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Bulaga May Move to Left Tackle

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by 13 Times Champs, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. 13 Times Champs

    13 Times Champs Cheesehead

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  2. Oshkoshpackfan

    Oshkoshpackfan YUT !!!

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    As long as he stays healthy and or is recovered properly, I think he may just be an improvement at LT......lets just hope he does not get off to another slow start like he did last season.

    LT = Bulaga
    RT Barclay

    Newhouse = hit the road JACK !!!
     
  3. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    The headline could have been “Packers Realize the Obvious”. Newhouse was the biggest problem on the OL. If they can fix the LT spot pass protection will improve a lot. And if Bulaga is the answer at LT, it’ll be easier to find his replacement at RT than the fix at LT. All the other OTs would be candidates for RT. Barclay improved as his snaps increased and he could be adequate at RT or better. There may be a better candidate on the roster – perhaps Datko, Sherrod if healthy, or even Newhouse who wouldn’t be so exposed in pass protection on the other side. The best case IMO is a healthy Bulaga staying put at RT and a healthy Sherrod grabbing the LT job by the throat. But I’m glad they realize the obvious and are looking at all options to fix it.
     
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  4. Aaron rodgers is god

    Aaron rodgers is god Cheesehead

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    Bulaga is our best overall tackle. If we can't find a LT in the draft we should move Bulaga over to LT even though he is more suited for RT. We have quite a bit of depth at the tackle spot the thing is we dont have any studs. Result of drafting low in the draft every year. Otherwise we have Newhouse, Bulaga, Barclay, Sherrod, Datko. That's pretty good depth at the Tackle spot. Not to mention TJ lang can move over if needed
     
  5. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    Even if we do find a LT in the draft, unless we are drafting a top 10 guy, we have no business expecting him to start right away. That said, I'm fine with moving Balaga back to his natural spot on the left. If Barclay can hold down the right side then we'll be good, especially with Newhouse as a proven backup (you know that he can play, just not well enough to start) and a chance for Sherrod to get into the mix.
     
  6. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    I'm not opposed to it, but Barclay really, really struggled in pass protection. It is my belief that Newhouse looked worse at the end of the season because he (Barclay) got nearly all of the help, leaving Newhouse more on his own more often.

    Assuming Barclay makes a big jump next year, this could be a net-gain and we'd certainly be a better run blocking team. It's also possible that Newhouse continues to improve and can keep the new combination at bay. I'm choosing my words carefully here. I'm not saying that Bulaga wouldn't be a better LT than Newhouse, merely that it is entirely possible that Newhouse + Bulaga > Bulaga + Barclay. Maybe 2014 is the year Barlcay forces his way into the lineup.

    Regardless of who ends up at LT, I suspect he'll have an easier job this year. It appeared that Lang had to help Saturday more often than necessary. It wouldn't surprise me that our upgrade at center doesn't have a trickle down impact on LT.
     
  7. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    Could EASILY make a BAD situation WORSE. Which should be obvious to most knowledgable fans.

    Should they look into it? Sure, but it should only be one of several options.
     
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  8. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    ivo610, it does sounds like it is something they’re just considering. I like that a lot more than them thinking Newhouse will just get better. IMO I don’t think it could easily make a bad situation worse and I think the Packers’ staff know more than the “most knowledgeable fans”. I don’t know if Bulaga has the feet for LT but Newhouse hasn’t shown he does and he doesn’t finish plays. And Barclay isn’t automatically the RT if Bulaga starts at LT.

    mradtke66, IMO where Newhouse looked the worse was blocking one-on-one on the outside. The LG can’t help him with that. The only help the LT can get (usually) vs. the opponents’ best pass rusher is a TE or a RB either chipping or doubling the rusher. I don’t remember Newhouse getting beat repeatedly inside.
     
  9. texaspackerbacker

    texaspackerbacker Cheesehead

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    It depends a lot whether Bulaga is the guy he was 2 years ago or the guy he was last year. I have never heard any reason for the drop off in performance. Also, didn't Bulaga get a try at LT and not do very well, before settling in at RT?
     
  10. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    My "lack of help from the guard" angle is more subtle. If you are truly on an island, the LT is responsible for both an inside and outside move, let's say 50/50. If he can safely assume help from the LG, his worry shifts. Maybe only 60/40, but perhaps 70/30 or better. Magically, the LT looks better, because he can focus on the outside move more.

    This is all theoretical, of course. I haven't broken down film to see if, for example, the DT to the offensive left is more often a 3-technique, which would prevent Lang from helping regardless.

