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Report: Packers to Hire Mike Pettine as DC

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Report: Packers to Hire Mike Pettine as DC

Adam Schefter of ESPN reported on Tuesday night that the Green Bay Packers appear to be headed towards hiring former Browns head coach Mike Pettine as thier new defensive coordinator.  Pettine will replace Dom Capers, who has coordinated Green Bay's defense since 2009.  Pettine was also a defensive coordinator for the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills.

Pettine's defenses were nothing short of outstanding.  Below are the Defensive DVOA ranks for the defenses that Pettine has coordinated in the past:

2009 New York Jets 1st
2010 New York Jets 5th
2011 New York Jets 2nd
2012 New York Jets 2nd
2013 Buffalo Bills 4th

Pettine's first defense with the Browns wasn't terrible, either.  The Browns checked in at 11th, decidedly above average.  Pettine, though would eventually succumb to all that is Cleveland and put forth the 29th ranked unit and the 30th overall team.  It ultimately cost him his job as a head coach.  

Before Pettine's time as a defensive coordinator he was a part of Rex Ryan's staff as an assistant defensive line coach and an outside linebacker coach in Baltimore.   Pettine's expertise at the line of scrimmage could create a clean mesh with the two experienced secondary coaches the Packers would likely want to keep in CB coach Joe Whitt, Jr. and Safety coach Darren Perry.  Regardless Pettine needs to find new coaches for the defensive line and the linebackers.

The former Browns head coach's specialty is definitely pass defense.  At no point in his time as a defensive coordinator did any of his five groups rank below sixth in passing yards allowed.  Having Revis and Cromartie at the peak of their powers didn't help but there are other moving parts involved.  The Packers have talent.  They also have plenty of room to acquire new talent, as I outlined on CHTV on Monday.

If you're looking for a contrast from Capers, and most Packers fans are, this quote from a 2014 Sports Illustrated article provides a poignant quote.

“It's your job as a coach to keep throwing stuff at them and at some point, you'll get feedback,” Pettine says. “But you're going to have teams, like the 2006 Ravens defense, that had almost like an infinite sponge. We could have 60 calls up on game day, it doesn't matter. Those guys Ed [Reed], Ray [Lewis], Adalius [Thomas], Jarret Johnson—those guys could handle anything you threw at them. If your team's cumulative sponge isn't big, then you might have to back it off a little bit. I think sponge-wise, we're pretty smart. We already have some advanced stuff very quickly. But there's some coaches that each year, teach, This what we run and that's it. They don't ask more of their guys. To me that's coaching. If your guys can do more and you’re not doing more, that's on you. Or if this is your norm and you have a pretty good team and they're just not mentally there, then [expletive] pare it back a little bit.”

Capers 2016 unit would not be categorized by anybody as "pretty smart".  The Packers played with 10 guys, struggled to get lined up and failed to communicate consitently.  The unit bickered back and forth, failed to execute a flawed scheme and showed every symptom of a poorly coached unit.

From a scheme perspective, Pettine draws a lot from his Marvin Lewis / Rex Ryan upbringing.  The base of his coverage scheme is a single-high safety.  Life's easy when that single high safety in Baltimore is Ed Reed.  Pettine also had success with centerfielders that aren't first ballot hall of famers.  Kerry Rhodes and Jim Leonhard helped him out in New York, followed by Leonhard (again) and Aaron Williams in Buffalo.   

The Packers will have to be able to run 4-3 and 3-4 concepts, mostly with a 1-gap discipline.  Look for Pettine to use his two most disruptive defensive players, Mike Daniels and Kenny Clark in the same way he used Kris Jenkins and Mo Wilkerson.  Pettine loves defensive linemen that can win upfield.  It's a better use of Clark and Daniels than two-gapping as true 3-4 defensive linemen.  Pettine will likely have multiple uses for hybrid edges like Nick Perry and Clay Matthews.  Using safeties like Burnett and Jones won't be new to Pettine.  Can Blake Martinez be his David Harris?

Here's a fascinating sequence from Pettine in a 2011 game against Jacksonville.  Pettine opens up with left end, 1T, 3T, right end, and basically creates a 4-4 by dropping a safety down (Burnett/Jones anyone?).  Multiple time pro bowler MJD Is dropped for a 1 yard gain.  He then follows that with a 4-3 under look with seven in the box and four back.  The LEO breaks up the pass during his rush.  Finally Pettine goes to the three man rush (gasp), but instead of a soft eight man zone the Jets use aggressive man defense with strategic zone help.  The QB is sacked for a safety by the 1T.  

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (148) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

NashvilleCheesehead's picture

A solid reorganization for the Pack. I am intrigued to see how changes impact our next two seasons. GO PACK GO!!

Turophile's picture

Gute as GM, check
Philbin (seems to be) OC, check
Pettine as DC, check
Patrick Graham a candidate for linebackers coach ?

