Hello Wisconsin: “Super Bowl or Bust” Has Never Been More Accurate

This time, it really could be "bust" if the Packers fail to win a title.

Training camp has arrived, and with it is the return of my weekly column Hello Wisconsin, in which I spew forth all of my Packers- and Wisconsin-related thoughts. The CHTV publication schedule shifts to our in-season schedule in a couple weeks, but temporarily at least, you can expect this column to hit the ‘net on Monday afternoons.

If my annual poll of Packers fan expectations proved anything, it’s that the fanbase believes this is a “Super Bowl or Bust” season for Green Bay.

Certainly the Packers are operating under that philosophy this year. In restructuring Aaron Rodgers’ contract, the Packers have essentially made it clear that this is the living legend’s last season in green and gold. 

I won’t go through all the numbers and complications of the NFL salary cap here (follow Ken Ingalls on Twitter if you like that sort of thing), but safe to say there are two possibilities after this season: either Rodgers signs an extension or he’s traded. There’s no way Rodgers plays next season with a cap number of more than $40 million.

The Packers have taken other steps over the course of the offseason that indicate they’re preparing for one final championship push with Rodgers under center before moving on to the Jordan Love era in 2022.

They brought back slot receiver Randall Cobb, under instruction from Rodgers to do so.

To the surprise of many fans, they re-signed Aaron Jones and did not cut Preston Smith.

They have not yet signed Davante Adams to what is expected to be a landmark deal for wide receivers.

Most telling of all, they never wanted to get rid of the out they had in Rodgers’ contract after the 2021 season.

There have been other years in the last couple decades where the sense of urgency to win a title has been high. 

In 1997, the Packers were defending champions and were widely expected to win a second title. With a veteran core on the defense and an opportunity to potentially establish a dynasty, the sense of urgency was high. 

But when the Packers inevitably lost in a classic upset to the Denver Broncos, one that was certainly crushing to Packer fans, there was still the sense that the team would be back with Favre, who was still just 28 and in the midst of an unprecedented MVP run. 

In 2011, the Packers were also defending champions, and only expected to continue to get better. And get better they did, going on a 15-1 tear with one of the greatest passing offenses in league history. But when they got bounced by the Giants in the divisional round, there was still a sense that this team had plenty of opportunities ahead to make title runs.

More than any other year of my lifetime, this really is Super Bowl or Bust for the Green Bay Packers.

Realistically, this is it for the Rodgers-led Packers. This season marks the end of an era with an uncertain future. 

Sure, there’s a possibility Jordan Love develops into a great player, or at least a sufficient starter. But for the first time in a long time, the Packers enter a year with Super Bowl aspirations… and no real expectations for beyond.

There’s a lot at stake this season. At this point, the only thing that can add to Rodgers’ legacy is additional hardware. Meanwhile, it would justify a lot of the moves made by general manager Brian Gutekunst, and firmly establish Matt LaFleur as one of the finest coaches in the game today and a man who helped to re-energize Rodgers’ career in its latter years.

This is as all-in as the Packers have ever been. With Rodgers’ tenure with the team almost certainly ending after this season and all of the salary cap turmoil that awaits the team in the offseason, anything other than a championship this season is a letdown.

And that’s coming from me, a guy who’s typically all about enjoying the journey more than the destination when it comes to my football watching experience.

No doubt about it--this team is stacked on both offense and defense. There’s unfinished business from 2020. 

It’s a Super Bowl championship, or the team is going to be blowing it all up next year without ever having met its full potential. 

Enjoy the (last) ride.

Wisconsin Beer of the Week

I’ve missed sharing beer recommendations with you all! With the return of Hello Wisconsin comes the return of my choice for Wisconsin Beer of the Week.

If you follow me on twitter (@timbackes) you’ll regularly see photos of my beer fridge or of my beverage choices for the evening. If you’re into craft brews, feel free to look me up on Untappd as well and catch my ratings and recommendations.

This being a Wisconsin-themed column, I like to stick to Wisconsin craft beers. 

Summertime is a time of fruited sours, refreshing IPAs, smooth saisons and crisp pilsners. While I love a big-bodied stout with some barrel-aged boozy flavor to it, I tend to stick to the lighter things during the warm months.

Humble Forager in Waunakee is doing some amazing work when it comes to fruited sours (and pretty much everything else). I picked up the latest edition (version 14) of its Coastal Sunshine fruited sour, a gorgeous, thick, orange-yellow beverage packed with Thai mangosteen, Georgia peaches and California strawberries. 

The fruit flavor is potent, and this beer drinks like a smoothie. Great to have with breakfast, or while sitting outside on a gorgeous summer day. 

A lot of more traditional beer drinkers or those who have not yet exposed themselves to the modern craft brewing scene tend to avoid fruited beers, due to old-fashioned “don’t fruit the beer” rules. But let me tell you, we are living in the era of the fruited sour. Any experience you had with fruited beers 20, 10 or even five years ago can go completely out the window. The world of fruited beers has completely changed over the last several years, and brewers have developed outstanding expertise in using fruit in a wide variety of manners.

