Cory's Corner: The Packers are still dangerously thin

The Packers are entering a new season with thin spots again. However, the spots have changed to defensive line and linebacker.

Remember last year when the Packers were dangerously thin at running back and defensive back?

Well, the calendar has turned and the Packers are entering a new season with thin spots again. However, the spots have changed to defensive line and linebacker.

Mike Daniels is the heartbeat of the defense without question. Yet, the secret has been out on Daniels. He has been sidestepping double teams for over a year now and his tremendous power and perseverance usually gets numbed with more bodies. Dean Lowry has looked good this preseason, but he hyperextended his knee a couple weeks ago. Even if is ready to play Week 1 vs. Seattle, how much can really be expected?

A lot was expected of Kenny Clark and it looks like he’s ready for real games. He has been very physical up front, which helps when Daniels is getting occupied by a small village. Ricky Jean-Francois turns 31 this season and cannot be expected to log significant snaps.

The defensive line’s job in Dom Capers’ 3-4 is to take up blockers and allow lanes for the linebackers to make plays. There had to be some confidence in letting Letroy Guion go, because he added a key depth piece. Obviously, his off-field petulance was a headache, but if he didn’t offer any value, why hang on to him until Aug. 8?

As far as the linebackers are concerned, the Packers’ biggest fears came true when Nick Perry was sidelined with an ankle injury. The Packers bet $60 million over five years that Perry would be able to stay healthy and get to the passer. However, it looks like he will be nicked up all season. And outside of Clay Matthews, who has also had his own injury problems, the Packers really don’t have a proven pass rusher on the team.

That’s why the Packers will be kicking the tires on Ahmad Brooks today. The 49ers recently cut the 10-year pro who has averaged 6.1 sacks over the last three years. However, he is 33 and has a court hearing on Sept. 29 for a sexual battery case.

Last year the Packers got whipped in the NFC Championship because they could not get to the passer. We’re 12 days away from the season opener and I don’t see much of a change. I like how the secondary has been retooled, but unless the defensive backs can cover for 5-8 seconds every play, even an amazing defensive backfield is susceptible.

There are holes on this defense and unless Ted Thompson can pull a rabbit out of a hat after cut down day, it’s up to Dom Capers to do his best to hide the warts. A possible answer might be to use Morgan Burnett or Josh Jones as a full-time linebacker that has the speed to get around the edge and take the opposing quarterback off his spot.

Obviously, this is a huge gamble, because if the quarterback isn’t hurried at least, the Packers are in trouble.

In five of the last six years, the Packers have relied on Aaron Rodgers to be the savior. It’s easy to forget about team deficiencies when Rodgers is throwing dimes and destroying defenses. Las Vegas says that Rodgers accounts for 10 points when determining the Packers’ point spreads.

Just think if Green Bay didn’t have newsprint-thin depth on defense. 

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Comments (74)

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Nick Perry's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:02 am

The moment Brooks comes to 1265 Lombardi Thompson and Ball should bring him up to their offices and get a deal done. Brooks should not and cannot leave GB without signing.

IMO Conner Barwin should have been signed. According to one TT supporter Barwin didn't want to play in GB though I can't find one article to support that theory. Then there was Dumervil. Elvis wasn't signed either and to be honest I can't remember if he was even considered to be signed and it really doesn't matter. He should have been considered but he's in SF now AND had a sack this weekend.

Brooks has averaged 6 sacks a year over the last 3 seasons. Matthews hasn't averaged 6 sacks the last two and GB pays him $15 million a year. That's not a knock on CMIII, them's just the facts. GET Brooks signed and HOPE an O-Lineman and maybe even another surprise OLB get cut and start signing them too.

Tick, Tick, Tick...That's Rodgers turning 34, 35, and 36. If I was Thompson, I'd start thinking long and hard about how many years Rodgers can do what he did last season. Guys who can take a team to the NFCCG with a defense like that don't come around but once in a lifetime. GET IT DONE TED!

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:32 am

I honestly was hoping they would have signed Dumerville.

