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After Further Review: The Packers Season is Over

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After Further Review: The Packers Season is Over

I know on a normal Monday I would be in this time slot going through the replay of Sunday's game, breaking it down for all of you and trying to provide some hope or at least an analysis of the direction the offense and defense were going.  Today, though, is not that day.  Today we mourn.  The Green Bay Packers have been eliminated from the playoffs with two weeks left.  This also happens on a day that the Chicago Bears, yes those Chicago Bears, were named NFC North Division Champions.  

It's a difficult thing to accept, especially during a year that Rodgers stayed healthy played all of the games it was possible for him to play in.  So what do we do now?  We do what 31 other teams do every season and what the Minnesota Vikings have done in every single year of their existence.  We look forward and try again.

"A clean slate" has always been the most likely path foward for the 2019 Packers.  They are full of expiring contracts and current contracts that offer the ability to terminate.  There is one thing that Thompson definitely did right before handing the reins over to BG, and that was making sure he didn't leave much guaranteed money lying around on vets from other teams.  

There's gonna be a new coach and a new staff.  I think it's now pretty safe to say that Joe Philbin and his staff will not return.  

I'm also kind of writing this post in honor of Andy Herman.  Andy very well could be this site's MVP.  His Grading the Pack column and his creation of the Pack a Day podcast have been transformational, second to maybe only the video content provided by Aaron and Corey.  His child is having tear duct surgery today and Andy himself is having his gallbladder removed.  

So today we're gonna do what Andy wants to do, and that's clear the house and move on.  That's not what should terrify you, though.  What should terrify you is now I'm in charge.

So here's what we're working with:

 

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Ross Uglem is a staff writer for Cheesehead TV. He can be found on Twitter @RossUglem 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (68) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Samson's picture

Amazing! Talk about looking forward to a new season. -- The Pack will be improved if just 1/2 of what you list happens between now & September, 2019. -- Love the jettison of the 'old' deadwood on this roster (at present). -- (Are you bringing back S. Wells at center??)

Ross Uglem's picture

The day they gave Linsley #63 I knew I would never stop transposing the two players in my mind

CDC Dave Retired's picture

Wilkerson in fact has a history of injuries. with Jets broke ankle trouble due to broken fibula 2015 and throughout 2016'

Ross Uglem's picture

every NFL player has an injury history. He played 16 games in '15 and 15 games in '16. His current injury doesn't relate to any of his past injuries in a way that it should hinder his football future.

JamesFromMT's picture

Great content as usual.

I'm not seeing any mention of Geronimo. Do you think they'd retain him as well?

Since '61's picture

Chuck him! Thanks, Since '61

Ross Uglem's picture

I personally would not bring Allison back, and as I said in the piece: I'm in charge today.

mamasboy's picture

Coach Rogers might not like it if they part with Allison. He usually sings his praises, So there could be trouble!

The TKstinator's picture

Is there anyone who heard 12 talk about Cobb yesterday that didn’t understand EXACTLY why he was saying what he said??

Bearmeat's picture

Exactly. And I hope to hell that Gute completely ignores it and if Rodgers bitches, Gute tells him to stuff it.

Oppy's picture

Geronimo Allison was on pace for 60+ receptions and 6 TD's.

He finished after 5 games with 20 Receptions (30 total targets), 2 TD's with a 15.2 yard per reception average. 60.6 Yards per game.

Is he a #1 WR in the NFL? Nope, but he's a solid role player that makes plays. This guy gets hate for no good reason.

croatpackfan's picture

He is intriguing player, I agree.

But, who you would like to cut for G-Mo?

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Ross left three open roster spots. I assumed they were for his 5th, 6th and 7th round picks, but not every draft pick makes the 53. There is room for Allison without cutting anyone, and probably for the best of two out of McCray (ERFA), Patrick (ERFA) and Pankey.

badaxed's picture

j-mon

Since '61's picture

It appears that Linsley is missing as our starting Center in your rough draft chart, unless we're chucking him.

