The Lass Word: Are the Packers Better Than Tampa Bay?

Gutekunst must think so as Pack brings back their own.

One thing seems clear.  General Manager Brian Gutekunst wants to field essentially the same team in 2021 that he had in 2020.   He has taken great pains to make sure there will be as few major changes to the starting line up as possible. 

 

Instead of spending what money he has on new talent from the outside, he has re-signed Kenny Clark, David Bakhtiari, and Aaron Jones to huge deals.  Kevin King and Marcedes Lewis are returning.   Robert Tonyan, Allen Lazard and Chandon Sullivan have been tendered.  To date, just one starter, center Corey Linsley, has been lost. 

 

This tells me that Gutekunst believes he can win a Super Bowl with what he has.  If Tampa Bay is now the team to beat in the NFC, it tells me that Gutey believes his current team is better than the Bucs, that they should have won the NFC championship game, that if the Packers played the Bucs ten times, Green Bay would win more than half the games. 

 

You might make that case based on the stats from the title game.  The Packers had more total yards, more passing yards, more first downs, more time of possession.  You could argue the game was lost on two plays:  the defensive miscue allowing the touchdown bomb at the end of the half, and the Aaron Jones fumble.  You could contend the outcome would have been different if David Bakhtiari would have been available.  Yes, you could convince yourself that the Packers are a better team than Tampa Bay. 

 

As much as I’d like to, I just can’t buy it.  To me, the Bucs were clearly the better team.  The fact that Green Bay had several chances to win that game, and couldn’t, reinforces the notion that the Bucs were in control.  Yes, the Packers made critical mistakes, but so did Tampa Bay.  The difference was the Bucs were good enough to capitalize on the errors, and Green Bay was not. 

 

Tom Brady threw three interceptions and still won the game.  The Packers had three possessions in the 4th quarter, down by one score, and each time the Tampa defense outplayed them, denying a touchdown, and intimidating Matt LaFleur to the point where he felt he needed to go for the field goal on 4th down.  The Packers did win the statistical battle, but only because they had to play catch-up for the entire second half.  No Bakhtiari?  Well, okay, but the Bucs played without Antonio Brown and Antoine Winfield Jr.  The Packers had home field advantage and game temperatures that, while not arctic, were more to their liking than the Bucs.   

 

The difference between the two teams is most pronounced at the defensive line and inside linebacker positions.   Green Bay is decidedly inferior in both units, and thus far nothing has been done to change that.  It’s interesting to note that Tampa Bay is also standing pat, spending their offseason allocating money to bring most everybody back.  This tells you they also feel they have the better team, and I think they are correct. 

 

Just keeping the band together is not going to be enough for the Pack.  Gutey’s strategy leaves little or no money for free agent shopping.  That means Green Bay has just two other ways to improve: development of current players, and the draft.  Sure, some of the younger guys will improve, but that will be the case for Tampa Bay as well.  It’s also possible some of the veterans will decline.  Will the Packers draft so much more skillfully than the Bucs that it will change the dynamic?  Possibly, but realistically it’s not likely. 

 

Hey, the Packers are going to be a very good team again in 2021.  But the defending Super Bowl champs will once again be squarely in the way of their journey.   We couldn’t beat them last season.  I don’t see how we can stand pat, and then expect to beat them this coming season.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-----------------------------------

Ken Lass is a former Green Bay television sports anchor and 43 year media veteran, a lifelong Packers fan, and a shareholder.

NFL Categories: 
9 points

Comments (76)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
Lphill's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:13 pm

Offense possibly , Defense not even close and that’s what will doom them again .

6 points
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Coldworld's picture

March 25, 2021 at 07:38 pm

Coaching was definitely inferior.

5 points
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TarynsEyes's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:15 pm

Are the Packers better than the Bucs?

NO, NO, and hell NO.

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Savage57's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:26 am

Dour.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:39 am

Until they beat them twice in a year, Tampa will remain the better team.

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JohnnyLogan's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:27 pm

Not if Kevin King has to guard anyone. Before the game, I asked the question, "How do we guard that receiver corps of Evens, Godwin, Antonio Brown, and Scotty Miller? Brown was out but it didn't matter, there's no way King could stay with any of them. Nothing's changed. He'll still have to guard one and Brady will continue to expose him. Why would Gute think that has changed? A new defensive coordinator isn't going to make King faster or tackle better. When there's a hole in the boat you plug it with Stay Afloat not tissue paper. Put tissue paper there and you'll drown. King is tissue paper.