Haven't seen anything i don't like so far...........

rstain99's picture

As soon as I saw Cleveland Browns attached to his name it was like oh no not again, more I read article sounds like he might be the guy. They need someone to break down the defense to the simplest form. Bright I would say not for this group, they need to be just a little better than average and they can compete, the last 5-6 yrs this group has been horrible can't get off the field on 3rd down too many time dbacks pointing at each other palms up like duh? was not my guy. Lets get a stud def to go along with AR for a few yrs and watch the success.

croatpackfan's picture

He was 7-9 with Browns at his first season as HC. Than they gave him Manziel - he finished as 3-13...

I think that will be home run. Vic Fangio stays with Bears, and other top candidates are already signed.

I believe, 2 years out of football (last season je was Seattle consultant!) is helpful for Mike Pettine.

What I found interesting - MIKE Murphy, MIKE McCarty and MIKE Pettine...

Hmmm lot of Mikes...

fastmoving's picture

just that one of the Mikes is named Mark.......

croatpackfan's picture

Oooooo my bad.... :-)

fastmoving's picture

hang loose....

carlos's picture

Don’t drop the Mike.

dobber's picture

A reading from the Book of Mike, chapter 9, verse....

GBPDAN1's picture

"They need someone to break down the defense to the simplest form."

From what I read rstain99, his D is somewhat complicated with multiple fronts and schemes. This is to scheme the opponent being played and not to run the same D on a weekly basis. This worried me a little because one of the problems with Capers was a confused D with the young roster. I like that he said if the players are not mentally ready, he will scale it back.

He sounds like a good candidate over all, let's hope he simplifies the DBs responsibilities until we have players that get it. Maybe he's a better teacher than Dom and has better success implementing his schemes. I feel better about Gut adding the players needed then I did about TT. Go Pack

dobber's picture

A lot of the teaching has to come from the position coaches. He has to pick good position coaches...which, due to his breadth of experience, I think he can probably do.

Ferrari Driver's picture

We need to add some defensive backs who score higher than 12 on the Wonderlic test. 20 is determined to be of average intelligence.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Of course, Dobber, since GB just promoted Whitt, looks like that position coach is one Pettine is going to inherit. But then, maybe Pettine is fine with Whitt. Probably is going to inherit Perry as well, but who knows?

The TKstinator's picture

Can he make chicken salad?
Can he make a silk purse?

(BTW: Love that last paragraph!)

Coldworld's picture

It is sadly all too true. Dom has had a great career but it all came undone at the end. Just a total collapse.

I wish him well, but it was overdue. No worries here that we had an alternative to change.

dobber's picture

Lots of people have said that anyone could be better than Capers. Well, promoting from within would have been the equivalent of adding just 'anyone'. I think this is much better than adding just 'anyone'.

The TKstinator's picture

Gotta say I have a sneaking suspicion that the current players can perform better under a new DC, but time will tell. The “chicken salad” and “silk purse” remarks might have been a bit harsh. Eager to see!

Tundraboy's picture

Absolutely. A new voice was needed and one from outside.

CAG123's picture

Well I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little excited just for the fact that the Packers will have some new blood at DC that will actually be on the sideline and not in the coaches box with a stupid rug on his head. I’m a little worried about the words “single high safety” as they relate to HHCD who was always late getting to the ball carrier or play this past season but hopefully that was an outlier and we get more of the 2015 (his best season in my book) version.

Nick Perry's picture

Wow...2 dislikes already? I guess our fellow Packers fans have already forgotten just how pathetic HHCD was in 2017.

I'm with you about a coach on the sidelines. I mean could have Kevin Greene told CMIII "It's Time" in SB 45 if he was up in the both next to Capers? NO!! Put him on the sideline so he can actually coach and talk his guys DURING a game.

CAG123's picture

Yeah people hate negative comments about players no matter how true they are. HHCD had a terrible 2017 get over yourselves and accept it lol. Anyway excited to have some new blood out there and interested to see the coaches and players he brings in (Ardon Key please).

WKUPackFan's picture

One of those dislikes was prompted solely by the "with a stupid rug on his head" remark.

CAG123's picture

Didn’t really care people are always sensitive about something

WKUPackFan's picture

Sure sounded like you cared after incorrectly pigeonholing and lecturing people about being adverse to any negative comments about players in your response to Nick.

Juvenile insults like "wearing a rug", McPuffy, Albino Ted, ect. = Lazy analysis. They taint any good analysis, and are always going to get a dislike from me. Try caring about behaving like an adult.

dobber's picture

Yep...the namecalling immediately leads me to expect far less from the post and the poster.

fthisJack's picture

HHCD gave up on the team. Someone needs to light a fire under his aZZ and tell him that no matter how bad you think things may seem, they will be much worse when you are unemployed!

CAG123's picture

Please tell me you’re not using the “Well you responded so you care” defense? Is there a more lame excuse you self validation than that? You responded to my sensitive comment so that means you care right? You’re up here long enough to realize people are going to dislike comments for one reason or another but if you really think that yourself and the other “Comment Cops” are going to stop me from saying what I want to say then you clearly take yourself waaaayyyy too serious.

WKUPackFan's picture

You're having difficulty distinguishing between simply responding and the content of your response.

