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07/25/2017

O-Line Now Down Two Star Guards

Despite giving up close to triple the number of pressures as his predecessor, the Packers offensive line held up just fine in 2016 with young Lane Taylor replacing perennial All-Pro Josh Sitton at left guard. But expecting such smooth sailing this season without T.J. Lang at right guard might be asking too much. Give general manager

Players & Coaches

Barclay Finally Finds A Fit

No matter how many sacks he gave up, I never came down too hard on Don Barclay. Instead, I blamed the coaches for asking him to do what he simply wasn’t capable of doing. The former undrafted free agent had about as much business playing tackle in the NFL as Kim Kardashian has of playing

Amichia Has Bright Future

Ask me again at the end of training camp, but if I had to predict right now which player from the most recent draft class will enjoy the best career in the National Football League, my choice would probably come as a really big surprise. Even though more than 200 players were selected ahead of

What To Expect From Class Of ’16

As we found out last season, it’s hard to predict how a player will develop from year 1 to year 2 in the NFL. Some improve (Aaron Ripkowski), some regress (Damarious Randall) and some pretty much stay the same (Christian Ringo). Heck, some even change positions (Ty Montgomery). With that in mind, here’s a best

More Challenges Await Sirmans

Being a position coach in the National Football League is a tough job. It’s even tougher when the position you coach consists of five rookies and a three-year vet who didn’t even play the position until last October. Welcome to your life, Ben Sirmans. Sirmans, a 48-year-old native of New Jersey, enters his second season as

10 Most Irreplaceable Packers

We all found out last September just how important one player can be to the fortunes of a football team. The season-ending injury to Sam Shields also ended any chance the pass defense had of being competent. With that in mind, here’s my annual list of the 10 most irreplaceable Packers heading into training camp:

Holding On To Hundley

It’s easy to opine that Green Bay should trade Brett Hundley for a high pick, but unless the backup quarterback plays well during the regular season, that’s probably not going to happen. Even if the former UCLA star has a great August, it’s hard to imagine any team making GM Ted Thompson an offer he

Randall’s Role To Change

Let’s stop with all the nonsense. The decision makers in Green Bay are moving Damarious Randall to the slot cornerback position because they’ve come to the realization he can’t get the job done on the outside. It’s really as simple as that. Here’s what cornerbacks coach Joe Whitt said about the move at last week’s

Rollins Ready To Rebound

A year ago at this time, I defended a third-year player coming off a poor season. Davante Adams proved me right by catching 70 passes for 997 yards and 12 TDs in 2016. Today, I’ll be defending another third-year player coming off a poor season – one whom I’m every bit as confident will prove

Scouting Report: Jahri Evans

As someone who begged GM Ted Thompson for years to add veteran free agents to fill gaping holes, I’m sure as heck not going to criticize his decision to sign Jahri Evans. That said, let’s just say the situation at right guard is still a bit iffy. That’s because after finally getting a chance to watch nearly every snap

Defending The Indefensible

Mike McCarthy was a guest on ESPN Milwaukee’s Wilde and Tausch Show last week, and much to the credit of the hosts, he was asked why he’s stuck with beleaguered defensive coordinator Dom Capers for so long. Here was his answer: “Well, going back to the Mason Crosby comment, and obviously applying that to the

Scouting Report: Jordan Tripp

Packers fans are among the most knowledgeable in the league, but even the majority of them had no clue who Jordan Tripp was when he signed with the team last December. Since that included yours truly, I decided to put the former Montana star under the microscope. What I saw on the All-22 was better than

Longshots To Keep An Eye On

Ted Thompson has given jobs to more unemployed young men over the past decade than Adecco, and that’s why so many of the top undrafted free agents choose to sign with Green Bay. Of the 15 such players who showed up for rookie minicamp on Friday, none has a better chance of beating the odds

Hill Of An Athlete

Former BYU quarterback Taysom Hill will be fascinating to watch in the weeks and perhaps months to come – not to mention easy to root for. The 26-year-old dealt with one major injury after another in college and never gave up. And while his chances of making the roster aren’t good, it would be foolish to bet against him. The Packers will