    As far as Barclay being the automatic RT if Bulaga switches, you're right only (imo) because of the absoluteness of the suggestion that he would be the RT. I would say, however, Bulaga and Barclay are the only 'real' RTs on the roster. Datko and certainly Newhouse are more finesse, pass block first kind of players. Putting either of them would downgrade running plays to the right and hurts the team by potentially wasting Sitton's blocking. I am strongly, strongly in favor of keeping one of those two over there to give us some push.

    I'm still not sold on Sherrod. I'd love him to prove himself, but he had legitimate flaws coming into the league--waist bending being the biggest problem. He's not really had a chance to fix those problems between the lockout and then the injury. All he has right now is the pedigree of being drafted in the first round. It'd be great for him to show up and take the job by force, but I'm not holding my breath.
     
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  11. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    This is the second time this week doubt has been cast on Sherrod's ability to play. Earlier, MM commented on his past injury "speculations"; any team consideration of moving Bulaga implies doubt with respect to Sherrod.

    It comes down to rolling the dice on Sherrod and bypassing an LT in the first 2 rounds...or not.

    All I can say about a Bulaga LT / Barclay RT combo is we better find a primo 3rd. down blocking back.
     
  12. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    I'm not casting doubt on Sherrod, just being pragmatic. His rookie season, he looked like a rookie. That's okay, players get better. But then he got hurt. This adds to the mountain he has to climb. Assuming he comes back into camp ready to train, I'd expect next year as the earliest he'd be able to push for a starting job.
     
  13. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    I wasn't speaking of you; if I were I would have replied to your post. I was talking about (1) the story in post #1 and (2) McCarthy's comments earlier this past week about his rosy injury "speculations" in the past.

    I think at the time Sherrod was hurt he was passing Newhouse...nice strides were being made. Any contemplation of Bulaga at LT implies skepticism regading Sherrod's recovery. There's no other way to interpret the matter.

    However, I've been skeptical since the day he was hurt that he'd be able to recover to "dancing bear" status. When a guy snaps his leg at a 45 degree angle between the knee and ankle, you probably don't want to bank on a full recovery. If it happens, it should be regarded as a pleasant surprise.

    Fans tend to view players like their car...something breaks down, you just send it to the shop and get the parts replaced according to some predefined schedule. It's easy to remember the guys who make full recoveries from serious injury (Purple Jesus); it's a lot harder to remember the many more who quietly wash out of the league.
     
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  14. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    I wouldn't go quite that far, but yes, he was improving. He didn't implode the way he did (to my eye) in preseason. But he was on the right side, not the left, easier job, blah blah blah.

    It is my understanding this particular injury, while gruesome is relatively easy to recover from. It's not a joint injury or anything. The potential hangup is the bone not getting enough blood flow which impacts healing. As long as that happens and the bone(s) is (are) nicely healed, a 100%-ish recovery can be expected.

    I don't doubt he'll be able to come back healthy, just if he'll have a legitimate chance to improve his technique. He's two years behind and it was going to take at least 1 for him to become the starter based on his rookie preseason. Has he regressed in the time he's been out? Probably. Thus it's possible he'll wash out not because he can't hack it, but because it'll take him ~2 years (I'm guessing. Prove me wrong kid!) to play back to form. Then we're looking at a 1st round draft pick who's been on the roster 4 years and played ~10 snaps from scrimmage. Other linemen will have been drafted. He might just slip away.
     
  15. HardRightEdge

    HardRightEdge Cheesehead

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    The evidence suggests otherwise. We're a 1.5 years into this, and the optimistic prognoses have dissolved into silence.
     
  16. El Guapo

    El Guapo Cheesehead

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    If you can stomach it, rewatch the Seattle game and you'll see the announcers replay the tape of Newhouse getting beat repeatedly to the inside during the 8-sack half. It was ooogly
     
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  17. HyponGrey

    HyponGrey Caseus Locutus Est

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    Moving Bulaga to LT drop's Bulaga's production, and simultaneously SIGNIFICANTLY downgrades our RT position. Barclay had a LOT of help, he was servivceable, but not an upgrade to Newhouse. Newhouse and Sherrod are absolutely useless in the run game, and don't grade well at RT at all. Our optimal line would be Sherrod over at LT and Bulaga at RT. We can always move Bulaga later if we need to. Heard this last year, nothing happened. I expect the same.
     
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  18. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    I said easy, not quick, though it is possible that it isn't going well for him.
     
  19. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    That presumes that Sherrod is an upgrade over Newhouse. A more generic statement is that "we need our LT to play better." That could just be Newhouse improving. To date, Sherrod hasn't shown much of anything. I have less faith in him at this point that most had in Neal this far into his career. At least Neal had that dominate game against the Redskins his rookie year.

