Surviving Sunday: Packers News, Notes and Links for the Football Deprived
The Packers signed free agent center Jeff Saturday this week to replace the departed Scott Wells. Yes, I said the Packers signed a free agent. A free agent that I actually heard of, nonetheless.
I wasn’t sure how I was supposed to react to this occasion. It’s been a while since Ted Thompson blew the dust off the checkbook he uses to sign free agents from other teams and actually brought someone in. Fans from other teams often celebrate like they just won the Super Bowl after inking a free agent so….congrats fellow Packers fans?
Thompson obviously didn’t know how to react to the occasion, either. He was so confused and out of sorts about what he just did that he turned around and did it again, signing free agent defensive lineman Daniel Muir.
Now, Muir fits the mold of a Packers free-agent signing much more than Saturday. Muir is a journeyman that Thompson signed and released once before. He’ll have to fight hard just to make the team and anything he contributes during the season will be a bonus.
Saturday, on the other hand, will be expected to be what he’s been his whole career: A reliable pass-blocking center who quarterbacks the offensive line for one of the most explosive offenses in the league, often during no-huddle situations. I’m sure Saturday is up to the task, but he’s also going to be 37 years old when the season starts.
Yes, Saturday has started all 16 games in six of the past seven seasons, but the thing with 37-year-olds is that they’re, well…old. You never know when the body of a 37-year-old football player might say enough is enough, or their skill set diminishes almost overnight.
Saturday was a good signing. No arguments about that. But it’s still going to be business as usual for the Packers at the center position. Saturday will (hopefully) fill in nicely this season and possibly next, but the Packers will still likely draft a center in April, both to solidify the position long-term and provide insurance in case age gets the best of Saturday.
Tim Tebow, Pat Lee/Jarrett Bush, Anthony Hargrove
- The Packers supposedly had some interest in acquiring Tim Tebow before he ended up with the Jets. Of course, this got several Packers fan wondering why Ted Thompson and company would bother with Tebow, but it got me wondering why Tebow would bother with the Packers. It also got a lot of Packers fans angry, but mercifully, the angst only lasted a day. At this very moment, Tebow’s star might be as bright as it ever gets. He’s coming of an improbable season capped by a playoff win and endless talk about Tebow having “it.” There would be no “it” talk with Tebow as the Packers backup, or even third-string, QB behind Aaron Rodgers. Sure, learning how to be a better QB from Mike McCarthy and Tom Clements might be good for Tebow down the road, but if I’m Timmy, I’d like to get right back out on the field and try to keep the magic (or whatever it was) from last year going.
- The Packers re-signed CB and special teams ace Jarrett Bush for $5.25 million over three years. If Nick Collins returns, I wonder if Bush could replace Charlie Peprah as the backup safety? In other backup CB and special teams news, Pat Lee signed with the Raiders. New Raiders GM and former Packers front office member Reggie McKenzie is doing his best to acquire as many castoff Packers defensive backs as possible.
- Free agent Anthony Hargrove visited the Packers. Hargrove is in the middle of the Saints bounty story, so who knows if he’ll even be available to play once the season starts.
In Case you Missed It
- The Saints got hit hard by Roger Goodell for Bountygate. Hopefully that couple extra thousand bucks for collecting a bounty was worth getting suspended, fined, stripped of draft choices and becoming the laughingstock of the NFL.
- Our own Zach Kruse started his new gig at CheeseheadTV. All of us at ALLGBP.com are happy for Zach, not only because he will still be posting here, but also because the more Zach writes, the more we get to enjoy his fine work, regardless of where it’s posted.
- Speaking of CheeseheadTV, make sure you pick up their Pro Football Draft Preview. If you’re like me and don’t follow college football as close as you’d like, this 99-page guide tells you all you need to know about the NFL draft from a Packers’ perspective.
- If you don’t care about Donald Driver on Dancing With the Stars, then don’t click here.
Non-Packers Thought of the Week
This is the least interested I’ve been in the NCAA basketball tournament that I can remember. Yes, many of the games are close, but close games aren’t automatically good games.
Many of these games are a chore to watch. Scoring is low. Play is choppy. Coaches are overbearing.
I don’t know if it’s because there if the vast number of Division I teams spreads the talent so thin, or if the talent level is just down, period. Other factors include good players leaving for the NBA early and teams adopting systems of play that are boring to watch, but effective as far as staying in games.
Give me the NBA over an NCAA tourney game any day.——————