I like your FA choices but I doubt that they will all happen. The draft choices are a crap shoot like every draft but they are a solid starting point.

I'm glad to see that all the OLBs are gone except Fackrell.
Good to see Brice and Ryan gone as well. Agree with chucking all of the TEs but Tonyan.

Besides the players the Packers need to decide who will be making the decisions, Gute or Murphy. I hope it's not both, starting with the HC selection. I want Gute to do the job, Murphy can have some input on the HC but Gute should select his HC.

Then the Packers need to decide are they trying to win in the next 2-4 seasons with Rodgers or are they building for the longer term. This decision impacts their FA signings and how they draft. If they think that they are moving on from Rodgers in 2 years then they should build for the longer term. If they are trying to win in the short to mid-term with Rodgers then they need to go for it in the FA market and the draft by building the OL, get another WR, TE and pass rusher. The good news is that the QB, LT and one CB is already in place.
They need a pass rusher, safeties and a game break WR to start if they want to win soon.

1. Who is making the decisions?
2. Select the right HC, preferably a current NFL HC who knows how to build a program Harbaugh? Ariens?
3. Select an OC who Rodgers can work with.
4. Bring in some actual NFL level quality players.
5. Actually rebuild the offensive playbook rather than talk about doing it.

Thanks, Since '61

CO_Brandon's picture

I think Breeland will cost more than 4 million a year.

Ross Uglem's picture

well he's playing on a one year $750K contract right now and just had a team nullify an $8M contract. I'd say $4M is as good an approximation as any.

Bure9620's picture

Yes Breeland will be at least $6 mil

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Even if that's true it wouldn't be hard to posit an $8M AAV and a $4M to $5M cap number for 2019. I suspect he won't get $8M due to injuries but he's shown he can play when he's on the field, so $6M to $8M AAV sounds about right with a $5M cap #.

Thomas might get $12M AAV, but his cap should or at least could be well less than that.

Community Guy's picture

hmmm.. i would be concerned about burning the 12th selection of the draft on Polite, given his size.

two guys i am 50/50 on bringing back: Tramon and CM3. both might be offered a reduced paycheck and a different position: move Clay inside and use Tramon as safety. maybe have a backup plan if those two do not return.

i have been thinking about Josh Jackson. i was initially on the "convert him to safety" train. i am not anymore. see: safeties have to be able to tackle well.. and, sure tackling is not something Jackson brings to the table. i am afraid Jackson has to make it as a corner, or be cut.

wanna know who i want to see at safety at training camp/in the preseason? Ibrahim Campbell.. i liked what i saw from his snaps this year.. oh yeah, that Earl Thomas dude would probably be a fine add too.

Ross Uglem's picture

Any anti-Polite take is a bad Polite take. He's not going to be good he's going to be a star.

The TKstinator's picture

I think Richard Sherman has shown that with the right skills and usage, a 4.56 CB can succeed. True, Josh isn’t 6-3, but isn’t he a shade over 6-0?
Does he have good work habits? Also on board with keeping him at CB, at least for one more season.

Lare's picture

Everything else aside, there is no way they go into next season with Bulaga & Spriggs at RT. Earl Thomas also won't be in Green Bay, the only place he wants to play is in Dallas.

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

Yep. I'd be worried if Bulaga and Spriggs are our RTs for 2019.

HankScorpio's picture

There is no way I'm paying a Safety $12 mil given the rules of the game.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Thomas is a little old for my preferences. I think the NFL will have slot CBs, boundary CBs, and free safeties. Strong safety, if it doesn't go the way of the fullback altogether, will be hybrid LBs.

Denise Chanterelle's picture

I hope Mark Murphy resigns on 01/03/19. It's time to really clean out that front office too IMO. Thank you.

arthurl's picture

Generally agree with this roster with exception of RT. Bulaga is done physically and Spriggs is awful. I really struggle why Packers would draft a center in the 1st round when you have this gaping hole at RT. I also have issue with taking a QB in the 4th round, they should be looking to build more depth in OL, DL, or LB. It's a mock, but good reading following elimination from playoffs.

