Sorry for the dearth of posting over the weekend. (And thanks to Corey for his great conversation-starter of a post).
Packer Update has a post up regarding what it will take for the Packers to resign Greg Jennings and how negotiations won't be as easy as some might think. I don't agree with everything the Update (or their ever-present 'anonymous source') posits, but one thing I think the source nails is the following:
While Jennings proved to be both dynamic and unselfish in 2008, his play down the stretch left some in the organization scratching their heads. “He seemed to lose focus once the weather turned bad and the team was eliminated from the playoffs,” said the source. “He didn’t run his routes nearly as aggressively and he dropped a bunch of passes. Conversely, [veteran wide receiver] Donald Driver gave every bit the effort in week 16 that he gave in week 1. It’s probably not that big of a deal, but it’s definitely something to consider when you’re talking about committing so much money to one player.”
By my count, that's three years in a row that Jennings has faded in the cold. His rookie year, I chalked it up to injury/hitting the rookie wall. (Also, his first child was born the final few week of the season, reason enough for any man to lose focus...) Fine. Bur then in 2007 there was his disappearing act in the NFC Championship game. Yes, it was brutally cold, (right Corey?) which I remember thinking just made Driver's play all the more astonishing.
Then came the Monday night game against Chicago this past season. Again, a bitterly cold night at the end of the season that saw Driver making play after play. Indeed, Driver looked like he may have suffered a serious injury in the first half. Many, many veterans would have sat out the rest of the game or even the season thinking, 'Hell, the season's over. I'm not getting hurt...' - but not Driver. He is all heart and gives his all no matter what. Now, this is by no means meant to question Jennings heart/toughness, but again, on that cold December night, Jennings was M.I.A. (Yes, he caught a touchdown. A five-yarder that you could have caught...)
None of this takes away Jennings' brilliance and it is by no means a reason for the Packers not to pony up some serious cash to keep the emerging star, but it is worth noting/watching when you're the Green Bay Packers and a player that is supposed to be one of the cornerstones of your offense has trouble in the cold.
And yes, that sound you just heard was IronMan's head exploding... ;)
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