Obviously, we’re thrilled that the Packers are rolling. We’ll keep putting up posts about the awesomeness of Aaron Rodgers or the sudden invincibility of the Packers at Lambeau Field.
But typically the highest-viewed posts and the posts that generate the most buzz have at least a little negativity in them, something the Packers are doing that warrants criticism and us bloggers can provide insight into how the Packers might address the situation.
There hasn’t been much to criticize lately. I supposed we could bag on the Packers for not reaching 60 points in either of the last two weeks, but even the most trollish of readers would scoff at that.
At least this week the Packers’ special teams gave us something to critique and complain about. But even the special teams managed a punt return for a touchdown, so the complaining can’t be too loud.
Oh well, I’ll try and find something to write about.
On to the stock report:
There is no other player more important to his team than Rodgers is to the Packers. That was apparent after Rodgers was injured last season and it’s obvious now that he’s back healthy and lighting up scoreboards. I think it’s safe to say that Rodgers is the new leader in the clubhouse for NFL MVP.
Just like we all predicted, Guion is making big plays in November. Actually, nobody predicted that, but Guion is making big plays in November. There’s a lot of season left, but if Guion keeps this up, that’s a heck of a free-agent signing for Ted Thompson. Will it lead to more outside free agent signings in the future? Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves (or too crazy).
When Linsley took over for the injured J.C. Tretter, we probably would have been satisfied with a Guion type of performance: Steady improvement and holding his own in place of the injured starter. Linsley has been more than that. Much more. He’s wrecking guys in run blocking and helping his two injured guards keep the A-gap as clean as possible in pass protection. When Rodgers said Linsley deserves Pro Bowl consideration, he wasn’t kidding.
It’s like clockwork; whenever Rodgers leaves the pocket, Cobb gets open. Now the question is whether Cobb signs an extension before the season is over, or if he’ll test the free-agent market.
When did the Packers sign Dick Butkus? Did pre-injury Patrick Willis secretly leave the 49ers and join the Packers? Did Luke Kuechly not get on the Panthers team bus leaving Lambeau a few weeks ago and has been playing for the Packers since? Nope. That’s just Matthews having his way at inside linebacker.
Packers special teams
A blocked punt and a couple of botched extra points stained an otherwise near-perfect day for the Packers on Sunday. Those kinds of mistakes won’t fly as the games get tighter in December. The game will get tighter, right? I mean, the Packers aren’t going to score 50 every week, are they? Right?
Perry hasn’t really seized his opportunity now that he’s getting more snaps after Matthews moved inside. Besides falling on that fumble Sunday, Perry hasn’t done much the last two weeks.
The Packers were penalized for having too much after one of their touchdowns on Sunday. Fun, on a football field. It’s just not allowed in the NFL. We don’t want to teach the children that it’s acceptable to have fun, especially with your teammates, after a big play.
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 .
36 thoughts on “Packers Stock Report: Writer’s block edition”
“Now the question is whether Cobb signs an extension before the season is over, or if he’ll test the free-agent market.”
Here’s something to write about: a commentary on the Packers upcoming FAs…who deserves contracts to stay at GB at what level, and who doesn’t?
Might have to face the facts about Cobb he could be gone after this year if he wants to much to stay 🙁 TT will let him go just like he did Jenning Driver Jones Etc. They have Janis and Abby waiting in the wings and Adams is already playing well so Nelson was TT’s main goal to make a core player. Cobb may be expendable to keep the salary cap flexable for other players.
Nah. Cobb is ascending and GJ was not. That’s the simple fact. GJ was 29 when he get let go. Cobb is (I think) like 24. Big difference.
I am just saying with the cap he might want to much since he is a top receiver and the Packers just might not be able to afford him.
I understand – but GBs got plenty of room. I’m confident TT will find a way to get it done.
Here’s another topic to write about; what made MM revamp his play calling? The way packers started out of the gate was what we were all kicking our TVs about for the last 2 years. But wow, its great to see variations that really challenge and exploit opponents defenses. We love it, but what happened? Can you writers get this out MM?
It was never an issue about play calling, it was an issue about execution. As the season has progressed the OL has steadily improved. Linsley has a lot to do with this as Adam correctly points out. As the OL goes so goes the offense. Early in the season defenses, Seattle and Detroit in particular, played 2 high safeties, dared the Packers to run and the OL was not getting the job done. Now, the run game has become more effective and we are throwing to Lacy. Defenses are trying to adjust. This opens opportunities for Rodgers in the passing game. If we had a real threat at TE 60 points would not be out of the question with this offense. It’s almost like we’re using Lacy to make up for the TE position. However, R. Rodgers and Quarless are starting to come on. Rodgers is getting better at blocking and Quarless has made some big catches. It’s about execution, not play calling. Thanks, Since ’61
No, it was an issue of bad play calling. Two things changed:
(1) Slowly but surely, MMM adopted all the suggestions of the fans (smirk if you must but true); and.