6 points
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packer132's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:51 pm

King may be a backup or possibly not make final cuts. I'm hoping Packers draft a CB in 1st or 2nd round and possibly bring in a cheaper FA corner. With his signing, less pressure is put on drafting a CB in the 1st round. Lot of time left before the first game.

0 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:04 am

King is a lock and there are $3.75M reasons. I can't believe Gute guaranteed 75% of King's deal.

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jannes bjornson's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:45 am

It is sand in the wound of the 2017 draft. King must have been one of "his guys" along with the RAS wizard Josh Jones. Too bad neither seem to know the game of football.

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Mike Rossmeier's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:30 pm

No, they're not. But any year 4-5 teams can win it. The problem with being an NFL fan is having expectations for your team, and then it's derailed by injuries.

6 points
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blondy45's picture

March 25, 2021 at 05:56 pm

Yes they are:
1. The Pack had the number 1 offense in the NFL last year, better than Tampa.

2. The defense is a bit below the Bucs, but the Bucs had the least amount of injuries in the NFL last year.

3. The Bucs had a much easier schedule last year.

4. MLF is a better more creative coach that his players respect & believe in.

5. The Bucs are not the dynasty team like the Patriots were.

6. Both have kept most of their players from last year. If you played the best of 3 series the Pack would have won last year.

7. The Green Bay Packers are the better team on paper right now except for CB depth & quality.

8. We have a new & hopefully improved defensive coordinator. The Defense should be better.

9. Rodgers now sees that it is now or not ever, should stay motivated.

10. Injuries will always be the X factor. Time for Tampa to get their fair share this year.

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splitpea1's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:40 pm

3. The Bucs schedule isn't very imposing this season.

4. Arians proved he was the better coach in the title game.

6. Hypothetical best of three series? The Bucs beat the Packers twice last
year.

7. You know what paper is worth. And you forgot to mention interior defense, where the Bucs have a substantial advantage.

8. Let's hope so, along with couple of rookie defenders who can make an impact in Year 1.

9. Rodgers hasn't been "motivated" in the past?

10. Why root for injuries?

There's no sense in even worrying about Tampa Bay until we have to play them, if we even have to at all.

2 points
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dobber's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:09 pm

A year ago about this time we were trying to figure out if the Packers could keep up with SF...

5 points
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Droski's picture

March 25, 2021 at 10:30 pm

Yup and the 49ers probably would've still had the Packs number this past season if they hadn't been riddled with injuries and covid-19. Now they gotta worry about the both of them, efficient offenses with crazy physical smothering defenses. The Packs definitely got their work cut out for them.

1 points
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Fabio's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:47 pm

Butler signed at the same cost as King.
Not great, but it would definitely have been an update on King .....

3 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:20 pm

They are both the same player.

5 points
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Coldworld's picture

March 25, 2021 at 07:40 pm

King May actually be better if he could stay healthy

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BrettFavor's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:00 pm

Kevin King's deal is so incentive-laden it won't cost 6 million against the cap unless he plays at a Pro Bowl level which makes it a steal. If he plays like 2019, he'll get paid 3-4 million which is a good deal. If he plays hurt and isn't effective it'll only cost slightly more than the veteran minimum against the cap.

I would have preferred an upgrade even though King has played well when he's healthy. The problem is 3 out of 4 seasons he was either hurt or playing hurt. 2019 he was a solid #2 CB and I thought was about to take the step to consistently good, but injuries... This is all about his health and providing depth because the Packers seem reluctant to restructure Aaron Rodgers contract.... Likely so they can keep the flexibility to let him go after the next season or two which is just stupid after his play the past two seasons. He had three "down years" where he was still a top ten QB and he struggled with major injuries in each of those seasons. After seeing last year the Packers management should realize barring catastrophic injury Aaron Rodgers can play at an elite to MVP level for 3-4 years at least and go all in every year then whenever the decline happens you try to have a QB ready... It's still hard to find elite QBs who make everyone better, but it has gotten much easier to find good QBs who won't lose games for you and can compete for a title if the team around them is good.

The point is, unless they restructure Rodgers (or possibly extend Davante, but that takes more time because he's gonna flirt with record breaking money and frankly he deserves it, the Packers would be wise to pay him too) then getting Kevin King back on essentially twice the veteran minimum hit against the cap (unless he balls out and then it works for everyone, but most of those incentives will be deemed "unlikely to be earned" which means they don't count against the 2021 cap and will only count against the 2022 cap if he earns It with good play). It's low risk, high reward.