    Similarly, it is possible that Barclay improves similarly to Newhouse in his second year. Newhouse went from 0 snaps played and inactive for 15(?) games to being the number three tackle and starting most of his second year. IF we can get that kind of one year improvement from Barclay, watch out. I kind of doubt it and would predict he'll make a more serious push his third year, but I'd love to be surprised.
     
  20. HyponGrey

    HyponGrey Caseus Locutus Est

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    Sherrod has a better skill set than Newhouse, so the assumption I'm making is "Sherrod should eventually be (has the potential to be) an upgrade over Newhouse." Newhouse is farther along in his development, so I don't expect Sherrod, or any other LT we could possibly draft to usurp him right away.

    I doubt we get that from Barclay, especially when I expect we'll keep him as a G/T tweener. As such I don't think he'll ever be more than a backup, at least not until they decide to throw him all in on one or the other (See: Daryn Colledge). Barclay has been vastly overrated by the fanbase at large.
     
  21. ThxJackVainisi

    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    It is unrealistic to expect an OT picked at #26 could come in and start at LT but it’s not unheard of – Clifton was picked at #44 and he started as a rookie. However, even if they’ve targeted an LT at that spot and get him, that player shouldn’t be depended upon to step in as a rookie.

    It is possible that Newhouse & Bulaga are better than Bulaga & Barclay but I doubt it unless Newhouse gets much better and if that happens, this is moot anyway. Newhouse did get beat inside vs. Seattle and Bulaga actually had a worse game than Newhouse, also getting beat inside. But IMO getting beat inside or having to depend upon help from the LG is not Newhouse’s main problem: What happens when there’s a defender on Newhouse’s outside shoulder and another lined up over Lang? Said another way: They have to find a LT who can be on an island, able to block even if there’s an even chance the defender will rush inside, outside, or bull rush. And again, if Bulaga has to play LT, there’s no guarantee Barclay will start at RT. Newhouse may be better suited for RT. Sherrod may not be able to recover a “dancing bear” status but if he’s healthy, he may be better than Barclay and Newhouse at RT.

    My main point on this thread is, contrary to the OP, I see their consideration of moving Bulaga to LT as a positive. Newhouse hasn’t been good enough at LT and - funny as it may sound - I’m glad the Packers recognize that. That doesn’t mean I think Bulaga is the answer at LT - I’m hoping someone else steps up at LT so Bulaga can stay where he is.

    But the good news to me is analogous to what Whitt has said about the CBs: He said there is going to be a wide open competition for the starting jobs, T. Williams won’t be handed one and neither will Shields. If they follow through with that, that’s music to my ears. Even if Williams and Shields end up starting. Same with the OTs – find the best LT and then find the best RT.
     
  22. HyponGrey

    HyponGrey Caseus Locutus Est

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    Sherrod and Newhouse both see themselves as LT only prospects. You can tell by the way they play. From what I've seen they just don't have the mindset for RT and are therefore unsuitable. Which is a shame because Newhouse's skillset is actually better suited for the right side. Sherrod is a LT, no way around it, it's the only place he fits.
     
  23. JamesCA

    JamesCA Cheesehead

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    As I recall, Bulaga was drafted to be the LT of the future and got moved to the right side because of injuries to Mark Tauscher. I can't believe that he wouldn't be better than Newhouse.
     
  24. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    It's only potential from Sherrod. I'd be more optimistic had he shown anything, based entire on what he produced in the preseason, I wasn't impressed. To say that Sherrod has a better skill set is just a projection.

    Yes and no. He did very well and exceeded expectations and might grow into a fine RT someday. But I will be the first to point out how much he struggled in protection and the piles of help he required to get the job done.
     
  25. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    The weak point there is Barclay. He is the downgrade from Newhouse. Yes, moving to Bulaga would probably improve LT, but would seriously weaken RT.

    True, even the greats get beat. I'm just pointing what I perceive to be the problem.

    In that situation, the LT doesn't have to worry about inside moves, because the guard will have the B gap anyway, by virtue of picking up that defended. Again, leaving Newhouse to focus on the outside defender/move. (I'm simplifying and ignore stunts and the like.)

    I think Newhouse can be that guy, provided he gets help sometimes. I'm not talking every play or even most plays. Just a little chip here, a double team now and then, and you've given the end something to think about. Probably enough for him to succeed for a long, long time.

    I strongly disagree with that. No tackle bodies on our roster are good run blockers other than Bulaga and Barclay. To my eye, no other player will get it done when we need to run, which limits potential fits.
     

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