Hey guys, thanks for joining me today. I think Sunday's game is going to be a tough one for the Packers. The Seahawks might be the second-best team in the NFC after Dallas, and they look to be rolling right now. Did anybody watch them last night? Quite a display. Seattle's secondary took a big hit when safety Earl Thomas broke a bone in his leg. He's one of the best in the league, so that's a huge loss. Might allow the Packers to have some success in the passing game. Seattle opened as 2.5-point favorites, and I think that's about right.
I disagree about the offensive line play, at least when it comes to pass protection. The line has given Rodgers oodles of time this season on a consistent basis. In that regard everything has been fine. The run game has been decent.
Detroit's win @ New Orleans yesterday was a massive blow for the Packers. The Lions were big underdogs and won comfortably by two scores. If the Packers lose to Seattle and the Lions beat Chicago -- both very possible -- things get murky in Green Bay. They'd be three games back with three games left.
I'm not sure if Montgomery will ever be a featured back in the traditional sense of 15 or 20 carries per game. But I do think he can be a featured player in terms of the number of touches he gets each week. I've watched Ohio State play a few times this year, and they have a do-it-all player named Curtis Samuel who is something between a running back and receiver. The Buckeyes use him all over the field and he averaged better than 9 yards per touch this season. I think that could be Montgomery's ceiling, a guy who touches the ball fairly often from a lot of different spots on the fied.
The Packers are a zone blocking team. Some teams are zone blockers, others are power runners with pulling linemen. It's a philosophy thing, just like some teams play 4-3 defense and others play 3-4. There will be a couple times a game when Lane Taylor or T.J. Lang are asked to pull, but it doesn't happen very often.
Randall Cobb: 57 catches, 577 yards, 4 touchdowns with contract totaling $40 million. Adam Thielen of the Minnesota Vikings: 52 catches, 657 yards, 3 touchdowns with a salary of $600,000 this season. Cobb's production does not match his contract, in my opinion.
Sorry Brad, posted those out of order.
I was very impressed with Gunter's performance yesterday, especially his ability to break up passes as you mentioned. Gunter is actually pretty slow by cornerback standards, and that's why he didn't get drafted coming out of Miami. But he plays very aggressively and very physically and he's found a way to have success against faster receivers. He did a tremendous job on Odell Beckham Jr. earlier this year and limited Julio Jones as well. (Granted, Julio Jones hurt his ankle and wasn't as explosive as normal, but still.) He had another solid game yesterday. Not sure if he will ever be a No. 1 corner the way Sam Shields was, but he's proving himself worthy of significant playing time.
All the way from Istanbul?! I'm impressed, Jake. Thanks for joining me. It's really hard to predict roster moves because Thompson is typically against any major changes. Mike McCarthy defended Starks pretty adamantly during his press conference this morning. I think Starks finishes the year on the roster.
Hawkins played very briefly against the Detroit Lions way back in Week 3. He got burned on a play that went for a touchdown and hasn't seen the field since outside of special teams. There have been plenty of opportunities to use him given the rash of injuries at cornerback, so the fact that he hasn't sniffed the field tells you a lot about his development. It's not as fast as they would have liked.
Last year's game plan on offense was somewhat improvised because Lacy got hurt and did not return. Starks carried 20 times for 95 yards and really paced the offense through all four quarters. It was one of his best games of the season. It will be interesting to see how the Packers attack that vaunted defens.e
I agree that Michael showed more burst and explosiveness than Starks has this season. However, Michael carried nine times and averaged about 2 yards per carry, which is actually a little worse than Starks' average of 2.3 yards per carry this season. I think the coaches will try to involve Michael a bit more this week and take advantage of his athleticism if they can.
Other than the two offsides penalties, I thought Letroy Guion had one of his better games stopping the run. He was constantly slicing into the backfield and made a couple nice plays. Jake Ryan is their best linebacker against the run. When he is healthy, things operate more smoothly. The majority of the Texans' rush yardage came on third-down draw plays or scrambles by Osweiler. It wasn't like they gave up 100 yards to Adrian Peterson where he just mauls the defense. The Packers were fairly stout outside of the two areas I mentioned.
Good observation, Jesse. It's just another way to try and generate pass rush. The Packers take practice reps with Clay Matthews and Nick Perry on the interior to give the defense a different look. Of all the offensive linemen, tackles are the most athletic. Putting Matthews or Perry inside for a snap or two allows them to go against players with less explosiveness and athleticism. It can cause problems in small doses.
McCarthy did not have any new information on Perry.
I rarely have time to watch games outside of the Packers so I can't comment on this.
Yes he did. McCarthy said this morning that Lowry was on the field because he had earned the opportunity in practice. He did well for himself in game action and should be on the field a bit more moving forward. However, his presence is also dependent, to an extent, on the Packers playing their base defense. He's not going to be used very often in nickel and dime. So against the Lions later this year, for example, the Packers might not play base defense at all. Lowry's playing time could be minimal in a game like that.
I think the best chance for the Packers to make the playoffs is by winning the division, yes. Whether they can catch the Lions depends largely on what happens this weekend against Seattle, in my opinon.
The Packers were in zone coverage on that play. It seemed to me that the spacing between players was not where it should have been. I don't know for certain but that was my first reaction. The pocket between Randall and Hyde should have been smaller. Again, just my opinion. I don't know the details of the coverage so I could be wrong.
Whether Lacy returns will depend more on the rest of the NFL than the Packers, in my opinion. If another team wants to give Lacy a longer deal or a deal worth more money, then I think the Packers let him walk without much resistance. If he doesn't find what he wants on the open market, he could return to the Packers with a short, show-me deal.
New to the team. He has to understand the whole running scheme and all of the pass protections before being able to take the field. What if the Packers call a run play but Rodgers audibles to a pass? Michael better know the pass protection rules. He has more to learn than just the running plays.
I think the Packers' defense is better when Clay Matthews plays inside, yes. Obviously that's not what Clay wants to do, but I think there is so much more stability when he's in there. Martinez was having a lot of trouble with play-action fakes prior to his injury. He was struggling in coverage.
It's hard to put someone on the field who is totally one-dimensional. That's why he didn't play as a traditional wide receiver. He was pure speed and not very much else. You can't put him on the field very often if his only contribution is on jet sweeps or reverses. It becomes too predictable.
Hyde is still on his rookie contract whereas Hayward was a free agent. That means keeping Hyde is much less expensive than keeping Hayward. The versatility of Hyde is what keeps him on the field. He can play four of the six positions in the secondary. That's something you can't ignore. The only spots he can't play are the two perimeter corner positions.
I'm totally fine with the decision to go for it but I didn't like the play call. It was 4th and a long 2, almost 4th and 3. I don't think running out of the shotgun was the right choice. I would have thrown or run the ball from a power formation.
They tried that earlier this year, but Janis has trouble tracking the deep ball through the air. It's not a strength of his. He's a tremendous athlete with below average ball skills. Hard to keep him on the field if he can't cash in on his chances.
All right, guys, I'm out of here. See you later