Post-Draft Packers Position Analysis: Wide Receivers

A look at the wide receiver position coming out of the Packers' 2020 draft.

Over the next week or two, CheeseheadTV writers will be taking closer looks at position groups as they currently stand on the Packers' roster. I volunteered for the task of analyzing the Packers' much-maligned wide receiver position.

I have to say, I expected to be much harder on this group than I'm going to be.

Now, that being said, you are most assuredly NOT going to hear me say that I believe this group to be "fine," or anything resembling a strength of the team. In the CheeseheadTV draft guide, I discussed how wide receiver was one of the team's biggest needs. A quick excerpt of what I said:

"The Packers decided to kick the can down the road on the wide receiver position last year, opting to address other positions first in the hopes their 2018 draft picks and young players would take the next step.. Having not picked up a veteran wide receiver in a relatively thin free agent class, the Packers need to make the position a priority early in the draft if they’re going to have any hope of revitalizing their passing offense."

I mostly stand by these statements. I would perhaps revise them to say the Packers' hopes of revitalizing their passing offense probably didn't hinge solely on them taking a wide receiver early, but they certaintly didn't do anything to help themselves in the draft by opting out of taking a receiver in what was, by all accounts, the most receiver-rich draft in the modern era.

Let's take a look at what the Packers are currently working with at the wide receiver position.

On the roster: Wide Receivers

We'll get the obvious out of the way: Davante Adams is an absolute blue-chipper, an elite player at the position who somehow still remains underrated on a national level. He can line up anywhere, has one of the smoothest breaks off the line you'll find in the game, and has impeccable route running. His presence gives Aaron Rodgers a go-to receiver and reliable safety blanket at all times.

I assume we're all on the same page there.

The rest of the depth chart at receiver is a lot murkier. The only real significant change is the Packers allowed Geronimo Allison to walk, and picked up Devin Funchess, formerly of Indianapolis and Carolina. Allison had the worst year of his professional career in 2019, routinely dropping key passes and failing to be the reliable presence many had hoped he would be returning from his 2018 injury. 

Barring a couple undrafted free agents and a CFL pickup, everyone else is a holdover from the 2019 season, and after mostly standing pat this offseason, the Packers are relying on their young players to make big jumps. 

Here's what they're working with.

Devin Funchess, 25

Funchess will be just 26 years old when the season starts, but will already be on his third team in the NFL. He barely played at all with the Colts due to a broken collarbone that landed him on injured reserve, so any analysis of his play can only be based on his Carolina tenure. A former second-round pick, Funchess was a rotational player his first couple years in the league before becoming a full-time starter in 2017, catching 63 pases for 840 yards and eight touchdowns, all career highs. 

At 6'4, 225 lbs., Funchess is a large target. He's never been a burner, but he has demonstrated some good route running ability for a player of his size, which can make him an effective chain mover.

The big issue with Funchess has always been drops, and this is undoubtedly the reason the Panthers let him go afer his rookie deal elapsed. There are times when Funchess has lapses of concentration that result in the ball getting too close to his chest at the point of the catch. 

Tape grinders also report Funchess occasionally having difficulty getting separation from defenders, despite his larger frame. For a guy of his size, Funchess can stand to be much more physical than he typically is.

The Packers are essentially paying peanuts for Funchess; they gave him a $1.2 million base salary and a $1 million signing bonus for the year, with performance escalators that can bring the deal up to $6.25 million. It was a smart flyer and a low-risk move to take on such a young prospect who clearly has some raw talent. But it remains to be seen whether Funchess can truly be a viable number two target.

Allen Lazard, 24

Lazard is perhaps the most intriguing player on this list, due to the way he burst on to the scene out of seemingly nowhere in the second half of the 2019 season. Lazard was undrafted out of Iowa State, so he doesn't have the same pedigree as Funchess, but he does have a very similar physique, coming in at 6'5, 227. 

It was the Monday Night Football game against Detroit at Lambeau where Lazard first made his presence felt, bringing in a couple of the most crucial catches of the game in a come-from-behind effort. Lazard quickly earned Aaron Rodgers' trust, and from then on saw a lot more playing time, finishing the season with 35 catches, 477 yards and three touchdowns. 

The Packers like what they see in Lazard. He's sure-handed, showed himself to be a forceful run-blocking presence (crucial for a Matt LaFleur offense) and shows a tremendous amount of confidence for a player who was undrafted and essentially unrecruited in college. He plays with a chip on his shoulder at all times. Like Funchess, he's not a blazer, but his speed combined with his strength and leverage is enough for him to get the separation he needs to make tough catches in tight windows. 

The big question for this year is whether or not Lazard can continue to develop at the same rate he did in 2019. If the answer is "yes," Lazard could become a strong second or third option in the passing game. If not, the pressure on other young players to develop grows even more intense.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling, 25

MVS is another big target at 6'4, and unlike Lazard and Funchess, he is capable of burning just about any back in the game. His 4.37 second 40 yard dash made him a combine darling in 2018. 

The frustrating thing with MVS is his consistency. At times he flashes the ability to be a gamebreaking deep weapon, but then he'll disappear for quarters, halves or even games at a time. failing to get open enough to merit a target, or having struggles with drops. 

He caught 26 passes for 462 yards in 2019 and a catch percentage of just 46.4 percent, all representing decreases from his 2018 rookie numbers. The big question for MVS: was last year a sophomore slump, or was it representative of him hitting his ceiling? If MVS is going to develop into a reliable part of the passing game he will need to do even more work on expanding his route tree, because right now when he's in the game, opponents are waiting for a go route or a post. He's not quite a one-trick pony, but he's also not exactly keeping defenses guessing, either.

Equanimeous St. Brown, 23

The Packers do love their tall receivers. At 6'5, 214, ESB has a slightly slimmer frame than some of the other players on this list, but every bit the tall, imposing target Brian Gutekunst has made the habit of bringing in to the team.

ESB missed all of 2019 on injured reserve, and he had been hoped to be an emerging part of the Packers' passing game in 2019. ESB flashed a lot of potential in his 2018 rookie season. Though he finished with only 21 catches for 328 yards and no touchdowns, he appeared to be beginning the development of a good rapport with Rodgers and had a respectable 58.3 percent catch percentage.

At this point, what can be expected from ESB coming off an injury is completely unknown. He missed out on a year's worth of developmental time with Rodgers and a year to get playing time in a new offense under LaFleur. He's still very young, though, and if he can make the leap from his rookie year that some thoguht he might heading into 2019, suddenly the picture at receiver isn't looking quite as bad.

