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Packers Need To Upgrade Return Game

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Packers Need To Upgrade Return Game

Yesterday I had a very brief back and forth with Matt Bowen on Twitter regarding the Packers pathetic return game. This caused me to receive a bunch of "What about Will Blackmon?" Tweets and emails.

What about him?

Yes, the guy has all the talent in the world, but he's been in the league four years and played 16 games in a season once, in 2008. His coverage ability is either greatly overrated by the team, or knowingly lied about. It's a common mantra so far this offseason for the team and/or observers to say "Well, of course the pass defense suffered after we/they lost Al Harris, Will Blackmon and Pat Lee".


The pass defense suffered when the Packers lost Al Harris for the season. Would Will Blackmon coming in at nickelback  over Jarrett Bush have had some magic calming effect on the sieve-like secondary? No. And it's laughable to opine  'if only they had Blackmon instead of Bush'. Please. Did we all miss the 2008 Atlanta game? Brutal. Just brutal.

So yes, please, by all means use the original-round tender on him. Bring him back and let him compete. But in no way shape or form should the Packers be counting on him. They should be drafting his replacement.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (12) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

holly's picture

Oh, LOST references. I know you didn't necessarily mean it that way, but it's still appreciated.
I agree, though. It's been too long since we had a PR or KR who would regularly put us in favorable field position.

Phil Hanrahan's picture

Roddy White pushed off! Well, he did, but yes, he SCORCHED Blackmon off the line - a literal "Didn't lay a glove on him" - and then made Will look kinda silly at the other end catching that TD. God, it's all coming back. Thanks, Aaron. Brutal is right. But Pat Lee, after his initial slip and wipeout on the Falcons' first drive, actually showed a little something. A glimmer.

PackerAaron's picture

Agree Phil. I've long maintained Lee is a player. He is def on 'last chance' ground though. "Can't make the club in the tub" and all that...

packsmack's picture

The biggest mistake TT made last year was IR-ing Pat Lee when he should have had the foresight to see that it was entirely possible one of the top 3 corners, 2 of whom were over 30, could be injured. By putting Lee on IR instead of letting him return sometime around week 8, he crippled the depth in the defensive backfield. It's not like there wasn't room to have a guy doing nothing on the roster(cough-Giacomini). Plus, he kept THREE FRIGGIN FULLBACKS. Anyway, I've ranted on all of that before, but Lee would have been WAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYY better than Bush, and definitely better than a rookie.
All that said, I tweeted you today Aaron and mentioned 4 guys that I loved from the 1st group of DBs. One of them was AJ Jefferson. He returned kicks in college, he has the Packer CB size(6 ft. 190 lbs.), and Mayock remarked about how well he did today as well(AFTER I tweeted you, mind you). I could definitely see TT trying to get the guy in rounds 5-7 and letting him develop, all the while giving him a shot as a KR/PR.

Drizzle's picture

We could spend some money and go get Sproles. Hahahahaaa... I kill me. Sexy free-agency ain't TT's bag man. Hopefully we can dig up a Dante Hall/Devin Hester in the late draft. Who knows.

Nypacker's picture

THANK YOU! I've been trying to point this out for a while now. Blackmon is strictly a returner but nothing past that. He doesn't really have any shot of being a true corner. Did you knw, Blackmon was drafted as a wide reciever?

PackerAaron's picture

Nypacker - Blackmon played WR in college, but was not drafted to play there.

packsmack's picture
gratif's picture

Lets not forget 2 (all?) of Blackmon's punt returns came against a historically awful Minnesota punt coverage.

Oppy's picture

blackmon showed talent against the Colts in '08, which was the first time I thought "Wow, he might actually be a viable CB after all". Other than that, I hadn't ever though he was going to be anything other than a nickle back in the NFL as far as his play time on Defense.

NickGBP's picture

A lot of people feel Blackmon would be a starting CB on basically any other team. Any of those people want to show their faces?

I'll jump in; Blackmon is a good CB

Scrumptrulescent's picture

Perrish Cox in the 2nd for secondary depth and kick returns.

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