I do think the Bucs have a better roster top to bottom, but with a healthy offensive line and a defensive coordinator that runs more 4-3 (he runs both, but 4-3 makes stopping the run while covering the pass so much easier... If you can get after the QB with 4-5 guys consistently and I think with the emergence of Rashan Gary, Z playing borderline DOPY level - man he was a steal by Gutey, Preston getting to play some outside DE in 4-3 and not drop into coverage so much (no idea why Pettine dropped Preston back so much last year, but it was an example of not putting your players in the best position to succeed, I don't blame the down year on Preston because his pressures stayed high despite a lower percentage of rushes, his win rate did drop a little bit that could be regression to the mean or lack of proper opportunity), and finally Kenny Clark gets after the paste when healthy. Last year he was still good against the run, but that thigh injury took away his explosiveness, but he came on strong toward the end of the year, you gotta remember he's only 22-23 years old, he can get even better. We finally have some LBs who can cover and get sideline to sideline. Martin needs some consistency and will have some growing pains, but I think Krys Barnes makes a huge second-year jump into a very good starter. He has the potential to be dominant because he's an elite athlete with a very high football IQ... Those guys only fail if they have injuries, don't work hard enough, or have personal issues that usually stem from issues with mental health and substance abuse. Off-topic, but the NFL has ruined many a career just for marijuana. When someone struggles with addiction the story isn't I hope they get the right treatment, it's they aren't responsible, they aren't good people. Addiction is a disease of brain structure not a moral failing or a lack of work ethic or weakness of character. That's science, too bad we ignore science and pay attention to the headlines with no real understanding of the issues.

Kinda like thinking Kevin King is actually going to get paid as much or have anywhere close the cap hit as Malcolm Butler because you completely ignored "inventive-laden" or didn't understand what it actually meant. I'm not sure Butler is much of an upgrade at this point in his career, he's been a lot like Kevin King. Flashes, but rarely consistent. Makes big plays, gives up big plays. Butler figured it out for a couple years, but he was never a great #1 CB. People just think that because he made one amazing play on the biggest stage in the biggest moment and gifted Brady another Super Bowl (Brady's defenses have been dominant more years than Aaron Rodgers has had a top 15 defense - only two top ten defenses in Rodgers career, Brady has had a top ten defense every single season except for two... Put Rodgers on the Pats during Brady's run and he might have won 8 Super Bowls before he moved to Tampa Bay, in a state with no income tax and a loaded roster, it was almost like Lebron going to the Heat or KD coming to the Warriors).

2 points
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Droski's picture

March 25, 2021 at 10:43 pm

Preston actually dropped back a little less in 2020 than 2019, he just clearly wasn't as effective of a pass rusher or run defender. Idk why everyone swears dropping back was why his play dropped off. Don't get me wrong, like I've said before I still like Preston and I love that the Packers restructured his contract but fans need to stop making excuses for him, he just needs to get back in better shape and play harder period.

3 points
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Mike Rossmeier's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:52 pm

So the NFC Title Game was all the fault of one player? Never mind the coaches who messed up the call before halftime, or the offense that put up next to zilch in the 2nd half.
Looks like King has succeeded Jarrett Bush as the next major whipping boy (who rewarded all the bitchers with a great play in the SuperBowl).

2 points
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Minniman's picture

March 25, 2021 at 03:57 pm

Ken , as I posted in Gil's column today....... team = coaches + players

I think that with a good draft the playing group becomes comparable.

The question is if MLF et al can get them over the hump in the big matches.

I think that if the Packers do get back to the NFCCG next year, they will be a lot more battle hardened than last year.

2 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:04 pm

Don't forget....Tampa gets to draft players also.
.
They might even draft ......to find players to help them win this season.
.
It's an off the wall strategy :)

5 points
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Minniman's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:19 pm

Duly noted PF4L (but yes, I actually left this as a given).

Of interest will be just HOW Tampa goes about drafting late.

They've enjoyed over a decade of drafting in the first half of the draw....... it will be interesting to see how they go picking last.

P.S Late-breaking news - Malcolm Butler to the Cardinals on a 1 year deal worth up to $6M.......... should be a hoot reading comments over the coming days! Perhaps Butler looked at the King deal and decided that playing for an OK number is better than not playing?

2 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:59 pm

Yea....picking last sucks, but i guess it becomes easier with the Lombardi Trophy sitting on the middle of the table.
.
People need to remember, the success of your draft isn't where you pick, it's who you pick.
But yea, it's easier at the front. Especially the first round.

If i recall correctly....
Bakhtiari, TJ Lang, Sitton, and Martinez were 4th round picks, Linsley was a 5th round pick. Aaron Jones, and KGB were 5th round picks, Taucsher and Driver were 7th rounders.

I never really thought of Butler as blue chip but i'd trust him over King.
Talk about making a play on the big stage....what a play he made picking off Wilson.
It doesn't get any bigger than that.
The play that wrecked...the locker room in Seattle.