Brooks would be a good pick up. He is similar to Nick Perry. Very strong at the point and can set the edge. And when all 3 would be healthy it would give Capers options.

"Matthews hasn't averaged 6 sacks the last two and GB pays him $15 million a year."
No, to be fair though the previous 7 years he had no less then 6 sacks. 4 seasons he had double digit sacks. Last year he easily would have had more had he not taken a cheap shot from Barbre.

Not to go off on you or anything but everyone worries way to much about what Mathews, Cobb and Rodgers make. These guys all signed contracts that when they signed them they earned them and they were fair. The truth is with the NFL constantly making more and more money these guy's contracts continue to go up. Look at what Stafford just signed for. He is now the richest player in the NFL. And what does he have to show for it? 0 playoff wins...

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:11 am

RC, Cap is King, and we have guys like Matthews and Cobb dramatically underperforming their contracts. It's odd you'd include Rodgers in that list, as he has clearly outperformed his contract.

In a league where each team gets the same amount to spend, such dramatic underperformers cripple your chances to sustain a quality roster--causing more reliable performers (like Lang) to leave.

Oh yes, those massive deals are very important indeed.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:32 am

No my point with those 3 players is that those are the 3 players that most people talk about needing to restructure their contracts. Most people want Mathews and Cobb taking a cut while paying Rodgers more.

At the end of the day if they give Rodgers 10 million more per year and give Mathews and Cobb 5 million less each, how does that change anything? They are still paying the same amount for all 3 players. The same amount of money is getting spent, just used differently.

I understand that the cap is very important. But to be honest, I don't think the Packers have ever been as cap conscious as they are now under Thompson and Ball. I will go with "In Ted we trust" as far as the contracts they sign because they have been very good at managing the cap.

I don't blame Thompson for letting Lang go. He is now 30 years old (or will be in a month). He has only started 16 games 3 times in his career. Handing out big contracts to players nearing 30 with a history of injuries is not a smart investment.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:50 am

True, but we don't have to give Rodgers more money until his extension next offseason--when we'll surely release Cobb and Matthews.

But if we released Cobb now, we'd save $6.5 million for our cap with no meaningful loss of production. That would be reeeeeeeeally helpful in locking up guys like Tretter before they seek greener pastures.

Wouldn't you rather have Tretter than Cobb right now? Well you would have him, if we had locked Tretter up during the season last year with the plan of releasing Cobb.

Ted's a good GM, but sometimes he just doesn't make the obvious move.

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dobber's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:04 am

Tretter? Not really. The guy could not stay healthy, and has no track record at G, where he would've had to play. If you'd put your eggs in Tretter's basket, you'd need a significant upgrade at backup G...because that guy is likely to play.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:29 am

No, Tretter is actually a good, athletic tackle as well.

Man, we could really use him right now. The benefit to this current roster between him and Cobb would be no contest whatsover.

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Duke Divine's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:52 pm

Sure they could use him, but not at the price CLeve paid! He is versatile and very athletic and as much as he is those things he is also injury prone..Call it bad luck but being available is half the battle and he was rarely available for more than 40% of a season.

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billybobton's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:25 pm

totally beyond belief this gets a down vote, cobb is totally a guy and JC was the better center, could fill in at guard and as was decent as a OT......dislike this and you should not be disliking

This post was as accurate as anything ever posted on this site

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billybobton's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:23 pm

Generally the cap becomes an issue AFTER you win a super bowl and teddie has been good at avoiding that problem because he also avoids adding talent to obviously weak positions that need shoring up

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croatpackfan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:51 am

Nick, you may write that I wrote that...
packerswire.usatoday.com/2017/03/11/report-packers-have-contacted-connor-barwin/
gnb.247sports.com/Bolt/Report-Packers-have-contacted-Connor-Barwin--51705652
us.blastingnews.com/sports/2017/03/green-bay-packers-looking-to-replace-peppers-with-connor-barwin-001540869.html
www.nj.com/eagles/index.ssf/2017/03/ex-eagles_lb_connor_barwin_has_heard...