This is a great option if you can find it at your local liquor store, as is anything else from Humble Forager. For other fruited beers, I strongly recommend the work of Untitled Art (also out of Waunakee), Eagle Park (based in Milwaukee with a satellite location in Muskego) or several of the New Glarus thumbprint beers, such as Raspberry Tart, Wisconsin Belgian Red or Serendipity.

Enjoy!

Who’s this year’s training camp hero?

Every year there’s a dude that gets a huge amount of hype in training camp that ends up being on the roster bubble during final cuts. Often he starts as a longshot, then outplays others thought initially to be more talented. Over time he becomes something of a training camp hero, and manages to get a big portion of the fanbase behind him.

We’ve seen it with plenty of guys in the past, from Jake Kumerow to Herbert “Whisper” Goodman. 

The early contender seems to be wide receiver Juwann Winfree. By all accounts, Winfree seems to be off to a strong start at camp. But he’s in a crowded wide receiver position that just got even more crowded with the acquisition of Randall Cobb.

You figure the locks at the position are Davante Adams, Cobb, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Amari Rodgers and Allen Lazard. After that, there’s one, maybe two more roster spots available for Devin Funchess, Equanimeous St. Brown, Malik Taylor and Winfree, among others.

It could come down to who’s able to play special teams.

But there have certainly been other wide receivers in recent years who forced the Packers to keep more than they were expecting at the position. With a strong preseason, maybe Winfree can do the same.

It’s a long shot, but it’s a shot.

Not worried about the money

It feels like there is a not-insignificant portion of the Packer fanbase that is already stressing out about the Packers’ financial situation in 2022, when we haven’t even begun the 2021 season yet.

I guess I just don’t understand the need to look ahead. Ya’ll have the legit last shot with an MVP/HOF quarterback in front of you this season, and you’re worried about who the Packers are going to re-sign in the offseason?

These are the good problems to have. The fact that the Packers have so many talented players to pay means the team has done an excellent job at scouting and acquiring talent. At some point you’ve gotta pay your guys, and you can’t keep everyone. It’s how it works.

My recommendation is to just enjoy this season for what it is: the end of an era.

But if you need some consolation, remember:

An Aaron Rodgers trade gives the Packers a massive amount of money.

A Za’Darius Smith contract extension frees up space and secures a key part of the team.

The salary cap will likely rise significantly for next year and the year after after two down years due to COVID losses.

Russ Ball is a genius and the Packers have never had massive cap issues during his tenure.

Everything’s gonna be okay. Watch football, have fun and let the suits worry about the dollar signs. 

It’s so good to see fans

Last season was a lot of fun for a lot of reasons, but it was so weird to see empty stadiums all over the league. Nobody at training camp, nobody at Lambeau… just felt weird.

This summer has been so refreshing. The Deer District packed with screaming Bucks fans en route to a title. The amphitheater at Summerfest packed with people for the Foo Fighters on Friday night when I went downtown for the concert. 

But it’s been especially heartwarming seeing fans back at training camp in the stands, cheering the players on in the late July heat. 

This fall, the Packers will take the field to 80,000 fans, and I don’t think I’ll be able to take that for granted again.

The pandemic surely isn’t over (please, for the love of god, get vaccinated already), but we’ve come so far since a year ago and it’s hard not to be giddy about it.

Speaking of the Bucks

I’d be remiss if I didn’t spare a few words for the Milwaukee Bucks, as we’re still just a couple weeks removed from their title-clinching game here in Milwaukee.

Most of you saw the series, so I won’t waste much time talking about the incredible display of talent by Giannis Antetekounmpo and a team that displayed a tremendous amount of synergy and unity.

What I really can’t stop gushing about, beyond the team, is how much this means for Milwaukee.

I’ve lived in Milwaukee or the MIlwaukee area for nearly my entire life, except for a four-year detour for college in Madison. The city in 2021 is vibrant and exciting, a city on the rise. One very different from the city it was in my youth. 

There is a lot of energy here in town right now from citizens, business owners and activists who see the potential this city has, and are also honest about its flaws and are striving to do something about them. 

The Bucks managed to bring this city together in a way that was really incredible. It was such a tremendous win for Milwaukee. This city is constantly overlooked and disrespected nationally, as we saw on ESPN (“terrible city,” anyone?). 

But it’s also constantly disrespected and besmirched by its own state, to which it gives so much financial support. You get out into rural areas, and people across Wisconsin despise Milwaukee for its big-city politics and urban culture, with plenty of not-so-thinly veiled racism to go along with it. State legislators frequently use Milwaukee as a boogeyman, trashing its school district, crime and economic hardships rather than trying to take any steps to resolve them. 

It’s immensely frustrating as a resident and as someone who loves this city dearly.