JohnnyLogan's picture

Looking at your draft only reinforces Gute should have trumped the Bears for Mack. it would have only taken throwing in a 3rd with the two 1sts. I'd trade Polite, Risner and Hockenson tonight for Mack. Afraid we'll pay for this mistake for years.

Lare's picture

Hate to break it to you (especially before Christmas) but players like Mack were never going to come to Green Bay.

But on the bright side, Santa Claus is real.

JohnnyLogan's picture

That sounds fairly ridiculous. Gute was willing to pay the price tag in dollars since according to most reports he bid two 1st's so why wouldn't a player like Mack ever come to Green Bay? He wasn't a free agent. You know something no one else does?

Oppy's picture

Mack wasn't a free agent, true, but Oakland could not effectively trade Khalil if he would refuse to renegotiate his contract with the trade partner. Effectively, Mack controlled his destiny to some extent, as no team would spend the picks to trade for Mack if there was any indication he would not agree to terms to extend his contract.

So if that constitutes Lare knowing something that no one else does.. then Lare knows something no one else does ;)

gmeyers1's picture

Does Gutey still have Cole Madison's phone number?

Lare's picture

Who cares, Madison could be here tomorrow if he wanted to be.

Skip greenBayless's picture

Last I heard Gutey tried calling the number Madison gave him and Colt Lyerla picked up and said hello.

BoCallahan's picture

Hey, I liked Colt. I really wished he would have made it.

Minniman's picture

Shame he wasn't able to be mentored through his maturity issues. He's playing WR in the Arena league now

Oppy's picture

This is just my gut telling me this, but I don't think Cole Madison has a drug problem, if that's what you're getting at.

I think (and this is total speculation on my part) perhaps Cole Madison is suffering from severe depression or other mental health issues related to the loss of his friend and team mate to suicide his senior year.

I believe it was also deduced that the friend showed signs of CTE as well.

Just a hunch.

stockholder's picture

We disagree again. Especially with your draft picks. First; Don't play games with T. Williams. He's still very handy. You might not get Thomas. Sign Breeland. The packers can't keep signing guys to "1 year prove it Contracts." The Wilkerson signing is more than likely a must. I don't believe this team tanks to get the #12 pick. If they do, Simmons would be my Pick. Why? Wilkerson might leave with Pettine. Your also to weak at LB. And if the packers pick lower, Sweat is projected higher to the packers than Polite. I'd take Sweat first because he'll be a better OLB. ( Sacks!) Next Graham stays. I would take Font over a OL. ( Risner .) But that won't help the defense if CM3 and Perry gets cut. The first two picks must be OLBs. And to top that off ,if you loose Ryan and Morrison, you need a ILB. Then the first 3 picks should be Lbs. ( if you want to go to the super-bowl. ) TT signed McCray and others couldn't make it. The lower you go per Packer picks. The less likely the guy will make an impact his rookie year. But if they get the right trio. Your set for the next decade.

Pierre's picture

I think Boyle deserves to stay on this team at QB as he is a tall, strong armed pocket passer who has shown he can throw an accurate deep ball to receivers. This guy has a lot of potential with the skill set he has shown. He just needs a chance.

Skip greenBayless's picture

No worries Pierre. Boyle isn't going any place. Gutey is not going to let go of one of the most physically gifted qb's to come out of the draft in the past decade. NOT GONNA HAPPEN!!

dobber's picture

Um...he was a UDFA.

The new coaching staff might not think as much of him as MM did.

