"Hope and change!"
"Hope and change!"
"Hope and change!"
Pinch yourself, this isn't a circa-2008 Obama rally, this is the new rallying cry for disgruntled Packer fans everywhere.
For years, this current regime has wasted away the most talented quarterback in the history of the NFL to the tune of just one Super Bowl. But here's why Rodgers' injury may be a blessing in disguise:
An Optimist's View:
1) Aaron Jones. When was the last time the Packers had a legit running game? Ryan Grant was solid, yet unspectacular, Lacy was too busy at McDonalds to ever amount to anything past his rookie year, Ty Montgomery had a few good games but clearly didn't have the makeup of an NFL running back. You have to go back to the early 2000s when Ahman Green was running rampant through the league. That's how long it has been. For some reason, Jones only had 17 carries yesterday, but he has looked really good, and is only 22.
2) The New Rookie Class Might be OK! We've already talked about Jones, but I also have been very impressed by both Kevin King and Josh Jones. King was torched in yesterday's loss, but so was everyone in the Packers secondary, and some of that has to do with the archaic coverage system employed by the senile Dom Capers. King looked very good against Julio Jones, perhaps the best wideout in the league, and has the size/speed/potential to be a legit corner down the line. Jones takes over the Hyde roll as a safety/linebacker combo in the Packers defense (along with Burnett), and has also had some very good games. He brings much needed speed to the linebacking core when he's placed there. Although Vince Biegel hasn't played yet, I was very impressed with him at Wisconsin and wouldn't be surprised to see him being a solid linebacker. I'll also include Kenny Clark, last year's first round pick, who is really coming on lately.
3) The Strength of Schedule Is IFFY. This is for the head-up-the-ass Packer fans that still believe the Pack have a legit playoff shot without Rodgers. But I can understand why some think it's possible - if and only if Rodgers is activated later this year.
A Realist/Pessimist's View:
1-100) Ted Thompson, Dom Capers and Mike McCarthy will be exposed! I liken this staff's success to Mike Brown's success as a head coach in the NBA. Like Brown had a generational talent in LeBron, this staff has a generational talent in Rodgers who did his best to mask this horrid roster.
Here are some of Ted Thompson's recent high-mid round draft picks: Damarious Randall, Jason Spriggs, Kyhri Thornton, Kyle Fackrell, Quinton Rollins, Carl Bradford, Datone Jones, Jonathan Franklin (injury), Jerron McMillan, Jerel Worthy, Casey Hayward (only listing him because Thompson let him go for pennies and went instead with Randall/Rollins), Derek Sherrod, Alex Green.
Aside from Hayward, all of these players drafted in rounds 1-4 from 2011-2017 are mega busts. The "in Ted we Trust" crowd is running thin. His "draft and develop" fetish only works when a) you can draft, and b) you have the coaching staff to develop. Green Bay has neither.
Dom Capers is the longest tenured D-Coordinator in the league and somehow hasn't fielded a top-10 defense since the Super Bowl year in 2010!!!!
McCarthy is consistently out-matched as a head coach in crucial games (see him in any big game against Jim Harbaugh or Pete Carroll).
Most Packer fans can clearly see how this trio has failed this team. Thompson has drafted poorly recently and never goes after any free agents (Bennett has been awful thus far). Capers should've been fired eons ago, and his defenses have been the downfall of this team for the last 6 years. And McCarthy is a poor game manager in clutch games. Hopefully Rodgers' absence will see the end of this ineffective regime once and for all. Aaron Rodgers deserves better.