OK everybody, the Super Bowl is in the books, the NFL offseason is officially full speed ahead. Let's jump right in. Just guessing, but I doubt Cobb or Matthews would sign a one-year prove-it deal, somebody will offer them something better than that. Wilkerson and Breeland seem like good candidates for that kind of deal. Breeland hadn't had injury issues before but then had that offseason foot injury last year that voided his FA contract with Carolina, and had some issues during the season after the Packers signed him. I'd think they'd want to bring him back, and I'd think on a one-year deal the cost wouldn't be high. Wilkerson had a serious injury and you wonder how much it will take out of him. I didn't think he played all that well before getting hurt -- Lowry clearly proved to be better -- and I don't know how much the broken ankle this year will diminish him. If I were the Packers I'd try to sign Breeland to the one-year deal and see if Matthews would do a contract to play mostly inside LB at $5M or $6M a year. I'd move on from Cobb and probably Wilkerson, depending on how he's doing medically.
I wouldn't be shocked if he did that. I doubt that's how it will work out but wouldn't be shocked. He does have a long needs list though. Depending on what he does in free agency he could have big needs at RT, G, TE, S and RB, besides edge rusher.
I don't think anybody was duped, McCarthy had his beliefs. it's fair to criticize him for not adjusting the last few years like, say, Andy Reid has. Then again, we just saw the most innovative young offensive mind in the game get held to three points in the Super Bowl.
I think the biggest concern regarding inexperience was at OL coach, where Stenavich was an OL assistant in the NFL for only two years and is only 35 at a position where experience really matters -- making in-game adjustments on the OL is so important, and he's coaching nearly half the offensive players on the field, a group that has to operate in sync. Stenavich was on practice squads for four or five years, so that counts for something, but he still has a short coaching resume. Maybe they'll hire an experienced offensive line assistant. I think Mennenga was a ST assistant in the league for like seven years before going to college, so I don't see him as that inexperienced. He hasn't been an ST coordinator in the NFL, but he has worked in the league for a while. I kind of see the same thing with Whitted, he played WR in the NFL for nine years, that's a long time, so he should know the position very well even if his NFL coaching resume is short -- he's been a college coach since 2011.
Yeah, a couple guys already have been cut around the league -- the Falcons waived a starting cornerback, Robert Alford, that was interesting. The Packers could do these moves at any time. Assuming they're going to cut Perry, for instance, it could be today, could be next week, could be in a few weeks.
I know they've taken a lot of flak for drafting Rollins, a former basketball player who played only one year of college football, in the second round. But I have to say, I talked with a defensive backs coach in the league before that draft, and he was really high on Rollins, considered him a second-round player. I don't think there was anything wrong with drafting Randall to first try to play him as a CB either, even though he played safety (and nickel corner) in college. But at some point they should have moved him to safety.
That's a question we're all wondering. I'd think pass rusher is the hardest to address in free agency, teams just don't let good rushers hit the open market. So I'd guess the draft is where they'll probably have to address that, though you never know if they think there's a sleeper available. I'd think OL and safety are possibilities for free agency, at least for signing mid-to-lower tier guys as possible starters. At wide receiver, I'm assuming you're thinking slot receiver. That's something you might be able to find in free agency. The positions of the one you mention that usually take time to develop are TE and WR. There's a lot for OL to learn, too, but rookies seem to at least be able to do OK there.
Some truth there, no question. it's also true that McVay does seem to have helped Goff a lot compared to the previous staff, the poor SB performance notwithstanding.
Before it's all said and done, yeah, wouldn't be surprised at all to see some players LaFleur has been around end up here. I was wondering that with the CB Alford the Falcons waived yesterday. LaFleur was in Atlanta with him for two years.
When Rodgers had the surgery I talked with a doctor from another team, and he said one reason for doing the surgery is to make sure the collarbone stays the same length so his throwing motion won't change. He said that if he were the Packers he wouldn't have any concerns about it affecting Rodgers' throwing. That said, it was an injury to the throwing-arm area, which always makes you wonder. As to whether he had nerve damage, I haven't heard any rumors let alone seen any reports about that. That doesn't mean the broken collarbone in some way or another hasn't affected his throwing accuracy, I just can't say.
I'd assume they'd want to hold onto him for another year. FWIW, I think he's better (or at least a better NFL prospect) than Kizer, and I very easily could see him beating out Kizer for the No. 2. If I had to bet on it, I'd pick Boyle to win that job unless they sign a vet or draft a QB high.
Yeah.Sounds like that's right around where Hockenson could go.
I sometimes think we overanalyze these things to death and go by what happened most recently. There's no one way to do it. The Patriots have had the best QB in the game, so that's a huge reason they've won all these Super Bowls, and Belichick of course. Quarterbacks can't do it by themselves, but talent in the league is dispersed relatively evenly, that's one of the reasons QBs make such a huge difference. Also, look at last year's SB, there wasn't a punt in that game. This year was 13-3. So there's no one way to do it. I thought the Packers had a bona fide SB contender in '14, and if not for that incredible meltdown in Seattle they would have had a decent shot at beating the Patriots that year.
The only thing that surprised me was all the stops. Stop after stop after stop.I was expecting a 37-31-type game. Also am wondering what's up with Gurley. He must be hurt and they've been lying on the injury reports, because otherwise there's just no explaining that he hardly played. He's their best guy on that side of the ball.