Milwaukee missed out on a big opportunity to be featured on a national stage after plans for the Democratic National Convention in 2020 had to be significantly altered due to the pandemic. The NBA finals showcased the best aspects of a city on the rise. 

Milwaukee desperately needed this moment. It’s the biggest thing to happen to the city in my lifetime. I honestly never thought we would see a championship parade.

Josh Myers already drawing praise

In the early days of training camp, the standout rookie has to be center Josh Myers out of Ohio State, the de facto replacement for the recently departed all pro Corey Linsley.

Myers had been getting plenty of praise from folks at camp reporting on Twitter. That praise was then echoed on Sunday by Rodgers himself.

When James Jones (in his NFL Network capacity) asked Rodgers who has stood out in camp, he responded thusly.

“I gotta say Josh Myers, the center. For a guy to come in, as a draft pick,a s a rookie, and be that comfortable, it’s pretty impressive. He’s very comfortable with the system, comfortable in his own skin. And he’s a big fella. He’s probably the biggest center I’ve had in front of me.”

Hearing such praise from someone like Rodgers has to do a lot for the confidence of Myers.

If Myers is able to carry this performance over into actual game action, he could end up being another home run pick for Brian Gutekunst. Linsley was always an extremely underrated player for the Packers. If the team is able to replace him with another solid center (out of the same university, no less) it will be a big deal, especially given the depth needs this offensive line had coming into the season.

It’s Rashan Gary season

Rashan Gary was arguably the top-performing Packer in the postseason, and throughout the 2021 season continued to get more opportunities to showcase his skills.

Gary finished the year with an outstanding pressure rate (one of the best in the league) and a whole lot of doubters who were suddenly silenced.

Entering 2021, Gary is poised to get even more playing time. We could be looking at a true breakout season.

For a player whose drafting drew such criticism, it’s not a stretch to say Gary could become the Packers’ best all-around edge defender as soon as this year, and that’s on a team that includes Za’Darius Smith. Gary is relentless both against the pass and the run, and the more he gets on the field, the more he’ll be able to showcase his skills.

Get ready for Jordan Love game action

Whether you’re a snarling hater, a hopeless optimist or simply a curious fan, you probably are looking forward to seeing Jordan Love in some actual game action for the first time as a Packer this month.

At this point, there’s not a single person outside of 1265 Lombardi that has any real idea what this man is capable of in real game action. Love will have extensive time during the team’s three preseason games to show how much he’s developed in the NFL so far.

Love still has another year’s worth of development ahead of him before he has to worry about being an NFL starter. 

This progress report should be revealing. But, keep in mind, Aaron Rodgers himself looked like pure garbage in his first two preseasons. Should love look less than inspiring, it certainly cannot be looked at as an indictment of the decision to draft him as the heir apparent.

 

Happy Monday to all!

 

__________________________

Tim Backes is a lifelong Packer fan and a contributor to CheeseheadTV. Follow him on Twitter @timbackes for his Packer takes, random musings and Untappd beer check-ins.

5 points

Comments (61)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
Lphill's picture

August 02, 2021 at 01:01 pm

Except we don’t know about the defense or special teams the two units that have been denying the Packers .

3 points
7
4
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:43 pm

It ABSOLUTELY is "Super Bowl or Bust" for this team. And, in all likelihood, it will be be "bust." Teams that start the year with drama, don't usually win. Remember the "Dream Team" at the end of Reid's time in Philly? What about Brees' last year in NO? What about Marino's last years in MIA? Favre in 09 in Minny or 07 here? How about Kelly's last years in BUF? MIN in 99? CHI in 07? Tom's last year in NE or Peyton's in IND? What about Fouts in SD? Young in SF? That's just off the top of my head in about 2 mins of thinking. I could find more. Point being: Riding off into the Sunset as Elway did is exceedingly rare. And Denver got lucky as hell in 97 especially.

Plus, Aaron is a toxic A-Hole. He's old. He wants out. Davante wants a ridiculous contract and will age soon. Randall is old. Z wants a new contract and is currently hurt. P will probably get cut after this year. Turner will probably get cut as well. The only "older" vets left on the team after this season will probably be A Jones, Bakh and Amos. Then you throw in the fact that MVS and Lazard and Tonyan are on the last years of their deals and will be wanting paydays. And we are FIFTY MILLION over the 22 cap right now. And Joe Barry, the "new" DC, has been a punching bag in his only two DC jobs and is instilling a new system.

Do you think that drama isn't percolating juuuust below the surface all the time? Or, in Rodgers case, on the surface. This team is a proximity mine just waiting to go off. A couple losses that shouldn't happen is all it will take, and it will ALLLLL blow up. Face it, we are all so starved for a title because of the bad luck and ridiculous amount of playoff choking we have been subjected to since 1992. The Favre-Rodgers/Wolf-Sherman-TT-Gute Packers are, indeed, the longest NFL Dynasty that wasn't.