(2) Play calling gets real easy when you are up by 28+ points at halftime.
Everything going wrong that was so obvious, to us the fans, only took 2 years for MM to figure out and finally listen to us. Just happy he is finally listening to the fans and letting them help coach. If he continues to listen to our suggestions there is hope for the season. It’s okay little buddy MM we are here to help you. Now if TT will listen to the fans on draft day the sky is the limit.
Big T – your delusions about MM or TT listening to you or any fan has reached a serious level of ridiculous. It’s amazing how you rip then when they lose and you want to take the credit when they win. You really take yourself way too seriously. I assure you (not that it matters) that no NFL coach or GM are listening to the fans about personnel or on the field decisions at any level. They are professionals and they don’t need advice from amateurs. Enjoy your fantasy world because you obviously spend a lot of time there. Thanks, Since ’61
You are just as delusional if you think you can prove that they don’t entertain amateur advice… I have never taken credit for their wins. I don’t rip them when they lose. I just point out the obvious mistakes they make and come up with solutions. 61 you are starting to sound like an Eagles fan.
Archie – I agree with your point #2. However, if you really believe that MM is listening to the fans then you are taking yourself way too seriously and are farther into fantasy land that I thought you were. You are quick to rip them when they lose and now you want to take credit when they win. Ridiculous. If an NFL coach has reached the point where they are seriously listening to their fans then that coach and their team are done. Thanks, Since ’61
Okay, Dobber, I’ll bite. Here is a list of GB’s FAs with prior cap #:
Cobb ($1.02 m); Resign $8-9 M/yr for 4 years 50% guaranteed;
Bulaga ($3.8 m) Resign for $5-6 m per year
Tramon ($9.5) resign if affordable $5m/yr 3 yrs
Raji ($4m) Don’t want him really at any price, Okay w 1 yr. $2m
Flynn ($2.65m) Cut if not vet min.
Bush ($2.0) re-sign for $2m – no/little guaranteed $Lattimore ($1.43m) re-sign for back up money
Guion: ($985) resign if possible < $3 million/yr
House (720K) resign high back-up low starter $
Kuhn ($1.051) resign same $ no/little guaranteed $
Tolzien ($645K) resign <$1.0m wait and see him play
Dujuan ($645K) like to see more play
Richardson, Barclay and Boykin are RFA. Lowest tender for each of them. Tenders are not guaranteed. Dorsey and Perillo are Exclusive rights FAs who do not have negotiating power. Minimum at best.
This is off the cuff a bit. Really, I'd like TT to find a real NT at Soliai money ($6 million/yr) and jettison Raji ($4) and Guion $1 million almost). House I do want, but depends on Tramon a bit.
The Packers just scored 50+ points in consecutive weeks and you guys want to talk next season? C’mon!
I see we already won SB this year!~~~~~~~
YOU were the one, Adam, who was saying you were having a hard time finding new topics…
I predict the Packers keep Cobb for $10 mil per year. They try the threat of the franchise tag, but settle for 4 yrs/$40 mil. Then, they cut Pepper in the off season to save $7 mil off the cap next year (still carry $5 mil dead money, though).
Well, maybe. I think $10 million for Cobb is too much, and will be more that fair market unless the cap goes up a lot.
As for Peppers, both sides had to know that the $12 million base salary in year 2 would only be realized if Peppers played at an elite level. I don’t think there will be any hard feelings when GB asks to renegotiate, clearly for more than Neal $ and less than CMIII $. I still maintain that it would be very unlike TT to have $5 million dead money due to 1 player. I am guessing that TT will offer something like $6.5 to $8.5 million to Peppers, assuming that he continues to play well (he might even get more comfortable at OLB and play in a better, more well-rounded way. Don’t you think GB wants Peppers back next year? I don’t think Neal or Perry’s play has made Peppers expendable.
Peppers isn’t expendable when compared to Perry or Neal, but we don’t know who will get drafted or step up next year. Also, when they have to count beans to build the best roster they can, $10 mil is better spent on other players not named Peppers.
It’s not $10 million. GB has a $5 million cap hit if they release Peppers. That’s a “sunk cost.” I suppose they could cut Peppers after June 1 to reduce the immediate cap hit.
It is true that GB can ask Peppers for a pay reduction after the draft, but I think suggesting waiting to see who GB drafts or whether some current denizen of the roster might step up next year is fine but you won’t necessarily know what you have until real games are played. I can’t rely on Jayrone Elliott replacing Peppers, but I hope he blossoms.