Nick Perry's picture

That was hardly lecturing WKU. As far as insults go you seem to be full of them in some of your replies to other comments.

Brian's picture

Did it strike a nerve?

holmesmd's picture

Multiple coaches have explained that HHCD had to look after and cover for CB’s who weren’t prepared to play the coverages properly. A guy like that doesn’t just “forget” how to play football. Calm down, he’ll be fine. No need to sit in the worry chair.

rdent's picture

holmsmd, contract year for HaHa, he better pick it up.

The TKstinator's picture

I have to admit I feel a little proud any time somebody references the "worry chair".

dobber's picture

We've got a "Worry AirBus 320" on order for 2018...

fastmoving's picture

...we will need at least an Airbus A380 for these guys

jeremyjjbrown's picture

If you haven't gotten few few dislikes you probably haven't said much...

RCPackerFan's picture

To be fair, Clinton-Dix was about 30 yards off the ball way to much. I really don't get what Capers was doing with Clinton-Dix this last year. And to be fair, i don't know what he was doing with the defense in general.

I think as a single high safety Clinton-Dix can be good in that role. He has good range. I also think with Pettine as the DC he will be able to real Clinton-Dix in to getting closer to his pro bowl level.

dobber's picture

I used to think that part of HHCD's problem was that he was dealing with a group of CBs each season where virtually ALL of them needed safety help. I mean, you can't be helping everyone all the time, and a good QB is going to exploit that. I thought he would be fine when there was a stronger CB on the field (Sam Shields?) who didn't need help so he could narrow his focus a little more.

Between this season and last season, I've changed my mind. By now, he should have been on top of this defense, and with swiss cheese CB play that looked a lot like his Pro Bowl season, he should have progressed or been at least at the same level this year. I just don't think he works very hard...that's a generic statement that doesn't mean much, but his effort on the field is lacking, and a good safety should be faster to the ball and diagnosing plays better than he does...

RCPackerFan's picture

I really don't know what Clinton-Dix's issues were this last year. The year before he was a pro bowl player. this year he fell on his face.
I do think some of it is the way he was being used. Asking your Safety to drop 30+ yards down field down after down and being out of the play down after down can make you disinterested. To me that's what it seems like he was most of the year.

I really don't know what the deal was with him. Hopefully a new regime can get more out of him.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

Yeah, I'm taking the stance that MM will be giving HHCD all the feedback need Al La Mike Pettine.

RCPackerFan's picture

right.

JHitTheB's picture

From what I understand HHCD was given the mic'd helmut when Burnette went down so he had his normal assignments plus he was tasked with getting plays called getting people into proper position as well play help man when our CBs get burned. I think it was just too much for him to handle.

Rebecca's picture

"with that stupid rug on his head" lol. Shag or indoor/outdoor?
In 2017 Ha-Ha looked like a guy who figured out he didn't want to get hurt playing with a defense that acted like they'd never played together before. He stood and watched a lot of plays rather than actually doing something.

4thand1's picture

Pettine talks about a sponge, we needed a sponge to soak up the tears watching Dom's defense. This looks like a great choice for DC on paper, now get the players we need. Great point about the top, to high-to-mid level picks that are doing great else where. We all saw it and pulled our hair out watching it happen. I think this was one of the main reasons Dom and TT got the boot. Can't wait for the draft and training camp with all this new blood.

Coldworld's picture

The Hyde and Hayward experience doesn’t speak to drafting but it does speak to personnel decisions and definitely for me was the proof positive that Capers had completely lost the plot. Hayward has done it twice. If you can’t get the best out of your players you are on the road to perdition.

This is why I will not write off some of our D that others do. I believe that, at the end, the scheme was tripping the players up even if they knew their relative assignments. Might also help some of the younger players make a jump.

I am excited to see what we really have on the roster and Pettine seems to be a coach with a record of figuring that out.

Rebecca's picture

But are the Packers' defense players "sponge" worthy?

rdent's picture

Rebecca, lol, Seinfeld.

Coldworld's picture

Our DC situation is one of the cases where I think one can legitimately say that a fresh start alone is a big step forward. Pettine’s record is impressive. I don’t see an obvious difference in its strength versus those if Fangio or Bradley. Good hire on paper. Let’s hope he can duplicate his prior success for us.

A key part of that will be his ability to rapidly and accurately assess our D roster and sort the wheat from the chaff. It will be interesting to see what he does with the coaching set up and personnel too

Nick Perry's picture

All in all I think this is a solid hire. Pettine is a good coach, a good teacher who I think will make a difference. The biggest difference though will be he'll actually play to his players strengths, not putting more on them than their capable of handling.

I'll be very curious to see who Pettine wants as his assistants. Are Perry and Whitt coming back under him? Could we perhaps see the end of Moss who I'm still not 100% clear on exactly what he did.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

The teacher part is pivital to me. He also talks about adjusting the complexity to the level of the players. Hopefully he works out, he really can't be much worse than Capers.

RCPackerFan's picture

'The teacher part is pivital to me.'

