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September

Packers Stock Report: Now the Games Finally Count Edition

Andy Mulumba was one of many fringe players that ended up making the final Packers roster.

As a fan, this was one of the most difficult Packers preseasons to endure in quite some time.

The Packers got hit hard with injuries (again). The team looked awful in exhibition games (especially on offense). And the quality of play was mostly abysmal (it’ll be a long time before the images of Graham Harrell, Vince Young and B.J. Coleman chucking passes to God knows where leave my mind).

Fortunately, none of that matters now. The regular season is upon us and the horror show of the preseason will be a distant memory if the Packers come out and dropkick the 49ers in week one.

For some guidance on who will be the key players in helping us erase those terrible exhibition season memories, let’s go to the Packers stock report:

Rising

Andrew Quarless
Brandon Bostick
Andy Mulumba
Chris Banjo

Lane Taylor
Jeremy Ross

All of the above players were probably sitting on pins and needles Saturday. Every one of those guys had to scrap to make the team, and now that they finally made it, I’m considering all of them rising. Of course, I’m writing this at 7:30 on Sunday night, meaning Ted Thompson could make a roster move before this publishes and cut one of them. But even if one of them does get axed early, odds are the Packers will rely on at least one of these guys to contribute during the season. Let’s hope the momentum and confidence boost they receive from being in this week’s rising category translates to the playing field.

Johnny Jolly
Jolly fits into the above group as well, but I’m giving him his own slot because his story is that cool. It was nice of the Packers to give Jolly another opportunity to redeem himself, and it was great to see Jolly take advantage of that opportunity and make the team. Initially, this whole thing seemed like the Packers just doing a good deed and helping Jolly get his life back on track. After a few exhibition games, it became apparent that Jolly can still play and fills a need on the defensive line. Next up in the Jolly reclamation project: Eliminating silly penalties.

 

Steady

Ted Thompson
Once again, Thompson showed on cutdown day that he isn’t afraid to take a chance on young unproven talent that nobody has ever heard of. Five of the players Thompson cut in order to keep all the players in the rising category have already been signed by other teams. That means one of two things: 1) Thompson and his staff have a talented group of guys that nobody has ever heard of who will eventually prove their worth and become well-known, or 2) Thompson made some big mistakes and cut bait on a few players too soon. My money is on the former, but only time will tell. Either way, Thompson stuck to his philosophy and deserves a place in the steady category.

EDIT: Thompson released B.J. Coleman and signed Seneca Wallace after I finished writing the stock report last night. It looks as though Thompson is just throwing things against the wall to see if anything sticks as a backup QB. It’s one of the few times I can think of where Thompson doesn’t appear to have a plan. Is the latest development in the backup QB situation enough to remove Thompson from this week’s steady category? Nope. Every season, fans of all 32 NFL teams get excessively wound up about their backup QB. It’s no different in Green Bay. Sure, it’d be nice to have a “proven” backup (whatever proven means when you’re not good enough to start), but here’s the bottom line: If Rodgers gets hurt, the Packers are screwed. If pretty much any of the 32 starting QBs in the NFL get hurt, their teams are screwed. Yes, Thompson could’ve handled the backup situation better, but in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t mean all that much.

James Jones
With Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson battling injuries this preseason, Jones filled the void and looked like he’s ready for a repeat performance of his breakout 2012 campaign. Jones averaged over 14 yards per catch in the preseason — second only to Jermichael Finley among Packers with at least two catches — and hauled in a 50-yarder in the first exhibition contest. More importantly, I’m ready for the return of Jones’ trademark sleeveless turtleneck under his jersey. Once Jones busts out the sleeveless turtleneck, you know things are about to get serious.

Falling

The 31 NFL teams that aren’t the Green Bay Packers
I’ll save any negativity until the regular season starts and we have something meaningful to be negative about regarding the Packers. For now, it’s nothing but positivity. Real football is about to start. The Packers will be on my TV on Sundays. The team should once again be among the handful of teams that has a shot at winning it all. Why dampen all that joy and cheer by putting a Packers player in the falling category before the season’s first game? Go Pack go!

 

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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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20 Responses to “Packers Stock Report: Now the Games Finally Count Edition”

  1. Oppy says:

    Seneca Wallace makes a lot of sense for Ted Thompson, I think..

    I didn’t look into it, so I may be wrong…

    But isn’t Seneca one of “Teddy’s guys” from Seattle? At the very least, TT’s got to be familiar with who Seneca the player truly is from his time Seattle, even if he wasn’t the one responsible for bringing him into Seattle in the first place.