If we somehow could have gotten Gilmore, Rhodes or somebody, then drafted a starter or two, i'd feel pretty damn good about this coming season, but man....left cornerback has got to get fixed first.

6 points
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Minniman's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:30 pm

They took a draft crush of mine from a couple of years ago (several picks before the Pack were on the clock) - Vita Vea. He had injuries last year but he dominated the middle in the NFCCG and SB

1 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:05 pm

The Lass Word: Are the Packers Better Than Tampa Bay?
.
Tough one....
.
Who has the Lombardi trophy?

2 points
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LeotisHarris's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:12 pm

Disappointing, PF4L...
.
You forgot to add...
.
"Greetings from Italy."
.
.

0 points
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Fabio's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:26 am

Hi Leo
I don't ask to necessarily share my ideas, but I don't think I deserve to be laughed at either ...
I may have different ideas than yours, but I will never go too far in criticizing you (smile)
A friendly greeting from Italy
SMILE
Go Pack Go

0 points
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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:45 am

PF4L March 25, 2021
I’m old school.
.
If you’re the Champion, you’re the best, until your not.
.
That’s just how it works.

1 points
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fastmoving's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:14 pm

sounds more than liek noschool.
But that Tampa is better was at least a good one. But at least you thought you know a single thing like a single thing works......

-1 points
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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 06:01 pm

fastmoving...

Thank you for your opinion.

Good luck on your GED exams.

-1 points
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Handsback's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:16 pm

Let's see...Green Bay had zero money to sign FAs, yet somehow they were suppose to ignore signing Jones and sign who that would make a difference? Green Bay didn't win the game because their offense went into cold storage. Their (Rodgers) obsession of getting the ball to Adams at all cost cost them the fourth qtr. comeback.
I think there might be another possibility...they can't win with their current line-up and it will probably be a two-three year plan to get the team where it's needed. Which brings us to who will be the QB? That I can't answer, neither can anyone else at this point. Gutsey is taking no chances with this team. Last year the draft was a new QB/RB and a ton of new Oline players. This year will probably be Dline, CB, and WRs with maybe a ILB thrown in for good measure.
It takes a team to win the SB and right now Green Bay doesn't have enough blue chip players to take them over the top.

4 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:08 pm

Great Post IMO until the last line.

They have more Blue Chip Players than most anyone and at the most Key positions.
These are are arguably the best in the game at their position
ARod
Bakh
JA
K Clark
CL (last year)

These guys are Starters on most any team and considered very good or projected to be
Jenkens
Amos
Savage
Z
Gary

Though not a big believer in the Pro Bowl the Packers led the League last year.

4 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:35 pm

Dino is spot on
Although very good, i'm not sure Clark is blue chip good. He might be with some actual help though.

We could have gotten him some help, but we apparently needed an edge rusher to sit on the bench for a few years.

Lets maybe wait on Gary to play full time and start before we crown him.

So who starts this season...Gary or Preston?

2 points
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PhantomII's picture

March 27, 2021 at 01:08 pm

Gary should have started around game 10-on. That is yet another reason I had lost faith in Pettine as a DC. It was obvious.

0 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:26 pm

Handsback....

Gutsey? Really?
No judgements my friend :)
********************
I like your call on this years draft. seems like a good idea to draft for help.
.
D line, corner, wr, ilb, maybe tackle?

The only thing better than that would be.... if one or two of them becomes a starter.

1 points
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ckoski's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:17 pm

It doesn't matter. It's March 25. They are not playing this week. There is a lot left to happen before September. Let it play out.

5 points
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4thandinches's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:34 pm

But it's not just GB vs. TB... After 2019 everyone thought we needed to build a team to beat the 9ers in 2020. How'd that pan out? You build the best team you can each year and take your chances. I'm pretty sure thats what Gute is doing. I personally would have gone a different direction then resigning KK (unless the money is a lot less than the reported 6 mil) but I can accept that the Packers front office has a lot more info then me. They also have done a pretty good job of roster construction the last few years. I think the team winning percentage bears that out. At the risk of being lambasted, can I suggest taking a deep breath and letting the off-season play out? We're a week into fa for cripes sake! That is all.

9 points
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PhantomII's picture

March 26, 2021 at 10:00 pm

We need the same 3 players in both NFCC games. DL next to Clark, #2 CB and #2 WR. If we get those and have some health and a little luck, we'll be fine against anyone.