Jake Kumerow, 28

At 28, the 6'4, 209 lb. Kumerow is the elder statesman of the wide receiver room, even older than Adams (27). A local folk hero, Kumerow has likely reached his ceiling at this point in his career. He's a guy who can make plays against backups and occasionally get open as a rotatoinal player, but absolutely not someone to be relied on as any greater than a fifth option, a player to spell the guys above him on the depth chart when they need a rest.

Kumerow caught 12 balls for 219 yards and a touchdown in 2019 after being a camp darling. With the return of ESB, Kumerow will be a bubble player entering 2020 and will once again face an uphill battle for a roster spot. If he sees signifficant playing time in 2020, odds are the Packers' passing game is in poor condition once again.

Darrius Shepherd, 23

The 5'11 Shepherd is by far the smallest player in the receiving corps. He made the Packers' final 53 at the end of training camp last year over Allen Lazard, but a few too many mistakes in the return game saw him get cut midway through the year before he was picked back up for the practice squad.

Any chance Shepherd has of making the roster again in 2020 will have to be through special teams, because he simply isn't the kind of player in terms of physique or skill set the Packers are building their roster around. You can at least be certain he's not going to get on the team over Lazard again, so he'd be battling with the larger, more reliable Kumerow (who also plays special teams) on the bubble. And with Tyler Ervin having broken on to the scene in the return game in the latter part of 2019, it's unlikely Shepherd will unseat him there. 

Reggie Begelton, 26

The Packers brought in CFL star Reggie Begelton on a reserve/futures contract in early January. The 2019 CFL All-Star will need to make a quick transition to the pros to be able to make the Packers' roster. He'll be up against more complex deffenses and more athletic defenders, not to mention a much higher degree of competition on the roster.

Because he's coming from three years in the CFL after playing college ball for a I-AA school, Begelton's nearly a complete unknown. He would have to overcome tall odds to make the roster in 2020.

Malik Taylor, 24

The 6'3, 220 lb. Taylor hung around the Packers' training camp and practice squad, and figures to be back this year. He is unlikely to supplant any existing player on the roster, barring a Lazard-like emergence.

Darrell Stewart, 23

The 6'0, 121 lb. undrafted rookie played a wide variety of roles for the Michigan State Spartans, but never really caught on in any individual role. He's highly unlikely to be anything more than a camp body, but surprises do occasionally come from the ranks of the undrafted. 

 

Conclusion

I'm not entirely convinced Gutekunst isn't going to still find a way to bring in another actual contender for a roster spot, whether it's through free agency or a trade. But that could be wishful thinking on my part. Gutekunst has said the team likes the receiver room they have, but of course, he's not exactly going to come out and say they think it's a weakness.

If there are no changes to the makeup of this unit, then the Packers are banking heavily on the development of players like Lazard, St. Brown and Valdes-Scantling, as well as hoping the flyer they took out on Funchess pays off. 

It's clear through the way this offseason has progressed that the Packers are working on beefing up the running game to do more to help set up the pass, especially in the play action game. But that only helps you so much if the guys you're throwing to aren't reliable. 

The Packers won 13 games with essentially the same receiving corps last year. But if you're not getting better, you're getting worse. Gutekunst has laid his chips on the table and bet on his young guys getting better. Time will tell if he was right.

__________________________

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.

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Comments (89)

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stockholder's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:03 am

I Just don't see anything positive in our Wrs. The explosion just isn't there. To be truthful, I see a Little Richard Rodgers in All of them. There is No evidence of impact. The guys who should have stepped up, didn't. So maybe it's a good thing we are going to run the ball. And truthfully; More Nfl teams are putting their Best Wr in the slot. The packers could have drafted a slot. They could of drafted defense and still got a Wr for the slot. I even Thought Adams might play the slot. Especially after his jump. But the facts are the facts. Gutey wanted to hurt Rodgers by not getting him the weapons he needed. The shut down defense. The switch and play on words are very confusing to most. Live and Learn people. Guteys plans will get us in the Toilet bowl. Not the super-bowl.

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Savage57's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:24 am

MVS, sub 4.4 time. Lazard, ESB and Kumerow, all 4.5 times as big WR's. The 'explosion just isn't there' premise is more fan anecdotal blamestorming made real by repetition, than fact.

They're all basically entering their third year and expecting them to make a jump is more reasonable than the roll of the dice a 1st round slot WR making a significant contribution in year one has proven to be over time.

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stockholder's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:39 am

MVS - Dropped passes, No Tree. No catch Radius. Lazard- Slow 4.55 No Tree . Kumerow plays slow. All lack the hips to turn. Making them straight line speed. No separation in routes. poor feet. Compare them to Adams who showed you his jump. Cutting on a dime. Fast in and out. Yes he will drop the ball. But he showed his on the field quickness. Funchess would not have been signed if it wasn't obvious. And what happened to your Allison.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 04:57 am

The blown two pick on Jackson in the 2018 draft is what set the Pack behind the curve when considering the talent that went through their fingers: Chark, Washington from OSU, Anthony Miller, Goedert at TE. Gallop, Mark Andrews. Kemoko Turay, Warner at ILB, Darius Guice, Orlando Brown, RT, O'Neil at RT starting for the Vikes. Nnadi at DT. Then the coup de grace with the selection of Burks in the third. That set of whiffs kept the Pack out of the SB. Oh, how could I forget the Trifecta with J'mon Moore(WR) in the fourth. Epic fail. Equan was rated as a three pick by some scouts, so I will hold judgement depending upon his ankle. I thought he was the best of the long-legs and 4.45 speed. Maybe MVS sticks as the deep shot guy, but he doesn't offer a sp team threat like Cordarrell Patterson.

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egbertsouse's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:05 am

Davante Adams, a couple of JAGs, and some guys who have to improve to become JAGs. So what, Malph is going to run it 50 times a game anyway from what I am reading.

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nostradanus's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:50 am

The Packers are transitioning to more of a two tight end, run - play action offense. Thus they will probably keep one or two less WR’s and the ones they keep need to be willing blockers. Sternberger will be used also like a big WR and Tyler Ervin as a gadget and slot guy. The Packers could still use more talent in the WR room and barring an injury to Adams they have enough to win now.
It’s just not an exciting group.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 04:48 am

Still need a speed guy with quicks to break press coverage. I would try to swing a trade.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

May 04, 2020 at 11:48 pm

They have him already....Adams!

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Stroh's picture

May 05, 2020 at 07:03 pm

What the hell are you watching? Adams is not fast by any stretch. Great WR and can get open but he's not a speed receiver at all. Pay attention.

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RCPackerFan's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:00 am

I like everyone was mad when the Packers didn't even draft 1 WR. We needed help there. I don't believe we are done adding tot he position.

That being said if we look at the position as it sits today, we can win with the receivers we have.

Adams is a stud. Plain and simple. Is he Julio or Megatron? no. But he is a stud!
It starts with him.

After Adams there are a lot of questions.