Here is several sources that Packers contacted Connor Barwin. And nothing happened. I'm sorry not to be able to provide you with article I was talking about, but as I recolect in my memory, Barwin already has pre arrangement to go to Rams because of Wade Phillips...

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Jimmy Ryan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 11:08 am

Sign Him!!! PLEASE!!!!

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croatpackfan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:56 am

But, in addition, I found this: phi.247sports.com/Bolt/Connor-Barwin-explains-why-he-was-released-by-the-Eagles--51897993, as explanation why he chose Rams

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cuervo's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:01 am

"IMO Conner Barwin should have been signed. According to one TT supporter Barwin didn't want to play in GB though I can't find one article to support that theory"

Hey, I would have liked it if they would have signed Barwin also....BUT he had an opportunity to go play for his old coach (Wade Phillips) who he likes and enjoyed success with. Plus he signed a guaranteed 3.5 mio contract with incentives up to 6.5 million, GB wasn't ever going to do that.

But what the hell....TT should have signed Barwin at 6 mio, Dumerville at 2 yr/8mio (his current contract) and while he's at it Mario Williams is still a free agent...throw 3-5 mio at him and he'll come here to. There....all the pass rush problems solved....this GM stuff is freakin easy.

I assumed form the beginning that TT would have to end up signing some OLB vet UNLESS the players on the roster showed something. Fackrell shows absolutely nothing, Elliot has also shown diddly and is hurt. Matthews looked like a 5th grader going against a college team in the last game, he was knocked around like a rag doll. Beigel breaks his foot....so essentially you have 5 players you're counting on to man the position, 3 are hurt and 3 have shown no improvement at all.

The question I always have, is it the coaches that tell Ted that player X, Y and Z have potential and will solve the the positional issue? I find it hard to belive that Ted goes off on his own and ignores whatever the coaches tell him.

The OLB postion is a disaster right now...it wouldn't surprise me if they sign another player after cutdowns.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:13 am

Great post, cuervo. Voice of reason.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

August 30, 2017 at 05:53 am

I couldn't decide whether to like or dislike cuervo's post because I couldn't tell what the hell he was saying. I do think paying Barwin $7M with $3.5M guaranteed in March would have been a good move. Heck, maybe Barwin did want to play for a garbage team if he got to play with his old coach rather than earn more guaranteed $ and earn more total compensation in GB. Or maybe TT low balled him. No one knows. Maybe Dumervil wanted to play for a garbage team for $1.5M guaranteed and 2 years/$8.

Then cuervo moves to sarcasm and suggests that TT should have signed Barwin, and Dumervil and Mario Williams. [This GM stuff is easy.] I don't think anyone suggested signing 3 OLBs and giving them each chunks of guaranteed money. Classic straw man argument. And it sounds like he was against signing any OLBs in March, but I thought he was for signing Barwin.

Then he writes that he assumes TT would have to sign somebody unless some of our OLBs showed something. Again, sounds like he was against signing any OLBs in March. Would that decision be made in June? In August, after a preseason game or three? Is it a good idea for a GM to assume that a rotational OLB who can play 500 to 700 snaps will become available in August? As it happens, some folks think such a thing just happened with Brooks getting cut. Does Cuervo think GB should make a serious offer to Brooks before Brooks leaves GB? Say, more than Datone money and up to Neal money? I don't know what cuervo thinks. I think GB should. Cuervo finishes by writing it wouldn't surprise him if GB signs someone after cutdowns (Sept 2). Does that mean he thinks GB should hold off on making Brooks an offer to see who else gets cut? Again, I can't tell and I don't know if Brooks will still be unsigned on Sept. 2.

I would have offered Barwin $7M in March. If that wasn't enough, so be it. I'd offer Brooks more than Datone money and up to Neal $ right now. That means as a veteran he gets termination pay and it is essentially guaranteed. If not, then I'd hope Datone or someone better gets cut. I don't think Datone wants to play OLB, and Daniels, Clark and Lowry at least are better than Jones at DL. We could wait until week 2 to sign an OLB to avoid the veteran guarantees, but I suspect (though I do not know) that only some real humdingers would still be available.

