Packers Stock Report: Week 4

The Green Bay Packers are a team of resiliency. At this point, it doesn’t matter who takes the field, they continue to win games. And, they look good doing it.

Heading into the bye week, the Packers are 4-0 and remain the top scoring offense in the NFL. In back to back weeks, they’ve put up at least 30 points without Davante Adams. On Monday, they did it not only without Adams but also sans Allen Lazard, who will miss some time with a core injury. It helps when the quarterback and head coach are on the same page as much as Aaron Rodgers and Matt LaFleur, which has allowed for full optimization of the receiving threats they have at their disposal. Then, you have to take into account the dynamic backfield of Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams. The way it looks now, this offense truly is a work of art.

While the defense may be a step behind, they are staying true to their bend but don’t break identity. Look no further than week four against the Atlanta Falcons when they were on the field for over ten minutes on a single drive and still managed to hold them to three points. Green Bay’s defense isn’t great, in fact, they are incredibly average. However, right now, they are good enough.

Following a 30-16 win over Atlanta, it’s time for the weekly stock report to see who’s up and who’s down as the Packers go into the bye week undefeated.

Buy

  1. Robert Tonyan

Big Bob Tonyan was a touchdown catching machine against the Falcons. He caught three touchdowns and totaled 98 yards on six receptions in what can only be described as an invigorating performance. Tonyan has gotten better week after week and is slowly making himself a player that opposing defenses have to account for when preparing to face Green Bay’s offense.

  1. Packers RBs

Jones and Williams were impressive on their way to 216 combined yards on 36 touches in week four. The two did most of their damage through the air, racking up a combined 135 yards receiving. Williams accounted for 95 of those in what was a new career-high. As long as they can remain healthy, the tandem of Jones and Williams will continue to be one of the best one-two punches in the entire league.

  1. Za’Darius Smith

Smith is arguably the most impactful edge rusher in the NFL today. He proved yet again that he can be a game-breaker on defense with eight tackles, four tackles for loss, three sacks, and five QB hits against Atlanta. Smith is tied with Myles Garret for the most sacks in the NFL with five, however, he leads everyone is sack yards with 42. It's looking like another Pro-Bowl year for the team's top edge rusher.

  1. Krys Barnes

Barnes has been killing it since being signed to the active roster a day before the season opener against the Minnesota Vikings. As an undrafted free agent, expectations for Barnes were pretty low. However, he’s exceeded expectations and been an important piece to this defense. Filling in for an injured Christian Kirksey this week, Barnes saw a boost in his snap count and responded well with six tackles (four solos) and solid pass coverage. His athleticism has been refreshing, as he’s proven to add something that’s been missing from the linebacking core for years. He’s also yet to miss a tackle this season. The sky is the limit for this UDFA that seemingly came out of nowhere.

  1. The dynamic between Rodgers and LaFleur

We touched on this a little bit earlier, but the compatibility between Rodgers and LaFleur is outstanding.  The two appear to have a very healthy dialogue and are well in tune with each other’s thoughts on the offense. It looks like Rodgers trusts his weapons more than he has in years past, and that is a huge tribute to LaFleur, who has done a great job of designing this offense to scheme guys open.

Sell

  1. Tackling

For the second week in a row, tackling has made the sell list. We know Green Bay doesn’t do live tackling in practice but it appears some refreshers may be in order at the very least. After a good helping of missed tackles in week three against the New Orleans Saints, the Packers somehow followed it up with even more missed tackles this week. Tackling can’t be an ongoing concern for the rest of the season if this team has Super Bowl aspirations.

  1. Josh Jackson

This one really hurts because I’ve been a big fan of Jackson ever since the Packers drafted him in 2018. He filled in during the second half against Atlanta for an injured Kevin King after King was sidelined with a quad injury. Jackson couldn’t make the most of his opportunity, missing three tackles and getting called for defensive pass interference. Jackson still doesn’t look comfortable dropping into coverage and was later replaced by Ka’dar Hollman after a blown coverage. Three years into his career, Jackson is making it hard not to be labeled as a bust.

 

 

Brandon Carwile is a Packers writer who also enjoys watching and breaking down film. Follow him on Twitter @PackerScribe.

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Comments (19)

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Bearmeat's picture

October 08, 2020 at 11:19 am

Jackson should be a free safety, where his lack of speed isn't as much of a problem, and ball-facing skills could be best utilized.

Let's wait and see on Barnes. He's better than Burks, which is no high praise. I think we're all just so frustrated from years of bad ILB play that we're liable to crown anyone who looks even moderately not sucky.

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CAG123's picture

October 08, 2020 at 11:48 am

Bingo! Someone please just step up and solidify the position I promise you don’t have to be Ray Lewis or Patrick Willis we’ll take a Nick Barnett who was very solid for the Pack!

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jannes bjornson's picture

October 09, 2020 at 05:53 am

All number one picks. You want the talent, draft it.

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Coldworld's picture

October 08, 2020 at 01:28 pm

Too small a sample yet but it’s churlish not to admit that Barnes has got better every week. That is for someone of whom adequacy was all that was hoped for in game 1. He has definitely not been a liability yet.

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jannes bjornson's picture

October 09, 2020 at 05:56 am

His movement in the hook zone and cover ability is fluid. He hits the gaps instinctively and he is a smart player. He and Martin should hold up the middle in the future. Kirksey is what he is now, a guy with some lingering physical issues.

