All Entries Tagged With: "Packer Defense"

Aaron looks at a couple of defensive keys heading into the game against the Eagles on Sunday.

Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy are counting on Dom Capers to make the necessary adjustments to help fuel a Super Bowl run.

Bearing in mind the defense was without five starters from last year's team and had to start three rookies, they performed admirably against Peyton Manning and the Colts.

Packer fans love to worry. There's just no need to yet when it comes to the defense.

With Charles Woodson, Nick Barnett, A.J. Hawk and Brad Jones all out of the lineup, the first-string defense predictably struggled.

As usual, there seems to be a never-ending supply of defensive schemes and surprises at the disposal of Dom Capers.

Again and again on Saturday night we saw the secondary giving the Browns' receivers huge cushions. Why?

While much attention has been paid to the move of Brandon Chillar to the outside, Brady Poppinga has quietly had an excellent camp.

Dom Capers will not sleep well tonight after watching all the same issues pop-up for his defense against the Browns.

Aaron looks at five questions he'd like answered over the course of the preseason.

Clay Matthews has been solid but far from spectacular so far in camp.

Having Ryan Pickett, B.J. Raji, Justin Harrell and Cullen Jenkins all on the field at the same time provides an imposing defensive front.

With Brandon Chillar practicing with the first-string defense at outside linebacker the past two days, Brady Poppinga has been relegated to playing second fiddle.

Dom Capers needs to blitz more. It's a cliche, but only because its true.

The personnel at cornerback and inside linebacker remain largely unchanged from a year ago. Can they improve in an area that was exposed by veteran quarterbacks a year ago?

The nose tackles on the Packers' roster are comparatively small in stature, but is that just coincidence?

Both Cullen Jenkins and Brandon Chillar were taking some snaps at outside linebacker during today's practice.

Jason Wilde's story on the competition between Brad Jones and Brady Poppinga is not to be missed.

Dom Capers must adjust his coverage schemes to fit the personnel on hand, rather than forcing them to play zone coverage - poorly.

The Packers like to preach "improve from within" when talking about the younger players on their roster. It's starting to look like that mantra extends to the coaching staff as well.

With the NFL Draft only three days away, Packer fans everywhere have visions of new linebackers and defensive backs being added to the roster and making a not-inconsiderable difference right away, most hopefully in the area of pass defense, what with the much-publicized problems Dom Capers' unit had against "veteran quarterbacks" that spread the team out and threw all over the yard last year. Some new players will help, it's true. But more importantly, Capers having a full offseaon to evaluate the talent on hand and match their talents to what he asks them to do will  have just as much, if not more of an impact. As indicated above, Packer fans can recite by rote the phrase that appears in almost every season recap of the 2009 Green Bay Packers - "they had trouble against teams with savvy veteran quarterbacks that spread the field". This is true of course, but going back and rewatching the season (as I am prone to do) something jumped out at me. First of all, the problems to come were foreshadowed in the 49er game especially after Al Harris went down. And as far as I know, Alex Smith has never been confused with a "savvy veteran".  Now, yes, it's hard to blame Capers for what guys like Jarrett Bush and Brandon Underwood do or don't do well when thrown into the middle of a game and where he is forced to gameplan on the fly knowing what he does about their capabilities. But watching that game again, I was reminded how Capers, at times, could really struggle to find a playcalling rhythm once Harris went out. And it may have affected his ability to recognize what the 49ers were doing.

Been meaning to post this for awhile, pretty much since Jason Wilde mentioned it on one of his many radio appearances shortly after the NFC Coaches breakfast. Of course, waiting has meant that I've been beaten to the punch, so to speak, by Brian - among others. Yes, Mike McCarthy mentioned having Brandon Chillar (been there, done that) and Nick Barnett rush the passer from the outside. McCarthy: We’re going to try to be creative with those guys, keeping those guys on the field in sub. I think both Nick and Brandon Chillar have outside pass-rush ability. I’m not saying we’re going to do it all the time, but it’s definitely an option for us that we’ve talked about. I'm not sure I'm completely sold on Barnett rushing from the outside linebacker position. What I like about what Barnett does in the A Gap blitzes is how he uses his athleticism to weave through the wash and get to the quarterback. When presented with a one-on-one matchup, he rarely wins and usually does his best A.J. Hawk impression, giving his man a shake - which does nothing - and then barreling into the guy, completely negating himself in the process.

