Packers vs. Seahawks: 3 Not-So-Obvious Things to watch

Packers vs. Seahawks on Monday Night Football

Packers vs. Seahawks on Monday Night Football

We’re going to delve into the not-so-obvious aspects of the Packers – Seahawks matchup and give you some very specific things to look for.

Here are three not-so-obvious things to watch in this game:


Breno Giacomini vs. ?

The Packers are quite familiar with Breno Giacomini and his positives and negatives. While his size is a big help in the running game, moving that big body quickly enough is a real problem for Giacomini against speed rushers. I expect Erik Walden to get a lot of snaps over Nick Perry, taking advantage of his speed rushing capabilities. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see the Packers give Clay Matthews a decent number of snaps on Giacomini’s side.  Nick perry will probably get teh snaps in obvious running situations.

Conversely, the Seahawks will certainly be ready for this possibility and have some pass/run options put in for Russel Wilson to call. Given Walden’s issues against the run last year (although he has improved), the Seahawks may see that matchup as a plus for them and try to run right at Walden with the big-bodied Giacomini swallowing him up. That will put the ball in AJ Hawk’s court as the inside linebacker on that side.

It’s destined to become a mini chess match within the bigger Packers defense – Seahawks offense chess match. Keep an eye on how this plays out.

Packers Defensive Backs’ Arms

I can hear you saying, “huh?” What I’m talking about here is the the bane of their existence last season; arm tackling. Although it has been a point of emphasis for the coaches this past camp, and there has been some evidence of improvement in this area, this week is the true test. While Frank Gore and Matt Forte/Michael Bush are hard runners that don’t go down easily, they don’t have the “bounce off” ability that Marshawn Lynch does.  Lynch will give you that dead leg and your block tackle attempt will get nowhere without grabbing that leg with your arms.

And forget about hitting him high without wrapping up. You’ll bounce off  him like you just hit a trampoline. So let’s see if the Packers DBs really get it now. I’m looking at you, Burnett and Shields…



Jersey Al’s Film Study: Running with the 2’s at the Family Night Scrimmage

While the Green Bay Packers are still in the early stages of training camp, I usually like to pay more attention to the second units. This seems especially true this year, as there aren’t many starting spots up for grabs (left guard and fullback, maybe).

So my interest then turns to who will be called upon to save the day in case of injury to a Packers starter. To that end, I fired up the Family Night scrimmage on the DVR and put the old slow motion remote to use. Time for a little dissection by DVR.

Some observations…

Bryan Bulaga: I can see why Mike McCarthy is giving Bulaga a chance at a starting job. Bulaga was almost perfect in his Packers debut. He wasn’t beaten once. Whether out on the edge with a linebacker or further inside battling the likes of Cullen Jenkins, Bulaga stood his ground and neutralized the pass rush. He showed quick feet, a good punch, excellent balance and proper body position. I can’t say enough about how solid he looked. the Packers didn’t run enough with the twos to make an evaluation on his run blocking.

Marshall Newhouse
is going to have a hard time making this team. He displayed a lack of strength and was easily thrown off balance, but in his defense, he was given reps at left tackle, which is not a position he’ll play in the NFL. Newhouse needs to build a lot more strength and then be used at guard, where his football smarts will help him more. As I have written previously, I believe Newhouse is destined for the practice squad, at best.

Breno Giacomini was not very far behind Bulaga in performance. His feet look infinitely faster than during his brief pre-season trial last year. He showed excellent positioning, always keeping that big body between the rusher and the QB. He even handled rushing linebackers, which was his undoing last year. maybe I’m starting to see why the Packers have carried him for 2 years. When Bulaga and Giacomini were the tackles, they looked like a very good pair and the thought crossed my mind that in a year or two, they could be the Clifton / Tauscher of their day.