Lazard stepped up big time last year. He is our number 2. A full offseason after playing as much as he did should really benefit him. He provides size and reliable target for Rodgers. I would not be surprised if Lazard approaches 1000 yards and 7-10 TD's range.

After Lazard its a combination of MVS, EQ and Funchess.

MVS started out having a fantastic start to his year. In the first 7 games he had 21 receptions for 416 yards 19.8 yards per catch and 2 TD's. However in the following 9 games he had 5 receptions for 36 yards, 7.2 yards per catch and 0 TD's. It still remains a mystery why he dropped off like he did. He did get hurt and then he lost confidence and just never was the same. IF he can get back to be the player he was in the first 7 games and add Lazard to the mix, our top 3 guys are very good!

EQ being out for the year wasn't a great thing for the team. But he is a talented player and can provide another really good target for Rodgers.
The hard part for EQ and Funchess is that without a normal offseason its going to be hard knocking off the rust and gaining the timing with Rodgers.

Funchess, similar to EQ in that he missed most of last year but also was with a different team. So he has to learn the new offense and so far will not really have an offseason with the team. So when the season does start I think it will take a little while for Funchess to fit into the offense.

Kumerow. Who doesn't like him. He makes plays at times. But he isn't consistent enough to be relied on full time. If he is on the roster he will likely be the 5/6th receiver.

Shepherd I really liked last year. But the game got to big for him and he was put back on the PS. He is a guy to watch and see if he takes a step in year 2. He has been sort of forgotten but he spent the entire year working with the team and the coaches have had a lot of time to watch him grow. He could be a guy to emerge.

Begelton is an interesting player. Can he emerge from out of nowhere essentially? He will be a guy that I just want to see how he looks in the NFL.

Taylor. I found it interesting that his name was mentioned from Gutey during a press conference. Like Shepherd Taylor spent the year on the PS. He could also emerge.

I would not be surprised if they would bring in another WR. Perhaps even trade for one.
The one thing to remember is that this offense isn't solely ran through the WR's like it was under McCarthy. They will use the TE's and RB's a lot more in the passing game. Don't be surprised if they are used even more in the passing game this year.

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Tundraboy's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:21 pm

That is as optimistic a spin you can put on things. Most of all it assumes that Rodgers buys into everything day one, leads strongly, and just about everything goes right. Maybe in a movie but not with this team, this year. I enjoy your positivity nearly every year RC, but this year I need to see some significant player jumps and Rodgers play first. All I have seen since last year is Rodgers forcing the ball to Davante over and over and begrudgingly handing it off. Until he has played enough in rythym with a running approach, his sub par short passing is going to make for a lot of frustration.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 04:50 am

Edelman was Brady's #one WR in a couple SB wins. Where was he drafted?

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Stroh's picture

May 05, 2020 at 07:15 pm

That's completely ignoring the huge presence of Gronkowski who commanded at least double coverage. Besides Brady is more than willing to throw a 5 yd completion to keep the chains moving. Rodgers not so much!

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RCPackerFan's picture

May 01, 2020 at 06:58 am

I agree with you that it starts with Rodgers. He is the one throwing it to these guys. The beginning of the year he was throwing it to MVS and late to Lazard.

Something to remember is last year was LaFleurs first in GB. It was also Rodgers first time in a new scheme. It takes time to learn it. So naturally Rodgers is going to rely on what he knows best and trusts best when things don't work. That is throwing to the star WR. Don't be surprised if you see a much different Rodgers this year. One who is in more rhythm with the offense.

The RB's and TE's will help also.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 11:59 am

They will also install the hurry-up schemes and use the pace of the game to their advantage with help from the RBs and FB/HB.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 05:07 am

Who was left to pick @ #30, Mims? Shenault? Pittman? Not rated as one picks. The top five were gone by #22, then the Chargers jumped up to #23 for Murray ahead of Gutey's typical trade partner,NOLA at the #24. Aiyuk was the only guy left and Lynch pounced with the trade to the vikings #25. Love was the best pick at that point and may have been their target after Murray was grabbed in any event. That's the way it goes. Who knows which rookies will shine w/out OTAs etc or if the season will even be played?

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Lphill's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:38 am

The receivers look like this , .1 Adams , then ???? so opponents put you best cover guy on Adams maybe even double team { why not } . No way to make this more than it’s not . Trade Rodgers now.

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PeteK's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:45 pm

It wouldn't be a stretch if stats looked like the following; Adams 85-950, Lazard 50-550, Funchess 45-500, Jones 40-350, Sternberger 35-350, Ervin 35-300 ( He could be the quick slot, saw some playing time in the biggest games). That's a solid unit.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 05:11 am

I would jump up Sternberger's reception total.

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ShooterMcGee's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:49 am

I have read in the past few days 2 articles regarding dropped passes in 2019. 1 article stated that the Packers led the league by a wide margin with 628 lost yards in dropped passes. The average for the NFL was in the 200s. Then Dusty broke down 2 dropped passes in the 49er game that were critical in the early stages of that game.
Our receiver group may be 1 of the worst in the NFL. Outside of Davante we have nothing but below average wide outs. Many analysts see our offense trying to emulate that of San Francisco. Well the Niners have choosen wide receivers early such as Dante Pettis, Deebo Samuel, and Brandon Aiyuk. They also trade for Emmanuel Sanders since they realized having a strong receiver group compliments the running game.

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:42 am

They are half a decade further on in their team construction and still relatively settled in their roster. Tellingly, receivers were the luxury that they addressed last. Not a good argument for your intended point.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 05:21 am

No real ROI with Pettis either. That's why they traded for Sanders, a guy who was a Packer target in free agency, opting to stay near home at NOLA. Garappollo missed him wide open on the post route. No TD for you. No SB win for you. The move for Aiyuk showed Lynch was in desperate straights with his WR corps. He dealt Goodwin to get a four pick, another guy Gutedkunst was making an offer to snag pre-draft. He knows the WRs limitations.
I believe he swings a trade for a guy with some talent. He can use 2021 picks and feel safe as he snagged the QB in this 2020 draft.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:56 pm

Davante is really good but even he has so-so hands. It is fair to indicate that SF only devoted limited resources to WR when they had awful teams, using 4ths on Bruce Ellington, Quinton Patton, Sweltzer, but I didn't think GB was awful: GB hasn't had the 3rd pick, the 7th pick or the 9th pick in the last few drafts.

SF sure has spent a lot on WRs recently. A first in 2020, a high 2nd, a 3rd and a 4th in 2019, pick 44 in 2018, and being awful in 2017, took a 5th round flyer on a WR.

The Packers are apparently moving to a grind it out offense. Dropped balls will stress that strategy.

