17

December

Packers Stock Report: Win and the Packers are in Edition

Packers QB Matt Flynn all fired up after learning he made it in this week’s rising category.

The Packers win over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday was their best victory since winning Super Bowl XLV.

Sure, the Packers won 15 games and lit up scoreboards all over the NFL in 2011, but none of the 15 triumphs was as fulfilling as Sunday’s comeback over America’s (Most Annoying) Team.

Yes, the Packers persevered through a bunch of injuries and won a playoff game in 2012, but even the postseason win wasn’t as awesome as what happened in the Jerry Dome on Sunday.

Now that Justin “Robo Leg” Tucker connected on a 61-yard field goal that put the Packers back in control of their own destiny, the Frozen Tundra is buzzing about a possible repeat of 2010′s late-season magic. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered before that happens, though.

Can the defense get it together for a full game? As the Packers offense goes, so goes the defense. If the offense sputters for more than a half, can the defense pick up the slack?

Will Dr. Pat McKenzie clear Aaron Rodgers? C’mon, Doc. Rub some dirt on the QB’s collarbone and let him play.

What’s wrong with Clay Matthews? The team’s second highest paid player can’t win a one-on-one matchup to save his life right now. He showed some burst when he rushed from the middle linebacker slot on Sunday. Perhaps that will get him going.

Who made this week’s Packers Stock report? That’s the most important question of them all. Let’s find out:

Rising

Matt Flynn
I was convinced that it was Tolzien Time at halftime on Sunday. Flynn’s release is so slow and everything he does seems to be a half-second behind where it needs to be. I thought McCarthy might give Tolzien and his stronger arm with a quicker trigger another shot after the first half debacle, but he stuck with Flynn, changed the gameplan around, and pulled out a victory.

Eddie Lacy
Lacy might not be able to run away from defenders, but he makes defenders want to run away from him with how hard and physical he runs.

Jarrett Boykin
Week in and week out, with Rodgers, Flynn, Tolzein or whomever at QB, Boykin contributes. Over the course of a year, he’s gone from a slow-footed longshot to a dependable receiver. And he’s tough to bring down. Once he gets a head of steam, would-be tacklers are flying backwards after contact.

Steady

Tramon Williams
He never did become the shutdown corner we thought he would, but there’s nothing wrong with “only” being a dependable corner. What has impressed me most about Williams over the last six weeks is his sudden desire to play physical. He’s still not a great tackler, but he at least brings it now. No more half-assing it by diving at the feet of running backs or retreating in fear when a strong back comes barreling around the edge.

Sam Shields
Kind of a younger and faster version of what Williams has become. Shields won’t shut down anyone for a whole game, but he makes plays and has developed a physical streak to him that wasn’t there earlier in his career.

T.J. Lang
Whenever I see Lang pulling and heading upfield at a linebacker or a frightened defensive back, I know something good is about to happen. On Sunday, Lang showed his speed by getting to the second level on the Starks’ screen that went for a TD. He also held Jason Hatcher (nine sacks) without a pressure all game.

Falling

B.J. Raji
I am completely baffled by Raji’s disappearance over the last six weeks. He was a little bit better against the Cowboys, but still got outplayed by the more active and energetic Josh Boyd, in my opinion. If the Packers run defense is going to turn things around, Raji will need to awaken from his slumber.

Morgan Burnett
You could easily put M.D. Jennings in this slot, but Burnett just got paid, so he gets the honors. Burnett isn’t fast enough to close on balls that hang in the air and he’s not physical enough to tackle or scare anybody crossing over the middle. Ted Thompson should demand a refund.

Jason Garrett
For as much grief as we give McCarthy for his playcalling, imagine if Garrett coached in Green Bay? The Packers often put eight defenders in the box to stop the run in the first half and DeMarco Murray still rattled off long gains. For some inexplicable reason, Garrett decided to ditch the ground game with a big lead in the second half and it cost his team a victory.

——————

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.

——————

47 Responses to “Packers Stock Report: Win and the Packers are in Edition”

  1. Razer says:

    I can’t argue with any of your selections. I just can’t get my head around this team or that game. How can you explain the Jeklly and Hyde that are the 2013 Packers. I guess the last wins tell you that we DO have the talent to play better football. I just don’t know why we can’t consistently play this better football.

    Kudos to the players who pulled together and pulled this one out, it speaks volumes about the character of the team. I am thankful that I can hang on for the wild ride. But, I do know that when we play a good team, this hocus pocus will end. Let’s hope that Rodgers gets back and we changes the rules of engagement.

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

  2. Nostradamus says:

    Great assessment! I’d like to see your take on Sitton throughout the game. For the most part, I thought he did well. But, he backed off and didn’t finish on the Starks td, (as you stated, Lang did)and allowed a defender to hit Starks and almost prevent the score.

    “Who made this week’s Packers Stock report? That’s the most important question of them all.”

