It might be, but that depends on the medical report, and I have no idea what the medical report said. If Lacy was 75 or 80% healthy, then we've seen plenty of football players take the field at less than that. If he was down around 50% or less, then yes, you could argue the front office should have protected him better. Either way, it was a risk only having Lacy on the roster for that game. But we can't "blame" anyone without knowing the details of the medical report.
Ted made his move by trading for Knile Davis. If he went out and did something else, I'd be surprised. Unless Don Jackson's hand is significantly damaged. Then he might have to make another move. However, signing Lynch is too splashy for Ted, in my opinion. Don't think he would go that route even if he wanted to add another player.
Clinton-Dix is definitely one of the top two safeties on the team. Let's get that out of the way immediately. You are correct, however, in stating that his influence on games has been a little underwhelming relative to the level of play he exhibited near the end of last season. But the defense blanketed the Giants and allowed only 3 points to the Bears. You can't do that if there's a huge weakness in your secondary, so Clinton-Dix is clearly not a problem at this point.
I saw Ryan get nicked up, but he refused treatment from the medical staff on the sideline. That seemed like a good sign to me. McCarthy said it's too early to know the severity of Jackson's hand injury. More tests will be done today.
I wouldn't call it a junk offense; after all, they put up 336 yards through the air and three passing touchdowns. But I would call it a bit gimmicky. Part of the reason why McCarthy went to that system was out of necessity: They could not run the ball very often in a traditional sense with Don Jackson, Knile Davis and Ty Montgomery/Randall Cobb, so the short passes became an extension of the running game, as Aaron Rodgers said last night. The second reason for using that type of offense was to combat the defensive strategy the Packers have faced the last three games. Beginning in the win over the Giants, opposing defenses have blitzed infrequently — rushing three or four — and packed the secondary with extra bodies to force the receivers, and Rodgers, to beat them. The Giants nearly made it work. The Cowboys did make it work. The Bears were too depleted to make it work. Short, quick passes neutralize the idea of packing the secondary. If Rodgers throws before his players get to the packed secondary, then the defensive game plan is nullified.
I think it's possible that Lacy played his last game as a member of the Packers. We don't know the severity of the injury, which means we don't know the type of surgery Lacy needs. In turn, we don't know if it's reasonable for him to return this season. The Packers would love to use their designated-to-return tag on Lacy and bring him back around Week 16 or 17, but only the medical staff knows if that's feasible. Lacy is an unrestricted free agent after this season. I'm not sure Ted will want to pay an overweight running back coming off ankle surgery. If he does pay him, it might be a "show-me" deal like the ones given to Jared Cook and Nick Perry.
I don't have a definitive answer to this question. I can posit some theories, though: 1) It takes rookies a long time to settle in with Aaron Rodgers. I remember Jermichael Finley telling me he didn't feel truly comfortable in the offense for about 2.5 years. We've seen how much Jeff Janis has struggled to get on the same page as Rodgers. So it's certainly possible Davis needs more time to develop. It's also possible that his thin frame — he's super, super skinny — can't hold up for more than a handful of snaps each game. He's not the type to run over the middle of the field, so his route tree could be limited at this point in time. Just some ideas.
If both players are healthy in 8 weeks, the Packers will absolutely choose Lacy over Shields. There's no doubt about it. Lacy is the only player on offense — aside from maybe Rodgers — who the Packers cannot replace. They don't have another 250 or 260-pound bruiser with quick feet and toughness. Very few teams do. So unfortunately for Shields, his season is over if Lacy is healthy later this year.
Different teams, different systems, different play callers.
Nothing wrong with disagreement. We all analyze things differently. Though he can't run, there are ways for Lacy to still get some cardio done if he really wants to. He can swim laps in a pool. He can use a hand bike that you see at physical therapy locations. He could ride an exercise bike. There are ways to try and keep his weight down. But yes, that's a valid concern. I still think the Packers choose Lacy over Shields in a second if Lacy is healthy and at a reasonable weight.
He's week to week. If I had to guess — and it's just a guess — I'd say he misses one or two more games.
Janis is one of their best special teams players, so he won't be cut. Abbrederis, in my opinion, does not have a role on this team right now. He doesn't contribute on offense; he isn't needed on special teams because they have better returners. I'm honestly not sure what he provides other than a 7th body for depth purposes. I don't get that one.
I don't know who comes up with the routes the receivers run. It's a good question, though.
There's no doubt McCarthy would have loved to run the ball more...if he had Lacy or Starks. The game plan they used last night was pretty solid considering their options. They got enough out of Montgomery and Cobb to make the Bears respect them out of the backfield. That facilitated the passing game.
Well, he took around 40 snaps out of the backfield. I don't think he's a full-time running back. If Lacy and Starks are healthy, Montgomery probably doesn't get more than 4-5 carries in a game. So to me, that's not a running back. He certainly plays pretty well in that role, though.
He just got out of his walking book earlier this week. I think he still has a little ways to go. A couple more games, in my opinion.
Sometime next week before the trip to Atlanta. Couldn't do one on a short week. No time.
This is a great question and one that I've pondered myself. Unless his concussion is really, really bad, I don't see how Shields could need another 7 weeks to recover. If they put him on IR immediately, which they should have done, he might have been ready in Week 10-13 instead of Week 15 or 16.
T.J. Lang got hurt and dropped out of the game for a brief period of time. He came into the game with a hip problem and the hip flared up.
I'm not qualified to analyze complexity of scheme or route concepts. That's way over my head. Sorry, Steve. Can't help you on that one.
Because he's the backup center with Linsley on PUP. And he played some pretty darn good football at center during training camp.
Kentrell Brice could be the best rookie in this class five years from now, and he wasn't even a draft pick. He's a special talent, in my opinion. Bob and I talk about that quite often. That's why the Packers get him on the field in the dime defense as often as possible.
I think some of you are forgetting that last night's statistical production will have little bearing on the Packers' offense moving forward once everyone, or mostly everyone is healthy. In other words, if Lacy and Starks are healthy, the offense last night looks totally different. Rodgers doesn't throw 50+ passes, he doesn't break Favre's completion record and they don't dink and dunk their way down the field. Much of that was injury-induced planning. I do think McCarthy is realizing that 5WR sets can help the offense to some degree, but the Packers used those same exact concepts against the Cowboys and were blasted by a mediocre defense. Just because it worked this week doesn't mean it will work every week. And more importantly, that type of offense is not what the Packers would do under more traditional circumstances.
Brice said he played corner in high school and went to Louisiana Tech as a corner. He was converted to safety his very first day of practice and hasn't played corner since. There's no doubt he has the athleticism to do it, but I don't see that happening.
Hmm. That's a really good question. I hadn't thought of that. It probably taxes the defense in different ways. Imagine you're a defensive lineman busting like hell off the line of scrimmage. You're putting all your speed and strength into each pass rush, and there's over 50 of them. The ball is snapped, you launch forward and then.....Rodgers gets rid of the ball in 1.5 seconds or less. That start-stop-start-stop is probably pretty draining.
If I remember correctly, that play was not run properly. I can't recall if it was Janis or Nelson in the wrong place, but it wasn't designed to have both guys in the same spot.
OK, guys, I'm out of here. Thanks for stopping by this afternoon.