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Pack103172's picture

May 01, 2020 at 10:44 am

SF also gets 3rd round pick last back from injury, Jalen Hurts

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Handsback's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:55 am

Doesn't it come down to opportunities during a game for a wideout? If or when the Packers are running the ball 55% of the game, using a 2-TE offense which WR will get any opportunities outside of Adams on a regular basis? Then the question of receiver depth isn't that important if you have three that can run a route tree and reliably catch the ball in traffic.
I think the Packer's pass catchers in number of times being targeted this season will be: Adams, RB, TE, and # 2 receiver. After those 4 the number of targets will drop to insignificant numbers. So, they may not even have more than 4-5 WRs on their final 53 roster.
If this becomes the situation, it's why they didn't get a WR in the draft. After the top ones were picked, there wasn't any left on their board that was going to be another Adams or equivalent.

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PackEyedOptimist's picture

April 30, 2020 at 09:16 am

I completely agree with everything you said here, Handsback.
Adams is a top WR, so everyone who has their pearls clutched is doing so over the #2 WR, but I agree with you, that Aaron Jones is the #2 going forward. I really believe he's going to be used like Deebo Samuel.
Past that, we have real potential in ESB, Lazard, and Funchess, and we only need ONE of them to be our #3 target. I have no faith in MVS; he is a speed threat, but he has never shown the ability to make contested catches. He's fine when he's open, but it's almost impossible to not have a DB get to you and hit you by the time the ball gets there, unless you're a quick guy getting a timing pass.

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:51 am

I think you hit the nail on the head. As I see it there is another level. If we accept that this is a LaFleur offense now, receivers are expected to block and block well. Lazard does that. Funchess does that and both have the size to back it. Those two are going to be on the field a lot as a result. If so, in addition to Adams, you need variation. That is where MVS has a leg up. EQ I see as the most versatile other.

Adams, Funchess, Lazard, MVS, EQ. If there is an injury, my guess is Bagelton. I don’t see much chance that any but the last 3 interchanging or another breaking in absent injury. I see a lot of snaps for the first 3, If Adams goes down its EQ.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:01 pm

Aaron Jones is a top running back and the plan is to move him to slot WR?

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ricky's picture

April 30, 2020 at 09:10 am

The recent history of undrafted Packers WR's doesn't bode well for Lazard's future. A few years ago, Jarrett Boykin came out of nowhere and did very well for a couple of seasons. Then he just stopped developing, and was cut. Geronimo Allison had a couple of decent years, then fell off the cliff last year. Now there is Lazard, who made some spectacular plays last year. And maybe he'll do well again this year. But if history is a guide, he'll become a liability in year three. I hope I'm wrong, and each case is individual, but he's bucking a long term trend.

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:24 am

"The recent history of undrafted Packers WR's doesn't bode well for Lazard's future."

I'd like to see an analysis league-wide of which positions have the highest "success rate" as UDFAs. In general, the players who have all the pieces--HWS, skill, polish, etc.--get drafted, so there's always some kind of flaw in the game of UDFAs. I would argue those flaws become more apparent the more snaps a player gets. Allison is a prime example. We may see Lazard's flaws more fully as he plays more, but I think Lazard has a chance to hang on for a while. I think he's a really good 4th and decent 3rd WR, but as a full-time 2nd WR will always make you look for more.

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 09:47 am

Adams is our WR corps. After him we have hopes, wishes and questions? Hope is not a plan.

This is the weakest WR group that we have had since before Ron Wolf became the Packers GM. This group doesn’t come close to Adams, Jordy and Cobb just an example.

This WR group maybe more of a detriment to our run game than a compliment. Especially given the fact that our OL has also become a question mark at least on the right side.

Can one or 2 of our young WRs emerge? Of course. But emerge to what? How much upside does MVS or ESB really have? Beg Elton is hoping for lightning in a bottle. Funchess drops passes. Nothing takes the wind out of an offense sails like a dropped pass on a 3rd down play during a promising scoring drive.

Nothing replaces speed and good hands in a WR group. We had a chance to get one and we let the chance go by the boards. So we’re going to pay Rodgers about $2 million per game to throw about 15 times per game and run behind a very questionable right side of the OL. With 15 throws at $2million per game that comes to $133K per pass attempt. With 20 throws we’re still at $100K per attempt.
Great use of cap space on top of drafting a clipboard warrior for the next 2 possibly 3 seasons. OK that sounds good. Stay well.
Thanks, Since ‘61

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TimBackes's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:12 am

Strong disagree that this is the weakest group the team has had. Don't forget that at one point Bill Schroeder was the team's top receiving target.

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:57 am

Bill Schroeder did have 3 seasons of more than 900 yards (one was over 1000), and averaged more than 15 ypc in his time as a Packer. He played next to a declining Antonio Freeman for most of his time in GB and played a couple of those seasons with Ahman Green (and even Dorsey Levens) running wild and catching a crap-ton (70-ish) of passes. The ball was spread around pretty broadly those couple of seasons. The Packers have Aaron Jones in the Levens/Green role--even last year he didn't catch 50 passes--and Adams in the #1 WR role...then what? Maybe the top of the WR pyramid is stronger, but there's not much to make opposing DCs lose sleep after that.

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:14 am

Cookie Dobber! See my response to Tim below. Stay well. Thanks , Since ‘61

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:15 am

Really??? When Schroeder was playing in Green Bay so was Antonio Freeman and I would take Freeman over any WR that we have on the current roster except for Adams.

Adams and Freeman as our #1&2 today would be infinitely better than Adams and the question marks that we currently have at WR.

As I recall Schroeder had pretty good speed and caught over 100 passes in 2 seasons. That is more than MVS, ESB, Begelton, Funchess and the other question marks have caught in their careers combined.

Even if I gave you the benefit of the doubt for the Schroeder days that is still back almost 20 years, which speaks for itself. Check your facts before you respond. I have come to expect better from the CHTV and previous AllGBP contributors.

We also had Bubba Franks at TE and Ahman Green at RB both of whom were better receivers at their respective positions than the current counter parts. Just think how much better our offense would be with Adams, Freeman, Franks and Green as our skill players with Rodgers at QB. Stay well. Thanks, Since ‘61

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TimBackes's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:20 am

You seem to have taken this quite personally, which is confusing. "I have come to expect better..." Relax, man.

2000-ish Antonio Freeman was widely criticized by fans and media alike as underperforming and being a washed-up body catcher. It is hard to say with any certainty that one would take Freeman over every other receiver currently on the roster. He was in the middle of a rapid, significant decline, and didn't have the physical traits and raw athleticism that many of the players currently on the roster have.

Having Adams as a top option, a top-five player at the position, is clearly better than having declined Freeman, Schroeder or both as top options, I don't think that's particularly arguable. And the players after that? I'd take my chances with the guys on this roster over the depth players at that time.