Corners Are Key To D

The Packers have been a good defensive team exactly two times since Dom Capers took over as coordinator eight years ago. In 2010, the D finished 5th in yards and 2nd in points in a season that ended in the Super Bowl. And in 2014, the D surrendered only 19 points per game in the second half of a season

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Off The Field

Packers Win Without Superstars

The Packers have had amazing success over the past quarter century. Since 1993, the team has made the playoffs 19 times and won a pair of Super Bowls. What’s even more amazing is just how few truly great players were part of that success. The only Hall of Famers are Reggie White and Brett Favre,

Allison Suspension Benefits Packers

Geronimo Allison will serve a one-game suspension without pay for violating the substance-abuse policy, the NFL announced Wednesday. The second-year wide receiver was charged with a misdemeanor possession of marijuana in December. The Packers might want to send Roger Goodell a thank you note. By suspending Allison, who figured to be at best fourth on

The Ring’s The Thing

Winning Super Bowl LII would obviously make Packers fans extremely happy. But another ring would mean even more to Ted Thompson, Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers. It would place the general manager and the head coach on a path to Canton and it would make the quarterback a legend. Here’s a closer look at why winning

Harris Deserves To Be Honored

Next weekend’s long overdue induction of cornerback Mark Lee into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame will leave just one glaring omission – Tim Harris. I had assumed for years that the dynamic outside linebacker was an enshrinee, but we all know what they say about those who assume. “I didn’t make a lot of friends

Ted’s Picks Stick Around

Ted Thompson drafted 111 players from 2005 – the year he was hired as general manager of the Packers – through 2016. Wanna take a guess at how many of those players were active for at least one regular-season game in the NFL? The answer is 105. Of those 105, 13 have been voted to

2017 All-Former Packers Team

Green Bay will be one of the most talented teams in the National Football League this season. That obviously says a lot about general manager Ted Thompson and the men who work and have worked under him in the front office. You know what says even more? The number of former Packers on other rosters,

Life With Favre As GM

In an exclusive radio interview last week with Jason Wilde and Mark Tauscher, former star quarterback and current cheesy commercial spokesman Brett Favre said he’d be interested in working for the Packers – either as a coach or in the front office – after his youngest daughter graduates from college in four years. Since I can’t

Who’ll Be GM A Year From Now?

General manager Ted Thompson’s contract expires after the 2018 NFL Draft, so the next 10 months should be filled with rumors as to who’ll be running the team a year from now. Here’s my list of possibilities, from most likely to least likely: TED THOMPSON – Assuming both his health and his team remain good, it’s

The Ultimate Diss

People under the age of 40 don’t know how tough it was to be a Packers fan in the 1970s and 1980s. Back then, a first-round pick actually chose to play in the Canadian Football League. Yes, exactly 37 years ago today, Bruce Clark signed with Toronto instead of Green Bay. It was the first

Roster Spots At A Premium

The Green Bay Packers are one of the deepest teams in the National Football League, so there won’t be a slew of legitimate openings on this season’s roster. Barring injuries, the following 23 players are all but guaranteed to be part of the final 53: Aaron Rodgers, Brett Hundley, Ty Montgomery, Aaron Ripkowski, Jordy Nelson,

Walden Would Be Solid Insurance

Depth at outside linebacker was an issue even before Monday’s surprising news that fourth-round draft pick Vince Biegel underwent surgery on his right foot last week. Now it would be downright negligent of general manager Ted Thompson not to sign a veteran before players report to St. Norbert’s College in late July. Even if Biegel is cleared to return in time for the start

Best Packers In Past 40 Years

As the NFL Network runs down its list of the top 100 players for 2017, here’s my updated list of the top 25 Green Bay Packers since 1977 (feel free to comment): 25] CB Al Harris (2003-2009) – One of Mike Sherman’s few good personnel decisions, the former backup with Tampa Bay and Philadelphia brought much-needed cover skills

Time To Lock Up Linsley

Now that the dust has settled on free agency and the draft, general manager Ted Thompson should think long and hard about extending the contract of center Corey Linsley. Prior to the start of the regular season would be the perfect time to lock up the present and hopefully future starting center of the Packers. As well as

If I Were The GM

I hate when a year or two after the fact people say they would’ve drafted this guy instead of this guy. It’s too easy. So I decided to pick along with GM Ted Thompson and make my selections right before he made his. These were my picks: Round 2 (#33): The only cornerbacks I would’ve taken