Yeah, injury concerns and what goes with that. He's a small guy, they tend to get injured more, and he's pretty beaten up. He's quick but not super explosive, and the injuries have diminished his quickness some. He's also a small target, so he's really tough to throw to downfield, he doesn't get a ton of separation and the ball has to be right on the money to be within his catch radius. He's been a good, tough player for them, and he's usually good at getting open when plays break down. But he's probably going to keep getting hurt, and to me, it's time for the Packers to move on.
I have a lot of trouble seeing the Packers going after Thomas. I thought he would have been a good target in a trade last season, even though he's starting to slow down at age 29, but then he broke his leg again, I think it was a couple weeks after the trade deadline. That's his second broken leg in the last couple years. That's a really bad sign and is likely to hasten his decline. The smart money says he's going to go downhill fast. Too risky to sign him IMHO.
I'm sure he can be tough to work with, but I saw the clip of Finley and found it odd that Finley thinks it's strange that a quarterback needs to see a receiver/tight end run good routes consistently in practice before he trusts him in game. Isn't that how it's supposed to be? I'll bet Tom Brady and Drew Brees are the same way.
Mine was the elevator ride, that was very funny.
There could have been cartilage damage too, and cartilage issues can range from minor to pretty serious. Rodgers has been so vague about the injury it's hard to know exactly what was wrong. It is the same knee he tore the ACL while in high school and that wasn't repaired until he was at Cal.
I'd agree Rodgers needs to take the checkdowns more, he did that a lot more when he was on the rise in '09, '10 and '11. It's up to LaFleur and Rodgers to make this work. That's why the Packers hired LaFleur, or at least one of the big reasons why.
Gutekunst seems to really, really like the big receivers with the huge catch radiuses (I just looked it up, can be radiuses or radii). They have had Cobb, and he's an example of the risks of the small receivers, they can be more prone to getting hurt. But they might want to add at least one small, quick receiver to play the slot. It's probably good to have at least one guy like that on the roster. But there's a lot to be said for big receivers who are big targets and can catch off-target throws and are easier to hit in stride for run after the catch because the ball doesn't have to be quite so accurate.
Iowa had two tight ends who are possible first-rounders, Hockenson and Fant.
Madison Memorial Class of '80, fantastic! Simmons hasn't been the primary position coach, so I don't know how he's going to do. LaFleur is very much hiring his coaching staff from everything I've heard, but you have to assume he wouldn't have fired Whitt and promoted Simmons unless Pettine was on board, and Pettine worked with both last season. That's about the most I can say on that Mike.
We've talked about this the last couple weeks. If I were the Packers I'd move on from Graham and save the cap space, which would be about $5.3M. That wouldn't cover all of Cook's contract, but it would cover half or more. The Cook question is a tough one because he turns 32 in April. Now, I talked with a scout I trust a couple weeks ago, and he said Cook still looked really athletic last season, much more so than Graham or Bennett before the Packers signed them. He thinks Cook will have a good market. But I could see the Packers being gun-shy because of the Bennett and Graham signings. Ian Rapaport reported last week that the Packers are planning on bringing Graham back. Like I said, I'd move on, especially if they're planning on the running the ball a lot, because Graham isn't a good blocker. But if the report is true, I have to think LaFleur has a big say in it and must think he can get more out of Graham than the Packers did last season.
Agreed. I'd be less demonstrative on the field than Rodgers is sometimes, showing up guys isn't the best way to get the most out of them. But nothing wrong with demanding that guys run good routes. I've read where Brady is extremely demanding that way.
This is impossible to predict, you never know how it's going to go and who they like and who will be available, etc. If forced to guess I'd say pass rusher first, then maybe OL second, TE third, RB fourth. But there very well could be a safety in there. Depends in part on what they do in free agency.
Teams can begin legally contacting free agents on March 11 and start signing them at 3 pm central time March 13.
Sorry, last answer was for JP Yosemite's question.
Interesting question, hadn't thought about it. Crosby turns 35 next season, missed his share of kicks this year. If I had to bet on it I'd say no, but you're right in suggesting we shouldn't be surprised if that happens.
I think I remember Roethlisberger having issues with his offensive coordinator a few years ago -- can't remember if it was Haley or somebody else. I don't know if you'd call it a disconnect, but I remember reading that one of the reasons Marv Levy went to the K-Gun offense was that Jim Kelly was changing plays so often Levy finally decided to just let him call the plays by going no-huddle.
That has to be what they're doing now or have been doing since the hiring, at least if the franchise is functioning well. Gutekunst has final say over the roster, so if he feels strongly about a guy one way or the other it's his call, but the coaching staff's opinion has to matter.
This will have to be the final question, time to get to other duties. Yeah, the one and only Eric Baranczyk (we co-author a column based on a review of the game tape each week during the season) wondered that when they signed him off Jacksonville's practice squad late in the season. Lazard is 6-5 and 227, that's huge for a receiver. I don't know if he can block well enough to be a TE, or moving him is in consideration. But just his height-weight suggests it might be on the table. Something to watch for when they start offseason work. Thanks for coming by and sharing your thoughts and questions. The scouting combine and free agency are coming up fast, so there will be plenty to talk about in the next few weeks. We'll do it all again next week, so if I didn't get to your question try again. Until then take care everybody.