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GBPDAN1's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:08 am

How did you get a thumbs down Nick Perry? You are spot on and the person that thumbs down you is living in their own little happy world. Reality is what it is, not what you want it to be. This team has 2 injury prone starting OLBs and one of them is grossly over paid and is a shell of his former self. Of course both Perry and CM3 are currently hurt. There's no quality depth behind these guys.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:52 am

Like I said in the elevator, GBPDAN1, "Wasn't me."

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dobber's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:17 am

"How did you get a thumbs down Nick Perry? "

Eh...haters gonna hate.

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Spock's picture

August 29, 2017 at 11:41 am

dobber, Agreed. I got a thumbs down for complimenting Turophile on his well thought out comment. Sheesh.

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PackfanNY's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:01 pm

I have seen nothing yet regarding Ahmad Brooks. Packers won't comment if they don't sign a player. I'll assume that means Brooks is leaving GB without signing. I was hoping he would sign because I think he could really help us.

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Nick Perry's picture

August 30, 2017 at 05:27 am

I'm hoping I read something early this morning they got a deal done with Brooks. If he gets to Denver I doubt Elway lets him leave. I have no idea what Brooks is looking for money wise but hopefully it's reasonable. Can't see Thompson opening the pocketbook to wide.

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PackfanNY's picture

August 30, 2017 at 07:13 am

I wake up and see nothing. Not looking good. I feel like you that if he gets to Denver he's not getting by Elway. Hope we are wrong. Just as I post this I hear Joe Haden CB Cleveland was just let go. I always worry about our defensive backfield. Who knows.

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PackfanNY's picture

August 30, 2017 at 07:20 am

I wake up and see nothing. Not looking good. I feel like you that if he gets to Denver he's not getting by Elway. Hope we are wrong. Just as I post this I hear Joe Haden CB Cleveland was just let go. I always worry about our defensive backfield. Who knows.

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Finwiz's picture

August 30, 2017 at 08:35 am

I'd take Joe Haden over Brooks. They can use all the depth they can find at CB.

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chugwater's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:11 am

Signing Brooks is the obvious choice given the lackluster development by Fackrell and Elliott in addition to Biegel's injury.

The question I have is do you double down after signing Brooks and get another OLB after the final cut this week? It sounds crazy given TT's track record, but he's been out of character this year with all of the free agent signings since March.

Brooks narrows the depth gap by quite a bit if we can reach a deal. Another solid if not spectacular FA would help even more.

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dobber's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:07 am

I think this all hinges on Elliott's bad back. If he's going to need surgery (which is a possibility) then you sign Brooks and Gilbert likely makes the 53. I don't think they're likely to find a cut out there who's going to be much better than Gilbert. I DO think they pad the PS with OLB candidates, though.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:33 am

Here's my prediction if Elliott needs surgery:

They keep Gilbert, then immediately release him after claimimg someone better.

We're arguably the league's thinnest team at OLB. Someone will release a better one.

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carusotrap's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:16 am

"And outside of Clay Matthews, who has also had his own injury problems, the Packers really don’t have a proven pass rusher on the team."

Exactly what delusion makes you think Clay will do anything this season? Last year, he was the top cap hit amongst OLBs in the league. Sacks? Ranked 22nd and out-played by two other guys on his own team. The media REALLY needs to stop drinking the Kool-Aid once and for all on CMIII.

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dobber's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:10 am

The numbers say that, but he played with one arm for a full 1/3 of the season after the Eagles game and Barbre's blind-side hit. I give him credit for playing through it.

At that stage, though, I find myself wondering whether there wasn't someone on the roster or PS who might have been more effective and whether Matthews' desire to gut out the injury didn't really hurt the team more in the long haul.