    Lastly, I don’t think TT always has a master plan- I just think he adheres to a list of ‘rules’ and protocols that Wolf instilled in him and he never panics, just keeps on running the system the way it was taught to him and keeps pushing forward. I think that calm, steady belief in the system is what lulls people into believing he’s always got a long-term plan. I don’t think he does. He just doesn’t fall into knee-jerk reactionism too frequently.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

    • Ed Schoenfeld says:

      I absolutely agree that TT has a strategy instead of a plan. The difference is that plans can fail and then you need to scrap them — strategies just adapt and move forward.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  2. ZeroTolerance says:

    And as he knows what we don’t, he has to be trusted.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  3. gruszman says:

    Here’s TT’s / MM back-up QB plan: Keeping the franchise QB up-right! Yes I know the OT’s are young and inexperienced which leads us to a plan that evolves around a STOUT DEFENSE,Pound the Rock…. and not getting caught in the middle of a Air attack shoot out. The Defense has never had more beef & more speed. The Defense is set to secure the run and young & quick enough to make plays in the pass defense. Hopefully all this youth will keep injures down too.
    This defense is JACKED-UP! This should make all the difference in the world in protecting our beloved franchise QB MR. Aron Rodgers. I’d rather have all our resources tied up in other things other than a back up QB anyways.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  4. PatMc says:

    Don’t forget Cobb! He can run the shotgun if needed. TT/MM have a plan, let’s enjoy watching it unfold. Go Pack GO!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  5. PatMc says:

    Look at the players TT is signing. It appears that (maybe) TT talked to other teams, determined their needs and 6 players were signed to those 6 teams. Watch who TT is signing, guy from SD, Clev, NY (maybe), Jacksonville, etc.

    TT is getting his needs filled prior to next years draft as we sit befuddled. Don’t don’t for a minute that TT hasn’t thought through a plan. We just don’t understand it.

    Put TT in the rising category.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  6. Nick Perry says:

    I’m glad Ted signed Wallace. I think we all knew when he released Young and the Packers were left with just Coleman, Thompson would bring in a Veteran QB. Wallace is familiar enough with the type of offense the Packers run if called upon, probably won’t botch a handoff near the goal line and fumble like Harrell. I wonder what happened with the Joe McKnight workout.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • Ed Schoenfeld says:

      Guys like Wallace come free all the time. It’s why all the knee-jerk reaction ‘fans’ who were clamoring for TT to *trade* (= give up valuable players or picks) to get a veteran back-up were wrong. You trade for or draft a player you think will eventually become a starter, either for your team or that you trade to another. But guys who you know are strictly backups you just sign off the street when you need them.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • cpocraig says:

        If I were TT I’d half to have thought hard and heavy about Matty Flynn coming back. Problem solved for a 5th or 6th pick

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Archie says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 10

    • mudduckcheesehead says:

      Yeah, that David Wells sure could pitch. I can’t believe Ted let him get away and sign with the Yankees. Fire Tightwad Ted!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Epy says:

      I take slight with your comment, I think it’s a little off base.

      1st of all, Ted Thompson will pay players that he didn’t draft if they perform.

      Woodson (FA), Pickett (FA), Grant (Trade), Williams (UFA) all got another contract/extension with the Packers.

      2nd of all, there was a lot wrong with the Packers defense in 2011 aside from pass rush, losing key players like Collins and having the 2nd scoring offense in NFL history is a big part of that too.

      3rd Jenkins has 9.5 sacks the two season he’s been gone from Green Bay, despite starting all 32 games.

      4th you don’t accidentally post 4 consecutive playoff appearances, there is a plan behind that.

      That said, it’s fair to criticize him for what you think his faults are, but to say he doesn’t have a plan is completely off base.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

      • cpocraig says:

        Having A Rod playing almost every game is a good reason that we have been to the playoffs these last 4 years.

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    • Rob says:

      First you complain he doesn’t pick or keep “good” players, then you complain he can’t afford all of the “superstars” on the roster. Which is it?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  8. Since '61 says:

    So far TT’s plan has given us Aaron Rodgers an MVP and Super Bowl winning QB, CMIII, Jordy Nelson, James Jones, MM, and most important of all a 51-21 record including a Super Bowl, 2 division titles and 4 consecutive playoff appearances. Pretty good results for a guy without a plan as some here have alleged. After living through the ’70′s and ’80′s teams I’ll stick with this plan for a while. Thanks, Since’61

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  9. tim says:

    Ever since TT has been in GB people have been scratching their heads, worried about where things are going and writing Ted off. He’s always got a plan. We might not be privy to it, but if you ask the rest of the league, they’d say the plan has been working pretty good, for the packers at least.

    On another note, what about this guy Michael Hill?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

    • Epy says:

      From Missouri Western. 5’10″, 210 LBs, 4.6 40
      2168 yards rushing, 19 TDs, and 7 YPC his last year at MW
      Was cut from Chargers 8/31

      Thoughts? Seems a bit slow, and despite some sweet stiff arms in the highlight video, it looks like he needs to work on his strength so he isn’t pulled down by his arm.

      Highlight Video Below:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ET_Rz0ijlDU#t=178

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • cpocraig says:

        After watch the high light reel I’ll say two things: This is division 2 defenses. Speed up the defense x 2. Second: He’ll get that stiff arm ripped out of it’s socket. He won’t be seeing all of those failed arm tackles in the NFL. That said I hope that I’m wrong.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  10. Adam Czech says:

    Of course TT has a plan. Find talented players, don’t overpay to get them, and squeeze as much value as possible out of them while they play for the Packers.

    That’s every GM’s plan, I guess, but Thompson has been doing it better than most over the last several years. Backup QB is one of the areas where the plan is backfiring for the time being.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

    • Rob says:

      Agree except for the term “backfiring”. TT has been playing more of a “crapshoot” with backup QB, and rightly so. He has one of the best QBs as a starter, so shouldn’t be using high draft picks for a backup. He just “crapped out” on the last few throws of the dice. Likely roll them again at next years draft.

      Meanwhile he’s cut his losses and switched to Blackjack with Wallace– better betting odds. :)

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