0 points
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WVBuc's picture

March 25, 2021 at 04:42 pm

I'm not a Packers fan, my username gives away my allegiance, but I'm someone who roots for the Pack. Against 29 other teams, Go Pack, they're in a tie with the Steelers. Likely because of geography. I think the Packers are likely the most liked "other" team in the NFL.

I don't know what King had done throughout the season. It was good enough to reach the NFC Championship game apparently. I think coaching set him up against Miller. That coverage was not King's fault, was it? No help deep, too shallow of a cushion, he was doomed.

The Pack are at least one thing IMO whether they are or are not better than the Bucs. They are the team I expect Tampa to have to go through to return to the Super Bowl. A lot of things can happen between now and the next NFC Championship game but right now it seems like Bucs vs Pack is the most likely pairing.

4 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:17 am

Doomed you say! Any CB that has to cover Scooter Miller, the 6th round colossus out of Bowling Green, one on one is doomed. Got it. Nothing to do with King stinking the place up. Jaire couldn't cover the colossus either without safety help.

0 points
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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:41 am

You can blame Kings coverage problem on other factors, but it's damn foolish.

Watch his technique on Miller, it's a 40 yard pass play...re-watch the play.
King is looking back at Brady for the first 30 yards, then turns his head to isolate on Miller.
The problem was.....Miller had already beat him.
His attention to the ball is reversed, he should run with the receiver for 30 yards, THEN turn back and play the ball the last 10 yards.

This stuff is fairly basic.

I'd explain his poor technique against Evans, but damn man....watch it for yourself. It's easy to see, i shouldn't have to explain every play.
Watch the play....you'll get it.

How about the holding penalty? Listen close......

Kevin King is a liability...he won't win you a game, but he can lose it for you.

1 points
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murf7777's picture

March 25, 2021 at 05:11 pm

Tampa will be the next team to lay an egg after getting to the SB! Dynasty.....nope, sorry TB. We can only hope Mlf is growing from his experiences.

3 points
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Dragon5's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:14 pm

Management has reduced GOAT & MONKEY players on the roster down to the following 5 ahead of the '21 season. This bodes well metaphysically speaking. Last year, I strongly advocated to WAIT on Bahktiari extension and let Linsley (GOAT) walk. Don't be surprised if Linsley's back issues take center stage this year.

Biggest player concerns this season...
Billy Turner GOAT...anticipating injury or disappointing performance no matter where he lines up
David Bahktiari GOAT...concern is instead of sitting out '21, they rush him back and lose not 1 year, but the rest of his career
MVS DOG...7 life path in a personal 7 year...high risk of injury
Davante Adams MONKEY
Z-Darius Smith MONKEY
Preston Smith MONKEY

TIGER year begins Feb 1st, 2022. TIGER enemy is the MONKEY...as the 2021 season draws to a close, keep a close eye on the latter 3 players. In the event the Packers make it to the Super Bowl on Feb 6, 2022, the TIGER year will be in full swing.

-3 points
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Minniman's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:42 pm

I love reading your celestial takes on things Dragon5 - I have limited to no idea how it all legitimately relates but it is an interesting perspective - thank you.

Re last year's NFCCG, per your above comments I see that this is out of sequence, but in the last quarter of that game it was plain to see who the tigers were and who the monkeys were! :)

Addit: I too see Corey Linsley as a time bomb waiting to happen.

1 points
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Dragon5's picture

March 26, 2021 at 09:29 am

Thank you for the kind words Minniman.

-1 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:30 pm

I don't know if its the fan in me or if Im just being a contrarian but I saw the NFCCG completely different than I many here.

I take my hat off to TB and they deserved to be the SB champs and destroyed KC. So I'm not here to say the Packers are better than a team they lost too (twice).

here's my thoughts on why I think they could be considered the better team

Injury -
Losing the best LT in the Game a few weeks before the game proved devastating
On top of that Wagner was battling through a bad wheel. (Not to mention Lane Taylor being out for the season)
To be fair all teams have injuries but when comparing teams its done at full strength.

Great points made on coaching
I believe the big issue was the Defense at the end of the half, ML admits to calling the defense but there was a miscommunication as to what it should be. Either way huge coaching issue
Kicking the FG - Rodgers Not knowing the if/then going into the 3rd down play

Why now category
kevin King having the worst game of his career
Redmens dropped Int
A Jones Fumble
Arod missing open/deep rec

But at the same time TB is a great team and just beat the Packers with skill (Key and Timely 3rd down and Big Plays by Tom B)
Great Pass Rush
Multiple Good Receivers that the packers couldn't match up with (King/Sullivan)

I'm 90% in agreement with with all the Players Gute has brought back
Bach
KClark
Arodgers
D Addams

and positioning themselves to do the same with Devante again and JA

50/50 on Jones and King was an act of desperation.