Franks and Green (and any other tight ends/running backs) are irrelevant to a discussion of depth at the wide receiver position.

I already stated in the article that the receiver position is an area of weakness on the team, and that it should have been addressed better than it was. My issue is the "weakest since before Ron Wolf" claim, which I believe is a) false, and b) doesn't even take into consideration that before Wolf, the Packers were also throwing to Hall of Fame caliber players like Sterling Sharpe and James Lofton and putting up big passing numbers in doing so.

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Tarynfor12's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:29 am

IIRC and perhaps I don't, Freeman played better with his arm in a cast then any WR on this team, less Adams.

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TimBackes's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:59 am

The year Freeman had his arm in a cast was 1996, when he was just entering his prime. Prime Freeman is absolutely an easy choice over anyone on the roster but Adams. But declining Freeman... Not so much.

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:36 pm

Agreed, a declining Antonio Freeman with Bill Schroeder...
1999: 74 catches, 1074 yd, 6 TD
2000: 62-912-9
2001: 52-818-6

Keeping in mind that Ahman Green caught 70+ passes in 2000, 60+ in 2001, and Dorsey Levens caught 70+ in 1999...AND Schroeder caught his share for more than 900 each season as the downfield threat. The most established WR on the Packers roster not named Adams played a half of football in 2019 and not for the Packers. No other WR on the Packers roster has had more than 38 catches in a single season.

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:51 pm

I rest my case. Thanks Dobber, Since ‘61

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:07 pm

No worries Taryn, you do recall correctly. Tim wrote himself into a corner and he doesn’t like it. I’ve never appreciated media hype (stupidity) which is what happens when they give us click bait rather than facts. Then when we reply with facts we get obfuscation. This blog is and has been better than that. Stay well. Thanks, Since ‘61

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:26 pm

BOOM!

Past cookies and up to brownies!

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:52 pm

Now you’re talking Dobber. Thanks, Since ‘61

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Tundraboy's picture

April 30, 2020 at 07:29 pm

We might need those special brownies this year. I'm going the Blondie route.

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Tarynfor12's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:35 pm

Thank you Since'61, Tim seems to have purposely missed the point that Freeman had a cast regardless of entering his prime. Put a cast on any player they have now and they don't even see the field and that point does include Adams.

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:56 pm

Truth to power! I understand where Gute thinks he is trying to go but still no excuse for not taking a WR in this draft.
Thanks, Since ‘61

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:56 am

I think there is much in what you are all saying. I think the solution is the interesting one: the equivalent of the way this team seems to be going. The difference is that there is more youth and upside in this receiving corps than in the years you reference. The solution of spreading the balm around with a strong running game might give some pause to ponder?

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:37 pm

A young Donald Driver was on those teams.

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Since'61's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:09 pm

Tim - I never said that Freeman was better than Adams. I said that Freeman would be better than any WR on the current roster except for Adams.

Also Lofton and Sharpe never played together. Prior to Wolf’s arrival in Green Bay Sharpe was our only WR, similar to Adams being our only WR now. Before that we had Lofton and John Jefferson who played a few seasons together. Jefferson was past his prime but he was still enough of a threat that defenses needed to account for him which opened things up a bit for Lofton.

The reason that I brought up Franks and Green is because they were viable receiving options for Favre and he spread the ball around much more because he had them as weapons in the passing game.
Rodgers doesn’t have the same levels of weapons at those 2 positions so he relies almost exclusively on Adams. Failure to select a WR in this year’s draft leaves him in relatively in the same position again this season.

Success at the professional level in any endeavor requires talent. Why? Because with proper coaching, preparation and planning talent will execute effectively. What we have in our WR corps is talent in Adams and hopes, wishes and dreams in the rest. Hopes, wishes and dreams do not translate into execution. In fact they distract from execution.

You are correct that our WR corps is a weakness and a weakness that could very well hinder our offense rather than help in 2020. We won’t agree but Freeman and Schroeder are looking pretty good to me as our #s 2&3 compared with the pile of question marks we have acquired to play alongside Adams. One final thought. Adams goes down for the season in Week 1, who is our #1 WR. Very simple answer, we no longer have a #1. We have hopes, wishes and question marks. Case closed. Thanks, Since ‘61

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TimBackes's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:23 pm

I know Sharpe and Lofton never played together, what I meant was that the Packers in the decade before Wolf still had a pair of insanely talented, high-level receivers, and did not struggle much in the passing game.

I understood your point re: Franks and Green, but the purpose of the article is comparing the wide receiver position specifically. In fact, I quite agree that Franks and Green gave a couple more reliable weapons overall than what Rodgers has right now; Sternberger is a complete unknown, and while I think Jones can turn out to be Green's equal in the passing game (in a wider variety of receiving roles), he still has more to prove there.

Finally, I agree there is no clearcut #1 if Adams goes down. But please also remember that the Packers offense played its most efficient, high-level football of the year in the month that Adams went down last season. Obviously you'd rather have Adams on the field, but essentially the same offense performed quite well in his absence last year, even with a weak receiving corps.

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Demon's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:23 pm

What I wouldnt give for a body catcher like Freeman right now. Freeman was a bodycatcher from day 1. I remember a great quote from Holmgren when Freeman was criticized for it. "I dont care if you catch it with your feet, if your a receiver, catch the damn ball"

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:28 pm

I remember one time he caught it flat on his back and ran it in for a gut-punch game-winning TD against the Vikings...

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 05:29 am

Toss in a two pick on Robert Ferguson...yikes!

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:06 am

The Packers cut ties with WR coach Alvis Whitted pretty fast after the 2019 season and have installed Jason Vrable to run the receivers' room. The speed with which they let Whitted go says that either there was a bad fit (either with the remaining staff or with the players) or he just wasn't very good. Maybe it was scapegoating.

Whatever the case, the Packers have a slew of young WRs, all of whom not named Lazard failed to advance in 2019. Given that management has decided that this same troupe of players will have to man the position for at least the next full season if not more, they've got to get every bit they can out of it. Adams isn't getting any younger, and his contract comes up after the 2021 season. There's no heir apparent to his #1 WR spot on the roster. Here's to hoping some of these guys emerge, otherwise they've painted themselves into a corner.

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Tarynfor12's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:24 am

As much as many here, by way of finding reasons to now justify this draft, support the move by MLF and the FO to copycat the SF offense while ignoring the GB defense, this team isn't close to being a copycat of the SF offense on their worst day. This team doesn't have a Kittle, nor the RB depth or the WR depth and talent to simulate it in practice much less in a real game.

This was not the year to take the ball out of Rodgers hands or to deny the upgrade at WR that 'We all knew' was a NEED before the draft and is now a need that many here, as the ultimate optimists, will now somehow deny such a need and find those necessary jumps being made even when they aren't because it's what your ilk do so well, believe you see what you don't and become blind to the obvious negative which is worse than the former.

