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craig

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  1. 2020 Green Bay Packers OL

    Considering those, plus with Rodgers' cap jumping by $15, I'm pretty supportive of rolling as much cash forward as possible.
  2. 5.175 - Kamal Martin [LB; Minnesota]

    Not sure I'm tracking, Joe? Lots of guys find more athleticism when they're healthy than when playing hurt. I'm not sure I'm expecting him to be athletic enough. But the injury factor certainly justifies at least the possibility that his 2019 film isn't representative of what his 2020 athleticism will be.
  3. Random Packer News & Notes

    Cap his it now $3,187,500, per spotrac. I'm also glad to have the extra cap space, and glad to have him back for injury-depth.
  4. 2020 Offense Outlook

    Shane or somebody else, can you reconcile those two numbers, or explain them to me? They seem widely contradictory. 31st suggests awful; but 5th in passer rating sounds excellent. So what do I draw from this? Awful or excellent? That overall, he was pretty excellent on deep throws? Or that he was awful and wildly inaccurate? Is the incoherence partly telling me that the sample size is small and neither number really has much meaning or predictability? Is it just how passer-rating is calculated? Completion % doesn't matter that much; interceptions and TD's count very heavily? Rodgers didn't throw INT's on his long throws; and while his completion rate was low, when they were caught a bunch were TD's and big yardage gains?
  5. 2020 Green Bay Packers Defensive Line

    I think that's a large part of Pettine's logic. Let the two good playmakers that you've got improvise, and have LB/safeties behind them read and flow as the line and gaps reshape themselves. That's a different question from how the defense is structured, but I'm not sure why that isn't a good concept? That same logic, I think, relates to Pettine's comments on the DL. He was NOT obsessed with gap-control, if that meant just hanging out at the LOS at your gap (or, with our DL, probably getting pushed back 2-3 yards...). He was in favor of getting some push and penetration if possible, and if that created some deformation in the line, again the guys behind the front were expected to flow and fill. (Again, maybe this didn't happen a lot because our DL didn't have the skills to penetrate or impose pushback.) But conceptually I don't see why that's such a dumb idea to let the front-4-5 penetrate and improvise and make plays, while the guys behind them track what's happening and flow to fill any emerging gaps? Obviously that concept doesn't mean there aren't other inputs. Preston isn't totally improvising on whether he's rushing or covering. Z isn't totally improvising on whether he' s working from the outside or is trying to create from the inside. You guys are smarter than me, but I'm not sure what's wrong with the concept of freeing your best players to make plays and letting guys behind them flow accordingly. And it's pretty much what other teams do also. Our run plays often don't work as scripted because opposing defenders are penetrating and moving around and deforming the intended line and scripted alleys. Jones has the freedom and quickness to then improvise and get to the holes that actually form, even if they aren't what the script anticipated. That's why he's good.
  6. 2020 Packers Defensive Backs

    The UDFA safety Black from Baylor got a $25K guarantee in addition to his $7K signing bonus. One of three guys to get the $32K combo ($7 + $25). The others were DE from Rutgers; LBer from Utah State. Two other guys got guarantees to go with their $7K signing bonuses, Bruffy the OT ($20K) and Scott the SMU edge ($15K).
  7. 2020 Packers Defensive Backs

    Hadn't realized his stats were that good. Sullivan is still only 23, and he was an academic all-american in college, so may perhaps be a smart guy. So hopefully he's legit, and perhaps still has some upside left? The risk with small-sample guys is that they get exposed later. (Heh heh, as discussed in the DL thread, Lancaster and Adams supposedly had some good stats down the stretch in 2018, so posters were optimistic they were ready to emerge as anti-awful NFL rotation guys. But then some of their limits were exposed last year... Hopefully that won't be Sullivan's deal.) . I like the academic all-American bit. Sometimes I think fast and seemingly athletic undrafted secondary guys from smaller conferences come in with good speed and athleticism numbers, and I get enthused; but most of them never actually pan out. I think sometimes that's because while their 40 and 3-cones are good, that sometimes their mental-processors in real games aren't fast enough. Hopefully Sullivan's is.
  8. 2020 Green Bay Packers Defensive Line

