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Packers Stock Report: Defensive Failings, Late Fumble Finally Sink Green Bay's Leaky Ship

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Packers Stock Report: Defensive Failings, Late Fumble Finally Sink Green Bay's Leaky Ship

Green Bay’s 31-24 loss to the Panthers on Sunday, coupled with Atlanta’s win over Tampa Bay Monday night, means the Packers’ postseason hopes are officially toast. With the season set to end on New Year’s Eve, the only meaningful aspects of the next two weeks are how Green Bay can affect the playoff picture for other teams, and how they affect their own position in the 2018 NFL Draft.

Here’s this week’s stock report:

Rising

Randall Cobb: He led the team in receiving against Carolina, catching seven passes for 84 yards, including a 33-yard touchdown on which he made multiple men miss on the way to the end zone. Admittedly, Cobb’s production hasn’t necessarily lived up to the numbers on his contract, but games like the one against the Panthers prove that he can still be a valuable piece in Green Bay’s offense. It will be interesting to see if the Packers approach him this offseason with some kind of extension that would free up some money to use elsewhere.

Damarious Randall: Once a scapegoat after his benching earlier in the season, Randall has since responded with a run of excellent play. He factored in only four tackles against the Panthers, but he held Devin Funchess to one catch for 19 yards. Given the Packers’ defensive struggles over the entire season, it would be a very positive sign if he can carry his high level of play through the last two weeks and get back to being the player Green Bay thought he could be when the drafted him in the first round.

Richard Rodgers: With four catches for 77 yards, including a 24-yard score late in the fourth quarter, Rodgers put forth his best game of the season. It’s been an odd season for Rodgers, as he was somewhat of a forgotten man once the Packers signed Lance Kendricks and Martellus Bennett during the offseason. He’s still not—and will never be—the playmaking tight end the team (and fans) longs for, but he does deserve credit for his reliability.

Aaron Jones: Normally it would be odd to put a running back in this category after a three-carry game, but Jones proved once again why he should be the number one back on the depth chart. Jones made the most of his three carries, picking up 47 yards, including runs of 20 and 23, but the Packers went away from the rookie from UTEP as the game wore on. The combination of Jones and fellow rookie Jamaal Williams gives the Packers something in the running game they’ve not had in quite some time, if they can figure out the best way to play them off each other.

Falling

Dom Capers: I’m not sure he can actually fall any further, but he deserves a mention here due to yet another poor performance from his defense on Sunday. And what more can be said? When players are out of position as often as the Packers seem to be, when there are not enough men on the field, when half of the unit has no idea what is going on pre-snap—eventually the responsibility for those things comes back to the man in charge. It’s not Mike McCarthy’s modus operandi to make changes during the season, though with the 2017 season now having an expiration date, I’m not sure anyone would mind if he decided to hand the reigns to someone else on the defensive staff to finish out the year. Indeed, that’s not going to happen, but the scrutiny will only grow from now until the team makes a decision on their future at defensive coordinator.

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix: The continuation of his hesitant play cost the Packers dearly on Sunday, on the play that can only be described as “the butt cheek touchdown.” Instead of coming underneath Panthers receiver Damiere Byrd and knocking the ball away, Clinton-Dix watched the ball sail over his head and into Byrd’s waiting hands, and then stood and watched as Byrd juggled the ball, eventually reeling it in for what was ultimately ruled a touchdown. It was another in a litany of tentative plays this season, a campaign that has served as a head-scratcher for someone who entered the season with such high expectations.

Geronimo Allison: Despite catching five passes, his fumble on the Packers’ last possession served as the final nail in the coffin against the Panthers. It’s unfortunate when you consider that he probably wouldn’t have been in a position to fumble the football had Davante Adams been in the game, but you just can’t lose the football in that situation.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (55) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Bearmeat's picture

I didn't do this research myself. Hat tip to Reynoldo.