    Adam Czech did. Says so at the top of the article. No need to thank me, just doing my job.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • Adam Czech says:

      Sitton also played well. I’ve just been pleasantly surprised by Lang all season. He’s really improved (granted, he did play hurt a good portion of last season).

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  3. GBPDAN says:

    I think Quarless should be rising, the last 2 weeks have made me forget about Finley

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 1

    • Adam Czech says:

      Can’t argue with you on that one.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

    • Razer says:

      I am thankful for the emergence of a TE. Until this year, this offense was primarily Rodgers and the WRs. With a RB and now an over-the-middle TE, this offense has more horsepower. I would like to see Bostick or another TE evolve into another weapon.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  4. GBPDAN says:

    I agree on your comment about Mathews, what happened our maniac game changing defensive MVP?

    And here’s to doc Mac clearing Arod

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  5. Elo says:

    Great article Adam. Agree on your stock report. Raji seemed pretty agile for a heavy man, now he just seems fat. Thought we would see more action from Richardson, maybe we will, we definitely need an upgrade at Safety. I thought Hawk actually stepped it up a notch in Dallas. Would like to see the Claymaker return next week. Crazy year, and we actually have a playoff shot – wow.

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

    • Nick Perry says:

      After Jennings pathetic attempt in the back of the end zone in 4th quarter to Bryant, Jennings and Packers fans were taken out of their misery and Richardson came in. At some point TT has to see that a UNFA can’t plug every hole. Most times there’s a reason they go undrafted, they suck. Not always but most times. I think TT did a great Job in this past draft, but to have not drafted a safety in one of the deepest classes in years was just plain stupid.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

      • Stroh says:

        Clearly Thompson and McCarthy were expecting McMillan to develop into the starter. When that didn’t happen they dumped him. Good thing they doubled up on Safeties and got Richardson in UDFA. As the season goes on or next year Richardson will have plenty of opportunities to show if he can be the starter. If he shows decent coverage ability they won’t draft a Safety again or if they do it’ll be a late rd pick to develop.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  6. NYPACKER says:

    It seems like Raji is unmotivtaed & perhpas wants to go to a team that plays a 1 gap scheme, which coming out of college, many specualted that he was better suited for.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

    • Rob says:

      Maybe he needs a Gilbert burger.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

    • Razer says:

      Raji has been a disappointment but then again the D-line has not played well. Teams are running around and through us. Hey, I like Pickett and Jolly but the production has not been there for most of the season. This has to change if we are to beat the better teams or the Cowboys that don’t turn away from Demarco Murray.

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

      • Coz says:

        I agree. He isn’t making any impact plays, he barely gets any penetration, and only has 11 solo tackles. I don’t understand how he thinks he is worth more than 8 million, honestly let him walk if he wants more money. If I were to play GM, I’d take that offer right off the table and pay Sam Shields that contract.

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

      • Wilkerson says:

        Pickett didn’t have a good game either. Badger Fredrickson moved him around, mainly by himself. Not good. Our fatties are wearing out as the injuries and season wears on.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Tom Shields says:

    What about Jamari Lattimore? His speaking up at halftime seemed to light a fire in this team. The first half this team looked like it didn’t want to be there. Something changed. Making adjustments to the game plan helped. Changing the energy and mindset looked to be the bigger difference.

    Lattimore seems to play with an attitude. I saw Brad Jones coming on a blitz one play and he was trying to fake out the running back instead of coming full force. He is more of a finesse type where Lattimore plays more like Desmond Bishop used to play.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 1

    • Archie says:

      AROD called the plays in 2nd half or so I’ve been told.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 7

      • cubFan90 says:

        Where did you hear that from?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • JimR_in_DC says:

          The voices in Archie’s head? ;)

          Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

          • marpag says:

            Actually, there’s dead silence in Archie’s head.

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

            • Big T says:

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

              Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 14

    • 2shares@aseasonticketholder says:

      Lattimore is ranked the 10th best ILB by PFF. Jones is ranked in the middle and Hawk is ranked the 6th WORSE ILB. Nothing can be done right now to correct Thompsons’s Draft @ Play(not develop) theories that have created big holes in the defense. But, if Hawk was benched and Lattimore replaced him, the defense would be much better.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 7

      • Nick Perry says:

        This defense was much better with Lattimore in line-up. Makes you wonder if they play them because they pay them. Lattimore gives them one thing they’ve lacked at ILB. SPEED.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        • Wilkerson says:

          Hawk has speed, at least he did at the combine decades ago ;) Lattimore appears to have better feel/instincts…has a quickness to him that Hawk doesn’t. Hawk can run, but cannot diagnose quickly. It always seems to leave him a step behind.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • TallBaldGuy says:

            Hawk has slowed considerably. Being a vet helps him read plays otherwise he would still be trying to catch runners and receivers

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Nopainnogain says:

        Lattimore has shown some promise, but it’s a bit early to put much stock in his PFF grade. Sample size is super small compared to the other LB’s. He’s basically only had meaningful snaps in 5 games and was good in 2 of them. heck, Mcmillian had about the same grade after his first 5 games last year and we all know how he turned out.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  8. marpag says:

    Boykin is definitely rising. If he keeps it up, you have to wonder if the Packers might save some money for other players by letting James Jones walk in free agency at the end of the year.