    agree, I thought that was an interesting comment by Pettine. I didn't think it was dumb, either. A lot of good plays happen when guys are getting some pushback, even if that results in some deformation of the line of scrimmage and creates some gaps. The key, of course, is that things are sufficiently well-defined so that a LB can come in, cover the hole, and stop the runner. Our typical one-ILB-and-a-safety personnel didn't consistently accomplish that effectively. Then later, he was asked about his unusually high use of dime. He coach-speaked his answer, including the shortage at ILB; but he also kinda reasoned why he likes the flexibility of the extra safety. So, it's not entirely clear why if anything might change this year. Maybe they'll use more 2-ILB sets behind the DL, to fill those pushback holes? Or maybe not? he wasn't that apologetic about the run defense: he seemed to acknowledge that there are pros-and-cons to everything, and that use of his kinda-run-vulnerable defense supported a 14-win season. So not clear he's going to change that, greatly? But who knows, maybe Kirksey will do well in that? Or maybe they will use more 2-ILB sets? I'm crazy, I know, but I admit I enjoyed some of the brief Clay Matthews at ILB experience. He was fast, forceful, and aggressive at filling in those holes. He might have looked pretty good in Pettine's defense and been a really good run-game defender. Not sure how often Pettine would ever consider using only 4 secondary guys, and going with an old-fashioned 3-4. hardly ever. But I admit I have wondered whether it might be interesting to play a 3-4 with Gary standing up inside. If the opposition wants to run into that, and our d-line got some pushback, I'd love to see Gary smashing into an emerging hole and blasting a running back who thought that was going to be a lane. That might be much more conducive to his skill-set, and it might be a different look than having a safety do it. Probably makes no sense. But if opponent passed he could also pass-rush up the middle. Stupid idea with a million vulnerabilities, I'm sure. But Pettine mention of using Gary or Z inside, just made me wonder how that would work if that was in conjunction with 3 DL besides, as opposed to being in-place-of a DL.
  9. 2020 Green Bay Packers Defensive Line

    The numbers for those five guys combine for 207%. Not sure whether that number will, or should, go up or go down? 1. Why it might go Up: Our run defense was bad. So one way to improve the run-defense would be to play more d-linemen more to try to suppress it? 2nd, last year, Fadol Brown wasn't very good; Keke as a raw rookie wasn't very usable; and Adams got hurt early and didn't play effectively. So while we opened the season with 6 DL on the roster, in practice it was 4, and once Adams got hurt, it kinda simplified to three-plus-Adams. Assuming Keke is now used in the rotation, that Adams is healthier and somewhat more favorable on the anti-awful spectrum, and that Hester is more servicable and anti-awful than was Brown, there might be a larger and fresher pool of legs to draw from. 2. Why it might go Down: Our DL group isn't that hot. So perhaps reducing snaps to below-average guys and playing more talented football players is desirable? Both Clark and Lowry played too many snaps. So resting them more might help. Pettine noted that his statistical analysis was generally favorable using Z inside, and that he envisioned Gary being available for that as well. He also noted that Gary scored well in his run-contain statistics. So it may be that Gary and Z will replace a bunch of the Lowry and Adams snaps, perhaps to good effect? Keke is obviously a crucial variable. So is Lowry. Lowry played so many snaps, and he's not necessarily bad, as a 3rd/4th guy. But he's kinda lacking as a #2 guy: he's not really a force in the pass-rush, and he's not very strong or physical in the run game. Nice guy and great-effort hustler, but he could benefit from perhaps reducing his snaps and being more forceful and powerful in those he does play? Not sure how physical or powerful Keke can be in the run game, either; but he might have a lot of the type of athletic qualities that Lowry has, but perhaps with a little more burst in pass rush? I have no idea, but *IF* he ended up splitting Lowry's snaps, and perhaps played at a comparable or variably better level, things might be somewhat better overall? Coming off of 2018, there had been some thought that Fadol Brown might be an NFL guy. WE ended up getting very little from him. Hester isn't going to be excellent, we know that. But it's not impossible that an experienced veteran guy like that might be fairly strong in run-defense, and while he might not be much of a playmaker, perhaps he'd be able to hold the line and provide some gap integrity? Beats me. But there can be some value in getting JAG play? Sometimes on the awful-to-great continuum, a JAG can be sub-average but still provide some anti-awful improvement?
  10. Packers 2020 WR Corps

    No, haven't seen. How big does he look now? 230? Bigger? To some degree this is where combine numbers have mixed value. In terms of flexibility and athletic stuff, will he have the same speed and flexibility now that he had then? May be a pretty different physique with very different pros and cons. But yeah, that guy has the potential to be a really physical blocker, and have the speed to be really good as a movement blocker.
  11. 2020 Packers Defensive Backs

    Agree, King was good. I'm hoping that if he can stay healthy, he'll be as good or better this year. Shane, thanks for notes on Sullivan. I'd earlier seen the 4.7, and wrote him off. But if that's not fully representative, maybe he's got a chance to play in the league and be a depth guy. I wonder how his actual game-speed will compare to Ento, for example.
  12. Packers sign Devin Funchess

    Hard to guess how many targets there will be. ~30-35 throws per game, maybe a little less this year if we're going all run heavy, punting a lot, and eating clock so that there just aren't as many plays per game. Between Adams, the backs, the TE's, and the other WR, how many of those throws per game are likely to Funchess's way? Maybe 60-70 targets, optimistically, so will maybe average around 4 per game. Rodgers accuracy isn't that good anymore, so less than four catchable targets per game, presumably. Hope he catches an awful lot of those, because opportunities will be limited. Also hope he catches an awful lot of the throws early on, so that Aaron doesn't give up and stop using him. Alex is correct, that it will depend in part on whether Rodgers uses the middle of the field. If not, it's hard to see Funchess being very stats-rich.
  13. Packers 2020 WR Corps