Now, that said, the team is also undeniably talented. Could they go 14-3 or so and be utterly dominant en route to glory before Gute (rightly) blows this ship up? Sure. They absolutely are ALL IN. But history says actions like this are just not likely to work. We wanted more movement just like "The Broncos in 15 and the Bucs in 20." Well, the GM FINALLY gave it to us. And we're going to find out that playing the long game is a far better bet almost all the time. And, frankly, right now, Aaron Charles Rodgers is damn hard to root for. Even for this dude who bleeds green and gold. Will I cheer for the Packers to win? Yes. Damn betcha. Will I be conflicted about it because I hate our QB and want him to be shipped to Siberia ASAP? Also, yes.

As an aside: lest you think that this is a recent "hate," I wanted to trade him for 5 first-round picks by midseason 2016.(Right before "run the table") Yes, he was MVP GOAT-like in late 16 and throughout 20. But other than that? NOPE. His ego has been writing checks his body can't cash since mid-15. Yes. I think we'd have been better off to trade him for 5 first-round picks as soon as we got rid of MM, and maybe sooner. But that's water under the bridge now. He was undeniably great in 20 and looks good so far in 21. One more go-around. I expect to be let down. Again.

I can't wait for March 22. Let the Love era begin. Even if we have to start over.

-7 points
8
15
cuervo's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:04 pm

"Will I be conflicted about it because I hate our QB and want him to be shipped to Siberia ASAP? Also, yes.

I can't wait for March 22. Let the Love era begin. Even if we have to start over."

Nicely worded! I'm just glad that there's at least a few people that don't accept being treated like utter fools. How anyone can root for an ass like AR after he's disrespected the town, State and Team you supposedly hold dear is beyond me, but the same thing happened back in the Farve days.
The amazing thing to me isn't that the Packers haven't won more superbowls with two talented QB's, but how on earth those same QB's turned out to be the largest Diva A-holes in the last 25 years of the NFL. ...must be the water in GB?

-1 points
6
7
greengold's picture

August 02, 2021 at 03:48 pm

It's not about accepting how he treated the fans. It's more about realizing there is nothing any of us can do, regardless that we know a bit more now about what occurred. It's done. What are your options?

The Packers front office clearly are all in on this 2021 season, and I'm here for it. I support this Packers team no matter what. Always have, always will. Doesn't mean I don't disagree with some things, but I'm just a fan.

It's a long season. We have a better backup QB situation with Jordan Love getting a lot of 1 reps through TC and preseason. The plan for Love's development we all wanted and felt was best remains in place. If Rodgers gets dinged, Love should be more ready to step in and keep things on track. Rodgers knows there is heightened urgency to lead this offense to winning the Super Bowl. We'll see what happens, but I support the Green Bay Packers in this 100%.

The other garbage can take a back burner. A lot of ballgame left to play out.

2 points
4
2
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:08 pm

This is all very true. And why I will be cheering for my team like mad all year.

1 points
3
2
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:12 pm

Bearmeat - if you recall we had a bit of drama prior to the 1996 Super bowl season. Specifically, Favre spent part of that off season in a rehab facility.

Rodger is being treated like a criminal because he has an ongoing dispute with management which if not for a hearsay report from Schefter we may have never even heard about. Imagine what kind of drama we would have on the blog if Rodgers had gone into rehab for substance abuse.

Holmgren handled Favre, I'm confident that MLF will handle this non-event with Rodgers. If not he's the wrong HC for this era of the NFL when real crimes like domestic violence, child beating, substance abuse and DUIs are common place around the league.

As for the salary cap situation, the FO put the team into it's current crisis they will get out of it after the season.

For me, I'll worry about 2022 when it gets here. For now it's SB or bust and Go Pack Go! Thanks, Since '61

2 points
3
1
wildbill's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:41 pm

Hey, I’m old and retired. I’m more worried about me making it to next year! The Packers are just great entertainment and nothing more. Just one piece of my life and I’ll root and watch but not going to lose any sleep over any player staying or leaving

1 points
1
0
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:13 pm

Wildbill - I’m with you. I’m also old and retired. Although I don’t feel old. Like you, I say let’s get through the season first and worry about 2022 when it gets here.

No worries wildbill, we’ll both be around for quite a while after Rodgers is gone and we’ll still be Packer fans.
Stay well. Thanks, Since ‘61

1 points
1
0
Bearmeat's picture

August 03, 2021 at 09:10 am

61 -

Again, we completely disagree. From ARod's mouth himself. Players cannot be a GM. Tom Siverstein just owned Rodgers own complaints yesterday. The relationship with the FO is broken. Murphy isn't going anywhere until 24 and Gute for longer than that I'd guess.

Rodgers has to go after this year. Must.

0 points
1
1
Leatherhead's picture

August 02, 2021 at 06:23 pm

I’ll enjoy the ride and hope for the best. Next season is next season.

