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Why Are The Packers Screwing Around W/Poppinga?

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Why Are The Packers Screwing Around W/Poppinga?


Look, I get it. Competition is good. Guys can be pushed to new heights when made to compete for their jobs. Yada, yada, yada. But pretending Brady Poppinga is in 'competition' with Brad Jones for the starting left outside linebacker position is, in a word, stupid. (That's right Jason Wilde - I said it.)

It would sure seem the Packers are falling victim to the "he's such a good teammate" syndrome here. The "he's done everything we've asked him to do" waltz is being played. So they are throwing him a bone and giving him the honorary "Jeremy Thompson Running With The Starters...In May" award. I think there may also be a bit of the ol' "Thompson Sees A Version of Himself When He Used To Play" at play as well.

But please.

I've tried to stay positive on Poppinga. I really have. I was one of the few who didn't pop a gasket when the Packers extended his contract a few years ago. I was one of the few who tried to point out he did a bit more than just jump on the pile after the play was over. (Not a LOT more, mind you. But a bit more.)But it's hard to stay positive when you see a guy offer absolutley nothing in the way of rushing the passer, zero in coverage and very, very little by way of stopping the run. After awhile, it's hard to stay positive.

The guy is just...a guy.

If the Packers truly are counting on Brad Jones to improve the pass rush, playing mind games with him seems to be a really dumb way to go about it. So, memo to McCarthy, Capers, Greene, and whoever else I need to speak to: Stop messing around and let Brad Jones run with the #1s. This is just...stupid.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (22) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

PackmanAZ's picture

Brad Jones needs to run with the ones hands down... and sooner than later. They are only slowing things down by doing this, we already know Jones plays the spot better. Why screw around with this? I like Brady too, but I like wining more(I know it is only may)so get Jones some reps.

IPBprez's picture

Tend to agree, AZ. PopPinga's chances were greater about 3 seasons ago. And, Bob Sanders sorta took that away as an option, now didn't he?

I go with Brad on this one.

A town Hero's picture

Could Brady's contract be driving this decision? He is definitely overpaid for his mediocre talent.

chazman's picture

Is there any chance they are just looking at Poppinga one more time before they boot him?

CSS's picture

Aaron (anybody, actually) - Any idea why we're hearing nothing about Obiozor? I realize he was raw, but I took it as a good sign last season when Green and the coaching staff were riding him so hard in camp (i.e. - they were pushing him after seeing his potential).

Is that a name we can anticipate hearing more about after OTA's and in camp?

packeraaron's picture

I keep trying to find out but all I keep getting back is "they like him but he's a year away."

CSS's picture

Call me crazy, but the silence like this coming out of any camp (especially Packers) I take as a very good sign. If it were the opposite I'm guessing they would envoke his name and march him prominently onto the field more often in order to either move him or remove him.

Hopefully he isn't another year away. If he is, I wonder what he has from the neck up because he certainly appears to have the physical tools.

Stan's picture

They know they have zero comp for Jones, so yeah, this is a bit stupid. However I would rather they did it this way than hand a young guy a free pass (Mason Crosby ain't doin so well with his)

DAWG's picture

Jones is a pretty bright kid, he's probably chuckling as we speak on the (pops), all he needs to do is add strength to his upper body, which he admitted as a rook, it's all good.
But hey, POPs- he's the best pile on guy we have:)

Jersey Al's picture


I know you're a "professional athletes should be able to motivate themselves" kinda guy, but as you probably know, I'm not. They are simply letting Jones know the job is not just being handed to him. I see nothing wrong with it, other than it's not fair to Poppinga, but since he's just "a guy", as you said, that doesn't bother me much.

Professional athletes are still human beings. Being handed millions of dollars a year will always invite some guys to coast a bit. Others will work extra hard because their makeup dictates that.

Overall, I'm always for letting guys know their spots will not just be handed to them.

PackersRS's picture

I hope you're right, Al, but lemme just say this: If Obiozor is one year away, and we're actually counting on Poppinga, we're the ones who're screwed...

coloradopackerfan's picture

Capers said Jones was the starter in press conference so I don't think there is any smoke and mirrors going on. They probably put him with first team for a reason that doesn't have anything to do with him actually starting.

Satori's picture

Teams do things in May to set the table for later in the year. Both TT and MM have mentioned an interest in a veteran OLB and part of the evaluation is making a comparison to what you already have.

Additionally, if Jones gets injured they need a look at Popp after a year in the scheme to see if he could hold down the fort in an emergency.

This is just due diligence in preparation for the next round of minicamps and TC. Its not sending a message, or adding competition for Jones. They are merely making an additional assessment of the depth at that position so they can then make better informed choices going forward.

packeraaron's picture

Lots of truth to this.

Nypacker's picture

Aaron this was already addressed by an article in the green bay press gazette:

Capers specifically says Brad Jones is the starter opposite Matthews. I think they want to get Jones in the weight room and test him out physically before they let him on the field. They want to see how much stronger he really is after adding those 10-15 pounds.

packeraaron's picture

Exactly (I linked to this in the post) - so why are they running Poppinga w/the 1s? Makes zero sense.

FITZCORE1252's picture

"Makes zero sense."

To you and I, that's true. I'm gonna go ahead and give Dom the benefit of the doubt on this one. There appears to be a slight chance he may know what he's doing.

From time to time head-scrachers like this come along that I just don't understand, and then I remind myself... I'm not on the coaching staff, I'm not in the meetings, and... IT'S MAY!

If Brady's still trotted out with the Starters in August, I'll worry.


Ron LC's picture

We, the fans, either saw something in Jones that the coaches didn't or Poppie has picutres of TT. I'm leaning towards the later.

retiredgrampa's picture

This too shall pass!

FITZCORE1252's picture

"I think there may also be a bit of the ol’ “Thompson Sees A Version of Himself When He Used To Play” at play as well."

Wow dude, project much?


aaronqb's picture

I don't even want Brady as part of the 53. Obiozor and one of the free agents would be better backups at the OLB positions

foundindaho's picture

Maybe they like the way his name sounds like the kid in Phil's book. (I know, lame. But I can't imagine another reason, haha.)

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