But this really pisses me off. Ted Thompson and Dom Capers MUST be FIRED. NOW.

Since 2012, TT has used 71% of his first through fourth round draft picks on defense. That includes 5 of 5 firsts, 3 of 5 seconds, and 7 of 10 fourths.

When you take into account TT's refusal to add to the team via free agency and trades - the only other mechanisms for finding likely difference-making player acquisition other than his precious draft capital - the resources that have been spent on defense has been enormous. And THIS is what we got this year.

#Packers Defense. ☠️

3rd Down Completion %: 69.0% (32nd)
3rd Down Conversions: 44.8% (30th)
Scoring Efficiency: 40.3% (31st)
TD Efficiency: 23.5% (32nd)
RZ Scoring Efficiency: 100% (32nd)
RZ TD Efficiency: 69.2% (31st)
5 Minute Drives: 26 (T-32nd)
10 Play Drives: 30 (30th)
Opposing QB Rating 100.5 (30th)

Because of the dumpster fire above, this team was NEVER a super bowl threat. There were too many holes at CB and OLB. Again. So either the talent evaluation has been bad, or the coaching has been bad. And it's been almost this bad since 2011. This is INEXCUSABLE. Bob McGinn before he retired was exactly right. 1265 Lombardi is too comfortable. Someone, TT or Capers, has to be fired, right? Right?

Samson's picture

Some nasty numbers.
My fear: --- Finishing 8-8 (or even 7-9) this season may very well keep '1265 Lombardi' comfortable for another season.
One can only hope that Dom & TT feel compelled to retire. -- I'm not sure anyone will outright fire either of them. --- Personally, I'd prefer MM and the coaching staff to be shown the door also but ... that may be asking too much.

Bearmeat's picture

MM has a 0% chance of being fired. TT has a 10% chance IMO of retiring. DC is 50/50.

I'm hoping TT walks into the sunset after the draft. We're probably stuck with him for 1 more year at least. If Dom isn't gone, the hope for GB to be a super bowl contender next year is IMO less than 10%.

I won't be fooled into believing into this regime again.

Finwiz's picture

Agree - except I'd say it's still less than 50/50 on the DC.
They'll rationalize a way to keep him, even with those results.
Fact is the D isn't much different (worse) than it has been in the past 2-3 years. They didn't force him out then, so why now?
For sure MM isn't going anywhere. Chance on MM = 1% or less.

Bearmeat's picture

There are only 2 hopes:

1. We are SO BAD on defense the last 2 games that the problem becomes obvious to those that don't want to see.

2. There is change forced from the BOD or Mark Murphy. Probably moving TT's job responsibilities around in the process and ceding some roster authority to another, who forces TT's hand.

Again, I'd put this chance at less than 10%. Next year is almost surely going to end in disappointment because our defense will be below league average, and probably just plain old bad.....

RCPackerFan's picture

Them missing the playoffs this year, I think has a bigger impact in their decisions...

I think McCarthy knows he has to make a change. Against the Browns the first half the defense was not good. He made the comment that they have to be much more aggressive in the 2nd half. They came out and the defense was better in the 2nd half.

I think McCarthy makes the move this year.

I could also see Capers deciding to retire, whether its forced or his own decision. He is 67, will be 68 before next season starts. I think there is a strong possibility that he retires.

Bearmeat's picture

If you are right, and I sincerely hope you are, that would be a BIG step towards a mediocre or even above average defense. TT retiring as well would be the other shoe that needs to drop.

It's likely that Vic Fangio will be looking for work... I've always loved how his defenses play. He has crap to work with in the secondary in Chicago, and they're MUCH better than us. And his 9ers defenses were SIIIIICK.

RCPackerFan's picture

Well we both know I'm always right. lol.

I agree though. Changing to a new DC I think would do a lot for the team. Now they need some players to, and players to stay healthy, but I think just changing the coordinators would do a lot for the team.

If Fangio is available I seriously hope they go after him. He runs a similar defense but he really can get the most out of the players.