The Packers are all in, as they should be, and are right where they had always planned to be….a very good team that should win their division and advance. The 2021 offense should be as good as last year’s and the defense should be a little better, and it’s the strongest overall Packer team that I’ve ever seen to start the year.

1 points
1
0
jannes bjornson's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:35 pm

Prepare to eat a massive tonnage of spoiled Silage. Murphy will be gone in '22, not Rodgers especially if he moves the boys club into a SB contest. He may bail by 2023 but that will not be on him. The same thing happening in the "Favre years would be the FO failing to get the supporting cast and all on the same page to Win the Big Game. End of nursery rhyme. Rodgers is the best chance to get the Lombardi--let it sink in.

-1 points
2
3
greengold's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:07 pm

Completely understand where you are coming from with this, Bearmeat. This is clearly one of those unexpected series of events for the team where we saw mistakes made by both sides. I'm just taking the tact of sitting back and seeing what happens, while supporting this team as best I can.

Rodgers heaped a lot of pressure on himself to finish the job. Gutekunst has the team about as loaded with talent as ever in his tenure. Go for it!

1 points
4
3
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:45 pm

They're all in. I'm hoping that we roll Yahtzee. A straight won't do it.

-2 points
1
3
CoachDino's picture

August 02, 2021 at 06:10 pm

I'm a Packer fan so I'm glad he's back as it gives the team the best chance to win in 2021. That said I'm not an AR fan and agree with much of what has been said about his character. But I've never seen athletes as role models but just Professionals on the team on root for. The best case scenario is when the players are great and you appreciate the guys character on the team.

I'll tale talent over character, to a point, for the Pro team I'm a fan of.

Thing is I'm embarrassed to say there will be part of me that won't be upset if AR flops. Kinda like the women's soccer team, I am rooting for Americans but don't mind seeing athletes who are privileged enough to play for the US team and represent us but put their own personal beliefs ahead of the country and people they have chosen to play for flop.

-4 points
2
6
jannes bjornson's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:43 pm

He's not a red hat if that's what you intended to say. Maybe he should flash his dick across the social media universe, throw some deer guts in a team mates locker, or scam the State of Mississippi on some phony PR presentation he never made for a 1M performance fee. What scales do you balance in your morality play?

2 points
2
0
CoachDino's picture

August 02, 2021 at 11:50 pm

Wow, that response showed us something. Not sure what Red Hat means (Catholic, Republican?). Plus are you referencing Brett Favre?

If so, did you assume that I saw him as a role model? Why jump to that conclusion? Why is it important to even contrast the two of them in this conversation?
Favre was IMO much more morally corrupt than AR from the information available. Heck, just his drinking, when he shouldn't be, escapades throughout the Milwaukee Bar and Restaurant scene embarrassing to himself and the team not to mention the people involved..

IMO Brett is more the bumbling star athlete that got away with everything and didn't need to grow up until Deanna seemed to lay down the hammer. Then his on again off again retirement fiasco was pathetic when viewed in it's entirety. I lost all respect for him, but who cares what I think, it doesn't matter to anyone most certainly him or AR for that matter. It's just my view posted on a board for just that Opinions, ideas, discussion etc.....Its open to comment but isn't meant to be a final judgement. AR is very calculated and his moves are done with full knowledge of the impact, to a point. He's not nearly as smart as he thinks he is. He's proven that.

Both in the end, when they didn't need to, put themselves above others which is fine but in a way that lacked class and character. Methods counts, I'm not a the ends justifies the means guy.
AR games with 3 years left on his contract, trying to talk about people and come off as something other than what this was for, himself. It didn't and won't help anyone else. If that was truly his issue then retire in protest of it. But like so many these days they use broad issues projecting a cause for others in a way that will only in the end benefit themselves. Its called narcissism. What did he change? just his contract for his own personal benefit.

4 points
4
0
McFly's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:19 pm

"Can't wait for March 22"..... Wishing to miss a full season of Packers football does not equate to bleeding green and gold. Are you the biggest fraud of a Packers' fan ever? Yes. Damn betcha.

3 points
6
3
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:42 pm

lol. OK. You go ahead and fan the way you want. I'll do the same. And let's leave the labels at the door? Mkay?

Hey Dobber: Is this guy another addition to the "never read/Fredo treatment" list? I'm thinking yeah...

-4 points
1
5
dobber's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:31 pm

You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? Well, I'm the only one here, who the f#@k else would you be talkin' to?

Sorry...crossing up movie references, but this one fits...

2 points
2
0
Bearmeat's picture

August 03, 2021 at 03:00 pm

Let's leave the name calling at the door, hmmm? I mean, it makes me laugh that you have to result to stuff like that. It undermines your point overall.

Also, you've now "Fredo'd" yourself. Congratulations! It's an exclusive club of Bearmeat's fly over commenters. :)

1 points
1
0
McFly's picture

August 04, 2021 at 11:30 am

I (and 99% of Packers' fans) can't wait for the season to start.... you can't wait for it to be over. I think that is all that needs to be said about your "fandom"

0 points
1
1
Lphill's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:32 pm

Seems you bought the Florio hype.

