28

February

The Packers Should Release Donald Driver

Donald Driver

Donald Driver before playing the Broncos in October.

I hope I am wrong about every single point I make in this post. I hope sometime in the future, a commenter on this site or a blogger on another site uses this post to highlight how big of an idiot I am. I hope at some point next season, I have to warm up a big ‘ol plate of crow and eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Then re-heat it for a midnight snack.

NEWSFLASH: Donald Driver to compete on the next “Dancing with the Stars.”

I think the Packers should release Donald Driver. Not re-structure his contract or ask him to take a pay cut. Release him.

It’s time to move on and give more snaps to Randall Cobb or another young player not yet on the active roster.

I just slapped myself for writing that, but I believe it to be true.

I’ve heard several arguments in recent weeks highlighting why the Packers should keep Driver. I want to agree with them, but I cant. Here are some of those arguments and why they’re wrong:

The Packers need Driver’s leadership.
It’d be great to have Driver in the locker room, but here’s the thing about leadership that most fans don’t realize: If the teammates you’re trying to lead sense that you don’t have it any more, your effectiveness as a leader diminishes. It gets worse if teammates feel that you’re taking snaps from a younger, more deserving player, just because of your status as a “leader.” (Also, why can’t Greg Jennings assume that leadership role?)

Driver showed he can still play last season, but he rarely matched up against the other team’s top defensive backs. Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson and Jermichael Finley drew most of the defense’s attention. Is Driver still the Packers best option to exploit mismatches against linebackers or inferior dime backs? Or would Randall Cobb, James Jones or an upstart player not yet on the roster fare better in that role?

The Packers need to go with the latter option.

Driver was the only WR to show up in the playoff loss to the Giants.

That’s true. It’s also true that roster decisions should not be based on one game.