He would be a great person to bring in for sure.

Bearmeat's picture

You need to change your screen name to "Unicorns and Fairy Tales" lol.

RCPackerFan's picture

lol.

Finwiz's picture

I want to see a flash-mob descend on Packer management headquarters at Lambeau, and have the local stations all cover it on the 10 PM news.
Somebody set that up, I don't do Facebook.

The TKstinator's picture

I’ve been sending Dom pamphlets from a number of desirable retirement communities for several months now.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Good, but stop sending the pamphlet for the retirement community located at 1265....

The TKstinator's picture

Dilly!!

Finwiz's picture

When you are this BAD on defense, it can not possibly be all, or primarily, talent. This is the definition of defensive collapse/breakdown.
They have tuned out the defensive coordinator.
It's possible the DC can't relate to players anymore - the modern athlete.
He's from a different time and place, a different league.
Those stats are really eye opening.
Somebody with the ability to do so, please send these to Mike McCarthy and Ted Thompson.
Seriously.

Bearmeat's picture

I'm sending them to the season ending chat with Silverstein. Hopefully he picks up on them and asks. After McGinn retired, Silverstein is the only beat writer with the stones left to stand up to TT/MM

Finwiz's picture

Do it - I'd rather see somebody do that than spend another $200 on a worthless stock certificate .
Desperate times, call for desperate measures.
And the Packers are desperate, as is evidenced by activating their busted up, 150 million man to play for one "long-shot" chance at the playoffs.
And if Silverstein actually brings this up to McCarthy in the season ending presser, he'll be my hero, along with the guy that gets it to the attention of the media/management.

The TKstinator's picture

I’m not sure I’d use the word ‘bad’; I prefer ‘goodness impaired”.

GBPDAN1's picture

Excellent post, Bearmeat !! TT and DC needed to go years ago.... Please lord let this happen

Since '61's picture

Bearmeat - I agree with you. The Packers defense and their results are sad and sickening. Worst defense in the league with all that draft capital spent on that side of the ball. Yet we have posters here who write that Capers should be kept and that it's Rodgers fault when the Packers lose a game.

There is no defense for this alleged "defense" and there is no excuse for management to allow it to continue. I've said it since 2013 and I'll say it again FIRE CAPERS!!! Pay him to leave if necessary. I'll even contribute.

Thanks, Since '61

canadapacker's picture

I agree with your comments that it is about time for a defensive change and have said so. But the total overreaching of your comments is a total disregard that our biggest defensive weapon is our Quarterback. Nobody will ever convince me that we would not be in the playoffs if AR didnt break his collarbone. Heck we just about made it without him. Now all the stats in the world this year are only worth the paper that they are written on because of 12 not being here. My complaint about this defense is twofold (and it is hard because of all of the injuries) but as I have said many times - 1. we let too many good guys go - this year it was Hyde and Hayward as TT is too tight sometimes. and 2. we play too soft and to far off all the time and therefore we never learn how to tackle especially one on one. Capers and his subordinates need cant find a better regime than having Dix play center field and getting the odd interception on an overthrow while never making a tackle?? That is why I have a problem with Capers Perry and Moss. Now once you make the playoffs anything can happen - so I wouldnt say that we are not a Superbowl team - it would like always depend on which team you are playing against - for cripes sake we beat Tampa Bay with Hundley and Atlanta barely got by them last night. But the one thing that I believe that we need a major change on our Defense and that probably means that we need to cut Matthews and maybe Perry or renegotiate their contracts and we need to get some faster linebackers who can cover and rush the passer.

Pauly's picture

Right on!!
I like how the Patriots use BELICHICK as GM and HC.
He is lot closer to team and picks the players he thinks he needs
instead of a TT isolated in an office away from daily on the
field action.
TT apparently doesn't pay any attention to what MM or AR
think is important,, like for instance, another TE Findley or Koch.