-1 points
0
1
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:24 pm

nah. I just don't trust the QB as far as I can throw him.

0 points
1
1
greengold's picture

August 02, 2021 at 01:45 pm

Great piece, Tim, and I agree with you on all of it. This is definitely a Super Bowl or Bust season , but, as Mercedes Lewis said today, "We're going to be tough to reckon with. We've got a team full of dudes."

This 2021 season looks promising in so many ways.

That WR battle is going to be something. A lot of talent there. Myers could prove to be a draft steal on the level of Elgton Jenkins, getting him at #62. Solidifying that C position is essential. As for Gary, I can't wait to see his further development.

The Bucks Championship was something I had been hoping for nearly a lifetime. The wait since the 1971 Championship was far too long. I'm so glad they came through, and it really brought this city together. I see it all over. This was HUGE!

Jordan Love is the future at QB. Should be fun to see what he can do in his first action this preseason.

1 points
8
7
Archie's picture

August 02, 2021 at 01:29 pm

Cheers to an extremely well-writtened article and clear-eyed analysis.!

6 points
9
3
fastmoving's picture

August 02, 2021 at 01:39 pm

Tim, the part about the city of Milwaukee was the best part in a pretty well written article. You just found the right words. Thank you.....

8 points
11
3
Turophile's picture

August 02, 2021 at 01:49 pm

For a very long time, the Packers were designed as an 'every year' team, never built to be all-in on one or two years at the expense of the future......................until this year.

It is new territory for the Pack, because the nasty cap situation that couldn't really be accounted for, has hit them badly since they have many top level players. I'm pretty sure they will suffer a dip, but after so long as a major playoff candidate, there could be trouble ahead - I just hope it doesn't last more than a year or two.

As for the WR position, I'm going with them only keeping 5 WR this year (Adams, Cobb, Rodgers, Lazard, MVS). Any 6th WR would need to play plenty of ST, and the prime candidates for 6th WR, Funchess and ESB, don't really do ST play. Malik Taylor DOES do that (181 ST plays in 2020), making him a possible 6th WR, but he has to compete for a place on the final 53 with the TEs (who LaFleur loves). Also, we know LaFleur likes the run game and you must keep at least 3 RB (Jones, Dillon and Hill, imo) along with hybrid Hback/TE Deguara. Finally, there are many talented O linemen this year, so keeping an extra one is very possible.

That's why I think 5 WR is what happens this year, and I'll add that if the Packers see any chance of getting a pick or player for ESB or Funchess, they should take it.

As for Love, I'm just hoping the Beatles song is the right mantra ("All You Need Is Love"). Here is a bit of the lyrics.

Nothing you can say, but you can learn how to play the game
It's easy
All you need is Love
All you need is Love
All you need is Love, Love
Love is all you need.

3 points
5
2
Irish_Cheesehead's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:01 pm

I’d like to post my support for more articles about beer!

4 points
6
2
Coldworld's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:10 pm

I will drink to them instead.

0 points
1
1
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:58 pm

I agree. I love learning about new brews. One of my favorite articles on CHTV. Always look forward to them.

But I have to honest...the one mentioned in this article, not so much. A thick beer that drinks like a smoothie? I'll stick to my stouts and IPAs.

3 points
4
1
Matt Gonzales's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:41 pm

If you like both stouts and IPAs, and have a reason to go on a run for (or a friend that can bring you) beer from SC... Thomas Creek Brewing in Greenville makes an extreme IPA called Up the Creek. It is hoppy AS HELL and comes out nearly black, but it is also just north of 12% ABV and has a ton of residual sweetness to balance the IBUs because the grain bill is just so massive that you get left with unfermented grain that naturally backsweetens the whole thing.

For something closer to home, Fifth Ward in Oshkosh makes a blueberry IPA that is really enjoyable.

2 points
2
0
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:00 pm

I do love hoppy beer! Thanks for the heads up. I no longer live in WI...in the desert out in the southwest now. I doubt I'll find Up the Creek out here. But I'll ask around. Thanks again!

3 points
3
0
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:15 pm

13Times maybe they will ship you a case. Check it out.
Enjoy! Thanks, Since ‘61

2 points
2
0
Matt Gonzales's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:24 pm

This would be your best bet. When I went to Thompson Creek 8 years ago they were (I think) exclusively distributing via their taproom, growler refill shops, and kegs to bars in the area, but the last time my sister came up (who lives down in mountain country) she brought it in cans. I don't think they have retail distribution other than growler shop type places that will work with self-distribution.

Their stout is pretty damn good too.

Hell, as long as I'm recommending obscure beer, see if you can get your hands on 8 Bit Pale Ale. It was from Tallgrass Brewing in Manhattan KS (so it has a fun Packers adjacent connection going for it, which is nice) and I saw it at bars and very occasionally at Festival here, but Tallgrass went out of business and licensed their beers to Wichita Brewing. I'm guessing you would have better luck getting Fantasy Factory out by you, but you never know.

