Green Bay Packers Offseason Program Set to Begin Next Week
While fans may have forgotten what an actual NFL offseason looks like thanks to last year’s lockout, the Green Bay Packers are set to begin their offseason program (OTAs) next week.
Teams with new head coaches, such as the Miami Dolphins, Oakland Raiders and St. Louis Rams, were able to begin their programs last week, but Mike McCarthy and crew won’t be able to begin until next Monday, April 16th. Before the new Collective Bargaining Agreement was signed, teams were actually allowed to start their program’s in March.
Within the new CBA, the Packers have only 10 weeks to do their nine-week OTA program. The offseason program is only allowed to work players during the week, and only for four days of that week. For all the updated rules of the offseason program, ESPN did a fantastic job of laying it all out here.
So, what does this shortened period of time mean for a team like Green Bay? With less time than they’ve had in recent years, the shortened offseason program actually works against the Packers.
Considering the fact that Green Bay doesn’t generally bring in many players during free agency, these offseason workouts is where they do the majority of their growing and improving as a team. This is the first time that the key players from the roster can get together on the field and work through things. With less time, and the need to rush their time to fit it into such a small window, the Packers could see a drop in improvement as a whole during this program.
On the plus side, the 2011 draft class will have their first full program due to the rushed offseason from the lockout last year. With players like Randall Cobb, Alex Green, D.J. Smith and Vic So’oto all looking to make a larger impact during the 2012 season, having a full offseason workout could do wonders for their development.
Since the majority of the other NFL teams are in the same exact situation that the Packers find themselves in, it’s hard for Mike McCarthy to complain too much. He doesn’t have to like it, he just has to deal with it.