OrganLeroy's picture

Cook.

splitpea1's picture

Excellent article. The numbers really tell the truth.

badaxed's picture

The three stooges should go as well Murphy, Thompson and McCarthy. this team can not get worse when you are 32nd in league. time for a change. HEEEEEEY Chucky time for a new "Ring of Honor".

bjkdad44's picture

Why would anyone vote thumbs down???? The facts are right there for crying out loud!!

stockholder's picture

DEFENSE
Winston Moss - Associate Head Coach/Linebackers
Dom Capers - Defensive Coordinator
Scott McCurley - Assistant Linebackers
Tim McGarigle - Defensive Quality Control
Jerry Montgomery - Defensive Front Assistant
Darren Perry - Secondary - Safeties
Mike Trgovac - Defensive Line
Joe Whitt Jr. - Secondary - Cornerbacks I need a drink! Seems I might not be alone. These guys coached All-pros. What the Hell are they thinking now? This is a staff thats afraid. I believe if MM gave them a chance to leave, they would have done it 4 years ago.

cpheph1's picture

2017: King & Josh Jones (2), M. Adams (3), Biegal (4)
2016: Clark (1), Fackrell (3), Martinez (4)
2015: Randall (1), Rollins (2), Ryan (4)
2014: HHCD (1), Thorton (3), Bradford (4)
2013: Datone Jones (1)
2012: Perry (1), Worthy (2), Hayward (2), Daniels & McMillian (4)
5 1st round, 5 2nd round, 3 3rd round, and 5 4th round picks spent on the defense from 2012-2017

The TKstinator's picture

A “who’s who” of defensive dominators.

Finwiz's picture

Wow - that's an impressive array of disgustingly BAD defensive stats.

I want to hear from ALL the people that don't think the Packers defense is "all that bad". Come on people - let's chat it up about the PAUSITIVE traits of the 2017 Packer defense. Let's have some of that good old-fashioned, green and gold Christmas cheer, while we sit and watch everyone else play in January. Nice work Capers, nice work.

The DC should be fired already and let the assistants take over. It can't possibly get any worse for the last two games, and it doesn't matter anyway. Send a message to your players that the performance expectations apply to coaches, as well as the guys on the field.

OrganLeroy's picture

Positive.

Tarynfor12's picture

The disconnect between defensive coaches and defensive players is Universal with a sign of coming together at times being Galactic.
Blame it on the ability or lack of upon each party as one wishes but neither have enough gravity to pull closer.
That's right...I just watched The Last Jedi....feeling spacey.
: )

RCPackerFan's picture

Its crazy how Randall's play has elevated since being benched earlier in the year. One of Randall's biggest weaknesses is the fact that he isn't a physical player. Well on a play before the controversial TD, Randall came up and smashed the WR who caught the TD, but Randall hit him hard enough to knock out the ball.
Randall was mostly assigned to Funchess their top WR. He caught 1 pass for 19 yards on 4 targets. That is insanely good.

I wish we wouldn't have had went away from Jones, and somehow gotten him the ball more. He is simply a play maker.

Richard Rodgers did look really good. He looked like he was moving well down the sideline also on that one catch and run.

While not everything can be blamed on Capers, the confusion with the defense, players out of position constantly, having to burn timeouts for having 10 men on the field is just to much. They need to go in a new direction.
I do feel like Thompson has given Capers enough talent to have the defense be better then it is.
I don't think he has given him a ton of all pro players or anything, but to me it should be better.
I have brought it up, but I think schematically Capers messes up to much. They are predictable and offenses know how to attack them. The scheme for me in the sub packages simply are not good enough. They basically run their nickel defense most of the time. Which is a 2-4 look. I still think the 3-3 would be better as it would be better against the run and pass. They would have Lowry, Clark, Daniels with Perry playing the OLB/Elephant End. Then have Martinez and Mathews playing ILB. Mathews then could be a threat to pass rush and rush any gap. But we don't see that. We continue to see the same 2-4 look down after down no matter how much we get gashed.