I also know some are still trying to wrap their heads around the reasoning for this draft and I would ask you to not fall to the premise of the optimist here but stick to your guns because when the season begins every doubt you had about this draft and the expected jumps needed and gambled on by the FO will prove you right and you will then begin to see the failings of being a blind or ultimate optimist.

The jump from the WR's, a huge gamble, and the installation of the offensive scheme of MLF, which lacks much at RB and OL and TE, is a huge task and tacking on the apparent task of getting Rodgers to bury his top two abilities, brain and arm, to be more a hand off specialist will be difficult in itself without the former two mentioned.

Good Luck, they're going to need a heck of a lot more than they got last season that made them the best 13-3 pretenders.

This draft actually could have made them less the pretenders being carried over this season and a more possible true contender for a playoff spot in the now diluted system for entrance.

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CoachDino's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:00 pm

I don't see him burying either his brain or arm.

He will actually have more opportunity touse his brain. Going to this offense will create more mismatch potentials. Rodgers should be able to spot these presnap - call the correct play and formation and then execute.
I think he will also have more opportunity to throw deep. If teams start crowding the box or playing run heavy he can play action to deep route opportunities.

This whole WR thing is out of hand.

The Packers did do something to improve from 2019.
1) Lazard will not start the season on the Practice squad but as a #2 or #3 rec
2) They signed Funchess
3) EQS is coming back from Injury
4) Said good bye to Allisson
5) Picked up the #1 rec in the CFL
6) They continued to change the offense to put less stress on WR
7) They improved the run game
8) Lost Bulaga - that will hurt
9)Two Receiving TE's that were hurt last year should be 100%
10) Cut Graham
Remember all these moves aren't designed to pu a #1 receiver but a #2 or lower receiver.
11) AR should be better at running this offense. I was and am a fan but he didn't do this offense justice last year.

Are all these even correct and will they pan out. Don't know but I can say the WR unit better than last year and see very little to no evidence it won't be.
In a offense not focused on passing I would still love to see them upgrade on MVS for the Speed guy I think they are lacking. Certainly not more important than getting the other pieces required to fill out this new scheme roster.

1 last thing - It's Aaron fricken Rodgers - He needs weapons but he needs them much less than most.

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:27 am

I agree with most of your early assessments, though I think the key to Funchess is how he is used. He was forced to play a role which I don’t think played to his strengths when he started for Carolina. Indy agreed to the tune of $20 million from what they said. Of course, if he had proved them right, he would not be here: a broken bone prevented us from finding out. Since he was on a one year deal and they had players emerge, concluding much of anything from that year if dubious.

Lazard is a player I have always underestimated but one wonders about his ceiling. He lost weight last year to speed up and it worked—I’m not sure 227 is still accurate though it’s what he is listed at.

EQ was competent in camp and just starting to look good when injured. Given the time elapsed, I see no reason why he wouldn’t be fit now. He has talent, I think the coach change asked more of him than most. I see no reason to expect him to mature at least somewhat. At his best, he looks very fluid for a big man and elusive.

After that is where I think more effort is needed. If you watched camp, Shepherd consistently got open, made tremendous catches and was very agile. He also looked truly natural catching punts. Then he hits the season and looks completely different at both. The punt isn’t cleverer in season. I find that suggestive. It seems to me that he mentally froze. It’s a huge jump in level from wher he played to Lambeau. For that reason (and in bringing him back I infer that the Packers agree), I do not write him off as a true, very agile, small slot with good hands. He made the roster on merit in camp last year despite starting as a trialist.

Bagelton. CFL receivers don’t often convert successfully. It’s a much wider field and the standard is accepted to be lower. That said, he has tremendous hands and runs good routes. Seems to play faster than he is timed. Those qualities, together with his attitude, would make me interested in him as a prospect bout of college. He is probably not a slot type, so provides an alternative on the perimeter to the big receivers. Given the chance, I will watch him with interest.

Malik Taylor. I really don’t know much about him. That said, the Packers seem to like his potential. Gute spontaneously referenced his potential in a recent press conference. Ordinarily, a receiver who didn’t show during a season like last year would have been allowed to depart by now if there wasn’t a high opinion of his upside. He is a small school alum and thus could need development. He is a decent athlete: at Central Michigan’s pro day, Taylor ran the 40-yard dash in under 4.5 seconds, hit 36″ in the vertical and 10-6 in the broad jump, did 11 reps on the bench press and finished the three-cone drill in 6.81 seconds and the short shuttle in 4.02. Again, one I would watch in camp.

Finally, Stewart. He looks like a larger slot candidate with upside but rough edges. From what I have seen he has a lot to like physically and some issues with technique and concentration. He has some intriguing attributes.

I don’t think the cupboard is full, I don’t think it as bare as many do. I do expect the coaches to get more from those not named Adams and some growth from EQ and MVS in particular. Those two are the real wild cards in this evaluation it seems to me. If either clicks, we are so much better due to their ceiling.

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TimBackes's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:37 am

Lots of good points, but I'm not sure I share your optimism with Shepherd. Shepherd did make the roster on merit--as the seventh receiver. To make it to the team again this year, he'd either have to leapfrog Kumerow or hope the team keeps seven again (Adams, Lazard, Funchess, MVS, ESB, Kumerow would all have to be considered the six favorites at the moment), and beat out any other competition he faces for that seventh spot.

I don't think it's out of the question, but it's probably unlikely. I'm rooting for the guy though, he fought hard last year and he brings a different style of play and some potential versatility. The question is, is there anything he can do that a guy like Tyler Ervin at RB/WR can't do better?

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:07 pm

I watched him and he has something. I don’t write him off because he did things in camp that stood out consistently. I also don’t see him on the roster. I think they keep 5, Funchess and Adams, Lazard, EQ and MVS from last year. Bagelton is the wild card.

I can see Shepherd on the PS.

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dobber's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:39 pm

I agree: Shepherd's ticket to the roster is on STs. He's gotta beat out Ervin for that...good luck.

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stockholder's picture

April 30, 2020 at 01:05 pm

This is just blind optimism. Lets use history first. Adams replaces Jennings. Jones was still faster then Funchess. Yet TT took Nelson not relying on Jones. For speed and Hands. Jordy Nelson became Rodgers favorite target. You don't have anything close to Jennings, Jones, Nelson, or Finley. And then lets throw Cobb into this too. The packers not only have failed at TE, but at WR in the last 9 years. You don't pay slow.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

April 30, 2020 at 08:41 pm

I don't remember ESB (the guy I thought would break out in 2019) having a good camp. Rather, I thought he was making a case for the practice squad. Perhaps my memory stinks, but given I thought he'd break out and show something, I think he was underwhelming. You've made this assertion a couple of times now.