    For all of the heat TT takes (some of it deserved, perhaps) I don’t think anyone can criticize his eye for receivers.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

    • 52lightsxout52 says:

      Agreed marpag, I was thinking the same thing. If Boykin keeps developing the way he has been, this may prompt Thompson to let Jones walk in free agency…

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • keith says:

      I’m sorry, but I’m just a huge James Jones fan. He makes great catch after great catch… has good speed, has broken games open with big plays, and he seems to be expendable in your eyes.I remember his early career struggles with fumbles forced after a catch, but he’s worked himself up to the point of being sorely missed, if just let go.I would welcome like value of some sort, in a trade, but to just let him walk would be a huge mistake in my opinion.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Stroh says:

      Jones will definitely be allowed to walk! I’ve been saying that since training camp. He’s just as good as Jones, same size/speed, great big mits. Boykin stays another 4 or 5 yrs w/ an extension. Jones goes to FA and if he’s lucky a team signs him to a contract similar to what he has now as a #2 or 3 WR. Only way he’s in GB next year is if no one wants him in FA again and he signs for less than he’s making now.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  9. John in Montana says:

    If there’s one thing the Steelers can learn from the Cowboy/Packer game is this: The Packer’s run defense is weak. Watch for Tomlin to feed Bell. Bell will be motivated to show he was the right choice over Lacy in the draft. And watch for Big Ben to dump screens to neutralize the Packer rush and attack the porous secondary. As much as I agree with your assessment of Williams and Shields AND Burnett, the Steelers will score a lot of points on Sunday. Better hope whomever is under center on Sunday has a hot hand. We’re going to need it.

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

  10. J204 says:

    I would say MM gets a little uptick in his stock.. I only say this cause I think most people (including myself a little) dropped it.. But he has stayed true and started to coach up Flynn pretty good.. He also did a pretty good job managing game situations in Dallas, like calling the timeout that allowed the booth to challenge that pick by Tramon.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  11. Big T says:

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

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 9

  12. 52lightsxout52 says:

    Totally agree with you on B.J. Raji, Adam. He hasn’t played the the kind of intensity and sense of urgency that you would expect from a player in a contract year. With Raji’s poor showing this year coupled with the return of John Jolly and the emergence of Josh Boyd, I think Raji has seriously hurt his market value and may find himself on the outside looking in…

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  13. Big T says:

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

    Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8

  14. Big O says:

    Id like to see Crosby mentioned in one of these articals, he’s back in the scoring department!! And come on Mckenzie let AR play before the rest of us have to find medical help!! Oh and ( Two one point wins in a row,GREAT but stressfull) Go Pack

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  15. tim says:

    Good picks on all counts, I really like what quarless has been doing & Jordy nelson came through in a big way as well. Can’t believe the packers again control their destiny, but they do. They’ve been given every chance to do it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  16. Mariothepoet says:

    ” Shields won’t shut down anyone for a whole game”
    Are you serious? Sam Shields played outstanding football. What does this man have to do to get some respect. Sam usually gets left on a island by himself defending some of the TOP receivers in the game. This is not an accurate assessment of Shields in 2013 though at some point it may have been true.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Adam Czech says:

      Are you Rodney Dangerfield?

      Shields gets all kinds of respect and I gave him plenty of respect in the post. He allows a QB rating of 75.5 on passes thrown to the WR he is covering, 20th best in the league.

      That’s damn good, but doesn’t make him a shutdown corner (unless your standards for being a shutdown corner are lower than mine).

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

      • Wilkerson says:

        Not being rude, just curious. How do we define “shut-down corner”? My guess is there are maybe 5 or so in the league?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  17. tim says:

    Shields has played some very good games and deserves a lot of respect. CB is a place where every sin can be magnified, and shields has been good out there. He’s as close to a shutdown corner as our crappy defense could expect. He and tramon are going to have to earn their pay against the bears. That is, if the packers are still in it by then.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  18. […] Your weekly Packers Stock Report: Win and the Packers are in Edition. […]

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  19. keith says:

    we should toy with Matthews in the inside more often. He is always matched up against much larger men, and is limited in his impactful plays because of that. Coach should move him around more, to keep the opposition guessing. He seems much faster than Hawk, and thus could possibly cover better in the center of the field( our Wide open spaces) I think he would also terrorize Qbs with some nasty blitzes.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  20. larry valdes says:

    Matthews should be move around like I said before that cowboys game we waste a lot of plays trying to rush ot smith which is a very good tackle move him to weaken lineman.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0