Category Archives: Alex Green

19

May

Surviving Sunday: Packers News, Notes and Links for the Football Deprived

Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football

Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football.

If I was creating my own perfect media universe to feed me information on the Green Bay Packers, here’s what it would look like:

Play-by-play announcer: Wayne Larrivee. No explanation needed. I could listen to Wayne all day — even if the Packers were losing by seven touchdowns — and still get enjoyment out of the game.

Color commentator: Mike Mayock. I used to have Cris Collinsworth ahead of Mayock, but not any more. Mayock made those boring Thursday night games on NFL Network tolerable last season. I’ll take substance over style from my color commentary each and every time.

Sideline reporter: Doris Burke. Ok, I’m cheating a little bit. Those of you who watch Burke work the sideline and conduct in-game interviews with coaches during NBA games know why I choose her, however. She takes the job seriously and actually tries to tell the viewer something that doesn’t insult his/her intelligence. Her questions are always light on fluff and high on substance.

Studio host: Trey Wingo. Doesn’t need catch phrases or tired schtick to be effective.

Studio analysts: LeRoy Butler and Mark Tauscher. Both guys have ties to the Packers, are extremely engaging and provide good insight.

Main beat writer: Tom Silverstein. Hard working. In-depth. No frills. Smart. Insightful. Gets a little snarky on Twitter. Everything you want out of a beat guy.

Secondary beat writer: Rob Demovsky. Doesn’t get enough credit because the talent pool of Packers reporters is deep. He’s one of the better ones.

Columnist: Bob McGinn. Years upon years of working with sources and dropping knowledge. He also tends to get people a little riled up, which a good columnist will do every now and then.

Radio talk show hosts: Jason Wilde and Bill Johnson. No need to re-create the wheel. Just keep Green and Gold Today what is already is: A show to discuss the Packers, not rant and rave incoherently like most sports talk radio shows.

Blogger: Jersey Al. One of the originals and still the best.

5 Packers people to follow on Twitter: @PackerRanter: Deep. @jrehor: Passionate. @Aaron_Nagler: NFL. @Packerpedia: Informative. @BrianCarriveau: Dedicated.

That about sums it up. I’m sure I left some good people off, but hopefully they get over it and their feelings aren’t hurt too bad by being left off such a prestigious list.

3

April

2013 Packers Position Group Analysis: Running Backs

Packers RB DuJuan Harris will surely be back with the Pack in 2013.

Packers RB DuJuan Harris will surely be back with the Pack in 2013.

As far as personnel, the Packers underwent more changes at running back than any other position. James Starks was the starter through training camp before the team signed Cedric Benson after the first preseason game. Injuries added up, allowing DuJuan Harris–a former used car salesman–to take over as the team’s feature back.

Where are we now:

Here are the current suspects;

DuJuan Harris (UDFA, Signed as FA in 2012)
Alex Green (3rd round, 2011)
James Starks (6th round, 2010)
Brandon Saine (UDFA, 2011)
John Kuhn (UDFA, Signed as FA in 2007)

Listen to expanded coverage of this topic using the player below or download the podcast from the Packers Talk Radio Network on Itunes.

Listen to internet radio with Packers Talk Radio Network on Blog Talk Radio

Harris: For the 2012 Packers, DuJuan Harris (5-9 208) was a huge blessing in a small package. After starter Cedric Benson was lost for the season with a Lisfranc injury, and reserves Alex Green and James Starks both battled injuries of their own, the team turned to Harris to be the lead back. Harris played in a total of six games last season and recorded a team-high four rushing touchdowns.

Green: After Cedric Benson was lost for the season while James Starks was already out of the lineup, Alex Green was the next man up. Green broke off a season-long run of 41 yards later in the game Benson got hurt but never grabbed hold of the starting job. For the season, Green averaged just 3.4 yards per carry.

Starks: As the starter in the Packers’ first preseason game, James Starks turned in a disappointing performance. Before suffering a turf toe injury which would cause him to miss half of the season, Starks also lost a fumble. He returned to the lineup and became a key part of the backfield rotation during the middle of the season, but his roster spot for 2013 is far from assured.

Saine: The second-year back out of Ohio State didn’t carry the ball once in 2012, as he was lost for the season after suffering a torn ACL in week six against the Houston Texans. Saine has appeared in just 14 games the past two seasons, but he showed promise during 2011 in a limited role.

26

March

Packers RB DuJuan Harris: Real Deal or Flavor of the Month?

DuJuan Harris

Packers RB DuJuan Harris

Packers running back DuJuan Harris has been getting a lot of attention lately.