    Thanks for analysis, Alex. I'm not disagreeing about MLF's offense. I'm not sure, we'll see; but it's not clear whether there is creativity or nuance that the best have. We'll see, I guess. On that particular play, I still wonder whether the play is badly drawn; or whether one or more of the key players, MVS, Shepherd, and Rodgers, executed ineffectively. Seems to me the play should have perhaps been a step or two deeper; and that Shepherd should have perhaps been a step or more further on his route? So that his defender would have needed to decide: "do I chase with Shepherd, or do I let him run free into the corner and stop and switch to MVS? As is, basically Shepherd dragged his defender right into MVS's face. Was he supposed to have already dragged him too steps into the end zone? So maybe it was Shepherd's execution that disrupted the timing. He was just slow or late to get where he was supposed to go? Or, maybe MVS. He didn't really sell that he was going straight into the end-zone and going for a corner. His decision to "cut" didn't seem hard to read. Didn't seem to really "set up" his defender. Maybe that's a skill thing; an experience thing; an instincts thing; maybe it's an execution thing; maybe it's just the consequences of having long guy with lesser ability to make sharp and deceptive cuts? I would suggest that *if* you'd had Greg Jennings or Diggs playing MVS's role in exactly the same play-call, that the play might have played out quite differently? Or maybe Rodgers jumped the gun? AFter that game, some fans noted "wow, Shepherd was all alone in the corner, it could have been an easy TD." But he went uncovered into the corner only after the ball was already in flight, so of course no defender had motive to chase him. But perhaps the play design is really intended for the QB to read the defenders; will *either* Shepherd's guy or MVS's guy be in position to cover him into the corner? Or will one or both be a step behind? Or will at least Shepherd's guy follow him, leaving MVS 1-on-1 with a step lead? Perhaps Aaron's timing was off and he jumped the gun, and ended up throwing too quickly to stress the defense, or before he could determine which guy would be more open, and instead threw so early that he forced the double-coverage and threw right into the double coverage? I guess I just don't totally guess how much it's a function of not being a very smart or clever play call, versus not being well timed and well executed by one, two, or perhaps all three of the players. The eternal question, I guess, is it the play or is it the players?
  14. Packers 2020 WR Corps

    Thanks for note on the held arm. That explains a lot. Alex, question on this, I don't understand how it's supposed to have worked. The ball was in the air before the two receivers rubbed. The ball was thrown before Shepherd ever had a chance to rub past MVS, or for Shepherd's defender to clear out. And the throw went to MVS only about a half-yard beyond the line of scrimmage, with Shepherd's guy still right in front of MVS. Even if MVS's arm isn't held by his defender, and he makes a successful catch, wouldn't he then have run right into Shepherd's defender, and gained only half a yard? Not sure how it was supposed to go. But it seems to me that the play needed just a little more time, an extra split second, for Shepherd to have crossed with MVS, and for Shepherd's guy to have needed to decide whether to stick with Shepherd, or to help on MVS? As is, it seems to me that Shepherd's defender never was put into a difficult decision. The ball was already in flight before MVS and Shepherd had rubbed, so the guy never really needed to make any decision. What am I not seeing correctly on it? Or was that too part of MVS's guy hooking him? If MVS had a free arm, would he have already crossed Shepherd's guy and had free space ahead of him? It's such an interesting play, I'm just trying to understand it.
  15. Packers 2020 WR Corps

    Man, was that a terrible play. Seems like MVS ran it poorly; didn't "sell" going towards the end zone, and go another step deeper; just immediately headed laterally along the line of scrimmage. And did it so quickly, and then Rodgers threw it so quickly, that the guy covering Shepherd had no reason to stick with him. The ball was already in the air with Shepherds guy going for the ball before Shepherd and MVS ever had time to cross each other; and before Rodgers had a chance to see whether Shepherd's guy was going to run into MVS and leave Shepherd WIDE open in the corner, of whether Shepherd's guy was going to stick with Shepherd and leave MVS 1-on-1 instead of 1-on-2. Even once the ball was thrown, it didn't look like MVS reached out to grab it; seemed to alligator-arm it, although it's hard to tell from the video whether the defender had maybe hooked his arm. Overall, it looks like a well-designed play. Either Shepherd, or MVS, or possibly both, seemed well designed to have opportunity. But the timing and execution just seems lousy, rushed. Probably partly MVS at fault. Maybe Rodgers, needed to wait another split second to make Shepherd's guy commit, and then to throw to whichever guy he left uncovered? Perhaps also just a case where Shepherd's guy was guessing, and guessing that Shepherd wasn't going to be Rodgers' target, so he just guessed and guessed right and won the game? But a fascinating play regardless. I still love (Hate) looking at it and trying to understand it better.
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