Packers chat with Pete Dougherty

Packers chat with Pete Dougherty

Wednesday, April 19 transcript

  • Is there a successor to Burnett on the roster? Is Brice that guy? He's been a solid pro for a long time, but father time waits for no man. HaHa looks like he will be around for a while, but I think they could bennefit from a fast "rangy" Safety back there. They gave up too many deep balls last year (some of that is obviously on the CB's).
  • OK, let's get started. You're dead right about Father Time. At this point it looks like Brice could be that guy. He's really athletic -- his 40, vertical, etc., showed great athleticism, and we saw glimpses of it with a few of teh big, explosive hits he had last season. The question will be how instinctive he is and becomes over time. He figures to get a fair amount of playing time this year, because Burnett is going to play a lot of linebacker in nickel. So we'll get a better sense of Brice's abilities and growth curve as this season goes on.
  • If TT continues to draft poorly, at what point is Murphy forced to make a change? Seems to me Arod has "covered up" a lot of this teams deficiencies for quite a while now. However you can't win Super Bowl's that way, which the teams track record has shown.
  • Thompson has only two years left on his contract, and that very well could be it for him. I just don't see Murphy making a change in that time unless something really unusual happens. Rodgers does cover up a lot of deficiencies, but you can say the same thing about Brady, Luck (when healthy), Brees. You're right that Thompson hasn't drafted nearly as well lately as he did early in his time with the Packers -- Ryan Wood's stories on PackersNews.com over the past few days document that very well. And I agree, he needs to hit big on a pick this year. They need help on that side of the ball in a big way.
  • Projecting here, but if TT's guy is there in the first round I think he takes him. Otherwise, this draft is so deep, it wouldn't surprise me to see him trade back to round 2 and pick up an extra pick. Sound like there will be some day 1 guys available on day 2.
  • Yeah, that's how I see it. Now, he's only traded back from his first pick once, so the best bet remains that he'll sit there and pick. But with the depth at CB, pass rusher and RB make the possibility of trading back better this year than in the last few, IMHO.
  • Do you draft a thumper RB to complement Montgomery and churn out yards in the 4th quarter or do you draft somebody similar to Montgomery so your offense/playbook doesn't have to change when they sub? I never really liked Lacy in the passing sets, just didn't fit his skill set very well. Can Ripkowski fill that powerback role?
  • I've been thinking about that. I'd think they first would want someone a little different than Montgomery, though the guy still has to be able to function in the passing game. So I'd say more likely the former but with some proven ability to pass protect. If they draft another one or sign an undrafted back (which is a given) after that, they could go for someone more like Montgomery, so they can keep running that package if Montgomery gets hurt. I'd guess they'll use Ripkowski as a two- to five-carry guy a game.
  • Do you make a mock draft? If so, what are your picks for the first three rounds?
  • No, Bob McGinn does that, though only for the first round. Mocking past that is insane in my opinion, and even doing that is really tough. But it's an exercise I'll do on my own to get a feel for who might be there when they pick. I'll weigh in on that in the middle of next week.
  • The Packers roster has always had players with character flaws, Lofton, Gilbert Brown, Jolly, Guion, Shields, etc. Why not take a flyer on Mixon in round 3?? TRhe window is closing
  • That's a big question. A lot depends on what the Packers' research into Mixon reveals. Maybe they think he has anger-management issues he's showing no signs of overcoming. Maybe they're convinced he's a good teammate and dealing head on with whatever issues caused him to punch that girl. It's pretty ghastly if you've seen the video. In the end, Thompson simply might not want to invite the kind of public/media scrutiny into his locker room that drafting Mixon would invite. That's my guess, but I don't know that.
  • Just read the article about TT's "slump" in drafting impact players the last 7 years vs his first 5. During that time frame, hasn't the Packers draft slot been significantly later (on average) in every round? IE its been a weaker talent pool when its their time to pick? Also what does that say about MM and his coaching ability, considering 2 trips to the NFC Championship in thet last 3 years w/out a flow of elite talent walking through the door?
  • thanks for your time Pete... will we ever find out what happened between the Packers and Jarod Cook? was it too much money or did the Packers simply like Bennett better? Seems like it might be a good story.......