Here’s what Packers coach Mike McCarthy recently said about him:

“Oh, he’s going to play for us next season. That’s his responsibility if wants to be the starter….I wish we would have had DuJuan earlier. He was a young man that we were just getting ready to try to put in the game. Everybody’s like ‘Just put him in there.’”

Cheesehead TV co-founder and senior NFL video producer at Bleacher Report Aaron Nagler recently Tweeted this about Harris:

“Watching DuJuan Harris run the football is one of my favorite things.”

Tyler Dunne had a feature story on Harris at the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Here’s an excerpt:

“The second-year pro from Troy finished as the Packers’ top back, rushing for 257 yards on 62 carries with four scores in six games. This off-season – as outside pressure mounts for Green Bay to land a bigger, durable, every-down back – Harris has hit the mute button.”

So, is Harris for real? Could a 5-foot-7 dude plucked from an auto dealership halfway through last season really be the Packers answer at running back?

Maybe.

Let’s look at why Harris might be the real deal, and why he might be just another flavor of the month.

Real Deal

  • Have you seen the guy run? Holy cow! Quick. Decisive. Explosive. Good vision. Strong. Moves forward. Packs a punch. Physical. You ask yourself why a guy like him was selling cars instead of ramming into NFL defenders.
  • His attitude. Go read that entire story from Dunne again. Harris sounds like a great guy who knows how the NFL operates and is ready to fight like hell for a starting job.
  • Who else is there? Sure, I suppose the Packers could draft a running back early, but do we really think Ted Thompson would spend a first-rounder on a running back? Never say never, but odds are the competition at running back will be between James Starks (yawn), Alex Green (yawn again), a lower-round pick (yawn some more) and Harris.

Flavor of the Month

13

March

2013 NFL Draft Preview: Ranking Packers Running Back Prospects

North Carolina RB Gio Bernard

North Carolina RB Gio Bernard

Running back can be a tough position to evaluate headed into the NFL Draft.

Take last year for example. Trent Richardson was considered a “can’t-miss” guy at the top of the draft, but Alfred Morris, the 173rd overall pick, had the best season of all rookie running backs last year.

This year’s draft doesn’t have a clear-cut top back. There isn’t a Richardson or an Adrian Peterson in this year’s draft class, but there are a handful of intriguing prospects that could step in and start for a team from day one.

Nearly all draft rankings have the same two guys at the top: Alabama’s Eddie Lacy and North Carolina’s Giovani Bernard. Most have Lacy firmly entrenched as a first-round pick with Bernard projected to go in round two.

Lacy and Bernard are completely different backs. While Lacy is a physical, punishing runner, Bernard is a versatile player capable of doing damage in the passing game as well as between the tackles. In today’s pass-happy NFL, I prefer Bernard as a prospect slightly ahead of Lacy.

But beyond the top two guys, this year’s crop of running backs has some quality depth. Oklahoma State’s Joseph Randle, Clemson’s Andre Ellington, UCLA’s Johnathan Franklin and Wisconsin’s Montee Ball all have a chance to be selected on Day 2.

Perhaps the most interesting running back in this year’s class is Marcus Lattimore of South Carolina. Lattimore suffered the most gruesome knee injuries I’ve ever seen last season, and concerns over his long-term health will likely cause him to drop to the third round.

It would be an upset if the Packers don’t add a running back at some point this offseason, whether it’s a veteran via free agency or a young guy through the draft.

1. Gio Bernard, North Carolina (5-8, 202)

  • Draft stock: Late 1st/Early 2nd
  • 40 time: 4.53, 225-pound bench: 19 reps, 10-yard split: 1.53
  • Two-year starter, declared after his RS Sophomore season.
  • The second round is likely where Bernard will be selected, but I really believe he’s the best running back in this class. On top of being a talented runner, he’s a dangerous return man and receiver. I see Bernard as Ray Rice 2.0, and I really think he’d be a natural fit in the Packers’ offense.
12

March

Will John Kuhn Return to the Packers?

John Kuhn

My hunch is the Packers bring FB John Kuhn back in 2013.

Most of the offseason focus on Packers roster cuts has focused on Jermichael Finley and A.J. Hawk. Both of those players elicit strong reactions from Packers fans.

Mention Finley on a sports-talk radio show and the phones lines light up. Drop Hawk’s name in a blog post and the comments section gets heated in a hurry.

John Kuhn doesn’t move the needle like Finley or Hawk. Most Packers fans like Kuhn. They view Kuhn as an underdog who got where he is through toughness and hard work. They also like yelling “Kuuuuuuuhn!” whenever he touches the ball.

As well-liked as the fullback from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania is, however, there’s a chance his days in Green Bay could be over.