Agreed 100%. It seems like the last few years the players were just kind of running through the motions on defense. There was constant communication breakdowns. If Pettine can get everyone on the same page, the communication breakdowns should drop.

Coldworld's picture

As this article does, it seems to be universally assumed Moss won’t be back. Coming back with his current title seems extremely unlikely particularly given the experience of the two coordinators.

Rossonero's picture

Pettine likes big corners, press man coverage and to employ 3-4 and 4-3 looks. The players will have to also learn 4-3 concepts, so I hope that is not too complex for them.

Pettine also likes to confuse opponents week-to-week with different looks. If we could do that weekly, I'm all for it.

I bet Winston Moss leaves for Detroit since Teryl Austin left for Cincy.

Nick Perry's picture

Well he has one "Big" CB in King who was drafted because he's a good "Press CB". Lets hope Kings surgery went well and he'll be able to start lifting weights to get stronger sometime soon. I have no idea how long before King will be able to do that but IMO that will be big in his development. He looks so damn skinny out there I worried every time he took on someone low for a tackle, like he might break in two!

Rossonero's picture

Same here! I just hope Pettine realizes we need a pass rusher in round 1.

RCPackerFan's picture

To be fair that will be on Gutekunst.

But also I hope they actually go out into Free Agency and find some pass rushers.

Rossonero's picture

True.

Jamie Freier's picture

They are there to be had this year. Just not Harold Landry or the instant IR Arden Key. I thought he would be great, but he is hurt all the time, and I'm sick of that with this team.

dobber's picture

House made his initial money in the league by playing press corner. He needs to get healhty, but he gives you that potential #2 CB for the short term IF they decide to bring him back. As a depth signing, he's worth the risk, I think. He shouldn't have many suitors and isn't likely to be expensive.

Nick Perry's picture

Completely agree on House. He's not going to cost a lot and at the very worst would give the Packers some much needed depth at the position and possibly a starter.

Razer's picture

Let's hope.

CAG123's picture

The fact that he requires is CBs to play press is already a positive we drafted a guy in KK and signed a player in House that both do better in press and DC asked them to play zone 80% of the time it was just mind boggling.

Coldworld's picture

Especially as House’s struggles in Zone were what derailed his career after his new team switched to zone and made him available. House is not a great but he is a fighter and has a great attitude playing through multiple injuries on a team going nowhere. This is a good hire for him I think both for press style and because his mentality and character seem to fit what Pettine looks for. Now we should resign him.

HankScorpio's picture

I'm not as worried about complexity as I was with Capers. Here is a Pettine quote from an SI article profiling him during his Browns' coaching tenure...

"To me that's coaching. If your guys can do more and you’re not doing more, that's on you. Or if this is your norm and you have a pretty good team and they're just not mentally there, then [expletive] pare it back a little bit.”"

He also uses a "buddy system" where a player with a bigger "sponge" pairs with a player with a lesser "sponge" to mentor. He talks about a very simple playbook without a lot of "graduate level" stuff in it.

https://www.si.com/2014/06/19/mike-pettine-cleveland-browns-coach

carlos's picture

Interesting Hank. A great concept. We need more speed on both sides of the ball also.

nostradanus's picture

Draft the big CB from Iowa Josh Jackson, draft a pass rusher also, add a couple of pieces in free agency and the Packers may just field a respectable Defense next season and in the years to come. As Rodgers gets a bit older the Packers are going to need a great Defense so they don't have to win shootouts every week, that and a solid running game will help to prolong Rodgers career and get the Packers to several more Super Bowls.
This is a solid start. Kudos!

JDK52's picture

Good article, Ross, thanks.

I'm excited. Pettine talks about teaching guys in a way that works for them, using the smarter players to do the mental work so the other guys can just go fly.

Time will tell if he can make his scheme work with this roster, but I'm hopeful it's not such a departure (in terms of personnel required) that he needs two years to make major progress.

We just have to keep in mind that finishing 2018 something like 20th in DVOA would not be failure. This roster isn't talented enough(I think) to do much better than that. 2019? Sky's the limit!

CAG123's picture

Don’t really know what talent is on the roster to say if they do or don’t have it seeing as 2 straight years players have left become pro-bowlers and in Hayward’s case is rated as a top corner in the league top 5 if I remember correctly we’ll just have to wait and see who rises to the top,

dobber's picture

I think there's enough talent here that if they can stay relatively healthy and play cohesively they should be able to get up to the 20 zone. They played as less than the sum of their parts for the majority of the season and it showed. Playing within the scheme and being largely assignment sound makes a big difference.

I think of it this way: this was a good run defense. I would argue that it ended up middle-of-the-pack due in part to a gross imbalance in TOP (27th overall, but they were top 10 prior to ARod's injury). That puts your defense in favorable down and distance, but it couldn't get off the field frequently on 3rd down. More cohesive play is going to net more punts. Maybe that's a simplistic way to view it, but if you're forcing more punts than you're giving up with #12 at QB, everything starts to look better.