One of these weeks, Q is going to have a breakout game and I hope you show him some love. He’s steadily getting better, making tough catches at key moments, blocking at the line and downfield is improving and he shows up on a couple of hustle plays each week.
If the Packers can get him and Rodgers to round into shape late in the season, having the TE as yet another option for AR? Turn out the lights, the party’s over.
Totally agree! If opposing defenses had to focus on our TEs as well as everything else all types of opportunities would open up for this offense.
Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since ’61
On a sort of “personal” level, I actually kind of like Quarless. He seems like a good guy. But at the end of the day he’s still a very sub-par starter, and unless he experiences a complete rebirth, he needs to be replaced. He’s a capable backup, nothing more.
It does seem as if Quarless has been a little bit more impactful just lately, but on a purely statistical basis he really isn’t, and he’s not getting better every week. In the first five games, he averaged 2 catches for 19.2 yards per game. In his last five, he’s averaged 1.8 catches for 16.8 yards. But either way, that kind of production doesn’t get your name included in the list of solid starters. His blocking has always been spotty at best.
So yeah, maybe he turns it on. I’d be very happy if he does. If he doesn’t, we need a new tight end.
If GB still had the production of Finley – or even just the THREAT of Finley’s production – this offense could be among the best in NFL history. But it sucks to be an NFL GM when some of your better draft picks go down with injury and there’s nothing you can do about it except get screwed.
I’m not sure that I agree with Nick Perry in the falling category. While his name has not been called a lot he is doing a very solid job of holding the edge on running plays to his side. His contributions have helped solidify the run defense enabling CM3, Dix and others to come up and make stops. The overall improved play of our defense has actually helped the offense a lot, because the defense is getting off the field and giving more snaps to the offense. This is significant when running the up tempo offense as it helps the Offense maintain their rythym. This week is the first road trip for the Packers since the N.O. debacle. I’m looking forward to the home team Packers that we’ve seen the last 2 weeks make this trip. Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since ’61
Agree 100%. Nick Perry has made a big contribution by playing well enough to allow Matthews to move positions. None of this works without him. That is rising, not falling, to me.
And how about Peppers as a pass covering OLB?
Something else that is absolutely necessary to move Matthews inside to fix the run D.
Ed – all good and valid points! I agree. Thanks, Since ’61
Great points. I was going to say the same thing. Perry playing well. Not every play is a splash play. Holding the edge critical in to the improvement in our run D. GoPack!
take some time to watch a replay of a game this year. Focus on the O-line, and you will see Linsley doing his thing. He really is a mauler, great strength, and is only going to get better! THAT is a quality 5th round draft pick!
TT has no choice but to sign Cobb to a 2nd contract. Is there a finer example of draft and develop? Besides, just keep showing Cobb a photo of GJ in MN during negotiations. I just wish TT would get ahead of the curve and give guys like Shields and Cobb tempting offers before their final year. He’s probably paying Shields/Cobb 50% moire than he would have had he simply given them a good offer before they proved him wrong. Raji was a different case altogether. He has been playing like crap for a long time and TT breaks the bank for him. Fortunately Raji was stupid enough to say no.
I bet TT and Cobb already have something in the works. A week or two from now we are going to hear that the Pack just resigned Cobb to a 4 year deal. I think he deserves it.
Things are still hairy for Packers. They could easily lose to the Pats, Bills and Lions, to finish 10-6 and miss the playoffs. The Bears and Eagles didn’t show up the past two weeks. That will not be the case for the three aforementioned opponents.
Barring injury, they’re NOT going to lose to the Bills on the road and the Lions at home. At worst we’re looking at a 12-4 team here.
The Pats is the telling game. If we can dominate them we are for real. As much as I despise Belichick he is a great coach and if the game comes down to coaching MM will lose this every time. Arod will need to throw 7 td’s in the first half.
Adam’s point about writing when your team is destroying the opponent is so true. What to complain about? I am pleased that we made a statement against a winning and good football team. I am pleased that Dom Capers is starting to make tackles. And, how can you not be pleased with Aaron “relax” Rodgers. It is great to see this team playing good ball in the second half of the season.
I still want to see us overcome an opponent that brings a solid four man rush (like Detroit). I also want to see us tear down a team with a good O-line that dictates run/pass. Not to look past the Vikings, but I really want to see how MM and Rodgers matchup against Belichick and Brady. Getting strapped in for the race to the playoffs. Go Packers
Adam, might I suggest a “Casper The Ghost” category? You know, one where you know he’s out there but you never see him.
If so, I nominate Datone Jones as the first ‘honoree’.
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