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Packers to Pick...

Packers to Pick...



The 2009 NFL draft is upon us. Excitement is building among Packer fans everywhere and everyone has an opinion.

My informal poll of Packer fans everywhere has produced the following results - Packer fans want defensive linemen.

The primary object of their desire is B.J. Raji.

Packers fans get very excited talking about him. They say he's the beast we need to anchor our new 3-4 defense. But what if he's gone before #9 (a very real possibility). Well, maybe then we'll trade down a bit in the first round, take a defensive end, then take a nose tackle in the second round, all while picking up an extra draft pick. Sounds easy...

"Maybe in the second round we'll get Ron Brace, Raji's teammate at Boston College or perhaps Peria Jerry of Ole' Miss. Either way, we'll have a 300-pound brute who can contribute and help our new 3-4 scheme be a huge success!”

What do I say? I say - slow down there folks, you're jumping to conclusions. I admit I've had some great  discussions/debates with other Packer fans about how we can best help our team. We all know poor defense is what  caused our woeful season in 2008.

And yet we all (except for the worst pessimists among you) have hope. We have a brand new coaching staff on defense, led by the ultra-experienced and well-respected Dom Capers.

He has hired a great staff, including Carolina's former defensive coordinator, Mike Trgovac. How many teams can claim two defensive coordinators on their staff?

We have a new strength and conditioning coach, Dave Redding. He is a 23-year veteran of NFL weight rooms and a member of the USA Strength and Conditioning Coaches Hall of Fame. A Hall of Fame coach, dammit!

And you're going to love his philosophy — he's not about how much players can lift or how many reps they can churn out. His primary concern is building endurance. His aim is for players to have as much energy on the last play of the game as they did on the first play.  Beautiful.

We all sat and watched in horror last year as Green Bay's defense collapsed at the end of games, especially in the second half of the season. This new approach to training can only help, right? So, we have hope.

Now, all we need are some players to fit our new 3-4 defense. A stud defensive lineman would be great, specifically a nose tackle. Some 300-pound immovable object that can tie up centers and guards at the same time, freeing our linebackers to do their jobs unblocked. Where better to get this player than the first round of the draft?

Yes, one of the best 32 players in the country can be the centerpiece of our defensive line next season. Imagine it.

Except, I don't think it's going to happen. Don't ask me to explain why I think this. I don't have any inside information. I haven't bugged the Green Bay war room, haven't hacked their computer systems, and haven't been spotted in the dumpsters outside Lambeau Field.

It's just a feeling I have — something inside me. I'm usually pretty accurate when I get those feelings. For example, I had a March Madness feeling to take Michigan State as my NCAA Champ (As Maxwell Smart used to say, missed it by THAT much!).

At the Green Bay-Seattle playoff game in the snow, after Seattle went up 14-0 and the fans at Lambeau were stunned into silence, I looked down at the Packers' bench and I just got a feeling in my stomach (and it wasn't the brats and Miller Lite) that Green Bay would end up blowing them out. Hooray for my feeling!

Unfortunately, the next week, when the game against the Giants went into overtime, a bad feeling came over me that a fumble or interception would lose us the game. Boo for my feeling!

Now that I've established my unquestionable credentials as far as feelings go, I have to get this off my chest—the Packers' first pick in the 2009 NFL Draft is going to be a tackle — an OFFENSIVE TACKLE. It's just a feeling I have...

(But I hope I'm wrong.)

Jersey Al's Packers Blog can be found here.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (36) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

I wish you felt a blockbuster play by Ted was on the horizon. Good read.

Jersey Al's picture

Wish I felt something else, also, but I have no control over it. Just like after too many brats and beer...

elmo's picture


We're getting another WR or a Punter in the first round....

Asshalo's picture

We probably will spend a pick on a punter in the late rounds and I'm all for it.

It's funny that you bring up an earlier round punter though. Bears spent a second rounder on one in 1995. Wasn't a bad punter, but he sure as hell wasn't worth a second rounder. Probably could have waited 4 rounds.

Asshalo's picture

"A stud defensive lineman would be great, specifically a nose tackle. Some 300-pound immovable..."

Wait-- you mean like a nose tackle or a defense end you just ripped on everyone for getting excited about?

