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Hodge Doesn't answer the Call

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by TOPackerFan, Nov 29, 2006.

  1. TOPackerFan

    TOPackerFan Cheesehead

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    Rookie middle linebacker Abdul Hodge was in the right place at the right time and scored a 29-yard touchdown on a fumble recovery Monday night. But that was about all he contributed in the Packers' 34-24 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

    Shaun Alexander carried 40 times and gained 201 yards rushing against the Packers. It marked only the fifth time since the NFL started keeping statistics in 1932 that a player rushed for 200 or more yards against the Packers.

    Know how many tackles Hodge had on Alexander's 40 carries?

    He had one solo tackle on a five-yard gain in the first quarter. He also had an assist on another five-yard gain in the first quarter and on a seven-yard gain in the second quarter when he recovered late after being driven back by second-year center Chris Spencer. On Alexander's 21 carries in the second half, Hodge didn't have a single tackle.

    How bad is that? A running back carries 40 times and the middle linebacker doesn't have a single tackle, even an assist, within five yards of the line of scrimmage.

    Early in training camp, Hodge, a third-round draft pick, opened some eyes by appearing to be what coaches call "a downhill player." But he was playing back on his heels all night against the Seahawks and hardly ever attacked the line of scrimmage.

    On Seattle's first scoring drive, Alexander fumbled on a first down run. There might be nothing more elusive in a football game than a loose ball, but it was sitting there for either Hodge or fellow rookie linebacker A.J. Hawk to cover up and neither reacted quickly enough. That might not have been graded as a negative play on their part, but it was a lost opportunity.

    On that same drive, Hodge appeared to be fooled and at fault for a 10-yard pass in the flat to fullback Mack Strong that produced a first down. Hodge also ran into nickel back Patrick Dendy and knocked him off course on a 12-yard completion to wide receiver D.J. Hackett. Hodge also was lucky that Strong didn't convert another catch into a first down on the play before Josh Brown's first field goal. Hodge got lost in coverage, but Strong dropped the ball.

    On back-to-back runs by Alexander in the second quarter that produced gains of 21 and 7 yards, Hodge was driven back by Spencer and couldn't get off the blocks to even get in Alexander's way.

    On an eight-yard gain by Alexander just before the Seahawks kicked their fourth field goal of the first half, Spencer mauled Hodge again.

    Hodge got lucky again on the Seahawks' first series of the second half. Tight end Jeramy Stevens beat him by more than two steps down the middle and would have gained at least 30 yards if safety Marquand Manuel hadn't stayed over the top and separated him from the ball with a vicious hit.

    On Seattle's first scoring drive of the second half, Alexander cut back to the right and gained 13 yards behind right tackle Tom Ashworth's block on defensive end Aaron Kampman. But, again, Hodge was blocked 10 yards down field by Spencer and was completely out of the play.

    When the Seahawks drove 77 yards for thei go-ahead touchdown, Alexander broke back-to-back runs of 15 and 16 yards. On the first, Ashworth put Kampman on the ground and Spencer put defensive tackle Ryan Pickett on the ground, but Hodge also overran the play. On the next play, Hodge missed a tackle or he could have held Alexander to just seven yards. On that same series, on a second-and-five play from the Packers' 11, Hodge missed another tackle on Alexander. What should have been a one-yard gain turned into a seven-yard gain. The Seahawks scored a play later and Hodge was the defender when Stevens caught the pass for a successful two-point conversion.

    Stevens also caught Seattle's final touchdown pass behind Hodge. Stevens got Hodge to turn wrong and then beat him to the back of the end zone.

    It was one game and only the first major test of Hodge's career, but he might have made veteran middle linebacker Nick Barnett millions on a new contract.

    As a footnote, coach Mike McCarthy said Monday afternoon that Barnett probably would be listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the New York Jets. Barnett sat out the Seattle game with a broken hand.
     
  2. spardo62

    spardo62 Cheesehead

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    True, his fumble return for a touchdown made his night look good, however, he did not seem to be around the ball on many rushing plays.

    It is not fair to judge him off of one game, but right now based on that one game, this team needs Barnett back and healthy ASAP.
     
  3. 4thand26

    4thand26 Cheesehead

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    I thought that the comment about Hodge making Barnett millions of dollars was right on. Barnett may want to sit another one to help cement his next contract.
     
  4. all about da packers

    all about da packers Cheesehead

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    I had commented that I thought Hodge played really bad. I don't usually agree with Christl or like him much, but I believe he has some right points. Hodge hasn't had nearly enough reps in practice OR gotten enough reps in real games to really work on improving his weaknesses.
     
  5. Greg C.

    Greg C. Cheesehead

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    I knew Hodge played badly, but didn't realize he played THAT badly. One solo tackle and two assists, when the opposing running back carries 40 times for 201 yards? Now that's awful. Not to rub it in, but Hodge has been invisible on special teams this season as well.
     
  6. ChrisC

    ChrisC Cheesehead

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    Need to bear in mind also that Hodge has been out injured for quite some time.

    He made a play - but it sounds as if he missed a lot of others. The key will be how he responds. The young players are learning right out there on the field.

    BTW, Alexander is quite a player!

    Chris
     
  7. agopackgo4

    agopackgo4 Cheesehead

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    I know some people on this forum do not like Nick Barnett. And I can agree that sometimes he may go above and beyond what he needs to after making a average play. But Barnett is our #1 definsive players if you ask me. We can really see how he makes a difference when he isnt in there. To me he is like the "Brett Favre" of the D. Definitly miss Barnett.
     
  8. porky88

    porky88 Cheesehead

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    I think expecting a rookie LB coming off of an injury to come in and make you forget about Nick Barnett is ridiculous. AJ Hawk was labeled an early bust during training camp and even early on in the regular season by some and look how he's doing. I'm not saying Hodge is going to be great but I think the expectations were over exaggerated by Packer fans and the Green Bay media.

