Packers Stock Report: Recovering From the Fail Mary Edition
My inbox has been overflowing with emails asking where the Packers Stock Report has gone.
It hasn’t gone anywhere. Its creator has just forgotten to do one through the first two weeks of the season. Its creator is also lying about his inbox overflowing with queries about the Packers Stock Report. I’ve gotten the same number of inquiries about it as the New Orleans Saints have wins.
So, back by not-so-popular demand, here is your Week 3 Packers Stock Report:
Even though he didn’t get a sack on Monday night, he was still creating havok on pass rushes and collapsed to the middle of the line on running plays. Matthews has been impossible to stop through three games. He’s the type of player that other offenses have to build gameplans around and a big reason why the Packers secondary has shown improvement.
Wha wha what?!?! Yes, Hawk has stepped his game up in the absence of Desmond Bishop. He hasn’t magically morphed into Ray Lewis or Brian Urlacher in their primes, but that’s beside the point. The Packers need A.J. Hawk to be the A.J. Hawk of late 2010: Assignment-sure, tackle the ballcarrier if he’s in your area, and every now and then blast a RB for a loss. According to Pro Football Focus, Hawk has 18 tackles, nine of which have resulted in an offensive failure. Hawk had six tackles and four offensive failure stops through three games last season.
Rookie Jerron McMillian has not allowed a catch this season. The only other safety to play as many snaps as McMillian and not allow a catch is Adrian Wilson with the Cardinals. The kid from Maine has registered a positive Pro Football Focus rating in every game and should have had the game-clinching interception Monday, but had it wiped out by a phantom roughing the passer call. I thought McMillian was more of a run-stopping safety, but so far he’s been great against the pass as well. Let’s see if it keeps up.
Benson has been about all the Packers could hope for. He’s not an elite back by any means, but he does enough to keep the defense honest on the rare occasions that Mike McCarthy decides to run the ball. He’s also proven to be a decent check-down option for Aaron Rodgers. Fumbling remains my concern with Benson. His fumble late against the Seahawks was one of those leap-off-your-couch-and-start-screaming “NO! NO! NO!” type of moments.
“Before the season started, I predicted that James Jones would be the Packers best WR through three games.”
It was another great game for Shields on Monday night. Too bad all he had to show for it was one tackle, a ridiculous pass interference penalty, and national “fame” for being the guy who got shoved to the ground on the game-disgracing final play. All that goofiness aside, seeing Shields play like he has is a very good sign. His coverage looks improved, but most importantly, he doesn’t appear tentative when battling for jump balls or making a tackle.
It’s never good to land in this category during a contract year. Jennings isn’t getting any separation on routes, which means he’s not getting opportunities to get yards after the catch. He’s taken on two excellent defensive backfields, though, so hopefully the bad start can be chalked up to the high level of competition and his groin injury.
This was supposed to be a breakout season for the right tackle. So far, he’s just been breaking down. Bulaga has always struggled with smaller speed edge rushers, especially on the road. That’s going to have to change in a hurry. You can’t have a former first round pick getting blown up like he was in the first half on Monday, even if he’s not comfortable with the matchup.
No further explanation necessary.