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LambeauPlain's picture

October 08, 2020 at 02:52 pm

Barnes has played solidly and has improved each game. For a young guy, UDFA starter, that makes him a good find. Ty Summers has played solidly too. Agree Bear, that it is a small sample....but after watching mediocrity, even poor play at ILB...Summers, Barnes and even Raven Green at hybrid are playing solidly.

I also hope Martin can make it back. I have high hopes for the former HS QB (like Ty) and a quick twitch tackling machine at MN.

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frankthefork's picture

October 08, 2020 at 11:28 am

Selling Jackson, Burks, (Lowry) and Adams; all are weakest links on the Defense for where they were drafted. I would be happier if we could trade them now-who would want these backups- or just release prior to next season.
Heck, I know they will be hard pressed to make the team next year after another good draft. Gute and MLF are so much better than TED and MM, thus far. Hope they find more diamonds in the rough...whatever that means. GPG

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Leatherhead's picture

October 08, 2020 at 01:24 pm

Well, Adams contract expires this season, so he’ll be replaced. You suit up about 10 DBs and if Jackson is the worst one, that’s a pretty good group. Lowry is our second best DL, so he’s safe.

Why make more holes in the roster? We are looking at having to replace King, Bakhtiari, Linsley, Jones, and Williams and we should fill those holes before we start making more.

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CAG123's picture

October 08, 2020 at 01:52 pm

That’s like saying Nelson Agholor was the Eagles best WR last year if Lowry is second “best” of a group that’s uninspiring after Clark that’s not a ringing endorsement for Lowry.

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13TimeChamps's picture

October 09, 2020 at 03:33 pm

You don't draft players in the 2nd round to be the worst in their position group.

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Coldworld's picture

October 08, 2020 at 01:52 pm

Adams might actually be starting to show up. I’m not selling him, reserving judgment till he is off snap count. Lowry is a sell. At this point he is the last lineman I want out there including Winn and Adams. Was poor last year, perhaps poorer this. I know he has been getting more snaps than others despite them declining, but i think it’s time for more for Keke, Adams and Winn ( if elevated),

I’m buying Hollman, who did well. That might finish Jackson’s downfall. We don’t need him at safety. I’d rather go with the more versatile Redmond and Scott. Remember, Jackson struggled mightily in center field coverage last year, while safety superficially sounds plausible, it’s not everyone who can process fast enough to play there.

Burks I do not get, but if he can’t beat out Summers or Barnes, that pretty much sums it up at this point. He did a couple of good things against the Saints but it is telling that Barnes appears way ahead of him and is taking on more coverage, the role for which Burks was drafted and where Martin also shone in camp. If and when Kirksey and Martin are back will ST even keep him on the roster?

I’m not selling a Preston Smith. Using him in coverage and Garvin to rush is frustrating. Garvin has potential but is a one trick pony at his current weight. He got abused on the edge on Monday. Perhaps Ramsey can cover, but if not I’d look into bringing back Tim Williams. Since Burks has been used to cover on a few occasions when Preston was moved, I’m guessing not. Tim Williams can cover a bit and he can hold the edge. Might not free Preston up, but it might make for better cover if Z or Gary are down.

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jannes bjornson's picture

October 09, 2020 at 06:03 am

With Green back in action he should be taking some of P.Smith's cover duties as well as Burks who is out of his league playing inside. This gives Pettine more fuel to bring it as with his big three and Keke. Montravious looked to fill his role fairly well and held his ground. Lowry is better as a situational guy,but they gave him money to be a starter. Yes, Hollman has moved Jackson out of the picture. A 4.3 guy and more aggressive. Williams is a goner.

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Christian Roussel's picture

October 08, 2020 at 11:41 am

I've also been a big fan of Jackson but he's not improving. Yes there's a problem with his tackling and lack of burst, but the thing that concerns me the most is the way he looks pre snaps. 3 years into the system and on so many plays he seems like he's not set or doesn't know his assignment. Wonder what you guys think of the way he looks pre snap because to my eyes, that's the biggest of his problems.

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LambeauPlain's picture

October 08, 2020 at 02:56 pm

He had one good year at Iowa playing exclusively zone. I just do not think he is quick enough to play NFL corner. Maybe he can play centerfield as a Free S...but that still keeps him riding the pine as a former 2nd round pick.

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Christian Roussel's picture

October 08, 2020 at 06:18 pm

I don't get why so many people see him as a safety. Because you know what a bad tackler does for a team when playing safety? nothing too good.

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Packer_Fan's picture

October 08, 2020 at 01:53 pm

Agree with Jackson. A bust period. Everyone on offense is doing well

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ricky's picture

October 08, 2020 at 02:11 pm

A lot of times, it's now where a player is drafted, but whether a guy is a football player once the pads are on. Both Barnes and now Tonyan, both undrafted, are showing that sometimes the scouts and GM's miss. And let's not forget Lazard. Both he and Tonyan were originally signed by other teams who let them walk right into the waiting arms of the Packers.

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Wildcomet's picture

October 08, 2020 at 08:10 pm

I have to agree that Jackson hasn't panned out for what a 2nd round pick should do, but as a 6th CB we could be doing worse. He probably walks when his contract is up.

Burks I'd for sure sell as an ILB, but his limited time at OLB I thought showed a bit of promise. Maybe he could be our coverage OLB like Fackrell did last year and allow P Smith to get back to rushing the QB more. Once Martin and Kirksey get healthy he doesn't have a role inside with Barnes and Summers stepping up, so we might as well try it.

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Leatherhead's picture

October 09, 2020 at 08:19 pm

Exactly. Most teams have some UDFA as their 6th corner. They guys ahead of him have played well.

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