"It’s just a feeling I have — something inside me. I’m usually pretty accurate when I get those feelings. For example, I had a March Madness feeling to take Michigan State as my NCAA Champ (As Maxwell Smart used to say, missed it by THAT much!).

At the Green Bay-Seattle playoff game in the snow, after Seattle went up 14-0 and the fans at Lambeau were stunned into silence, I looked down at the Packers’ bench and I just got a feeling in my stomach (and it wasn’t the brats and Miller Lite) that Green Bay would end up blowing them out. Hooray for my feeling!"

So you're saying your magic. Put on a moo-moo and change your domain name to Ms. Cleo. You describe the Seattle game like everyone in the stadium had given up. It was quite the opposit. If anything they got loader as they scored the 1st and 2nd touchdowns. We answered with six straight drives with a touchdown and people where just as into it on the sixth as they were the first.

I would love it if they picked up an offense tackle. With a pick in the second and two in the third I like the odds of getting at least one other player who can provide some depth or even start. If we picked up Andre Smith and moved Cliftont to left tackle, maybe AR would have some time to throw against teams like Dallas and Minnesota. Imagine the boost on the run game as well. We really missed Grant's explosive runs last year. With him healthy and the line improved and OT like Smith would bring a world hurt on opposing defenses.

Jersey Al's picture

Reading comprenshion is a problem for you, isn’t it?

I never said we didn’t need a nose tackle. I was merely paraphrasing (look that one up) Packers fans’ exuberence at wanting defensive line help. And show me where I “ripped” Packer fans or anybody???

The moments after Seattle scored their second touchdown, the fans were in stunned silence. I never said it stayed that way. Of course they got louder as the Packers started scoring touchdowns, oh Master of the Obvious. If you’re going to criticize someone, at least think about what you’re saying first.

Finally, I never said we don’t need an OT - we definitely do. I would prefer the first pick be defense, but I won’t cry if it’s one of the top OT’s.

And BTW, Clifton is a left tackle, so I don’t think we’ll be “moving” him there anytime soon.

It’s almost like you read a different article. Your comments prove that your nickname is no myth.

Asshalo's picture

No reading comprehension problems: "What do I say? I say - slow down there folks, you’re jumping to conclusions....And yet we all (except for the worst pessimists among you) have hope." And then you go onto say how we need a Nose Tackle.

Lambeau is always silent after an opposing team scores a touchdown. You obviously don't remember the third kick-off to us about minute after that second touchdown. We were down 0-14 and the crowd were just as load, if not more, than at the start of the game. Same goes for the first few first downs before we got into Seahawk territory. The crowd was fucking nutz and you're completely overstating your foresight. And who doesn't have a bad feeling when Favre has the Ball in overtime? He's a high risk player-- especially at the end of the game. Again, I commend you on that amazing foresite.

Speaking of being obvious, we've all read about the upgrades on the coaching staff and condition. So you don't need to patronize us. We've been aware of this improvement for months. People are just excited about the draft because we have a chance to land someone who could really help the team. And if you honestly don't have any concerns about the front three, or seven for that matter then you're being naive. No one is saying the season is over, just that the draft is a great opportunity.

I never said you said we didn't need an OT, just that I would love it if we picked up smith. I meant put smith at left and move Clifton to right tackle. And captain obvious, it's no shock to anyone that's been following this team that we could land an OT. Tauscher is done and Clifton is just about there.

Jersey Al's picture

Suspicion confirmed. I knew I was making a mistake even entertaining the thoughts of someone named "asshalo". Lots of credibility, there. It's pretty easy to cowardly sit there in your anonymity and criticize. Much easier than actually writing something yourself. But I promise to not take it personally, so rip away, Mr. A...

Now if you only made some points I could follow...

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Someone is testy today.

Franklin Hillside's picture

Andre Smith! Andre Smith! Andre Smith!

Love it, and I couldn't agree more, even though the rage-filled attack may not have not have been necessary.

Alex Tallitsch's picture

Don't mess with Al. He is from Jersey, and in the waste management business.

Jersey Al's picture

Va fangul... You're not supposed to talk about that, Alex. What's your address again?

nameless's picture

I think we should all practice the deep breathing technique.

