The Green Bay Packers aren’t waiting until training camp to shuffle their offensive line.
Details of the Packers new-look line can be found in this excellent Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel story by Tom Silverstein. To summarize:
- Bryan Bulaga moves from right tackle to left tackle
- Josh Sitton moves from right guard to left guard
- T.J. Lang moves from left guard to right guard
- Marshall Newhouse (last season’s starting left tackle), Don Barclay (who got a few starts in 2012) and Derek Sherrod (coming off a major leg injury that forced him to sit out last season) will compete to start at right tackle.
- Evan Dietrich-Smith is the starting center
Essentially, Packers coach Mike McCarthy is moving his two most talented and experienced offensive lineman from the right side to the left, which is Aaron Rodgers’ blind side, the Packers franchise quarterback who just signed a five-year contract extension worth $110 million.
Having a shutdown left tackle isn’t as important as it used to be in the today’s NFL. If you have a quarterback like Rodgers — someone who is mobile, smart and reads the opposing defense like a coach — you can get away with having an average left tackle.
But why take that risk? Why not combine your all-world quarterback with a reliable left tackle? If I climbed inside McCarthy’s head, I’m guessing that’s what his thinking behind the move would be.