Preseason Game 1: 1 target, 0 Recs, 0 Yards
Preseason Game 2: 1 target, 0 Recs, 0 Yards
Preseason Game 3: 4 targets, 1 Rec, 7 Yards

Six Targets, 1 Recs, 7 yards is not inspiring.

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Point-Packer's picture

April 30, 2020 at 10:44 am

Lets give arguably the most talented QB in the history of the game, minus Davante Adams, this dumpster heap of misfits, injury ridden JAGS and borderline CFL guys. And then not draft a WR in what has been proclaimed the most WR rich draft in the history of the NFL. Sounds like a brilliant approach.

"they just need to play" - Aaron Nagler

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Charvid's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:00 am

Funchess was, I believe, the 41st player selected in his draft class...essentially a first rounder. Let’s see how he does before classifying him as JAG or part of a dumpster heap. He’s never had a QB like AR throwing to him.

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Demon's picture

April 30, 2020 at 01:03 pm

And if Funchess was any good you dont think carolina wouldnt have kept him? Next please!

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flackcatcher's picture

April 30, 2020 at 04:36 pm

Did you see Cam at QB for Carolina before he was replaced. Funchess was good in that offense, it's too bad Cam was spraying the ball all over the place...

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Coldworld's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:58 pm

Well he got paid $20 million for a year after he left.

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Demon's picture

April 30, 2020 at 11:04 am

Anyone who defends Packer receivers does so with their beer goggles on. I wasnt one of the people beating on Gute to draft a receiver in round one, but an upgrade was/is completely necessary.

I dont think Ive ever seen a bigger collection of stiffs at the wideout position beyond Adams. Every pass thrown by a QB cant be perfect. In Green Bay it has to be and then its only 50/50 that the guy actually catches it.

Lazard is the only holdover that seemed to even want the ball. The rest looked like they were strolling through the park.

Pinning your hopes that ESB and a CFL player can make a meaningful contribution is at best irresponsible and more likely foolish.

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flackcatcher's picture

April 30, 2020 at 04:39 pm

I like Beer...goggles :-)

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stockholder's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:49 pm

2006 #52 Greg Jennings. 2007 #78 James Jones 2008 #36 Jordy Nelson 2008 #91 Jermicheal Finley Te 2011 #64 Randall Cobb They weren't #1s like 1988 Sterling Sharpe 2000 #14 Bubba franks, or 2002 #20 Javon Walker wr. But the above formed one of the most feared passing Attacks in the NFL. So we have Adams rd 2 now. But little else.!! You only have to compare the selections to Guteys. TT missed on Davis and others after 2011. NOT Fixing the Wrs was the biggest mistake made by this franchise since the 1980s. (When players went to Canada and a QB taken @6 (Rich Campbell). Gutey missed on Moore. He's now down to MVS, Brown and FAs. The history of the packers has already taught us. Gutey made a mistake in all 3 rounds. And IMO; in all 3 drafts, when you look at the past 15 years.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 12:08 pm

See the 2018 draft reference.

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BoHunter's picture

April 30, 2020 at 12:17 pm

I agree with RCPacker, Lazard is a STUD who will have a 1,000 yds and 7-10 tds this year.

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Stroh's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:31 pm

Gutey was trying to trade up in the 2nd rd to get a WR, but after the last one he wanted went in the middle 2nd he gave up. They simply didn't have the ammo to move up alot after trading a 4th rd pick to move up for Love. This WR group is a mess and it won't get more help till next yrs draft. Packers have to resign some big names on the roster so that'll take precedence over a WR. Lazard is a #4 WR, EQ possible the same. MVS is playing his way OFF the roster. Kumerow is an old man and has peaked. I don't care for Funchess but they had to try something. He'll be a decent #3 if he can catch and if no he'll be a bench warmer.

WR is going to have to wait till next offseason and then maybe sign a mid level FA WR and then take a WR in the 2nd rd. The Packers are very unlikely to use a 1st rd pick on a WR. Only Sherman broke that mold. The Packers almost exclusively use 1st rd picks on QB, OT, CB and Pass Rusher under Wolf and his protege's.

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Tarynfor12's picture

April 30, 2020 at 03:20 pm

"Gutey was trying to trade up in the 2nd rd to get a WR, but after the last one he wanted went in the middle 2nd he gave up. They simply didn't have the ammo to move up alot after trading a 4th rd pick to move up for Love."

This is why Gute made a huge error in drafting Love and giving up a 4th to do so. However, there were WR's that Gute could have taken in the 2nd that would been a big enough upgrade to the WR group we have,less Adams.

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Stroh's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:35 pm

You gotta secure the future of the franchise when your able, not when the need arrises. Anytime you can draft a possible Franchise QB you do it! No questions asked. He thought Love could be a franchise QB so he made the move. He also heard and I read that Indy was really trying to move ahead of the Packers. If he wanted Love he had to go get him!

When our pick at #62 came up I didn't like ANY of the WR options, so I don't blame him for not using #62 on WR.

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jannes bjornson's picture

May 01, 2020 at 12:06 pm

Not many trade partners willing to move for 2021 future picks because of the uncertainty surrounding this season and the next year's draft.

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Lare's picture

April 30, 2020 at 03:52 pm

"Gutey was trying to trade up in the 2nd rd to get a WR"

Gutekunst traded up to get Burks, he traded up to get Savage, he traded up to get Love. If he couldn't trade up to a WR out of the most talented WR draft class in the history of the NFL, then IMO he wasn't trying very hard.

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Stroh's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:38 pm

The WR he wanted went off the board in the mid 2nd. After that he didnt like what was left. At #62, I didn't like any of the WR either, so don't blame him a bit for not taking one at 62. I assume the last one he wanted was Shenault who went early to mid 40's IIRC. After moving up for Love and giving up his 4th rd pick he didn't have the ammo to move very high.

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TheBigCheeze's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:29 pm

is Darrell Stewart really 121#?......and just STOP using the word "DARLING".....it is just toooooo G A Y........

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flackcatcher's picture

April 30, 2020 at 05:35 pm

I agree with both Taryn and Coldword comments about the draft and the WR group. They are in a way, two haves of the same argument about personnel and choice. Most of us are surprised (and still are) at why the Packers would make and sacrifice high draft choices for an uncertain future now. When Gute hired MLF (yes, yes, Gute not Murphy made the hire despite Russ Ball's PR spin) The main desire was to return to a run game that had been abandoned in the last two years of the McCarthy era. (Or to be blunt, Rodgers abandonment of the run game under McCarthy) And to be honest, there is not much difference between McCarthy's old west coast scheme (2007-2013, 2014-2015) and MLF's pro set. The main difference is in the blocking sets and pass route options used. One could see why Gute would be attracted to MLF as an offensive coach. As GM, Gute had two main problems coming in. While the Packers had a good core group, there was nothing behind them. (Which led to the collapse in the second half in both 2017-2018) At the same time he had to fight the meddling of Mark Murphy in player drafting and free agency.