Heres what I don't get - What guys other than king could they have brought in for the same or less money that are better than the ones he resigned? So he IMO did sign the best players available
With Zero Money in 2021 and even worse on 2022 there was NEVER going to be big FA Signings.

Why keep pushing money out in the name of All in and then complain that they are moving away from Rodgers?
Going all in by definition means forsaking the future, why keep a Great QB at a Huge Cap % Hit if your not going to be in a position to win a SB?
Does anyone believe that part of the thinking by the FO on why they haven't completely destroyed the next 3 years is that they want to give Arod as many chances as possible over the next 3 or more years??

3 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:10 pm

Dino...
There was a cost to all that restructuring done to keep the team intact, meet me right here in a year from now and we'll talk some more about it.
.
Not sure why they kept P Smith.
Especially if you're going to keep Aaron Jones.
Plus, then you can make Gary a starter....finally.

I have serious problems understanding Gute's strategy over the last 3 seasons.
I don't go on blind faith, unless his job entitled him to rest on the 7th day.

1 points
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BrettFavor's picture

March 25, 2021 at 06:55 pm

Everyone seems to be forgetting that "incentive-laden" part of the headline on Kevin King's deal. That means it will include a bunch of "unlikely to be earned" bonuses and in this case voidable years.

His cap hit for 2021 is $1,887,500, not $6 million. The details just came out, but I have been telling people this since the initial announcement. The Packers don't overpay and any long term contract they almost always build in an out after 2 years with little to no dead cap space.

Read past the headlines people and remember there's a difference between an opinion and an educated opinion. If you don't like that the Packers resigned King then just say that, but after reading a headline saying The Packers signed Kevin King to a 6 million dollar incentive-laden deal don't go around freaking out until the numbers come out.

4 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:31 pm

His deal doesn't look to be incentive laden at all.

All i see is LTBE per game active bonus totaling $250,000

He will be paid 5 million in his first season. He will have a cap hit of $1,971,875 his 1st season.

Then he'll have a cap hit of 3 million in 2022 no matter what.

It's a one year deal, with an added 4 voidable years to spread out the cap hit money.

2022-25 years automatically void 23 days before the 22 league year ($3M dead cap)

It's not easy being me :)

3 points
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PF4L's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:35 pm

"The Packers don't overpay "

That's a good one! :)

Never lose your sense of humor

2 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:21 am

It is $5M. It is not $1.887M or even $1.937M. It is $5M.

1 points
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PF4L's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:26 am

Look at cap space for Packer players at OTC for 2021-2022

Then look at Kevin Kings numbers for 2022.
Cap Hit = 3 million
Dead Cap = same

OTC is your friend.

0 points
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canadapacker's picture

March 25, 2021 at 07:05 pm

Tampa Bay should have an easier route to win their division. The fact that New Orleans has a new quarterback - not named Brees will help that and Caroline and Atlanta. Now this year we host Pittsburgh Cleveland Seattle Washington Rams and go to Baltimore, Cinci, NO Arizona and San Fran. We will have our usual suspects and should have to deal with Minnie as a favorite again. As far as the remainder of the NFC - always expect Seattle to be there - think that the Rams and 49ers will have a major/minor rebuild with new QB/returning injured QB . Not too worried about the other teams beating each other up. Things can always change - but unlike last year I feel a lot more confident going into the season this year - not 13-3 confident but enough to win our division and get into the dance.

5 points
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Irish_Cheesehead's picture

March 25, 2021 at 07:14 pm

Past history shows it's not the previous Super Bowl winner you have to worry about. A year ago we were worried about catching up to San Francisco. Just get better.

4 points
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Leatherhead's picture

March 25, 2021 at 07:30 pm

Exactly. Win the division. Whether or not we’re better than Tampa isn’t important until the playoffs, which are 9 months from now. A gajillion things can, and will, happen before them.

Win the division. Win the division. Win the division.

8 points
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BAMABADGER's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:18 pm

As long as The GOAT remains healthy.... No, no, and no.

3 points
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Lphill's picture

March 25, 2021 at 08:19 pm

Bucs signed Suh back today .

1 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:37 pm

Is that all Tampa Bay does is sign their own players back. Genius

1 points
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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

March 26, 2021 at 07:23 am

Sound like TT.

0 points
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fastmoving's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:18 pm

Vet min I guess........because of his values.........