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Cory Jennerjohn's picture

August 29, 2017 at 11:49 am

I actually think that Matthews has been on the decline for three years now. His nagging hamstring injuries combined with his other ailments have turned him into a less than average rusher.

But that's just the point. He is one of the Packers' most reliable edge rushers. That in itself should keep Dom Capers up at night.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 12:49 pm

'I actually think that Matthews has been on the decline for three years now. '

Are you including 2014-215 when he was moved to ILB, or going with the last 3 years of him playing OLB?

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Cory Jennerjohn's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:19 pm

Last three as an edge rusher only. He should be moved inside to mask his lack of explosiveness.

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GVPacker's picture

August 29, 2017 at 02:04 pm

Cory I trust and value your opinion and when someone of your reputation which includes the likes of i.e. Jersey Al ,Jasone Perone makes an observation like that it's disconcerting. Clay Matthews on the decline and injury prone,Nick Perry a lot of talent there but just like Matthews he has a history of getting injured. Once again the Packers linebacking core is a big question mark going into the start of the season!

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 03:28 pm

I don't think he lacks the explosiveness. I just think he gets hurt to much, misses games and then plays injured and that affects his explosiveness more then anything.

I think the hybrid role is best for him. Not playing ILB, not playing OLB. playing an in between position.

In one of the preseason games he lined up at ILB, and they had Thomas next to him. Then they had Perry at OLB and the DL was Lowry Clark and Daniels.
I think this formation could be used a lot. Perhaps down the road they will replace Thomas with Jones, but this lineup I think best uses its players.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 30, 2017 at 07:45 am

Well on that one play they had 3 DL and Perry as the loan OLB. That would work.
But yeah if they signed Brooks he would give them another option.

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Handsback's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:31 am

OLBs are thin, but I don't think the dline is an issue. Especially since they will be playing a lot of 2-man fronts.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:04 am

The 2 positions I'm mostly concerned about right now is OLB and backup OL.

Perry suffered a sprained ankle and Mathews possibly got injured in the last game? Elliott has been suffering from back spasms, and Biegel has yet to play. So 4 of our top 5 guys have been or are hurt.
The good news is none of those are long term things, but in the short term we definitely could use help. Thats why signing Brooks makes a lot of sense.

OL the starters are great. the problem with that is the backups have been very shaky. I think they need to find 1-2 from another team after cut downs happen.

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EdsLaces's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:07 am

Thin at LB for sure...thin at DL....not so much. We do need to sign Brooks though Perry and CM3 just can't be trusted. Elliot and Fackrell are just bodies at this point..

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porupack's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:13 am

Geeze, injuries are plague-like in Green bay. To be fair, a number of teams are reeling after some key pieces are already lost for the season more than the packers at this point. Many of GB guys should heel up if not brought back too soon...so its too early to cry.

Cory, you're right about thin on OLB and OL. I think depth is reasonably fine at all other positions. No team is likely to have depth at all groups.

But OLB and OL are vulnerable.

Between the two, OL was result of releasing talent and quite in TT's realm of control. TT shouldn't have tinkered so much with what was a very good OL last year. Lang's experience would have been all the more needed considering the youth at RB.

For OLB, TT tried w draft capital, but just didn't pan out. Can't fault him for not having all picks work. Such is not directly controllable. He just makes reasonable calculus and a certain percent just don't pan out.

But he should not have allowed two defections at OL, risk another year of poor rushing attack, and add risk on pursuit of the SB trophy.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:36 am

for the most part I agree with you.

But I disagree with this part. "Between the two, OL was result of releasing talent and quite in TT's realm of control. TT shouldn't have tinkered so much with what was a very good OL last year. Lang's experience would have been all the more needed considering the youth at RB"

Thompson didn't release anyone. Lang and Tretter both left in free agency. Both players got big contracts to play elsewhere. Thompson then went and brought Jahri Evans in to replace Lang.
Tretter in Green Bay would have been a backup. He got a chance to start and he left to go there. Can't blame Thompson for letting him go and not paying him starters money to be a backup.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:19 am

Letting Lang go was the right move because we're so hamstrung by Matthews' and Cobb's contracts. Cap is King.