  • This is for the previous question: I wondered that at too and suspect it's a factor but not a huge one. Hawk and Colledge were high picks in their rounds in '06, and yet Jennings (second round, No. 62 overall) was a late-two acquired in a trade, and he was by far the best player in that draft. Matthews was No. 26 in the first round, Nelson was a trade back into the early second, Sitton a compensatory pick at the end of the round. So while drafting high definitely helps and certainly improves the odds in the first couple rounds, after that I'm not sure it matters that much. And as Ryan Wood's research showed, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and NE have done better over the last seven years, and they're usually drafting late also.
  • OK, not sure what happened there but posted the answer for the previous question twice, having some technical issues here, so I apologize in advance if I can't get this figured out. As for Jeff's question, I think the story was basically told. Sounds like Cook was asking for more than the Packers were willing to pay, so they contacted Bennett, who was willing to take about what they were offering to Cook. Bennett is the better all-around TE, so they ended up upgrading, kind of a no-brainer. They preferred signing Cook because he'd been here for a year, but when those talks stalled they went to Bennett and got a deal they liked.
  • Pete, 2 things I hope we start to get clues on. Is Trent Murphy a viable option at RG? Has Trevor Davis added some strength and can he add a speed dimension (and return punts) this year.
  • Yesterday at the first media availability of the offseason program Rodgers said Murphy is working at guard, so the Packers definitely have moved him. So he's going to get a good, long look in the competition for that starting job. That doesn't mean he'll be able to do it, but it means the Packers think he can make the transition. We'll get a look at Davis on the field in May during OTAs, so we'll see then what the offseason has done for him. Agreed he could add outside speed that this offense lacks.
  • Pete, a comment not a question. To me the sign that Ted Thompson is not serious about winning a Super Bowl this year is his handling of T.J. Lang. I know you and Ryan pooh-pooh the importance of guards, but Lang was described by his coach as "as fine a lineman as I have ever coached." He was reliable, strong, and a team leader. Ted will find a body to throw in there, and he might end up okay by the latter part of the season. But a GM who is truly "all in" on winning this coming season signs the veteran, giving his offense the best chance to start the season in full stride.
  • I can't agree with you on that. Thompson did offer Lang a little more than $7 million per year. I might have gone a little higher but understand why he drew the line even though Lang is a really good player and a guy you want in your locker room. If they didn't have the tackles and center they have, I definitely would have offered him more. But they still have the pillars for a good line, and guard just isn't a primary position. It could backfire if they don't find at least an adequate replacement, but finding adequate will be good enough. They cut Sitton at the end of camp last year and were just fine with Lane Taylor. I get it, they don't have a guy that you'd feel as good about as Taylor on the roster right now, but as mentioned earlier, maybe Murphy will be able to play there. There's also the draft, where a third, fourth or maybe even fifth-rounder (think Linsley as a rookie center) has a decent shot of being able to start at that position and holding up OK. Don't get me wrong, you'd rather have Lang than not, but I understand that they drew the line. Age and injury history were probably a factor there too.
  • Pete is there any indication that either Trent Balke or Scot McCloughan are assisting the Packers with player evaluations as consultants? TT could use the help from McCloughan because TT is not looking too strong after Dorsey left
  • There's not. I don't know if Baalke has any connection to Thompson. McCloughan was Thompson's right-hand man in the draft in Seattle, and I know they were very close, and that Thompson relied heavily on him. I don't know if Thompson is considering bringing him in, though. McCloughan has been available before and Thompson hasn't done it.
  • Pete: It's always fun to speculate this time of year. Seems to me like Martellus Bennett has the potential to make a real difference on offense. Looks like the best TE the Packers have had since Jermichael. I like the fact that he be a true duel threat on O - a beastey receiver but also a good blocker, so the defense doesn't know when he's lined up tight if the play is run or pass. I think he will open up the middle for AR, which will then open up opportunities for others. I think AR is going to love him. What do you think?
  • As an Ivy League fan, is there any chance that Jake Flores can compete for the open guard slot? Or is he viewed only as a center?
  • Yeah, I think the signings of Bennett and Kendricks make for a strong possibility that this offense will be better than last year even though it lost Lang. The dual run-pass threat because of Bennett's blocking, plus the same thing with Bennett and Kendricks playing together in two tight end personnel, could be a real problem for defenses. They have to honor the run because of the blocking of those two guys, but both guys are fast enough to be threats vertically and over the middle.
  • Sorry again, something's going haywire here with the way the answers are posting, bear with me. I'd think Flores will have to be able to play guard in a pinch, but i'd think his primary way of making the roster will be as a backup center. I don't think he's in the running for the guard job. For now that's Barclay, Murphy and Patrick.