Brian's picture

I just wonder how much of the lack of running the football is Rodgers or MM or both. Rodgers mentioned something about the defensive front forcing them to pass rather than run but good grief, when Jones ran it was awesome. Seems like there would've/should've been more opportunities to run. When Hundley was QB they ran a lot despite the defense knowing it was coming. Something smells bad!

The defenses seems goofy with the 2-4 nickel being used so much. Does anybody know if other "3-4" teams run anything like this so much? Seems like bend but don't break has led to collapse.

Tarynfor12's picture

Can we agree that Rodgers does not want to pass a mere 20 times give or take...where's the glory in that. Yes, he has an ego that needs to be soothed and his checking out of runs massages that ego.
MM needs Rodgers to be ' a highly successful coach ' and Rodgers needs MM to allow himself the ego massaging...hand in hand they go and the reason,perhaps, the run game is abandoned for no other reason.

Razer's picture

I am starting to think that our lack or run game is a Rodgers thing. He needs to talk to Drew Brees before the start of next season.

HankScorpio's picture

"Can we agree that Rodgers does not want to pass a mere 20 times give or take...where's the glory in that. "

Another way of phrasing that is "where is the brains in that?"

Limiting a QB like Rodgers to 20 throws is likely to draw some very serious second-guessing. With good reason. And yet you break it down to ego run amok.

Strange,

Brian's picture

Appreciate the sarcasm :) and it seems you are right on point! Kinda creepy....the Rodgers/MM relationship.

RCPackerFan's picture

Brian - Thats my question too. So many people came on here Sunday and yesterday throwing all the blame on McCarthy. Like you said, Rodgers stated that the defense approach dictated them to pass more. So did McCarthy call more runs and Rodgers changed them?

And you are right with the Hundley led offense. They ran more, but that was more on McCarthy calling the plays and Hundley not having many options to change the play call.
Which leads me to believe that Rodgers changed more of the plays that were called. Which to be honest, had they ran the ball 5-10 more times, who knows what happens in the game.

I just hate the idea of having 2 DL and 2 OLB's to take on 5 OL, down after down. They get wore down to much, which affects them in the passing game and running game.
Perhaps that is a reason why our pass rush isn't as good as we hoped it would be. Just from the way they are being schemed to play?

Brian's picture

RC, Agree. It has always bothered me when I watch Pittsburgh, Baltimore, and even the 49ers when they were good with Fangio as DC and I never see them in this 2-4 let the play come to the defense mindset. I get that Capers philosophy is contain the big play but that has backfired. It just wears the d down and they can't cover their own shadow right now in the secondary. I think you are onto something about the pass rush. Maybe the d was instructed to contain Newton and not let him run but the secondary can't cover forever. But they didn't play Cam Newton and Russell Wilson every week.

I get what Tarnfor is saying about Rodgers too. But, somebody has to let the QB know who is in charge and it's in his and the team's best interest to run the ball considering how much it helps the defense, too.

OrganLeroy's picture

The run/pass option QB's have on any given play is dictated by the odds of the call being successful against the defense that's been called, period! None of us know which play is going to work better, a run or a pass, none of us have played or coached professional football, I know I haven't, maybe most of you have!

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Hank, Taryn unfortunately used some hyperbole. 20 pass attempts would not be enough. We ran 70 plays (67 per ESPN), and AR dropped back to pass 50 times. With Davante Adams sidelined for much of the game. RBs got 13 carries out of 67 or 70 plays.

13 RB carries = 18.6% run. Carolina blitzed (sent 5 or more) 31 times. I can't remember the last team that blitzed 62% of the time.

HankScorpio's picture

That's all well and good. But I seriously doubt running Williams more would have helped. He ran for 3.0/att. And it hardly seems like a good idea to play the back that was running effectively but cannot pass block when they are down 10 in the 2nd half. Especially given that subsequent events have proven beyond a reasonable doubt that many in the organization didn't think Rodgers should have been on the field in the first place due to the injury risk.