Besides, Lang is a guard, and we're worse at tackle.

I just wish Tretter hadn't received such a huge offer. That was devastating. He could play anywhere.

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Finwiz's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:54 am

Tretter got a big offer because he was GOOD. Yeah we could use him, but they couldn't pay that contract for a backup - he wasn't going to be a starter at guard or center. Plus he had what, one year where he wasn't injured? He always was injury prone and lord knows GB doesn't need any more of those types, they have enough already.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 10:00 am

I wanted us to extend Tretter during the season, let Lang, walk, and start Tretter at guard. Then we could slide him outside if needed, since backup guards are easier to find than tackles.

Of course, I wasn't expecting the Spriggs implosion.

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Finwiz's picture

August 29, 2017 at 02:17 pm

Problem is, THEY didn't view him as a guard, and it doesn't matter what the armchair coaches like you and me think. Not to mention he had no experience at guard that I'm aware of, and even if he did - they don't PAY guards like they do tackles. So either way they weren't going to sign him if he wasn't a starter at tackle.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 08:22 am

I want Brooks too--we're in bad shape at OLB--but some here seem to think we should just pay him what he wants.

Negotiating in desperation usually cripples you down the road.

Cap is King.

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scullyitsme's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:00 am

So here's some facts for the doom and gloomer overreacters. Nick perry rolled an ankle and has two weeks to play week one and will, Barclay will be back week one, Lowry will be back week one, house will be back week one, they are talking about playing Elliot Thursday, beigel is progressing, but ok, might go on the pup. Then they sign Ahmad brooks, to make up for it. Jeez, even for this crowd it's a little much. I'll even go so far as to say I think Kyle Murphy played a pretty good game last week, and sprigs isn't as bad as all the overacters are saying. I know I'm wasting my typing skills or lack of them, and haters gonna hate, but sometimes, you people.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:27 am

Wow, is that optimism? I know I'm naturally an optimist, I'm just not really used to seeing it from others.

I love your post and everything your saying is true.

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Finwiz's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:49 am

Too early in the A.M. for green & gold SPIKED kool-aid. Put down the jug and snap out of it! LOL

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WKUPackFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 12:57 pm

Too early in the A.M. for the uniformed to be commenting. Get some new material. The green and gold kool-aid and China Doll schtick was played out several years ago. Maybe some meditation in that single-wide of yours by the pond, or "cottage up north" as you describe it, would help.

And since everyone is probably tired of me pointing out your mistakes, I'm leaving it to others from now on.

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Finwiz's picture

August 29, 2017 at 02:18 pm

I see the peanut gallery is back. Here's a quarter - call someone who cares.
Don't address me any more, you're unhinged, and too easily triggered.
TIA.

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lou's picture

August 29, 2017 at 11:14 am

I like the optimism as well, the best case scenario is Mathews and Perry start the season healthy, they add Brooks, Fackrell or Elliott show they can rush the passer, and Biegel gets an opportunity a few games into the season and shines (many thought he was a better all around LB than Watt). I worry most about Mathews, guessing its is the hamstring again, when healthy he has such an impact on the games and the hamstring injuries really linger. Who would have thought that at this point in the pre-season having Datone Jones available would be a comfort level for the coaching staff, he got washed out in the run game and always made a couple knuckle head plays but every once in a while he created pressure.

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Bure9620's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:08 am

We are not hamstrung by contracts, we have lots of cap space and very little dead money, a little over 3 mil which is primarily due to Sam Sheilds.

I actually think our D line is the deepest I have seen in a decade. Mike Daniels looks unblockable, he will be tough to handle on the interior, Lowry looks great and has some pass rush to him, I expect to be back week 1. Kenny Clark has definitely progressed and will only get better he has a some rush to him also, RJF will be a solid rotational veteran against the run and is actually an upgrade over Guion. Also, Ringo has quietly had a solid camp, he was a beast in the Denver game and the lights seem to clicking on for him, not sure why people think we are "dangerously thin" here?