0 points
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NickPerry's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:02 pm

My comment will stick of homerisum but I think the Packers can play with the Bucs or ANY other team in the NFL. I also don't think the Packers are done in FA. There's still players left, more to be cut after the draft, and more yet after June 1st. I also think Brady is at that age where the decline ISN'T going to take several years. I think he falls straight off a cliff and I think it's happening in 2021. Matter of fact, I'm more worried about the Rams with Stafford than the Bucs in 2021.

I could still see the Packers adding a CB, DL, and/or a WR in FA. I also think Lazard, MVS, Tonyan, and Sternberger will be better and I'm excited as hell to watch DeGura in this offense. BUT what I'm really pumped about, REALLY REALLY, pumped about is Dillon and Jones. IMO Dillon is and will prove to be a much better runner than Jamal Williams. Dillon also showed he could catch the football in his limited opportunities, but the tandem of Jones and Dillon will prove to be the top 1-2 punch in the NFL and I honestly believe that.

The Packers are a pretty young team and always have been. Even with King the have a damn good secondary and it would surprise me a bit if someone else is starting ahead of King by week 4 making the secondary even better. The Packers have a multitude of younger players getting better and taking the jump.

I know, I know, I'm a homer and maybe have blinders on. But EVERY one of those who said the Packers would be 9-7 last year are most of the same folks who think the Packers can't do it with this roster. I hope you all admit it come February 2022 when the Packers are hoisting another Lombardi Trophy.

5 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 05:19 pm

Im with you NP....To return a team with the roster the Packers had ( At least Top 5 in the NFL) losing only 1 starter (I like CL, he will be missed, but center is one of the easier to replace positions w/o much impact (Correlates to why its the 2nd lowest paid position)

Every year we fans complain about lack of rookie impact with the draft and develop model. Then proceed to complain about lack of FA signings w/o consideration that the draft and develop guys are beginning to bloom.
Gary/Savage/Keke/Jace/JD/Dillon/MVS/Jenkins/Tonyan/Lazard are all, be it at different stages, ascending players. That equates to improvement. How many of the Packers starters are descending players?
Maybe Preston/King and both those guys are still very young and most likely have or will have replacements in the wings...

Arod is the scariest one and he just had an MVP season. Why its so smart to be patient with extension.

Then you have guys like Barnes/Martin/Patrick/Runyan that are fringe talents that have flashed NFL League starter ability are young and should only get better. (I realize Patrick and Barnes have started but they aren't even average at this point more serviceable.

Restock with OT/CB/EDGE early draft picks and if the boards falls a certain way then get your WR/IDL or ILB. Personally, I'm stocking up on Versatile DBs who can play slot or outside a future OT, then really letting the board determine.

The arrow is pointing up Packer Nation...

0 points
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Since'61's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:15 pm

As far as 2020 is concerned the Bucs beat the Packers by a combined score of 69 - 36. They won at home and on the road at Lambeau.
To me that means the Bucs are better than the Packers.

As for 2021 we won't know the answer to that question until the 2 teas play each other, if in fact they meet.

Tampa has a better coaching especially at HC and DC.
Tampa has a better WR group and a better overall defense specifically at DL and ILB.
They overwhelmed our OL in both games and that proved to be a decisive factor in both games.
Their defense was better prepared to stop our offense than our defense was prepared to stop the Bucs offense.

The Packers have the better QB, probably an edge in the run game and the best CB on either team.

All things being equal, based on off season moves I believe the Bucs still have the better team unless they have lost some of their defensive players to FA which I'm not aware of.

To close the gap between the 2 teams the Packers need another legit NFL WR, another legit NFL DL, better ILBs and another CB who can prevent long uncontested TD passes. That is a significant amount of ground to cover via the draft in just one season.

Let's see where both teams are at for Week 1 of 2021. That would be an appropriate time to reassess this question.
Thanks, Since '61

8 points
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albert999's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:50 pm

Excellent

2 points
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Fabio's picture

March 26, 2021 at 08:35 am

Truly EXCELLENT SUMMARY !!!!!

1 points
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TXCHEESE's picture

March 26, 2021 at 04:07 pm

Actually, let's see where both teams are in Week 18 of the '21 season. Injuries, and player improvement will occur throughout the season. No team is ever the same at the end of the season as it was in game 1. Names on a roster at the beginning of the season are just that. Names on a piece of paper.

1 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 05:28 pm

Can't argue a single point though IMO if Bak is healthy it's a different outcome.

plus all the outliers.
Ajones fumble that cost the packers (7 pts).
ARods missed passes and turnover (7 plus pts)
kings worst game of his career. (7 plus pts)

That said and to your points the facts are the facts the rest are excuses. To be the man you have to beat the man

I'd love to play TB again.