Since91's picture

First off...Ross and Andy thanks for helping me turn the page! So onto the draft...I believe gentlemen that we are in BPA for all of our picks I see holes everywhere....Now free agency wise lets break the bank! When was the last team we had money to spend like this??? So how bout these moves to light somes fires in Titletown and fill holes with veterans who can play now and impact games now!
Sign- Larry Fitzgerald (Is ARod gonna question if one of the best route runners of all time ran to the right spot or not? 5-7 million)
Sign-Jared Cook (What now ARod still not enough weapons? 6-8 million)
Sign- Ndamukong Suh (Yeah brings out some emotion dont it! We need some attitude....to many wimps on this team...Him next to Clark and the cubbies and queens are weak in the middle of their oline...12-14 million)
Sign-Brandom Graham or Frank Clark (Either is an upgrade 6-9 million)
Sign-Rodger Saffold (RG is fixed 6million)
Re-Sign-Breeland (He is fine 4 million)
Re-Sign-Mathews (We owe him to finish his career in GB no stupid money though 4 million)
Now if Clowney, Mosely or Collins are not franchised then any of the three would equal the Mack trade for the cubbies
Well?

Minniman's picture

While I don't share your sentimentality on the issue, I do think that CM3 should be offered another contract and moved to ILB.

I think that the dead-money hit this year may be too steep to move on from Nick Perry --> unless one of the other notable FA Edge defenders agrees and they need to space.

All said, I'm not bound to either of these players, it really may depend on price, coaching appointments and other players that decide their fate.

HankScorpio's picture

"We need some attitude....to many wimps on this team."

And to whom are you referring? Mike Daniels? Laughable. Kenny Clark? He's a beast. Lowery has really stepped up since Wilkinson went down. Lancaster is showing something. More talent is always better but one positive for 2018 is that they don't really need to add much of significance to the DL.

Graham and Clark will probably cost closer to double the 6-9 mil number you give. Nick Perry signed for $12.5 mil AAV 2 years ago.

LeotisHarris's picture

All the "sign" and "re-sign" in your post, and you don't sign it "Thanks, Since91? Opportunity lost, my friend!

Skip greenBayless's picture

I agree. Such a tragedy. How did he forget the most important part? It's like Crosby going to Detroit and forgetting to bring his kicking shoes and missing 5 field goals.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Give me Lukas Daniel. Monyez sweat Marquise brown Irv Smith Jr and Germaine Pratt..

jeepingmakooi's picture

Rest of the draft can be whatever... Bring back breeland and Matthews... Td Jesus if he has another good camp and doesn't do a stupid dive into the endzone in the preseason... Wilkerson depending on the money because I think Lowry has played well. I'd live to cut Perry but think we might as well let him hurt himself again and IR him then cut him next year to save a little cap. Find Fowler a deal of the Rams don't bring him.back.. and give me ibraheim Campbell for Another year.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Or try to shop Perry for a trade and see what you can get for the guy of there is a team desperate enough for a player... Maybe Cleveland will trade or Arizona

HankScorpio's picture

According to Over the cap, cutting Perry (post June 1 designation), Graham, Tramon Williams, Lane Taylor and Mason Crosby would leave them $62.8 under. It is indeed $55 mil under if they don't kick the can to 2020 on Perry and take the entire hit in 2019.

But you can't cut Taylor for the cap savings, not re-sign him, and then have him appear on the final roster. They also might want to have a Kicker. Maybe not a pricey one. But you're not going to want to go without one.

It's not crazy to think they can bring back Tramon Williams for a lesser cap hit. And Wilkinson will not likely command a big deal. But it's a little optimistic to think all those other guys will sign at the numbers given in the $4-$5 mil area.

Lastly, the 3rd round Safety doesn't even make the team. That's ok, take away the $12 mil to Thomas and slide Hudson into that spot. *maybe* the rest could happen with the extra $12 mil to spread around.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Third round aaftey doesn't make the team? Well we have a second round one who should be adding a little weight and playing linebacker... Lots if productive safeties on this league that are 3rd or later

Oppy's picture

Just curious, if the Packers fix the right side of the OL, add more weapons to the WR corps, and even find an OC / HC who will "work with" Rodgers..and Rodgers continues to make poorly placed throws, make completely over/under thrown balls, or simply ignore the open checkdown/not see the open WR... who are Packers fans going to blame for sub-par QB play then?