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flackcatcher's picture

April 30, 2020 at 06:32 pm

It took the executive committee issuing a series of edicts to finally force Murphy out of the personnel office leaving Gute free to do his job. Gute's last two drafts and free agent signings were all about plugging the holes short term in the offense, and drafting and signing starters for the Packer defense. Looking over the defense, one would say Gute has done that. This draft was about two issues, both short and long term on offense. Replacing core depth on the offensive line and returning balance to the offensive scheme. In MLF scheme the FB and TE are the key players in the play action. For most of the season, MLF never had those pieces in his system. (Last game look at what he had in his skill players, injury did a great deal of damage. It was beyond pitiful...) When seeing the big picture, one can understand why Gute made the choices he did in this draft, and why the WR group was left unchanged. One last point. This Packer team is still extremely thin at a number of key positions, and that will not change until the next draft and free agency period in 2021. Combine that with the installment of MLF's system, that was never complete last year. (Short OTA. Shorter training camp. Thanks, Rodger//) One could see why both Gute and MLF would refuse to scrap the WR group and start again.

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Stroh's picture

April 30, 2020 at 06:45 pm

"The main difference is in the blocking sets and pass route options used."

Actually that IS a big difference. The blocking schemes in the run game and the route combinations of the receivers are what make an offense what it is.

Gute had a good relationship w/ McCarthy by all accounts, it wasn't his idea to fire McCarthy. Once that was done tho, I agree he had a large part in the decision to hire MLF. But I don't think it was Gutey's desire to have a running team.

Murphy is not involved in th the draft and FA. He simply IS NOT! So that part is patently false. Once Gutey and Murphy hired MLF, he stepped out of the picture and is strictly involved in the business side. He's not meddling in personnel decisions!

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flackcatcher's picture

May 01, 2020 at 09:06 am

Both the Walsh and Shanahan systems directly sprung from the air Coryell offensive system. Main difference is as you say in the blocking schemes and route trees allowing for more timing routes in Walsh's system. Or to be honest, pick plays. Even today, Denver is notorious for cut blocking in their run sets. I avoided the Thursday night firing because that is that one episode that exposed Murphy and most folks on this blog would rather not read about it. And YES, Murphy was involved in the draft in the wake Thompson illness. There was a vacuum of power, Murphy stepped into it as Packer president and became the final voice on player personnel issue. Even after the hiring of Gute, Murphy fought a pretty vicious rear guard action trying to hold on being the final voice over in player personnel. In each and every case, the executive committee had to reaffirm Gute's position as GM and force Murphy out of coaching selection, player salary negotiations, and yes draft selection. It's clear why the Packer organization as a whole has tried to bury this. Murphy's actions were a giant blot on a fine record as Packer president. In many ways it's a real shame for he has been a very good manager at 1265. I'll leave it at that.

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Irish_Cheesehead's picture

April 30, 2020 at 06:32 pm

I guess it’s Funchess or bust! And pound the rock!

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GatorJason's picture

April 30, 2020 at 09:16 pm

I’m a numbers guy and like the NFL model for assigning numbers to a rookie's likelihood of being an impact player. Last year I over-rated all the Packers receivers except for Lazard. Not this year.

This is the scale I will use to assess Packers WR

Grading Scale:
10. NFL All Pro
9.5 NFL Pro-Bowl
9.0 NFL No. 1
8.5 NFL No. 2
8.0 NFL Rotation player on game day
7.5 NFL game day active primarily for ST
7.0 NFL inactive reserve or PS player

2020 Pre-preseason Assessment

Davante Adams: 9.5. Elite elusiveness, toughness and hands. Has Aaron’s trust. Smart. Has top-tier on-field-communications with QB. Adams is a true impact player.

The Packers currently have no #2 receiver on the roster.

Allen Lazard: 8.0. Solid rotation receiver. Made big plays using his large frame. Not especially elusive or fast but can make tough contested catch with VG reach radius. Seemed to gain Aaron's trust over the year. An outstanding ST player. ML loves him.

Devin Funchess: 8.0. TE/WR tweener like Lazard. Possession receiver. Had ability to make big catches early in career. Will either resurrect career in GB or fade away in 2020, especially if Lazard progresses.

MVS: 7.8. H/W/S guy who was very inconsistent in 2019. Lost confidence and faded. Very low catch % (46%). Makes occasional big plays but not reliable enough to be a #2. Must improve in 2020 or go.

Jake Kumerow: 7.6. Cagey veteran with good hands and route running. He’ll burn defense if they fall asleep on him but not athletic enough to create space. All-star in Pre-season. Nice size, just like the three above him. Needs to be TD Jesus in pre-season again to make team.

EQSB: 7.5. Fan favorite but an enigma. Fast but not quick, agile but not elusive, tall but not physical. Easily covered. Another receiver who must improve in route running and catch %. V. Good ST. He’s only 23.

Reggie Begelton: 7.0. Tough, average sized WR with strong upper body and good jumps. VG CFL receiver. Packers taking a flyer he might be tough WR who can play slot position. Lumberjack WRs not good in slot.

Malik Taylor: 6.7. BG loves athletes like Taylor and is giving him another shot to translate athleticism into production. Talent is more than just H/W/S. Heart, discipline, awareness and confidence mean more. Taylor has to show those qualities to make team.

Darrius Shepherd: 6.5. Hot receiver last pre-season. Then reality struck in regular season where he dropped balls and disappeared without a trace. Too bad. Thought he could be the SE to replace Cobb. Nope. Behind Ervin on ST and likely Begelton in the slot.
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Cartwright's picture

May 01, 2020 at 04:24 am

I got a hunch that Gutey is waiting for cutdown day and is going to grab a discarded veteran or trade for one. If we can nail Odell and get him on board will all be forgiven? MVS and EQB for OBJ.

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rdent's picture

May 01, 2020 at 08:00 am

I guess the current WR group isn't sexy enough for most fans but I'll give it one more year, looking like I won't have much choice, lol.

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NMPF's picture

May 01, 2020 at 09:13 am

The same people bitchin' about no WR drafted are the same ones that whimper into their wee little pillows that #12 never, ever, ever throws to a rook WR. Let's see, he does not trust them. I believe the GREEN BAY PACKERS might have saved you $$$$$ on therapy

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dobber's picture

May 01, 2020 at 01:01 pm

C'orey Davis' 5th year option declined by the Titans. He had his best year with LaF in TEN, but has fallen behind AJ Brown as #1WR.

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