1 points
1
0
jurp's picture

August 03, 2021 at 07:49 am

I don't mind a beer brewed with fruit (I'm particularly partial to peach beer, for some reason), but a beer should look and taste like beer, not fruit juice.

OTOH, if a beer looking and tasting like orange juice means that you can drink it for breakfast...

1 points
2
1
Coldworld's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:19 pm

Russ Ball being a genius is a myth that keeps getting floated but never with any real justification. He’s competent, not innovative and a great pal of Murphy’s. That’s it.

Yes, we are all in, financially and emotionally. A lot hangs on Barry and health and, to a lesser extent, on Drayton. Now let’s watch this roster coalesce. Good to see Patrick Taylor back in training. I’m looking forward to seeing what he can do.

2 points
5
3
Bearmeat's picture

August 02, 2021 at 03:28 pm

Exactly CW. Murphy and Russ Ball can GTHO soon too. Murphy has made a ton of money for Green Bay and for the franchise. And for that, I'm thankful. But he absolutely is not a good CEO interpersonally. Russ Ball is worse, and frankly, he was a TERRIBLE pseudo-GM when TT got sick in 2015-2017 too.

2 points
5
3
Matt Gonzales's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:30 pm

Ball, this year, is looking more like a mad scientist than a wizard. If I didn't know any better I would think Murphy and Gute JUST heard of void years and decided to tack them onto every possible contract.

1 points
1
0
jannes bjornson's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:49 pm

Thank you. The guy should be pink slipped like 2017.

-2 points
0
2
stockholder's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:10 pm

Rodgers is my camp hero. He showed up. And in a honest Voice. Gave a great explanation of the drama. Until I see that DL show their NFL ability. I say this isn't the end of a era. But instead; "The Make a Buck Season". Because I smell the money. And it could just turn into a fire sale, if Rodgers breaks down. The Tar and feathers are Ready. No doubt about that. Making room= 7 WRS won't ruin a thing. Josh Meyers was considered a good center. If he can hold up and not get injured. Thats all anybody can ask, for now. Gary doesn't need to replace anyone. Were better with the rotation. And keeping players fresh. Don't make excuses for Love. If a Rookie/UFA makes the club. Nobody makes excuses for them. Your beer choices- Their amazing, but - Ask the players what they drink. Not how much.

2 points
8
6
fastmoving's picture

August 02, 2021 at 02:28 pm

Nobody will make excuses of LOVE. He is great and better as AR was at this point in his NFL life.
Milwaukee is on the right way all around, great example.....right way.

-5 points
3
8
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 03:03 pm

"He is great and better as AR was at this point in his NFL life."

Based on what exactly? He hasn't even thrown one pass against live NFL action yet.

10 points
10
0
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:24 pm

13Times, He hasn't even thrown one pass in a meaningless preseason game against scrubs. Let's see how that goes before we put him in the NFL HOF which some of the bloggers here did with Tolzien, Hundley and Kizer based on their preseasons alone. Those and a few others were all allegedly the third consecutive HOF QB for the Packers.

For me Love doesn't need to be as good as Rodgers, or Favre or Starr. I would be thrilled to pieces if he evolves into a QB as good as Lynn Dickey when Dickey played for the Packers in the late 70s and early 80s. With MLFs offense a QB at Dickey's level would be more than enough for our offense to score enough points to win.

Regardless of Love's development we still need better defense and STs.

My camp hero I'm rooting for is Stokes. Thanks, Since '61

4 points
4
0
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:46 pm

I agree. The odds on Love becoming our third consecutive HOF QB is beyond unrealistic.

I also agree that he doesn't need to be. Assuming he is the starter beginning in '22, and the fact he is on a rookie contract, AND Rodgers, and probably Adams, contracts are off the books, hopefully they can build a nice team around him.

I really like MLF as a coach. The fact they went 6-0 without Adams in the lineup showed me a lot. And, unlike most(?) on here, I think Gute is a really good GM. I'm actually looking forward to the next chapter of Packer football starting in 2022.

But, in the meantime, let's go out and bring that damn Lombardi home where it belongs!

6 points
6
0
jannes bjornson's picture

August 02, 2021 at 09:54 pm

Bloggers or boozers? Impaired vision or 20-10 clear eyes to the wild blue yonder. Some of these "fans" have to be masochists. Longing for the days of Dan Devine and the unholy trinity of the Silage Commune.

0 points
1
1
Stroh's picture

August 02, 2021 at 06:06 pm

Rodgers was anything but honest. He said he seriously considered retirement! That is absolute BS! If he retired he would be obligated to write a check to the Packers for 36M out of his personal account for unearned guaranteed money! There was absolutely no chance in hell he was going to retire and write that check.