The only thing I know for sure, it won't be placed on Rodgers. That was made strikingly clear in 2018. Oh, and it was made clear during his slump in '15-16', too.

JimR_in_SoCal's picture

I wouldn’t count on that. If everything around Rodgers changes, and he continues to play badly, it’ll be very apparent to all that Rodgers is no longer that “HOF” guy.

HankScorpio's picture

He had 4400 yard, 40 TDs and a 104 QB rating in 2016. He dragged a defense that had LaDarius Gunter as CB1 to the NFC title game. You don't need to make any excuse for that.

Oppy's picture

Perhaps I have my years mashed up, Hank. I may be thinking end of 2014-2015.

Oppy's picture

aaaaand actually, I may be right on the money with 2015-2016. Wasn't 2016 the year where the Packers had their back against the wall then all the sudden Rodgers flipped the switch with the "Run the Table"? Now I'm confused.

Oppy's picture

Yeah, 2016 was the year he entered the season in the midst of a big slump that lingered from the 2015 season. He turned it around about mid-way through 2016.

HankScorpio's picture

Yes, indeed the team did start very slowly in 2016, Rodgers included. But that was nothing like this year. The 0-4 run right before "run the table" was built on the strength of giving up 38.25/game while scoring "only' 26.75. He had over 300 yards in 2 of them game and 297 in another. The 4th saw him post a 125 QB rating. No doubt some of those gaudy numbers were garbage time production with the team in a huge hole late. But that's still pretty gaudy production from Rodgers and nothing to show from it.

He definitely took it to a whole other level while the defense stabilized a LOT to run the table and win 2 in the playoffs. Including that amazing game in Dallas.

RCPackerFan's picture

This is my thoughts for players for next year.

QB - Don't need to really add anyone if they like Kizer.

RB - Need to add at least 1 maybe 2 RB's. Draft will be fine. Draft 1 in mid to late rounds and add one or 2 as UDFA's.

TE - Myself I think I keep Graham mostly based on dead money. I think he can be productive with Rodgers. I let Kendricks go. Lewis? Tonyan bring back. But I would be all for adding a veteran TE maybe Jared Cook again if he was available. And draft a TE. Need to restock the position.

WR - Adams, MVS, EQ, Allison is a good start. See what they have in Moore and Kumerow. I would draft another WR at least in the mid rounds. But if a good one is available in the 2nd-3rd round I'd be fine with that.

OL - The left side is good, they need to upgrade the right side. RG has been a mess all year. RT IF they bring Bulaga back will be ok. BUT they have to add better depth.

DL - Clark/Daniels is a great start. I would resign Wilkerson. I like Lowry, Lancaster and Adams. I think they should draft another higher DL.

OLB - Biggest need IMO. They have to add impactfull pass rushers. I would be fine with bringing Mathews back at a lower rater. He isn't the pass rusher he once was but is still a good player. I would draft 1-2 guys, and add a veteran.

ILB - Martinez is really good. Burks maybe good next year. Morrison has surprised me a bit more lately. I would like to see another ILB added but it doesn't have to be a high pick IMO.

CB - Overall I like the position. I would like to see them bring back Breeland. Having Alexander, King, Jackson, Breeland, is as good as anyones 1-4. The key is for them to stay healthy. I would draft another CB because you can't have to many. I do like Brown too.

S - If OLB is #1 need, S is #1B. They have to upgrade the position. They need a difference maker. Plain and simple. I hope they draft one and sign a veteran. I wouldn't mind seeing Campbell come back as a number 3 or 4.