The OLB depth is thin, but if we can generate some interior pass rush this will help outside backers get home. We may have to blitz more. If you can collapse the pocket from the inside or outside it doesn't matter. Get that QB off his spot and disrupt timing

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:39 am

exactly right. Thats why I don't get why everyone gets so wrapped up in Mathews and Cobb's contracts.
The year and a half that Mathews sacrificed his stats to help the team and play ILB, shouldn't he get credit for that? Then last year he moves outside and has a couple of injuries.

I completely agree about our DL.
Daniels has been a beast. Clark was really coming on last year and now looks to be a perfect compliment to Daniels. Lowry looks like he has really emerged as well. Francois will be an upgrade over Guion. Ringo has had a great camp and preseason. Adams we don't know about, but could go on IR and return.

When healthy Mathews and Perry are a very good pass rushing duo. Elliott has shown he can get after the QB also. Bringing in Brooks makes a lot of sense.
And your right. There is more then one way to rush the QB. It looks like this year we may have rushers from up the middle more then we have had in a while.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:46 am

Because the Cobb and Matthews contracts are devastating our ability to keep or build depth elsewhere.

Cap is King, Cap is King, Cap is King.

Man, if only we could have used some of that cash to extend Tretter early and pursue a different passrusher at OLB.

But we're crippled now.

Cap is King. Obey the King.

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RCPackerFan's picture

August 29, 2017 at 10:19 am

Just curious. Who all have we lost that we couldn't sign due to Cobb's and Mathews contracts?

Packers could have signed Tretter. They chose not to at the price he was going to get to be a backup.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 02:13 pm

As I've written elsewhere, I would have extended Tretter during the season, with the intention of releasing Cobb to save $6.5 million in 2017 and much more in 2018. I would have let Lang walk, clearing the starting RG position for Tretter.

Then, if anyone went down, we'd have the super-flexible Tretter to move around, filling in someone else at RG.

But even now, the benefits of releasing Cobb are enormous. We save big money for helping extend someone like Taylor or Linsley, we protect a roster spot for one of our young receivers, and we hasten the inevitable transition coming next offseason.

Releasing a super-expensive and underperforming player from our deepest position on the team is, well, the obvious move.

So of course, we won't do it. We'll burn money while losing 2 players (one extension and one young receiver), only to release Cobb after the season.

Sheer stupidity.

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dobber's picture

August 29, 2017 at 11:16 am

"Crippled" is an awfully strong term for a team that's $17M under the cap.

Right now, they aren't crippled.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:54 pm

Yes, we are crippled, because we have big extensions upcoming.

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Tedlyflyfisher's picture

August 29, 2017 at 12:04 pm

I would be careful not to underestimate the importance of Cobb to our offense and to A-Rod. When the going got tough last year, who did he look to? Cobb quite often! And more often than not, Randall came through. And even when he's on the sidelines, he's quick to give aadvice and support to rookies as well as any other teammates. There's great value, IMHO, in Cobb. Don't hyper focus on his paycheck.

If you want to save money, cut Matthews. Sure, I love the guy, too, but I'm afraid we'll never see the guy that CMIII used to be, again.

It's odd to me that T.T. habitually ignores needs at LB on draft day.

I am actually quite optimistic about this season. I think our WR/TE depth is ridiculous. I am hopeful about our secondary. I also think people greatly underestimate the importance of our new punter, Vogel. I think he can provide plenty of hang time for our coverage units, AND reverse field position when necessary with is strong leg. It's been a LONG time since we ad a punter like this.

But I do agree with Nick Perry. We need OLB's! And OL depth!

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:56 pm

Cobb will make plenty of plays, but these are throws that could just as easily go to someone else
.

Cap is King. We have angered the King. Now we are suffering for it.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 03:09 pm

Too late to cut Matthews, after we ignored the position this past offseason.

He's gone for sure next year, barring a big paycut.