RCPackerFan's picture

I like the Pettine hiring. I am curious though, if his hiring was based on Fangio. Around the same time the news broke about Pettine, Fangio was reportedly close to resigning with the Bears.

But I think Pettine will be a good choice for the Packers defense. I am curious if they will be doing more 4-3 looks, and if so how much our personnel will change. To run the 4-3 we will need more DL and actual DE's.

The last year Pettine spent time with Seattle learning their system. He already has Rex Ryan's system and if he adds some of Seattle's schemes to his, look out. This could be a the making of a hell of a good defense. One of my favorite terms I saw being used when talking about Pettine's defenses is they are organized chaos. They are mostly simply schemes but are made to make things tough on the QB's because who is doing what is hard to read.

I read a great article on SI about how he teaches his scheme and how he wants smart players to run it. I do wonder if he will go out and look for some of his former players to help teach the everyone his system.

I like the hire. I am looking forward to seeing how Pettine fits his schemes with the current roster and players that will be added.

Bearmeat's picture

Agreed, RC.

The best quote from that article was where Pettine said that he demands mastery of simple concepts and won't give more to the players until they're playing base concepts at a world class level. That's something Capers never did.

I would like to see House resigned. He could do well in this defense. This, to me, is FAR better than a base 43 DC. And I love the part about 1 gapping DL. Clark and Daniels are going to beast in this defense.

Finwiz's picture

Like your comment, don't like your take on House.
He's got nothing to offer the Packers, other than veterans minimum and competing for the bottom end of the depth chart.

RCPackerFan's picture

Yeah definitely. That was a well written article. And really gave you insight to who Pettine is and how he likes to coach.

I agree that I think House could be a good fit in this defense. But honestly I wish House was our 4th CB.

I really don't know what Pettine will plan to do with our defense. He runs a hybrid 3/4-4/3 defense. I think we have a lot of the players in place, but need upgrades.
I am curious to see how the players they do have fit into the scheme he ends up running.

Bearmeat's picture

House would be a great 4th CB. A below average to average 2nd. Unfortunately, we don't have a CB2 - and that's assuming King becomes a CB1 (which may not happen). We need UFA and draft capital at CB this offseason.

RCPackerFan's picture

He definitely would be. Especially in a scheme that will have him playing press coverage.

I think King is a #1, at the very least a #2.
Randall really played well late. A new scheme may or may not help him.

I think they need to bring in at least 2 new CB's. Hopefully a veteran and a higher draft pick.

Ross Uglem's picture

So we’re just gonna pretend the last 9 games of Damarious Randall tape didn’t happen. Got it.

Rebecca's picture

Don't bother these guys with the facts. They have alternative facts (opinions) which are key to their love fest here.

HankScorpio's picture

We did a lot of the same pretending with Casey Hayward. He was hurt too much and couldn't play outside. So they let him go. And pretty much everyone agreed at the time it was the right thing to do.

Nevermind that the tape showed he was outstanding when he was used.

dobber's picture

"And I love the part about 1 gapping DL. Clark and Daniels are going to beast in this defense."

Yep. You beat me to this one.

Finwiz's picture

I heard his system is relatively complex and requires adjustments, so if he requires intelligent players, we'll see how that all works out. Like I said, we need 4-5 players between starters and backups on D to begin with, so hopefully he can get a few newer faces he can utilize. I expect a period of adjustment, but hopefully "blunt force trauma" can get the message across with a bit more hands on training, as opposed to the Capers method of the past. I'm looking forward to the coming months and reactions from players.

RCPackerFan's picture

Yeah, I know he wants intelligent players who know what everyone's role on the team is. I have no idea who on GB would fit that. I would think Martinez will be one of them.

I am not sure now how many new starters they will need with the scheme change. I know they need another CB and pass rushers. But if they switch to more of the 4-3 then they will need more DL. If they stick to the 3-4 they will need more LB's. It will be interesting to see what happens.

I agree with you that I'm also looking forward to the next few months to seeing what happens. March - April should be really exciting.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

I bet the Packers players are smart enough...

O think about it this way. Either most of the players who made it to the NFL and the Packers roster by playing football are too stupid to learn Capers defense, OR 3 or 4 defensive coaches where unable to coach it.

The probably there is self evident.

Rebecca's picture

LoL and that wasn't even racist. Duh. These are football players, not doctors of physics.

dobber's picture

He's also been on record as saying he feeds guys what they can handle. I think he's smart enough to install a shell and fill in as he goes. He can give them the whole playbook, but that doesn't mean he'll use the whole thing.

I expect this to be a work in progress. We'll need to make our judgements about how it's going later on, not immediately. But if they can be more consistent (read: consistently on the same page) early on, that's at least a meaningful step forward. Play speed should pick up as the season progresses.

croatpackfan's picture

RCPackerFan :
"The last year Pettine spent time with Seattle learning their system."

He was defensive consultant. I think he tried to help them, not to learne from them. Although, in every new job you will, actually learn lot of new things...

RCPackerFan's picture

yeah, you are right. He was a consultant. But like you said you come away from jobs picking up little things.

