Open Rants by conlin.zach

2.3 Rant
Published at 2/3/2017
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It’s taken me a while as a Packers fan to gather my thoughts, and well, take a break from it. This season was exhausting and an emotional rollercoaster. But we witnessed one of the greatest single season one-man performances of all-time. Aaron Rodgers took a depleted team with no running game and no defense to one game away from the Super Bowl.  Despite the near Super Bowl finish, this was one of the worst Packer teams of my life time (since ’96), and here are my thoughts on what they should do in preparation for next season.

  • Fire Dom Capers

-          Apparently this won’t happen, though. McCarthy defended the somehow longest tenured defensive coordinator in the league, and said something to the effect of “let’s not be dramatic about this”. I don’t understand the Packers’ steadfast loyalty to Dom, who’s only really guided one good defense in his tenure in Green Bay, being the Super Bowl defense. Granted, injuries and poor drafting play a part, but it’s pretty plain to see that he’s simply just out-matched and has been for years. If you don’t believe me, just re-watch the NFC Championship game. It’s sad to think that this defense operated by Dom has cost Aaron Rodgers, the most talented thrower of the football ever, at least one Super Bowl, in my opinion. In Aaron Rodgers’ seven playoff losses, his defenses have given up nearly 37 PPG.

  • Let Ted Thompson retire

-          Clearly the whole only “build through the draft” mantra isn’t working, Ted. That doesn’t mean I want to see this team operate like the Dolphins, but a little mix of free agent acquisitions and draft building would be nice to see. Thompson’s early-round picks have flopped big time as of late – in particular Randall and Rollins. Let Elliot Wolf run the Packers and see what he can do.

  • Get some new trainers

-          Look, it must be obvious if Troy Aikman picked it up – the Packers need to invest in some better trainers. The amount of injuries that this team has gone through the past few years has been ridiculous. Clearly something isn’t working.

  • Draft like 30 corners

-          This was painful to watch the entire year. I’m a diehard, life-long Packers fan, and watching your team get emasculated constantly is gut-wrenching. Damarious Randall needs to switch back to safety, in my opinion, and should be cut next year if he continues playing like he has (he’s the worst corner in the league right now), and Quentin Rollins hasn’t been much better. For two early-round picks, these guys have been complete busts thus far. Sam Shields, while talented, is probably done, and LaDarious Gunter was the Packers best cover corner, but only by default, as he is really nothing more than a 3rd corner. Micah Hyde is best served as a dime linebacker, safety hybrid, so the Packers should really draft at least one corner in the upcoming draft…or like 30.

  • Be more aggressive in free agency

-          This point goes with #2 here. Green Bay needs some playmakers defensively, as they can no longer be so cautious with Aaron Rodgers getting up there in age. Also would love to see Adrian Peterson in green and gold if the price is right, more so just to stick it to the Vikings who have done that with former Packers for so many years.

  • Resign Lang, Cook, Lacy, Michael, Tretter, Elliot, Hyde

-          The Packers O-Line was probably second to Dallas as the best in football, so resigning Lang, who’s a very good starter, and Tretter is a no-brainer. Tretter may prove difficult to resign as he has emerged and played well, and the Packers will have to decide whether to pay him starting money in favor of Linsley. I would love to resign both Lacy and Michael, if the Packers don’t make a play for Peterson and draft a running back in the middle rounds. Lacy is a very talented runner, but is so injury-prone that I would only welcome him back on a one-year prove-it deal with a P90X clause. The same goes for Michael, who is very talented but lacks the mental part of the game. He runs hard but too often runs east-west instead of north-south. Cook proved to be excellent and showed a great rapport with Rodgers down the stretch. He needs to stay healthy, though. Jayrone Elliot is a great special-teams player and situational pass-rusher who shouldn’t be too expensive, and Hyde proved to be one of the few Packers on defense that played well in the playoffs. He should be kept for the right price.

  • Cut Starks, Shields, and maybe Cobb

-          James Starks’ career is over. He played a pivotal role for the Packers during their Super Bowl run, but it is time for him to retire. While I would love to keep Shields, his injury history is too hard to ignore. He should also retire. As for Cobb, he has not been very good these last few years. The Packers could look to cut him, and use the money saved to target a defensive player to help balance this team out.

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