Mike McCarthy commented on his teams atrocious tackling in last years Wild Card playoff loss to the Arizona Cardinals. We've long commented that the Packers need vast improvement in this area of the game. Is McCarthy finally coming around?

Let it be known - I agree with Mike Vandermause. (I may as well give up now) In light of the fact that I completely contradicted myself earlier this week, I went back and watched the three games that McCarthy and Capers are no doubt going to pay the most attention to when reviewing tape this offseason - the second Vikings game, the Steelers game, and the Cardinal playoff game. And despite the secondary being torched repeatedly in those contests, especially in the playoff game, I'm pretty sure my first take was the correct one - an improved pass rush, namely a compliment to Matthews who can win a one-on-one at the line of scrimmage, will solve a lot of problems the Packers had against Favre, Roethlisberger and Warner. In looking at the secondary, I fell victim to what I call looking through the "offseason-lens" - where you remember every big play, both good and bad, but forget that there are hundreds of other plays that happened inbetween. Going back and watching the three games in question, you can see the potential in Brandon Underwood. Josh Bell is not nearly the liability that that final pass against Pittsburgh makes you remember him as. Improvement from those two players alone will go a long way in shoring things up on the back end of the defense. And this is even before counting on anything from Al Harris, Will Blackmon or Pat Lee.

Just watching old highlights here at my desk (LORD do I need help) and I came across this one - you remember it, I'm sure.

A few months ago, the Pittsburgh Steelers indicated they had no intention of letting either Casey Hampton or Ryan Clark hit free agency which...

Going back and watching the losses to the Vikings, Steelers, and Cardinals (yes, I am a glutton for punishment) its easy to see why fans and...

Nose Tackle: Ryan Pickett: B Quieted doubts about his ability to fit the scheme. Was a first-rate run stuffer and more than held his own against constant double teams. Set to be a free agent, the team is currently in discussions with his agent to bring him back. A big (no pun intended) positive in the locker room. B.J. Raji C+ Hampered by injury earlier in the year, Raji was never the difference maker the team was hoping it was getting. Extremely versatile, Raji did everything he was asked, including playing downfield in coverage. The problem was he didn’t do any one thing extremely well. It will be very interesting to see what an offseason spent in Dave Redding’s program will do for his conditioning. Defensive End: Cullen Jenkins B - Feasted on inferior competition while disappearing against the better offensive lines the team faced. Allayed most fears about his ability to stand up to the down-after-down pounding the 3-4 end position requires. Supplied pressure on the quarterback, which is always a luxury from a 3-4 end. Johnny Jolly B By almost any measure, Jolly had an excellent season. The worry, of course, is how much of what was on display was the dreaded ‘contract year’ doing the motivation. Given his perceived attitude both on and off the field, it’s impossible not to color all examination of his play this year with that brush. That said, his play was superb across the board. Jarius Wynn D + Wynn (friend of the show, though maybe not after he sees his grade…) was pushed around in the run game and offered next to nothing on passing downs. Needs an offseason to define the mass he has. The bigger problem? Doesn’t seem to have a motor at all. Michael Montogomery D – Barely played. For a reason. Justin Harrell I The man fans love to hate who’s name isn’t Jarrett Bush.

Good stuff from Tom Silverstein today about McCarthy needing to get to the bottom of the issues his defense had against the likes of the Cardinals...

It would sure seem like it from the way the Cardinals tore through them with Hightower and Wells yesterday. I was worried about the possibility but...