18

August

Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Analysis from Packers Preseason

Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football

Surviving Sundays with no Packers 

Packers beat Rams
The Packers got an exhibition win over the Rams on Saturday night. I didn’t get a chance to watch the game, but here is what I gathered about the Packers’ performance from those Tweeting while watching: First-team offense looks good, Johnny Jolly took a giant step forward, Micah Hyde has promise, Eddie Lacy is big and tough, the Packers don’t have a kicker, pass-rush from players on the first-team defense not named Clay Matthews isn’t there, D.J. Williams keeps dropping passes. For a more in-depth recap of the game, be sure to check out Jersey Al’s post.

Williams ready for week 1?
Out with a knee bruise since July 30, cornerback Tramon Williams said he should be ready for the season-opener against the 49ers. Of course, in the same interview, Williams also said he thought he’d be back by now. Never trust a player’s timetable for returning from an injury. Players always claim that the injury “isn’t that bad” or “should only take a couple of days.” They’re rarely right. I’m no doctor myself, but given how cautious the Packers are with injuries, it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if Williams misses at least the 49ers game.

Woodson praises Rodgers
Former Packers defensive back Charles Woodson doesn’t understand why Greg Jennings and Donald Driver were questioning Aaron Rodgers’ leadership lately. As soon as Jennings started spouting off, I remembered an interview Rob Demovsky — former Packers beat writer with the Green Bay Press Gazette and now at ESPN — did on Packer Transplants where he called the Packers wide receiving corp “the biggest group of frontrunners he’s ever been around.”  It’s scary how I remembered that quote, but it’s looking more and more like Mr. Demovsky was spot on.

Grading Packers’ rookies
Here’s a nice report card of the Packers rookies’ through three weeks of training camp. If I was the teacher, I’d probably put tackle David Bakhtiari and Datone Jones at the top of the class. I don’t think any parents need to be called in for a special conference yet.

Greene invents a new word
Outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene thinks Mike Neal has the ability to play both on the defensive line and as an outside linebacker. Greene even invented a new word — “explosibility” — to describe Neal’s game. I suppose Neal has a shot to make this work if they only use him as a pass rusher when he stands up outside. But if they ever ask him to drop into coverage, God help us all. To me, Neal is at his best when operating on the interior of the defensive line. He’s slimmed down to about 275 pounds now, which means moving him back inside full time probably would be tricky. Nightmare scenario: Clay Matthews gets hurt, leaving Nick Perry and Neal to play outside linebacker. Perry and Neal both drop into coverage at the same time. The world ends…

Packers depth slipping
Brian Carriveau over at Cheesehead TV says the Packers quality of depth is deteriorating, and on the surface, he’s right. Depth and getting hot in December and January are the keys to winning in today’s NFL (along with a stud QB, of course), and right now, it’s tough to say that the back end of the Packers roster is filled with quality depth. But how many times have we not considered a Packers player “quality” just because we’ve never heard of him, or he has no previous professional track record to stand on? I’m guilty of falling into this trap myself. Give the Packers depth some time to finish camp and develop. I bet a lot of these guys will turn into quality as long as injuries don’t press them into duty before they’re ready.

News and Notes

  • Registration is open for Throwback Weekend III, Oct. 19-20 when the Packers play the Browns. My wife is set to give birth to our first kid on Oct. 5, so doubtful I’ll be there. But don’t let that stop you from attending. It’s a great time and I can’t recommend it enough.
  • Randall Cobb’s arm hurts. Cobb’s durability has always worried me. He’s not a big man, and he was obviously hobbled at the end of last season.
  • Mike McCarthy views DuJuan Harris as his No. 1 running back. Now that Harris has finally returned to practice, we’ll see if he’s still the No. 1 a few weeks from now.
  • Marques Eversoll, Thomas Hobbes and Jason Perone had Green and Gold Today co-host Bill Johnson on No Huddle Radio this week. Be sure to check out the other podcasts this week from the Packers Talk Radio Network.
  • I know this is off-topic, but I can’t help myself. Those of you that have read Surviving Sunday throughout the offseason know that I enjoy playing general manager simulation games like Out of the Park Baseball and Fast Break Pro Basketball 2013. I stumbled across a different type of sim this week — Title Bout Championship Boxing. If you’re a fan of the Sweet Science, check it out. It’s a fun game.
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Adam Czech is a freelance reporter and a Packers fan living in the Twin Cities. Follow Adam on Twitter. Read more of Adam's writing on the Packers here.

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8 Responses to “Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Analysis from Packers Preseason”

  1. nick perry says:

    I’ve only saw the highlights available to me so far, but the runs by Lacy were impressive, that dude is a load! What’s funny is my friend who’s a 49ers fan says “Lacy’s spin move won’t work in the NFL”. Hmmmm, so far so good. It seemed to work well enough last night and this guy doesn’t go down easy after contact. (Yes I’m looking at you Alex Green) The Packers have given up a ton of yardage through the air, I’ll feel much better when Williams and Hayward are back. Even if Williams is ready for the opener, will he be in any kind of game shape? Just when I thought Ted would consider bringing in a quality NFL kicker, Crosby goes 3 for
    3. Dang!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

    • Dobber says:

      Williams might not have much game time in before the opener, but with Crabtree hurt, who are the Niners going to trot out who will kill a secondary? Anquan Boldin? He’s not going to run away from anyone.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  2. BrianURN says:

    As far as the depletion of depth on the Pack, it bears mentioning that a lot of the “depth” is starting right now due to injuries. WR and CB especially, as well as OT. Add in Bulaga, Sherrod, Cobb, Nelson, Williams, Hayward, Sharper,Quarless, and the 2 7th round receivers and you come away with a very different mix. I’d say that this team minus injury is one of the deepest the Pack has fielded across the board.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

    • marpag says:

      I agree that the Packers overall “depth” is just fine, and arguably better than it has been.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. NorthStarr says:

    “Johnny Jolly took a giant step forward”

    What a great opening … think I’ll take it. :)

    The Jolly Green Bay Giant.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 1

  4. DuJuanaman says:

    I know its early, but im gonna go ahead and say it: the Packers chances of winning the Super Bowl this season depend on Lacy staying healthy all season. If he can consistently do the things he did on Saturday all year, we are lookin good!

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2

    • Bearmeat Bearmeat says:

      Disagree:

      Assuming health: the Packers chances to win the super bowl depend on the Perry, Bakhtiari/Barclay and the winner of the SS competition stepping up.

      If all those happen, we’re a Super Bowl team. If only 1 happen, we still make the playoffs, but the Super Bowl gets pretty difficult to imagine.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

      • Stroh says:

        What if only one of THOSE happen along w/ Lacy running for 1000 yds and Datone being a playmaker? I would say that would make the Packer Serious SB contenders. Hell even w/o the Packers are SB contenders right now!

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0