  • Hey Pete, Ty Montgomery looked like a darn good RB last year. And, Michel seems a decent backup. Why all the talk about investing a high pick in that position?
  • Couple things. Montgomery did add a nice dimension to the offense, but I'm not sure you want him getting 18 to 20 carries a game, he hasn't played that much running back, not sure he'll hold up physically. So they really need a guy to split time with him. Michel isn't that guy. He has some explosiveness but is erratic as can be as far as finding holes, functioning in the pass game, etc. There's also injuries. Running backs get hurt, a lot, so you need several of them.
  • Ty Montgomery is listed at 6' 0" and 215 lbs. Please explain to me why the everyone who covers the packers says he can't the the punishment of 20-25 carries a game? He has similar size and build to Ezekiel Elliot, LeVeon Bell, DeMarco Murray, all the top rushers.
  • As a big Spriggs fan, I am a bit surprised there is not more talk/speculation of having him start at RT and moving Brian to guard. The Packers did make statements about not moving Brian to guard but that was while we were negotiating with TJ Lang. As well as beluga did at right tackle he would be a pro bowl guard. And with Spriggs we would have one of the most athletic right tackles in the league. With this move the defense could be .the focus, moving up and getting a player to help this year. Personally A short term move to get McKenzie or Revis at CB would go along way toward a Super Bowl bowl bid, you buy those 2 moves?
  • I think it's more because he's never been a full-time back -- he was primarily a receiver in college. He had that foot injury as a rookie that cost him most of that season. So it's more track record than anything, he just doesn't have one as a full-time running back. Maybe he could do it, but I wouldn't want to count on it if I'm the Packers.
  • There was some of that Spriggs talk when Lang left initially, but it was clear early on that the Packers don't want to move Bulaga. He's coming off his best season at right tackle, and that's such an important position. They didn't want to weaken themselves there (very doubtful Spriggs would play at Bulaga's level this year) by moving him. They must feel OK about finding a good enough guard also, either from what they have already or the draft. With how well Bulaga played last year, I probably wouldn't move him either. Maybe if RG ends up being a disaster, they'd reconsider during the season.
  • Do the Packers need to get Adams done on a Nelson/Cobb type deal this offseason? If he puts up a decent season this year I can easily see the market setting up above Thompson's line in the sand next offseason.
  • It's something they're probably looking into. With the way salaries are going up, you could be right, he might be in for a huge pay day next offseason if he hits free agency. I'm not fully convinced, teams know he also benefits from playing with Rodgers, but he did have a good season last year. The best guess is that they'll approach him this summer about an extension.
  • Hi Pete,

    Read that Clay Matthews thinks GB should pick TJ Watt in the 1st Round saying that "If he's half as good as his brother..." Your thoughts and who would be your pick if he was available at # 29 at point in the draft? Watt is certainly a very good college player, but I wouldn't pick him at # 29. Thank you.
  • I'm not a draft expert, I leave that to the scouts who spend their days watching film of all these guys and comparing them to one another. So I don't have much of an opinion here. I did talk to several scouts about him last week. That's a very small sample, but the read I got from these guys is that he's a very viable pick at that spot. He's fairly new to defense but has all the physical stuff (length, testing athleticism) to have some upside as an OLB in the Packers' 3-4. I have to think he's on their short list for No. 29, though maybe Thompson sees something that makes him agree with you and doesn't see a late first-round pick there. To me, though, he has Ted Thompson written all over him.
  • Packers obviously need defensive help in the draft, but reality says if the D is going to get better next year players already in the roster have to get better. Are there 2-3 guys who can make a jump?
  • You're right, that will be a factor. Randall and Rollins are big ones, the Packers need real improvement at CB from somebody, and those are their two best bets. Kenny Clark is a big one, came on late last season, as did Lowry. Those are the best bets in my mind, though you don't always know who will make the big jump (if anyone).
  • Would you agree that RB is thought of as a bigger need with Gb's brass than CB? I think so
  • I would not. I'd think CB ranks higher. Both are needs, though.
  • Let me remind the Ted Thompson detractors that we are the 2nd most winning team in the league over the last dozen years.. classic case of not valuing what you've got
  • Just giving Chris his say.
  • Good day Pete, do you think TT will wait until day 3 to draft a guard ( or a college left tackle to slide over to guard ) ?
  • If I had to guess right now, I'd say yeah, Day 3. But it all depends on how the board falls. A guy they really like and rated higher than anyone on their board could be available earlier. I'd assume they'd take him.
  • What position do we go in the 1st, corner or edge?
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