I have no idea what your point about the blitzing is. Yes, it was a lot. It's a shame Rodgers was not his normal self or he would have chewed it up and spit it out.

Bottom line is that there is nothing stupid or ego driven about going down with putting the game on the MVP-caliber, sure HoF QB instead of the inconsistent running game that was not particularly effective on that day. He just wasn't ready to play at his normal level. Carolina gambled that would be the case and won that bet.

Finwiz's picture

Uh-oh.....give credit to Aaron Nagler for this take, but he's saying MM has had ample opportunity to dump Capers, but has stuck with him. The theory he posits is that MM thinks Dom is doing the best he can, given the complex scheme he plays, with the draft and develop, young talent he's given.

This is interesting because it makes sense if you then conclude that perhaps there's a philosophical difference of opinion (coach/GM) in the type of players the GM acquires, and how he acquires them.

We can never know this for sure, but you have to consider it as a possibility. If this is the case, it signals a major disconnect in the philosophy between the coach and the GM. You wouldn't think this could be possible in GB, because it seems so disorganized and inconsistent with the typical harmonious relationship between coach and GM. This isn't the preferable relationship. If it's the case, you wonder if it's been this way since the beginning, or if it's a divide that has developed over time?

Brian's picture

Finwiz, if this is really what has been happening, how sad. I recall something being brought to light around the time Kevin Greene left about Capers being asked to simplify his defense for the younger players but that doesn't seem to have helped one iota. We continue to see the confusion in the secondary and the 10 guys on the field issues.

Pauly's picture

Brian, Agree on GM and MM, DC disconnect!!
I like how the Patriots use BELICHICK as GM and HC.
He is lot closer to team and picks the players he thinks he needs
instead of a TT isolated in an office away from daily on the
field action.
TT apparently doesn't pay any attention to what MM or AR
think is important,, like for instance, another TE Findley or Koch.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

GB has combined the HC and GM positions in the past. It has been an unmitigated disaster when tried in GB.

Since '61's picture

TGR - it wasn't a disaster when Coach Lombardi was the HC and the GM. Thanks, Since '61

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

True: the exception to the rule.

pooch's picture

Did no one else see the pass play in 1st half were Dix actually covered his head up with his arms and turned away from rhe play?? I see no mention of that play ,all though i screamed at the wife"Look it Dix what the hell is he doing"

Finwiz's picture

No way - are you serious? Probably after the whistle had blown or something.

pooch's picture

I am serious

Finwiz's picture

If he was doing that, there has to be something very wrong on this team.
This sounds like a team that is aware of the public criticism, and has given up on the coach. Heck, Kevin King was on the game day chat on Sunday, soaking up all the vitriol about our defense. They know what people are saying about them. Unreal.

Pauly's picture

Strongly agree!!
I like how the Patriots use BELICHICK as GM and HC.
He is lot closer to team and picks the players he thinks he needs
instead of a TT isolated in an office away from daily on the
field action.
TT apparently doesn't pay any attention to what MM or AR
think is important,, like for instance, another TE Findley or Koch.

David Aures's picture

(WANT) This is probably not going to happen because of personal, but I wish we could get a DC that runs the 4-3 defense. I miss the tim harris's, reggie white's, sean jones, john jurkovic's (probably spelled that wrong) those days. Big men up front that can get good push and pass rush. Also that usually will help stopping short runs by the goal line and 4th downs. Maybe it's just our 3-4 defense hasn't been working so im making the 4-3 defense seem better.

(SPEED) I also think we need a MLB that has speed and can punish runners. We have been lacking in speed for two many years now on both sides of the ball. We need some one that can orchestrate our defense to our strengths. I know im asking a lot but Capers and Ted got to go so we can get to the next level. Super bowl. Obviously my opinion. True packer fan

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