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Has Capers Been Holding Back?

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Has Capers Been Holding Back?

Now I know this is way out there in Jim Marrs-land, but after I got done re-watching the Rams game last night, I couldn't help thinking that the blitz packages the Packers have run so far this season look awfully obvious and uncreative, especially the last two weeks. Yes, we saw one overload yesterday, which the Rams went away from for a big play. But other than three or four plays against the Bears, the Packers have been anything but the creative, attacking blitz team when it comes to third and long that Packer fans thought they would be seeing this year.

Now, of course, Capers has been quoted as saying that the Packers won't be a big pressure team just for the sake of it and that they will rarely, if ever, be bringing more than six guys, if that. His whole pitch has been that the design is meant to give the quarterback hesitation about where the blitz is coming from, rather than overwhelming the QB with numbers.

In Week One I would say we saw some of that, but the past two weeks, even when the opposition has been put into third and long, the pressure has barely been disguised, with LBs marching right up to the line of scrimmage and declaring their intentions well before the ball is snapped.

Again, this is Grassy Knoll territory here, but what if Capers and McCarthy have left things plain and vanilla on 3rd downs the past two weeks so that they can save some of the 'good stuff' for the Monday night showdown with Brent?

Of course, bringing creative blitzes on third and long requires that you put the opposition in, you know, third and long. And the Packers' run defense was anything but a brick wall yesterday, though I thought it was a bit of an improvement over what we saw against the Bengals. Yes, Jackson ran for over a hundred yards, but he never busted off that killer, back-breaking run that the good backs always seem to have against the Packers.

All that said, I realize this is a long, long, long shot. But I just get the feeling we'll be seeing quite a bit more from the pressure packages next Monday night than we've seen over the course of the first three weeks.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (23) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

PackersRS's picture

Okay, first of all, Capers didn't need to bring the blitz. This defense is a turnover machine blitzing or not blitzing.
And second, I really hope you're right. Maybe Capers is holding back. Don't think the same about MM. BUT we did saw that sweet Wr reverse, and we haven't made a lot of "gimmick" plays. But then again, MM has never called a lot of screens and such...
And about pressure, Favre is a sitting duck. He has been harrassed almost as much as Rodgers with that Line. I admit, they're much better at run blocking than they are at pass blocking, but they're nowhere near a bad OL. But he has very good recognition skills. So we can't just blitz against them. It's gotta be a nice mix, we gotta confuse him more than try to take him down.
I don't think we're build to sack, instead I think we're build to hurry the pass, so our playmakers can change the game for us; Our bltizes aren't designed to bring a rusher from a blind spot. We want to appear in the face of the qb, so he hurries his throw...

Ruppert's picture

I didn't go to the lengths you did to analyze this subject, but I did think that the pressures were very vanilla yesterday as I watched.
I am very interested to see what the defense does Monday night. We need to contain Peterson (duh), and Favre is nowhere near the threat to make longer throws any more. I would think we HAVE to keep 8 or 9 guys close to the line of scrimmage. We have to pressure Favre, particularly up the middle, and get him on the move. Favre's legs are his biggest liability right now.
And we need to win the special teams game. Aside from a blown extra point, I was very happy with many aspects of special teams yesterday. I liked our kick and punt coverage (we had a 44 yard NET punting ave!!!). Returns were okay. Minnesota is vulnerable on special teams, and we totally need to take advantage.

Holly's picture

Ruppert, MN is vulnerable on special teams? Did you see Harvin's 101 yd TD return yesterday?
Aaron, it's like you're reading my mind. I am really hoping to see more confusion next week from our D - Kyle Boller-esque QBs shouldn't be given that much time and room to work. If we can get pressure against MN, and pick off plays where the opportunity strikes, then MN will be forced to beat us on the ground. I agree that stopping their run game is a very tall order, but getting them one-dimensional has to count for something.

packeraaron's picture

Holly - I think Ruppert was speaking of their coverage units, not their return units. And I agree with both of you, they are both vulnerable in coverage and dangerous on return.
I have to disagree with your second point though Holly. 'Forcing' them to go to AP is a recipe for disaster. You want the ball in Favre's hands. You want to force him off the spot and to make throws on the move and down the field. That comes down to putting the Vikings in obvious passing situations. That's going to be a tall order if things don't change on 1st and 2nd down for the Packers defense.