Anyone with half a brain knew that was complete BS. His entire press conference was disingenuous at best and full of 1/2 truths!

1 points
4
3
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 06:40 pm

His salary this year wasn't guaranteed. His contract was front loaded and he had already received any/all guaranteed money.

I assume you mean he would have forfeited his salary this year if he retired.

2 points
2
0
Stroh's picture

August 02, 2021 at 10:07 pm

Your correct and if he didn't fulfill the remaining terms of the contract, by retiring he would have been required to repay the unfulfilled guaranteed money! Too the tune of 36M! He wouldn't have gotten paid the remaining yrs AND he would have been on the hook for 36M owed to the Packers!

Apparently you don't understand what a contract is!

-2 points
0
2
13TimeChamps's picture

August 02, 2021 at 10:16 pm

There wasn't any "unfulfilled guaranteed money". What part of that are you having a problem with?

So he would have had to repay the 36M from this year even though he hadn't been paid this year's salary yet?

But I'm the one who doesn't understand contracts? You're funny.

They still brew Stroh's? Who knew?

2 points
2
0
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:31 pm

Stroh is was widely written throughout the media, that if Rodgers retired or even held out, the Packers were not likely to try to recover the money that Rodgers would owe. It was considered that if Rodgers returned or was resigned the team would just give him the money back anyway.

As for the rest of his comments, they are what they are, time to focus on the season. Rodgers is back with the team and the Packers have picked up $10 million in cap space. That's a better outcome than if Rodgers did retire and the Packers did not receive any picks or players in return. Besides Rodgers did not commit a crime. This episode is basically a non-event. Moving on. Thanks, Since '61

2 points
2
0
Stroh's picture

August 02, 2021 at 10:10 pm

You seriously think they wouldn't have required him to pay back 36M? Your dreaming!

I visit nearly every Packers related site and there was never anything written about forgiving any of it. Sources don't include other commeners like yourself!

-3 points
0
3
Since'61's picture

August 03, 2021 at 08:44 am

WSJ, NYT, UPI, SI all had articles on it. I’m guessing you don’t follow those sources.
Doesn’t mean they’re correct. Just one of the many possible scenarios in what we now know was a non-event.
Thanks, Since ‘61

2 points
2
0
Dragon5's picture

August 02, 2021 at 03:37 pm

Funny no mention of the 'Crew's '21 success to date now that it has the pitching to carry the team. Bonafide choke artists as well, but ya never know as the Bucks recently showcased. For those wondering why Yelich continues to stumble...look no further than his GOAT sign in an OX year = enemy signs.

-3 points
1
4
jont's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:21 pm

The orange smoothie might be tasty but it is not beer.
Is nothing sacred in this country any more?

-1 points
2
3
Crankbait's picture

August 02, 2021 at 04:44 pm

If the front office exhibited this so-called "urgency".... far too many seasons ago.....we would've had a handful of more Super Bowl wins with Mr. Aaron Rodgers.

0 points
5
5
TimBackes's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:03 pm

Or the same number, but a lot fewer seasons of playoff appearances.

2 points
5
3
fordguy's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:34 pm

At the end of the day those playoff appearances are really something to be proud of. And you wonder why people say things about Milwaukee is because of dumbass statements like yours.

-6 points
1
7
TimBackes's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:35 pm

You appear to be upset.

6 points
6
0
Matt Gonzales's picture

August 02, 2021 at 08:20 pm

Good point. The Packers could have chosen to break the bank going in to one of the Rodgers injury years, necessitating a cut and gut after a pointless season. Which is why Green Bay takes care of the future - it's better to start every year with a better-than-not chance of getting invited to the dance than to risk it all one year, knowing you almost definitely won't get invited for several years afterwards no matter how the current year plays out.

This whole all-in/run it back thing this year is making me very uneasy, considering how many players are coming into camp with axes to grind. While I would love if this core can finally get over the hump and let Rodgers go out on top, I'm equally concerned, if the season starts going south, there are going to be too many players who will already have their minds set on 2022, that we will start to see players demanding trades, or, worst case, that there will be enough discontent spilling on to the field that Gute will need to start making statement cuts/trades again to assert his control over the team and roster.

1 points
2
1
SanLobo's picture

August 03, 2021 at 10:18 am

Balancing risk is tough, but Murphy and or Gutenkunst have made the decision and they are willing to take the higher risk this year for the highest reward. Football has too much randomness in it to make solid predictions (injuries, bad calls, external issues like a COVID resurgence, even the damn ball isn’t round so it bounces weird), but the whole Team; players, coaches, management and staff appear to be more singularly focused this year on winning the SB then seen in a long time. This is a good thing.

1 points
1
0
Since'61's picture

August 02, 2021 at 07:34 pm

Crankbait that's a fact. But apparently for many the FO never makes mistakes and Rodgers is a criminal without actually committing a crime. Maybe a few more "crimes" and we would have those additional SBs.
Thanks, Since '61

-1 points
2
3