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Packers Stock Report: Still tops in the NFC North edition

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Packers Stock Report: Still tops in the NFC North edition

The defense learned how to sack a quarterback again, Eddie Lacy re-discovered his power-spin move and the Green Bay Packers figured out a way to get back in the win column with a nice road victory against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

Yes, a lot of the same problems continued to rear their ugly head on offense, but six sacks and a 100-yard rusher go a long way in masking whatever the Packers are still trying to work through in the passing game.

One thing I don't understand -- maybe some of the better X's and O's minds who hang around CheeseheadTV.com can explain it to me -- is why the offensive brain trust insists on using Richard Rodgers as a receiver in four-receiver sets. It's painfully obvious by now that Rodgers is only effective in or near the end zone. He's too slow to separate in space and not nearly nimble enough to make defenders miss and pick up extra yards after the catch. 

Unless there are some blocking assignments better suited to a bigger body that I'm not seeing, Jeff Janis should be taking Rodgers' spot as the fourth receiver in those sets. Yes, the Packers fans who treat Janis as the Second Coming are annoying, but c'mon. Enough is enough with Rodgers as a wideout. Let's see what Janis can do.

At the very least, hopefully Ty Montgomery returns soon so he can take Rodgers' spot in four-wide sets.

Now that I've give the Packers coaching staff all the advice they need to help improve their passing game, let's get to this week's Packers Stock Report:

Rising

Mike Daniels
Have you ever notice how often Daniels knocks over whomever is trying to block him. If you ever take your eye off the ball when the Packers are on defense, lock in on Daniels once. He doesn't always make the play, but man, he beats the hell out of the unfortunate soul assigned to tray and stop him.

Datone Jones
We saw Jones line up on the outside on Sunday and the plays came in droves. Staying healthy and consistent has always been Jones' main challenge. We'll see if he can continue rising over these final six games.
 

Clay Matthews
Over and over again, the Packers defensive line would fence in Adrian Peterson and Matthews would swoop in for the tackle. The defense appeared to be working as it was designed to work. The fat dudes up front wreck havoc allowing the linebackers to come in and make plays.

(Note: Some might argue that I should have included Mason Crosby in the rising category. These people have a good point, but I have yet to forgive Crosby for whatever the hell that was at the end of the Lions game.)

Steady

B.J. Raji
For the second week in a row, Raji could be seen caving in an entire side of an offensive line.

James Jones
Jones changed it up a big in going from the sleeveless turtleneck to the hoodie. Whatever fashion statement works for Jones, he should keep doing it.

Sam Shields
How about Shields making an open-field tackle on third down on the opening series? That's something you never would have seen from Shields early in his career.

Falling

Randall Cobb
There's not much else to say about Cobb besides the weekly drops needing to end. Now.

Adrian Peterson
Eff this guy. 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (14) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

John Galt III's picture

Cobb - Is he by chance injured in a way we don't know? Not sure what is ailing him.

Janis - all I see so far in his career is that if the ball is near him good things usually happen, so yeah, what is the point of Rodgers if he is slow. Worst case is Janis takes a top speed corner out of the way and if they put a LB on him it is like putting a pickup truck on a Ferrari.

Evan's picture

The shoulder is probably still lingering from the pre-season, but I wouldn't think that would affect his ability to catch the ball when it hits him in the hands.

RCPackerFan's picture

Yeah, I agree with everything here.

To add some to each...

Rising
Lacy - He was a bull on Sunday. Great time for him to turn his game around.
Janis - He had 2 of the biggest plays in the game. His 70 yard KR right after the Vikings drove down for a TD, swung the momentum back in favor of GB. While the offense did nothing it set up a FG which allowed them to tie the game. If he doesn't have that return and the ball is at the 20 and they go 3 and out but have to punt down by 3 to a Vikings team that just drove for a TD, that could have been a different game.
Tretter - He played really, really well after stepping in for Linsley.

Steady
Clinton-Dix/Burnett - Both were really good. Both stepped up to help stuff the run. And on the fumble of Peterson, it was the 2 that made the play.

Peppers - he quietly had a very good game.

Hayward - he like Shields was very physical in run support.

Falling
Cobb, yeah not good.

Richard Rodgers - Where has he gone? He looks slow and is a complete non threat as a receiver.

Hyde - I know he was injured but I really don't think he is/was that good to begin with. I think he should be a backup safety and special teams player only. Use Rollins as the 4th cover guy.
I like Hyde as a player, I just don't think he is that good and there are better options.

Nick Perry's picture

To top it off can you believe Thompson took Rodgers over Crockett Gilmore?

EdsLaces's picture

Yeahhhhhh baby .....efffff that guy!!!!!!

White92's picture

I'm no Janis enthusiast, but if he get the defenses from stacking the box, he needs to be on the field for 10-12 snaps, doesn't he?

Tundraboy's picture

Yes

MarkinMadison's picture

Datone Jones is putting together the best year of his career, by far. It's no where near the Reggie White-level he was shooting for when drafted, but it is respectable.

I'm not as hyped about putting Jeff Janis out at WR more often based upon special teams play. Desmond Howard was such an awesome special teams guy that he was named Super Bowl MVP. 123 career catches over 11 seasons. That's less than 1 catch per game. Point being a great special teams play does not make him a great WR. Drawing a PI is not a catch. If the coaches prefer RR as their 4th WR over a guy who is actually a WR, what does that tell you?

And he IS getting put out there now. 98 snaps now this season. When he starts being in the right spot he'll get thrown to more often. And his target % caught? 28%. Good for 324th in the NFL. Yeah. Not great.

Nick Perry's picture

Many thought it would take Jones a few years to become effective and it's year 3 and he's healthy now. Obviously one game doesn't make a career but he looked really good Sunday which was great to see. His stat line was excellent against both the run and rushing the QB, he keeps that up maybe we'll keep a 1st rounder on that 5th year option this time because he had some big expectations put on him right away playing in Jim Moras system at UCLA. Now if we can start to see it on a more regular basis we have something.

Lphill's picture

I think Janis comes up big down the stretch like Adams did last year.

Dan Stodola's picture

You do realize that Adams disappeared for the entire month of Dec, don't you! Adams had the big game against NE late Nov, then disappeared for ALL of Dec, only to make an appearance against Dallas in the playoffs. But Adams did not step up down the stretch last year.

4 rec for 29 yds then entire month of December is NOT coming up big down the stretch!

croatpackfan's picture

But that what you wrote suits well with what he wrote... Same performance. We. Can. Expect.

Lphill's picture

Last 2 college seasons Janis had over 3000 yards and 31 touchdowns . Throw him the damn ball .

croatpackfan's picture

Where? In the 2nd division! Can you imagine what was the competition? I can tell you, if I would play RB with the kids from kindergarten, I would put the numbners better than any RB in the history of the NFL!

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