I have no doubt that he learned things of how the Seahawks have ran their defense.

I am looking forward to seeing what he will do with the defense.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

"I read a great article on SI "

Me too. It made me feel a lot better than I felt after hearing about this complex schemes.

HankScorpio's picture

That article had Pettine flat out state that complexity is driven by what his players can handle, including that he'll give specific players more complex assignments while scaling things back for others.

I'm not worried about it at all.

Ryan Graham's picture

I believe this will turn out to be a good hire. sounds like he will bring some structure and leadership to guys like Martinez and HHCD. they need someone to step up and hold everyone accountable for their job, and they need to address the flaws in the pass defense, both the pass rush and the secondary. Maybe Pettine Is that guy.

it may be a little unfair, but if Packer fans and the organization were to be honest with themselves the whole philosophy and culture of whatever unit that's been out since the late 90s has been no better than subpar. the year 2010 and that postseason was special but arguuably fluke-ish. This is long overdue.

Dzehren's picture

Pettine had Leonard & Reed as single high safety over his tenure (Nick Collins type). Wonder what Pettine thinks of Burnett?? If Burnett is not resigned, HA HA & Brice could be coached up? Tre Boston Car, TJ Ward Den Tavon Wilson Det Glover Quinn DET Bradley McDougald, SEA & Maurice Alexande RAMS are Free Agents

WKUPackFan's picture

Glover Quin is not a FA until 2020. TJ Ward played with Tampa Bay last season, Tre Boston was with the Chargers.

Dzehren's picture

Jeez- I’m way off. Got that info from Walter football. Sorry about that

WKUPackFan's picture

No problem Dzehren! I happened to know about Quin from checking spotrac yesterday. Walter is an interesting read, unfortunately he's not always accurate.

Handsback's picture

Since Storage Wars wasn't renewed, I'm glad this guy landed another job.

Tundraboy's picture

Lmao Could be his twin!!!!

zoellner25's picture

I think I love this hire. I also think MM is going to regret firing capers 2 years too late by sept 1.

swampthing69's picture

More like 6 years too late.

Finwiz's picture

I heard on local Sportstalk show this morning, his nickname was "blunt force trauma" in one of his previous positions, so he takes no "guff" from people.
If the player doesn't get it, they will be on the short leash for playing time. Need some discipline on this team. He has Pittsburgh ties going back with McCarthy so it makes sense.

Hopefully he can resurrect some of his past success with the Jets. I generally like the hire, and it's a plus it isn't one of our internal candidates. One thing they were saying is, his system is quite complex, so let's see how this all plays out. It didn't work too well in the past, so hopefully he's a better teacher, and can relate to players better than old Capers could.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

I will be interested to see HHCD's level of effort now.

Rebecca's picture

lol, HaHa don't like to be hurt tackling or hitting bigger guys unless it's too push them out of bounds after the first down catch and run.

egbertsouse's picture

I’m glad they didn’t go inside for this hire. Hopefully it will work out. I wish they would have gone outside for the GM hire. In fact, I wish they would have fired Murphy and MM and started over.

Thebearsstillsuck's picture

A lot of great points in the article. The last paragraph is very close to what I've been telling everyone. I realize we have needs on defense, especially pass rush, but I don't think they are as bad as most think. Truthfully, we have no idea what we have on d. We certainly didn't think we had a top 5 corner and safety when we let them go. A new coordinator is going to be like adding an entire draft class with existing players. The sum of this d was definitely less than the individual parts, the exact opposite of what good coaching is supposed to do.

I think it's time to go the free agent route for a corner/secondary . 5 number 1 and 2 picks in 4 years is to much. And unless there is a true pass rusher available, one that actually played the position in college and not a 3 year project, I'd love to see some much needed speed added on offense with our high picks finally.

DD's picture

Pettine: You worked two times with Leonhard as a defensive back. Now, convince Gute to hire him!! Also, try to bring back Green from jets. I'm good then!!

D.D. Driver's picture

Nah. He should stay with the Badgers....

4zone's picture

Green - Absolutely
Leonard - Keep your mitts off the guy, Badgers need a guy like him for at least a couple year. Not that he wouldn't be a great addition.

carlos's picture

Would love Leonard or Green.

carlos's picture

How about Leroy Butler.

rdent's picture

"The former Browns head coach's specialty is definitely pass defense."
Bingo!

Since '61's picture

Go Pettine Go! Thanks, Since '61

mnklitzke's picture

Excited to see the leash removed from Clark and Daniels. Let them get home from the middle!! I think that will add to some pass rush and in turn help out the CBs. Still need lots more out of our OLB and pass rush! Go get Kevin Greene back in here to coach up the OLB!!

mrtundra's picture

Pettine, frankly like Fangio, Bradley and Capers will play single high safety as much as he can. Gotta have the corners and FS to do it. Can HaHa, King, Randall be those guys?

If Pettine watches HaHa's efforts late in the season, he might want to draft another Safety.

RCPackerFan's picture

Currently i'm listening to Jim Leonard talking about Pettine on Wilde and Tausch.