Jersey Al's picture


MrBacon's picture

Jay Cutler: Hi Packers, is it possible to lend me a receiver or two, and maybe a few offensive lineman. You see a funny thing happened, Angelo gave away a few 1st round picks, and now we have no draft picks to get some good receivers... and maybe, just maybe you guys can lend me some ? Please ? I know all the hotspots in Chi-town already with my friend Olsen.

Jersey Al's picture

OK, You can have Jake Allen and Lorne Sam off our roster.

Dale Z's picture

Things getting "cat fighty" in here. Meow!

Asshalo's picture

<blockquote cite="comment-3118">

<strong><a href="#comment-3118" rel="nofollow">Jersey Al</a></strong>: Much easier than actually writing somethin

Haha, how am I anymore anonymous than your are? I give props just like a criticise also-- hell I even find a way to agree with Dale (who can be pretty damn funny at times). I've never thought about actually writing something here. I didn't know they encouraged it.

I just didn't think there was any point made in your article. I'de rather hear you breakdown why we're going to draft an OT than listen to you ramble on about why you're Ms. Cleo-- some people found it entertaining. I didn't. No big deal.

Asshalo's picture

That was me by the way

Alex Tallitsch's picture

I think people might have figured that one out.

Jersey Al's picture

I'm offically tired of having to explain everything to you. But you're right about one thing - No Big deal.

Asshalo's picture

that's funny because you didn't explain or say anything in your last two posts other than how tired you are.

Jersey Al's picture

Whatever you say, Surly Sphincter...

Graham's picture

What the hell is wrong with a OT, the ROT spot is the only spot on the field WE DONT EVEN HAVE A STARTER!!! DE we have Jolly, and Jenkins, where I'll admit perhaps not ideal at least we have two guys to pencil in. Who is our ROT??


Right (not left) we dont have one. If anyone says Colledge I'll slap them in the face, MM said he is playing LG no more questions about it.

Jersey Al's picture

Nothing wrong with it, but a lot of single-minded Packers fans will be mad, which was one of the subtler themes of the article. My personal preference would be a DL or LB first, then an OT second. I wouldn't be upset if it was the other way around, but I know a lot of Packer fans that would.

Also, next year we probably don't have a LT either, as Clifton will be a Free Agent and near the end, anyway. TT will let him walk.

Greg C.'s picture

What discourages me about Andre Smith is that reportedly most scouts thinks he lacks the agility to play LT in the NFL. Usually you don't spend a top 10 pick on an RT.

However, if he is a total beast of an RT, he could be worth it for the Packers, as this is a huge position of need for them. And the doubts about him being able to play LT may cause him to drop to #9. Here's an article about it:

Here is a possible opening-day OL for the Packers, from left to right:

Clifton, Colledge, Spitz, Sitton, Smith

And here's another:

Colledge, Barbre, Wells, Spitz, Smith

Jersey Al's picture

I do think we've seen the last of Tauscher. By the time he fully recovers from his injury, we could be well into the 2009 season. I think stabilizing the OL is a priority for MM, and he therefore is not anxious to roll the dice with Tauscher. I also think Clifton is allowed to walk away a free agent after this season, so the need for OT help increases. I don't know about taking a RT that high, either. I'm actually thinking (hoping?) Oher may drop...

Asshalo's picture

McCarthy was thinking October.

Graffin's picture

Nice read Al, I enjoyed it, (even though Butthole Rim tried ta tear you down) love the Get Smart reference. I would also like front 7 in first round but wouldn't be pissed about a o-line guy. RB or WR would be worse.

Jersey Al's picture

Thanks, Graffin. This wasn't meant to be a detailed draft analysis piece like the Surly Sphincter wanted. Just a little light-hearted fun.

What do you do if Crabtree is there at #9?

Graffin's picture

I would try to trade down, but I think Thompson would take em.

Ezra Johnson's picture

Got to love us people in Jersey. We are Packer fans with a f`n mouth.

Jersey Al's picture

And don't F' with us - HaHa...

elmo's picture

'Dat's right, baby..

I'm from Jerzy, Exit 9..

packnut's picture

well i got a feeling... oh wait, thats just a gas bubble. but i hope your feeling fails you!! we NEED defense. personally, I like brian orakpo.

Jersey Al's picture

I would approve of that selection, also.

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