    Like stated Shaun Alexander is pretty good and it’s hardly all Hodge’s fault for Seattle’s offensive line dominating the Packers defensive line every play.
     
  9. kewlbeans

    kewlbeans Cheesehead

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    I think all the grumbling about moving Barnett to the outside to make room for Hodge can be put to rest for another year at least.
     
  10. Zero2Cool

    Zero2Cool I own a website

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    Yeah. What he said. Brett didn't fair so sexy his first game either!!
     
  11. DakotaT

    DakotaT Cheesehead

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    I think we should worry more about who will be playing nickel, free safety, and DE in place of the soon to be unemployed KGB. I would sure like to take a run at Ed Reed whenever he becomes a free agent, and am very interested in finding a DE via draft or free agency. I still can't believe our former GM (sorry Depack) gave KGB that ridiculous contract.

    I am not happy with the Manuel experiment this year, and KGB has been in my doghouse for many years. Some might argue that he is a double digit sack man per year, but those usually come against weak comp.

    I don't care for Nick's celebrations after routine plays, and the I don't remember him getting an offer to play the Last Samurai, but he is a good football player, and should remain our MLB for a long time. (Secretly I wish AJ would get a buzz cut, lose his front teeth, and become our MLB of the future (he is as ugly as Nitschke), but AJ is becoming very good on the outside and should remain.

    I am not giving up on Hodge, but he has a long way to go before becoming a legitimate starter in this league.
     
  12. Zero2Cool

    Zero2Cool I own a website

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    I'm no expert, but when doing the highlight video of the game Hodge didn't look bad at all. Lots of the runs I seen were to the left or right side and he was near them. I think he gave up a TD catch though :(
     
  13. Yared-Yam

    Yared-Yam Cheesehead

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    Hodge played fine. It's nothing a little experience can't help.

    He seemed to play tentative and didn't get to Alexander quick enough as a result.

    I still want to see a 3-4 defense.
     
  14. Cory

    Cory Cheesehead

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    In this case I would blame the loss of Barnett over hodges play for a day against the run. Let's not forget that other than Ryan Pickett our Dline was not getting penetration at all. KGB was manhandled by Walter Jones most of the night.

    Hodge can't shoulder all the blame for this that's for absolute certain. I just think the chemistry of Hawk/Hodge isn't there(and understandfully so this late in the season) as it is with Hawk and Barnett. As Barnett said earlier this year he and Hawk tend to cover each others mistakes.

    That being said...I do not personally feel Hodge has the NFL speed to be a good consistant player in this league.
     
  15. packer4ever

    packer4ever Cheesehead

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    wow! Does this mean Leinart's a bust too? It sounds like that the way you guys are talking. Give Hodge a break, he'll be an excellent MLB but he's still a rookie, he needs more time to gain experience, as for speed Hodge has plenty of speed ,remember he came from the same conference as Hawk.
     
  16. gbpackers0065

    gbpackers0065 Cheesehead

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    personally, i didnt like the hodge pick this team is obviously set at ILB
     
  17. Zero2Cool

    Zero2Cool I own a website

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    Lots of players were playing tenative cuz of the snow. You could see them pulling up a lil bit at times and not having a first step of confidence.
     
  18. Cory

    Cory Cheesehead

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    What does that mean? He played in the same conference as Hawk? So what? That has nothing to do with wether or not you have enough speed and frankly I don't think Hodge does...
     
  19. porky88

    porky88 Cheesehead

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    Neither did Zach Thomas. He was to small as well but he had the instincts and intangibles and that's something Hodge has as well.

    As for speed I think he meant the speed of the game. How Hodge reads the offense and how everything flows. In the NFL it's faster. Hawk has obviously adjusted well from the Big Ten to the NFL so Hodge probably can as well. The difference though is Hawk is far more physically gifted than Hodge.
     
  20. Cory

    Cory Cheesehead

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    I think Hawk has gotten faster at his reads, but not quite as fast as he needs to be yet. That'll come with time. He's playing more and more downfield though and thats' a good sign. With Hodge's lack of lateral speed he will have to be exceptional at making his reads. I'm not saying he can't get to that point nor am I going to judge him based off of one game for sure.
     
  21. GakkofNorway

    GakkofNorway Cheesehead

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    It was his first game, do you expect him to be Brian ******* Urlacher?
     
  22. ChrisC

    ChrisC Cheesehead

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    That would be the same KGB whose sack set up Hodge's TD?

    Chris
     
  23. Bobby Roberts

    Bobby Roberts Cheesehead

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    Actually one of Hodge's strengths is his lateral speed. It's his straight line speed (40 time) that rated low.

    The speed that was missing was reading and reacting to the play. To me it looked like Hodge was reading-thinking-reacting to the offense, when he needed to be reading-reacting. Hawk had the same problems and therefore looked slow and tentative at the beginning of the season. His experience with in the line-up has obviously helped.

    This was Hodge's first start and I believe he was injured for about 6 weeks this season. Therefore he didn't get a lot of practice outside of preseason. This wasn't a good game at all for Hodge IMO and Seattle took advantage of both him and Dendy. I believe that he will develop into a good player as he gains experience though. Nonetheless, Barnett shoes are very big ones to fill.

    GO PACK GO!!!
     
  24. Cory

    Cory Cheesehead

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    It was a great play by KGB that he doesn't do often enough. He was manhandled most of the night.
     
  25. Cory

    Cory Cheesehead

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    From what I see in the game his lateral speed isn't very good. Even when he does react well to a play. Like Ive said in many many posts about this subject already I'm not going to judge him as a player after one game, but I do feel his speed will be a problem for him.
     

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