I honestly don't think we are far away. We need to add a few veteran players and hit on some draft picks. But the growth of this rookie class plus last years picks will go a long ways into improving our team.
Top priorities this offseason. Fix OL. Add pass rush. Add safety help. Add playmakers anywhere and to whatever position.
If there is a TE or WR that can come in and become a mismatch. Get him. If there is a pass rusher that can be a terror off the edge. Get him. If there is a ball hawking safety. Get him. Just find and get the playmakers!

stockholder's picture

S. OLB- If you don't take one right off. The Best edge rusher will be gone by #1B. #1B. The kid from Alabama is a #1 not #1b. But try and put a rookie in there ,and your looking at Dix again. 4.5 speed. Plus Time. So #1b can't be a safety. The safety is in 2nd / -3 rounds. This is why you don't play with Williams. Keep him there until help arrives. Cleveland would not have traded for Randall, and Buffalo would not have signed Hyde if safeties grow on trees. Drafting a safety early #1, would be Gute's biggest mistake. Why? , Because he just has to many other holes to fix. Signing a FA safety would be his best move. Everyone wanted an edge rusher last year! You won't get a Mack late.

HankScorpio's picture

I hope the Packers show more aggression to upgrade the offense Ross does here. He lists 7 defensive vets and 2 on offense. His draft is 4-2 in favor of offense.

The roster as indicated has 1 pass catcher that posted as much as 500 yards in a season, as of now.

I think they already have RBs that can produce more than they have. But I wouldn't mind adding more to erase some of the doubt I have about that.

The 44 sacks Rodgers has taken so far in 2018 suggest a bigger swing at upgrading the OL might be in their best interest. That could also help the RBs look better.

The Packers need to get better on offense. If 2018 showed us anything, it is that they cannot depend on Rodgers magic to paper over all the holes on offense.

Flow49's picture

What the Fackrell is going on our there?

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I am getting allergic to third contracts. Nigel Graham, Earl Thomas, and Carpenter would all be 3rd contracts, and two of them would be for big money.

Earl Thomas wants to get paid, so I don't think he'd be willing to sign a contract with structure acceptable to me.

stockholder's picture

I believe Randall will get 9 mil. in 2019. Thats 9 mil against the cap. Thomas is a bargain compared to Randall. T. Williams had many contracts. (And is at 5 mil.) Avg for a cb is all of 12 mil. Gute didn't go after a Wr. last year. My feeling is he won't go after a free safety in 2019. (But should.) He'll draft two. That RG/OL we need, just became a plug from the free -agent market instead.

HugePackersFan's picture

The Packers season is over...period. ARod showed pain in his groin area during the Bears defeat and should be benched and rested. Let Deshone K. play the last two games and see what he can actually do against two very winnable opponents for the Pack. The Firing of MM is a very important 1st step in restoring the Offense next season to a top performing group. Watch some of the gadget plays NFL teams are now deploying. With MM, you would not see one of them in your lifetime if you started watching games at age 3 and lived to be 225,000 years old! RIP MM, you do not belong as a head coach calling offensive plays in the NFL anywhere else besides Little Gridders. We can and will in the 2019 season rebound. Look at the once hapless Browns. Utterly amazing with firing Jackson/Haley, that Baker M. & Co have now won 4 out of 5, and most likely will go on to have more W's in 2018 than our Packers.

leaerin4's picture

Losing these last two games from a business standpoint ,makes all the sense in the world. We should treat these games like preseason games and play everyone and evaluate players for next year. Our entire starting defensive front is now on IR or out for the season already. We can greatly improve our draft position and have three picks in the top 40. EDGE,offensive line,and wide receiver. Maybe two EDGE rushers to compliment our defensive line when they're healthy again. Some big name and longtime Packer starters and players will be leaving via free agency or trade value. This 2019 draft can go a long way to restocking the shelves and keeping the Packers young yet a Super Bowl contender with a healthy Arod with weapons and protection. The skies the limit with Rodgers and an improved defense under Pettine. Go Pack Go Let's land the right head coach FIRST!!!!

leaerin4's picture

Can we please draft a tight end this year by round three who can become a very valuable part of the passing game. We must keep improving our offensive line if we expect to keep Arod upright with the new and improved Bears defense which we'll face twice a year. I still say we never should have left Tretter go to the Browns. He could play anywhere on the offensive line and was the best sixth man in football.

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