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rodgersrules's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:26 am

Just a reminder, there isnt a team in the league that isn't dangerously thin in at least a couple areas. Thats what the cap does. Yes, I'd love to see us sign Brooks, OLB depth is not good. I haven't given up on Fackrell yet. He's just one of those guys who was so dominant at a smaller school that he didnt have to adapt his game. Extremely athletic for his size. But, simply not strong enough. We'll see. My major depth concern, by far, is O line. Second string at every position has been atrocious. Go back and watch the second half of these preseason games and watch the line. Man, its bad. Packers need to pick up, hopefully, two guys after cut down day. Or, pray for no significant injuries to the starters. Not unheard of for a line to play the whole year intact.

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Bure9620's picture

August 29, 2017 at 10:03 am

Agreed, the o-line depth is suspect, but how many teams can actually say they are "Deep" at tackle? Or on the o-line? Minnesota and Seattle can't even field a starting o-line. don't even think The Cowboys can say that and they seem to have the best line in the league.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 09:47 am

One problem with picking up players after cutdown is that other teams can do the same.

As a team overloaded at WR, I wish we could pull a trade this week to a team needing a wideout but deep at Tackle or OLB--they'd rather not compete for released players either.

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PatrickGB's picture

August 29, 2017 at 10:42 am

Ok, "Sexual Battery"? Why are we even considering him? He is Not Packer People.

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Andrew Lloyd Peth's picture

August 29, 2017 at 01:58 pm

Hard to know anything before the trial. I assume any contract would have contingencies related to all that.

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Tundraboy's picture

August 29, 2017 at 04:02 pm

Brooks has posted between 6 and 8.5 sacks in each of the last six seasons and has played in all but five games dating to the start of the 2011 season...

Can not say that about anyone on our roster, can we now?

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Finwiz's picture

August 29, 2017 at 04:08 pm

He's a bad apple, as others have alluded to. He has a pending charge for a sexual assault, and another assault on a teammate with a beer bottle. This guy is bad news. Who needs that type of player, particularly with the threat of season suspension hanging over his head?

I'm surprised they're even bringing him in for look-see. I think it tells you something about their desperation, and unfortunately the health of, and confidence in, their two starting edge rushers

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Sheila Allen's picture

August 29, 2017 at 07:59 pm

Watching the replay of the GBvsDEN game, and the defense - ugh. Nice interception, but that's about the only bright spot so far. Someone mentioned in a previous comment about time running out with Aaron Rodgers - he's at his best right now but there HAS to be a decent defense also. I'd hate for his best play to be squandered.

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Bure9620's picture

August 30, 2017 at 05:38 am

Don't agree, watch Daniels and Clark, they gave the interior of Denver's o line all sorts of problems, did anyone notice how Denver started running only offf tackle and stretch plays by the second quarter?

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marpag1's picture

August 29, 2017 at 10:55 pm

"Ricky Jean-Francois turns 31 this season and cannot be expected to log significant snaps."

Last year, RJF played more snaps than any Packer defensive lineman except Daniels. RJF's 537 snaps were 33 snaps more than Guion and 121 more than Kenny Clark.

If RJF "cannot be expected to log significant snaps" then why the hell did they sign him??

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Finwiz's picture

August 30, 2017 at 08:33 am

I like what I see of RJF so far, although he didn't look particularly motivated against Denver. I think he was coasting a bit, knowing he's made the team. I expect he will play significant snaps, particularly with the inevitable injuries that are sure to occur. He'll play as many snaps as Guion did last year, although the wild card with that will be the progression of Clark. If Clark really comes on, and no injuries, RJF may not see as many snaps. And who knows how healthy Lowry really is, but either way, they need the depth and he provides it. You'll be seeing plenty of RJF.

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PackfanNY's picture

August 30, 2017 at 01:46 pm

ESPN is reporting Ahmad Brooks to the Pack. Said it should be done by the end of the day. I like this signing since it gives us veteran depth. I also think he has something left in the tank. Good job here by TT.

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