After the playoff loss to San Francisco it’s hard to accept the season is over. Being a die-hard Packer fan I have a flood of emotions writing this blog. However, I want to look at this season with a clear head. Take a deep breath
and count to ten. That’s better.
Where do the Packers go from here? Let us breakdown each area of the team.
I’ll start with the offense. The good news we still have our franchise quarterback. Packer fans are lucky to have such a great leader, player, and ambassador of the game. I know Packer fans he’s not perfect. I’m not saying he is, but you get sacked over fifty times and see how you feel. Most NFL quarterbacks would be out of the playoffs. The great thing about Rodgers is he admits he needs to improve and I believe he will. Thompson must address the backup quarterback situation in the draft. How about a player like Kapernick? Sorry, to soon,
The offense line of the Packers. Where do I begin? First, we need to get more aggressive and bigger at the tackles. The first picks by Thompson should be tackles in the draft. Bryan Bulaga is not the answer and Derek Sherrod may not make it back from injury. I believe Josh Sitton and TJ Lang are adequate enough guards. Evan Deitrich-Smith at center in my opinion doesn’t have enough games under his belt to make an assessment of his abilities. Saturday will be gone after this season so Thompson probably will have to address that position in the draft.
The receiving corps will be interesting mix. Driver, Jennings, and Finley are gone.
Unless Thompson feels he cannot fill their spots, which Thompson doesn’t. McCarthy believes he can build an offense around Cobb. Not a bad idea but for the fact he tried that with Finely. We all know how that turned out.
I think the tight end position is going to one of our bright spots. The Packers need to get back to the days of tight ends like Mark Chmura, Paul Coffman, Ed West, and Keith Jackson. These tight ends were security blankets and possession tight ends. Rodgers needs a tight end like this for 3rd and five. I believe he has that with Crabtree, DJ Williams, Ryan Taylor they just need more reps.
The running back position is okay. Grant and Starks are gone. Thompson will not keep them after Dujuan Harris played so well in his limited time. Cedric Benson is a keeper because he played pretty well even behind an average line.
Special Teams this is easy. We need kicker and returner, easier said than done. Hopefully, we can find a gem in later rounds of the draft.
The defense is interesting. That’s because we have a nice group of veterans and youth. The rookies were thrown into the fire and for the most part played very well.
Unfortunately, I think it’s time to let Woodson go. He has been a warrior and he has done so much for the Packers. When the Packers let Reggie White go it was hard but it had to be done. Woodson has lost a step and looks out of place at safety.
Defensive line is the issue Pickett looks old and like Woodson is no longer the player the Packers can count on. Daniels and Worthy are 3rd down lineman at best. Raji wants a big payday and will most likely get it.
Our line-backers are a solid unit. That’s when they are healthy. Matthews will get paid and hopefully be worth the money. Bishop, Williams, Perry, Moses, Manning are good line-backer’s. They just need to stay on the field. It would be nice to find an athletic strong line backer to be able to stop quarterbacks like Russell Wilson. Good Luck with that in the draft. I know I forgot Hawk but like his play on the field he’s easy to forget. Release him and use the money for Matthews.
The secondary is good. Williams needs to play more consistent hopefully he will and not worry about getting hurt. Casey Hayward with this year under his belt will only improve. The safety position still misses Collins. MD Jennings and Burnett are okay, they have been asked to do a lot. It’s not easy filling in for a three time pro bowler.
Coaching is the key to next season. McCarthy needs to find another Philbin. He seemed to work better with someone helping him with the plays. Capers has let the game pass him by. It’s the same reason he never was a successful head coach. He cannot adapt and make the necessary changes to stop a Kapernick or Wilson. It’s a brand new NFL and Capers is not a part of it. The Packers need to find an aggressive and adaptive defense coordinator. Special teams with Sloccum has improved and he is worth keeping for now.
The Packers have a five year window before the decline of the franchise. I believe that to be true. Thompson and McCarthy cannot keep Packer fans happy by losing in the divisional round each year. Green Bay is called TITLETOWN for a reason.