Listening to Leonard I am even more excited about Pettine. Leonard played under Pettine for 6 years so he knows him well.

Leonard said Pettine will be flexible and creative. It won't be a 3-4 or 4-3. It will be both. He is great with match ups. Knows how to adjust the defense to fit its personnel and how to change it around his players strengths/weaknesses.

I really like what Leonard is saying about Pettine.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

What impresses me the most about Leonard are his adjustments. So that is awesome!

RCPackerFan's picture

Definitely.
I really like Leonard as the Badgers DC. And he was a great player. He was like a coach on the field so its not surprising he is already highly thought of as a DC at UW.

Leonard learned a lot from Pettine. And for Leonard talking so highly of Pettine, really gets me excited! In words of one of Pettine's former players - Bart Scott - CAN'T WAIT!

dobber's picture

He was a good player who got around his physical limitations (he's only 5'8", 190 according to his draft bio)...

http://www.nfldraftscout.com/ratings/dsprofile.php?pyid=54360&draftyear=...

...but I seem to remember videos of him dunking as a college player, too.

Whatever the case, he played for a long time in the NFL which says a lot about his determination and mind.

Finwiz's picture

That's a great endorsement......I would like to have heard the interview.
This bodes well, I just wish we didn't have to wait until July to see what kind of reaction we get out of our defense.

WinUSA's picture

Thanks Brian!

WinUSA's picture

I still believe that Leonard would have been a fantastic DC. Sure he only has one year as a college coach but a blind man with no fingers can tell this guy is a Mozart on defense!

4zone's picture

Well, there is no way we start the season without upgrading our D so that's a positive. I like that he comes from Ryan's tree not Capers'. Another positive. I also like that he had success in places without much of it and his passing D's are pretty good. Tells me he knows who to draft to make it all run.

Time will tell but I think we are already a better team across the board and am excited to see what kind of talent they add this off season. I think if he will be able to get more out of our current guys too. It will be interesting to see who he adds to his staff.

4thand1's picture

I watched the entire Murphy/Gute presser. The things I came away with were it's not going to be the same ol same ol. Murphy says the GM will have total control of FA, draft, and signings. Murphy is taking a more hands on approach also. Sounds like they really want to get things right. They didn't throw anyone under the bus, but agreed things had to change and everyone will be held accountable. Nobody's job is safe they say, from players down to coaches. After this year, everyone's been put on notice. Bout time! GOPACKGO

4zone's picture

I think we will have the largest influx of impact players this off season we've seen in a very long time. Shoot, if we sign even just one top tier guy in FA it would be a giant leap forward.

Got to say, it's already a more exciting off season than I can remember.

Tundraboy's picture

Sounds very promising. Excited for the draft and FA. One thing is for certain, we will start a season with realistic expectations for growth over the course of the season. Far cry from, adding a rookie, and a new "package" and hoping for the best. Will not miss the days of the D playing well for a game or two, and then being left to wonder if it was just dam luck, a very bad opponent, or that we still suck, and being tortured the rest of the year into the playoffs. All the while knowing down inside that it's the same old D, same old approach, leading to a disaster at the worst possible moments. No more relying on or hoping for a miracle.

croatpackfan's picture

Wolf accepted assistent GM position with Browns.

Wish him a lot of luck!

rdent's picture

I had a strong feeling Wolf would leave. I wish him and Dorsey and Highsmith my best in rebuilding the Browns, expect a big improvement in Cleveland.

Bure9620's picture

I like the hire quite a bit actually. With today's schemes and sub becoming the primary defense, there is not that much difference from 34 to 43. Not like 5-10 years ago. We actually played lot of 43 Under on first down this year against the cowboys and saints in particular if you watch the film. Pettine loves the 43 under alignmnet because it gives versatility in defending a teams 11 personnel. You have enough beef to stop he run and you can easily add speed at he Will or Mike LB spot to deal with a TE.
Perry is better suited to play a wing 9 tech off anyway, He can be the under and rush from here too. Never saw him as a strait 3-4 player. He can still bend. I also see a guy like Josh Jones being utilized here to blitz out of the Will LB spot, just send him like a torpedo up the A gap. I am Not quite sure where Clay fits in here. I guess he could be $15 mil backside rush defender??? Haha. He's not a Sam LB, he would get tossed around like a rag doll there. Would this make Lowry a true 5 tech?? His alignment would be on the guards outside shoulder I think. Daniels can play a 3 or a 1, always liked him as a 1 anyway, hes shorter and can usually get underneath a guard just blowing up the Guards inside forcing a center double team. Clark is a tough matchup here too with a little rush to him on a single team. I will be interested to see what body type BG targets for "EDGE" players. Some one Cliff Avril-ish?? Arden Key?

Qoojo's picture

The problem I have with Jones at LB is that he makes some very bad LB decisions, and is a liability quite often. I watched ESPN review tape on him, and it was pretty bad. He wouldn't fill the right hole or contest a blocking lineman. Which would mean, he took the wrong angle or tried to run around the blocker, and the RB would bust a big run.