Holly's picture

I agree that's what we want, Aaron...I just think that, of the two avenues to one-dimensionality, stopping the pass will be easier to actually accomplish. I look forward to be proven wrong and will toast to our run defense, once it shows up.

NickGBP's picture

Capers also brought more than 6 on the Woodson INT. I think you're just not paying attention.

RockinRodgers's picture

All we have to do is stop AP and Brent. No problemo.

I think Raji has a break out game. 1 sack and 8 tackles.

nerdmann's picture

I think the Packers have been looking past their first three opponents. Compare how they played in the preseason to how they've played since. Look at the number of dropped passes, for one thing.
And I think Capers will have something special for Brent.
This is personal. It ain't business.

FITZCORE1252's picture

Yeah, I've been a bit disappointed in the D's level of aggressiveness. I sure hope that you're on to something Aaron, it would be really cool to see them come out Monday night and just get after Brent. If we get burned, we get burned. But make him scrape himself off the turf EVERYTIME he drops back, the guy has been getting rocked repeatedly from what I've seen of the queens games.


FITZCORE1252's picture

Anybody catch the Woodson locker room interview? He sure changed his tune pretty quick, DAMN!


brewers_rule's picture

If he is holding back which I'm not sure I buy, has the thought crossed anyone's minds it could also be because the players are still getting comfortable w/the system? This is a complex system that takes the right personnel to execute properly which most ppl said Green Bay still doesn't have. He's not going to be aggressive until the guys know it AND can execute it front to back. I think you'll see it open up more as the season goes and both he and the players get comfortable knowing who can do what and when it's needed.

Dave's picture

I noticed the same thing too. I was thinking maybe it had something to do with out injury situation at the safety position. Perhaps Capers isn't as confident that he can cover for whomever is blitzing.

MC Iced Borscht's picture

Kudos on the Jim Marrs reference. More of this is needed.

AndrewInAtlanta's picture

Now that's wild. I decided to log on and pose this very question in a previous post and you made it the topic of this post. Too creepy dude.

I was just sitting here thinking there HAS to be one or two things Capers is saving. It's human nature considering ESPN thinks this is the game of the century and all. Again, too creepy Aaron

packeraaron's picture

brewers - don't be comin' in here wit yo logic and shit. ;)

packeraaron's picture

NickGBP - I know, I know. I was just quoting what the man said:
"You aren't going to get a lot of six out of us," said Capers. "We aren't a big six-man pressure team."

Keith's picture

I, for one, hope Childress is our best defense for AP. The fact that he only got 18 carries is ridiculous. Here's hoping Favre calls his number again this week to "stick it" to his former team.

Pete's picture

I agree with brewers_rule that it if he is holding back, it's because the players aren't 100% comfortable in the system yet. I don't think you leave stuff out of your game plan just because you are playing the Vikings two weeks down the line. If so, it can cost you the first game, and there are no guarantees that you win the Vikings game anyways. You treat each game on it's own. Win and move on to the next one. This is personal to a lot of us, but not to Capers. He could give a s*%! about Brent.

Ruppert's picture

Yes, I saw Harvin's return. I also saw them get a FG blocked. And they've already given up a punt return TD this year, in addition to several last year. I was speaking more to the possibility that we can take advantage of some of these shortfalls. Harvin is an excellent kick returner, but I still feel Minnesota has some things we can exploit in special teams. Perhaps you can say the same thing about the Pack, but like I said...we need to win the specials teams battle this week. And I think we can. If nothing else, we cannot be on the short end of the field position "stick" in a loud, hostile stadium. It's be a nice week for the punter to keep kicking well.

Ruppert's picture

By the way, nice to see Holly and gettin' some love from Seifert in the espn blog!

AndrewInAtlanta's picture

Have I mentioned we love Holly?

Chicago Hooligan's picture

I have no idea what Capers is brewing, but I'm excited to see the result. LeRoy Butler claims that a disguised Cover 2 is "the one coverage Favre doesn't like" while offering zealously contradictory wisdom about how "being aggressive will get you interceptions" but oh yeah "Stay where you're supposed to be and don't take any chances"... haha.

Bomdad's picture

Sign some guy named Giordano
I'm thinking there is something unexpected coming
AP and Brent with broken kneecaps

did I just wish injury? Yes

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