0 points
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stockholder's picture

March 25, 2021 at 09:18 pm

Better? No. But Lets play them again anyway. Forget the odds. As long as Rodgers is still the QB. We can Win. What do we have to fear? I doubt we make the same mistakes Twice. We won't be over confident. It's just a matter of who wins and who doesn't. We are not Done. The Fight is not over. And Nobody on this packers team believes that. But can they Bank on Gute? He's their biggest question mark. No body forced him to draft Love. His draft didn't do them any favors. His spending still had flaws. Starting over doesn't make anyone better. This team just can't have that. Were respectable. They want to be on top. If only Gute would make the right investments.

4 points
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Droski's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:03 pm

Great well thought out article and my thoughts exactly. The Packers need to have one of the best drafts this year to get over that hump that is the Buccaneers and the 49ers. The last game against the 49ers didn't count they weren't nearly at full strength, even Rodgers pointed that out and rightfully said it wasn't the same team.

1 points
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PhantomII's picture

March 25, 2021 at 11:05 pm

If the Packers don't commit 1 of 6 huge mistakes, they win NFCC, but they did. I don't think ML offense is a good match up for beating Tampa. ML offense has entire OL bunched in tight. Bucs Defense is very fast and quickly close on RB's running around the edge, and with Vea back it is hard to run it up the gut on big boys. ML's offense is limited on what it is. The way to beat the Bucs is minimum 3 fast WR's out wide a RB and 1-TE. Split the WR's out very wide and continually run fast post routes, clearing out one side of the field and taking the secondary players after them and clearing out an area for the TE to flow out into for a catch or running to that side weakened by the defenders covering the WR's. The TE can also clear out same side ILB and delayed draw run to side WR's and TE have cleared people out of. I think it would work better w/ 4 WR's which ML never does. Using a lot of motion would also help. On the other side Tampa has a lot better receiving core than GB. If you can get to Brady he can throw INT's, But we need better corners and a better DL player next to Clark. We need a legit #2 WR also. I don't think standing pat with the team as is can do it. ML needs a change up to his normal offense to beat a team built like this again.

1 points
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HankScorpio's picture

March 26, 2021 at 05:39 am

Last year at this time, we asked this same question substituting SF for TB. SF missed the playoffs in 2020. It can be an interesting offseason discussion but in the end, it means nothing, The NFL is a year to year league. There are too many factors nobody can predict. It's all guesswork. Some of the guessing is more educated than other guessing. But anything can, and does, happen.

Who predicted that the Packer offense would move from where they were in 2019 to one of the best in the league despite losing Bulaga and no signifcant player additions? I doubt very many did. But it happened.

2021 will bring what it brings. I'll be happy if the Packers advance to January football. If they do, anything can happen.

3 points
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canadapacker's picture

March 26, 2021 at 02:06 pm

So San Fran just traded a whole bunch of number 1's to move up to 3 in order to get their Quarterback. Does that mean that a rookie will start this season? I would say yes unless they pick up somebody else because they cannot afford Garapollo and this new guy. What does that tell us about our chance to beat them back to back in San Fran - last time they were decimated with injuries.

0 points
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CoachDino's picture

March 26, 2021 at 05:49 pm

To me it means SF is not going to the SB this year if starting a Rookie QB. Mahomes did it his second or third year? And He is an outlier. they say Jimmy G is going nowhere. That would mean SF used all that draft capital on a guy who won't start year 1?

Now has SF just increased their odds of winning in the future - Hell Ya But then again how many Franchise QB draft picks pan out?

just an FYI - many and I mean many have stated that Love would be the #2 drafted QB this year and most projected top 3 if he would of stayed in school, some even suggested stay in school and transfer to a better program.

So basically the packers have an MVP (yet aging) QB and a High end QB prospect with a year of exposure to the offense on the Roster. That is a fantastic position to be in considering QB has exponentially more value/impact than any other position in the game.

And it didn't cost them all the draft capital it cost SF. 3 first rd picks (one being the 12th pick) and a mid 3rd. What did Love cost? a 26th and 128th? (late 4th) pick.

jordan Love looks like a steal Right now.

0 points
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PhantomII's picture

March 27, 2021 at 12:57 pm

SF and TB both have a really good defense that gave us fits and ended the same way, us getting beat by similar defenses 4x total. Bucs have a much better WR core and a decent run game, but not what SF style is. Our OLB's are noticeably better at holding the edge than last year, which is a good thing. Our new DC will be interesting to see how he approaches games to Pettines fluffy style. Time will tell. Hopefully we see what Dillon can do for more than 1 game per year.

1 points
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LauraBabb's picture

March 27, 2021 at 12:43 am

informative.

0 points
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