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Previews & Reviews

Observations From The Offseason

The Packers concluded their offseason program with last week’s three-day minicamp. GM Ted Thompson spent the past few months replacing veterans lost to free agency and fixing the secondary, with an eye on getting back to the Super Bowl for the first time since 2010. The new-look roster will reconvene in five weeks for training camp. Here

Draft Review: Roster Analysis

With the draft now history, here’s a position-by-position look at the Packers’ 90-man roster: QUARTERBACK: Hall of Fame general manager Ron Wolf believed in drafting a quarterback every single year, but once again Ted Thompson didn’t adhere to his mentor’s philosophy. With Brett Hundley likely to be moved next offseason, it would’ve made sense to spend

Production Rules On Day 3

It took about 40 hours and three rounds, but GM Ted Thompson finally drafted players who produced better in pads than they did in shorts. Vince Biegel and Jamaal Williams won’t win any beauty contests, but they’ll help the Packers win games. In my opinion, Biegel’s tape is very similar to T.J. Watt’s, who went

Defense, Defense, Defense

There’s no question the Packers will be faster on defense next season. Whether they’ll be better remains to be seen. Friday’s draft picks – Kevin King, Josh Jones and Montravius Adams – posted some of the best 40 times at their respective positions at the Combine, but none of the three looked nearly as good playing

Packers Pass On Day 1

General Manager Ted Thompson traded out of the first round in 2008 and drafted wide receiver Jordy Nelson at No. 36. Packers fans can only hope things work out nearly as well nine years later. By sending the 29th pick to Cleveland late Thursday night, Green Bay will now be on the clock when the

The Green Bay Packers Select…

Trying to predict what general manager Ted Thompson might do with the 29th pick in the first round will be a lot easier after pick No. 28 is announced later tonight than it is right now. But that’s not going to stop me from giving it a shot. OK, I’ll start by removing the players who will likely be off

Positional Analysis: Safety

This is the 14th of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starters (B+): Few teams have a better pair of safeties than the Packers. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix went to his first Pro Bowl and was named an All-Pro in 2016. Meanwhile, Morgan Burnett quietly had the better season. The veteran from Georgia

Positional Analysis: Cornerback

This is the 13th of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starters (D): Losing Sam Shields to a concussion in week 1 devastated this position. Youngsters Damarious Randall, Quinten Rollins, and LeDarius Gunter simply weren’t ready for the move up the depth chart. How shaky are things heading into the draft? So

Positional Analysis: Inside Linebacker

This is the 12th of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starters (C-): Aside from Clay Matthews in 2014, Jake Ryan put together the best season by a Green Bay inside linebacker in years. That’s the good news. The not so good news is that the former Michigan star was still only

Mocking The Packers

I‘ve never been a fan of mock drafts, but football fans love them. So here’s my first effort at predicting what will happen later this month in Philadelphia. The Packers pick 29th, and while general manager Ted Thompson always talks about taking the best player available, the reality is he’s going to try to fill

Positional Analysis: Outside Linebacker

This is the 11th of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starters (B): Nick Perry finally played like a No. 1 pick in 2016 after four mostly pedestrian seasons while Clay Matthews continued to battle injuries and Father Time. That’s been the story at this position since the team switched to the 3-4 in 2009 –

Positional Analysis: Nose Tackle

This is the 10th of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starter (C-): Journeyman Ricky Jean Francois was signed last month, but the coaches would like Kenny Clark to be the starter in the middle of the D-line. Last year’s No. 1 pick had an ordinary rookie season until turning it up a notch

Positional Analysis: Defensive End

This is the ninth of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starters (C+): Seven-year vet Mike Daniels is the only quality end on the roster, but considering how rarely the Packers line up in their base defense (136 times in 1,239 snaps), that’s probably enough. The former Iowa star was a bit inconsistent last

Positional Analysis: Center

This is the eighth of a 14-part series examining each position going into the offseason. Starter (B): Corey Linsley returned from a hamstring injury just in time to rescue the Packers. The former Buckeye moved off the PUP list and into the starting lineup in week 10 after JC Tretter suffered a sprained knee. The O-line

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