Kuhn is set to make $2.6 million in 2013. That’s a lot of money to pay a back in a passing offense who isn’t much of a threat to run, pick up short-yardage first downs or turn checkdown passes into big gains.

Kuhn played 39.2 percent of the Packers offensive snaps in 2012. Pro Football Focus gave him an overall grade of 4.3 for the season, ranking him 12th among all fullbacks  (out of 25 that were graded)..

His blocking grade of 4.4 ranked him 16th and his running grade of -1.1 ranked 23rd.

Do those numbers merrit a $2.6 million salary? Probably not, but my hunch is Kuhn will be back unless the Packers could really use that extra $2.6 million to get the Aaron Rodgers and Clay Matthews contract extensions out of the way sooner rather than later.

I doubt Thompson is going to do much in free agency besides maybe a signing or two for depth. Thompson probably won’t need Kuhn’s cap space to sign free agents.

I also have a hunch that the Packers will head into 2013 with Evan Dietrich-Smith at center and Marshall Newhouse at left tackle. Either that or Dietrich-Smith at center, Bryan Bulaga at left tackle and Don Barclay at right tackle. Whichever combination happens to be the one, Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers are going to want a pass-blocking back who knows where to be and can get the job done.

22

February

Packers Alex Green: 2012 Player Evaluation and Report Card

1) Introduction:  The Packers selected Green in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft. Green attended the University of Hawaii after transferring from Butte College—the same school Aaron Rodgers attended before transferring to the University of California. As a rookie, Green was in line for an expanded role within the offense before a torn ACL ended his season early. Coming off major knee surgery, it was unknown how much of an impact Green would have this season.

2) Profile:

Alexander Denell Green

  • Age: 24
  • Born: 06/23/1988, in Portland, OR
  • Height: 6’0″
  • Weight: 225
  • College: Hawaii
  • Rookie Year: 2011
  • NFL Experience: 2 years

 Career stats and more:

3) Expectations coming into the season:  Green suffered a torn ACL Oct. 23 of last season, and he was back on the field for the team’s preseason opener on August 8. He started the preseason behind James Starks on the depth chart. And when Cedric Benson signed with the team, Green fell behind him as well.

4) Player’s highlights/low-lights:  Green played well replacing Benson after his injury against the Indianapolis Colts. He finished with 61 yards on ten carries, thanks primarily to a 41-yard burst in the fourth quarter. When DuJuan Harris emerged as the clear-cut No. 1 back, Green’s role within the offense was essentially eliminated.

5) Player’s contribution to the overall team success:  When Cedric Benson suffered a foot injury Oct. 7, Green assumed the role as the team’s starting running back. He started the ensuing three games but failed to run away with the job. James Starks and DuJuan Harris each took a turn as the team’s feature back.

6) Player’s contributions in the playoffs:  Green was active for the Minnesota Vikings game and inactive for the divisional round contest against the San Francisco 49ers. He didn’t touch the ball in the postseason.

Season Report Card:

(B-) Level of expectations met during the season

(C-) Contributions to team’s overall success.

(F) Contributions to team during the playoffs

Overall Grade: C-

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Follow @MJEversoll

Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.

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5

February

Packers Running Backs: Present and Future?

DuJuan Harris - Packers Running Back

DuJuan Harris – Packers Running Back

I dig into every article I can find about the Packers and the draft, including here at Al’s site.  There is a wide range of opinions on the subject of Packers running backs.  Lets look at my views on running backs,  those with the team, and in the draft.

The Packers currently have six running backs and one full back listed on their roster.  Those include running backs Cedric Benson, Alex Green, James Starks, Brandon Saine, Dujuan Harris, Ryan Grant and John Kuhn at full back.  Grant filled a spot caused by injuries, showed he can still do a little, but like last year, just say thank you and good luck.   The question on Benson would be is he even worth bringing back?  He did ok at best. He is a talented back with mileage and age, he just turned 30 and is coming back from a foot injury that required surgery.   I don’t see any compelling reason to bring him back other then competition.

Harris looks like a very good 3rd down back that can fill in nicely when needed to start, but not a “featured back”.  He does it all pretty well.  Has a decent jump cut, might need to be a bit more patient looking for cut back lanes.  He needs to be brought back and coached up over the off season.  Starks has shown he can be productive as a runner, is a good receiver out of the back field, but needs to work on blitz pickup.  How much time do you put into a talented 6th round RB that can’t stay healthy?  I think he should be brought back, but with any additional injuries he would get a quick hook from me.

Saine, another UDFA like Harris, has good straight line speed, is a decent receiver out of the back field and quite good in blitz pickup.  His ability in Pass Protection might have been his best asset. Not a great fit for the Packers running game.  He lacks lateral agility, but has quickness and speed.