Bure9620's picture

You prefer him in secondary??? I was at the Carolina game, that long touchdown was him letting Olson release on a quick out and up, spun Jones around like a top!!! Rather see him just using his athleticism and size to blitz. He's tough on guards.

Qoojo's picture

I put that down to an over complicated Capers' scheme where errors like that were common. He either blew the coverage or thought he was handing him off to the safety. Either is just as likely.

carlos's picture

Needs to be coached.

sonomaca's picture

So, Pettine likes smart players. Wonderlic doesn’t measure “football IQ” but the high to above average scorers on D include Lowry, Fackrell, Perry, Daniels, Martinez, Biegel, and M . Adams.

Below average are every key player in the secondary. T

There are plenty of good or great players with low wonderlic scores, but as a group the Packers secondary isn’t great.

sonomaca's picture

Forget Mathews and Ryan. Both good scores.

So, the front 7 shines as a group. The smart guys in the secondary include King and Pipkins.

Fordham Ram's picture

Good signing, and insightful article, was hoping they would hire him. Remember his days with the Jets, when they won it was always because the defense kept it close, they had no offense. In fact, I saw a game at the Meadowlands in NY where we played the Jets and Pettine was DC. Rodgers had a rough day of it that day, we won though in a boring 6-3 match. As an aside, I noticed Richardson, the DL from Seattle may be a FA. He used to play with Pettine during those Jet years and was a force. Maybe we go get him and he could help groom others to Pettine's defense.
Pettine, his name means comb in Italian, maybe they got the right guy, this defense could use a good grooming.

Since '61's picture

I think I was at the same game but the Packers won 9-0, not 6-3. Thanks, Since '61

Qoojo's picture

I like that MM picked a completely different coaching tree for the defense, especially like going to the Ryan one. I also like that his D features 11 guys attacking/aggressive instead 2-3 guys trying to occupy OL while less talented LBs try to make a play.

I think King and Randall are looking like solid CBs. Then need to find one CB more plus backups. I don't know what is going on at Safety position. DL is looking pretty good. LBs are a continual weakness, and that needs to be fixed. Maybe under the new scheme Daniels and Clark will get to apply more pressure.

Put on the sunglasses because the future looks bright. Another key is to get very good OL backups to keep Rodgers upright. Keep Rodgers clean like Sherman did for Favre.

dobber's picture

They have to figure out who their front-liners are on the right side before they can figure out who's going to back them up... ;)

4thand10's picture

I like this hire. I also believe the D will be markedly improved this first year under Pettine. Book it.

cheezit's picture

Color me cautiously optimistic about the defense for next year.

Spock's picture

Loved what I read about how Pettine has each INDIVIDUAL player know exactly what their assignment is for each game. Doesn't matter how "complex" his scheme is, he breaks it down for each player to know EXACTLY what they are accountable for. I look forward to NOT seeing the defensive people looking at each other with the "I thought you had that assignment?" look on their faces. Should make for a faster defense and let the players just PLAY and not have to stop and think about stuff. Let the players react to their own assignment. I LOVE this!!!

DThomas's picture

I hope he brings Seattle's tackling drills with him. I remember seeing tape of those drills and that's definitely not what the Packers were doing.

There's some legit complaints on boards about Murphy changing the organizational structure. While I don't like the change, I am excited about the new GM, new DC, and Philbin returning to help McCarthy with the offense.

swampthing69's picture

What, you don’t like the rolling foam donut?

DThomas's picture

The first time I saw that I had to look twice - it looked EXACTLY like a RB with the ball, perfectly duplicating a RB's legs. (Yikes)

Chris Vachio's picture

Remember, it's not like we need the '96 defense to win games, either. We just need the defense to stop making every opposing QB look like an all-pro. I feel confident that Pettine can get our defense to the "not suck" level.

dobber's picture

Must be an attractive job to know all you have to do is to "not suck" or "suck less"... ;)

Lphill's picture

It's very possible to improve the defense in one off season , Rodgers and the offense don't need the number 1 defense to go all the way but being in the top 12 in rankings should do it . Improve on getting off the field on 3 rd down and the rest will fall into place we may have had the right players but were not being used correctly. This is a better defense with Clay on the field don't write him off yet besides who would Aaron make commercials with?

dobber's picture

"This is a better defense with Clay on the field don't write him off yet besides who would Aaron make commercials with?"

I was not impressed with CMIII and the other Packers in Pitch Perfect 2. I think Don Barclay was dragging down the overall performance...again...

Tundraboy's picture

"I think Don Barclay was dragging down the overall performance...again..."

LMAO

HankScorpio's picture

The Packers are reportedly hiring Jim O'Neil to be their LB coach. He was DC in SF in 2016. Prior to that, he was on staff with Pettine during his time in NY, Buffalo and Cleveland.

Of course that would seem to indicate that Winston Moss' time in GB is up, as well. I won't be shedding any tears about that.

With Joe Whitt set to return, the defensive staff is beginning to take shape. We'll see about Darren Perry's possible return. And they need a DL coach.

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