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OT Issues

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by lambeaulambo, Aug 5, 2012.

  1. lambeaulambo

    lambeaulambo Cheesehead

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    Apparently, the Packers are having issues at the Tackle position. They built this through the draft and from what I am hearing, it is not going as well as anticipated, and there is talk that they may have to bring in a veteran free agent. The Sherrod/Newhouse situation is well noted, and there is a glaring problem there.

    The sky is not falling, however, I have some bad intuition that 2008-9 could be back on our offense if pass protection becomes an issue. Thoughts?
     
  2. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    If Sherrod can contribute this year IMO its unlikely it’ll be before sometime in October. The good news is reports say he’s not limping anymore but he’s got to get back to football strength and then he has technique work to do. It’s not as if we saw him doing well at OT last season before he got hurt.

    Newhouse was reportedly doing better this year but he got embarrassed by Matthews at Wednesday practice and of course Clay is an all-pro but the Packers’ LT will face very good pass rushers this season and Newhouse got embarrassed by a few last season.

    The Packers have 7 OT listed on their roster but after the first three probably stands Herb Taylor which tells you they don’t have depth at OT in spite of Thompson using 2 of his last 3 first rounders on the position. They really, really don’t want to switch Bulaga to LT and I certainly understand that but I don’t see any other viable options if Newhouse goes down and Sherrod isn’t ready. (Andrew Datko, Mike McCabe and Shea Allard are the other OTs on the roster). Forget about Clifton. His last hurrah was his fantastic resurgence during the end of the 2010 season and into the playoffs. But time and the accumulation of all his injuries caught up to him – even when he was “healthy” last season he wasn’t close to his ’10 playoff form IMO. If one of the OTs not named Bulaga, Newhouse, or Sherrod don’t step up in a big way before the season opens, I really hope Thompson is looking at a vet to bring in. Even one near the end of his career the Packers can “rent” for this season. They have a couple of options inside beyond EDS, but OT looks thin, thin, thin.


     
  3. 13 Times Champs

    13 Times Champs Cheesehead

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    Agree Jack. The lack of depth is a concern. Switching Bulaga from right to left then opens up a problem on the right. Maybe we can pick up a veteran on a late cut. We really need for Sherrod to come around at this point.
     
  4. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    A couple of articles have suggested Lang moving to one of the OT spots could be the backup plan until Sherrod is ready. Then EDS would fill in at OG. If possible (one they like is available at a reasonable cost) I'd prefer a true vet OT.
     
  5. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    Left tackles are overrated. Teams win SBs with below avg tackles. The only concern is Rodgers getting injured due to a bad block.

    Clifton is not a solution, at this point he might be worse than our other options on the roster.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. slaughter25

    slaughter25 Cheesehead

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    While the depth is concerning, I think Newhouse will be able to be serviceable barring injury. He's not a consistent all pro LT but if he can limit the revolving door plays a bit more he will be good enough to move forward with.
     
  7. milani

    milani Cheesehead

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    The offensive line is a concern even with a mobile QB. We have to face the likes of Allen and Peppers among others. Some weaknesses can be masked. Others cannot. The 9ers D-line scares me instantly.
    Newhouse performed adequately last season. Will Saturday still have enough at his age or will he be vulnerable to injury? And what about depth. Someone in the line will get banged up at some point this season.
    Building through the draft on the line can certainly be the way to go.
    Wolf drafted Clifton and Tauscher in the same season and they both had to start. Marco Rivera came aboard and had to play a little NFL Europe before getting his chance to play when Aaron Taylor and Timmerman bolted for more money. Mike Wahle came through the supplemental draft. Everyone thought Flanagan was done after 2 devastating knee injuries. Yet he was superb for several seasons before he was done.
    You also will recall that Wolf signed Bruce Wilkerson in 1996 half way through the SB season when Ken Ruetgers was toast. He finished out the year adequately and helped to get us the ring.
     
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  8. bozz_2006

    bozz_2006 Cheesehead

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    They've been in camp for what, a week? I'd hate to have a lot of you guys deciding my fate if I were new on the job.
     
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  9. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    I for one wasn't deciding anyone's fate, only expressing concern about the lack of depth at OT. It looks like Newhouse will be available either Thursday or shortly thereafter but the concern about depth remains because Sherrod is nowhere near ready and the next OT (not OG sliding over) is Herb Taylor.

    http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/article/20120805/PKR01/120805024/Green-Bay-Packers-offensive-line-lack-of-depth-exposed-with-LT-Marshall-Newhouse-out
    So Taylor hasn't played in the NFL for three seasons. Yes, miracles happen but I hope the Packers aren't depending upon one for depth.
    Yes, the "only" concern is getting the guy without whom title hopes vanish injured. IMO this is understated way of expressing the same concern I am.


    In this "notes column" jsonline reports in addition to Sherrod still being PUP eligible and Newhouse's concussion, Datko "might not be able to play" and McCabe has a hip injury. (I'll add the chances Shea Allard will be asked to protect Rodgers' blindside are only slightly better than mine.) My point is with the timing of Sherrod's return uncertain it would make sense to buy some insurance before the season starts. The headline of the column is "If Packers are buying, market's full of tackles". While I understand Thompson's MO of building mostly through the draft and UDFA - and have written more than once on this forum about it - I would love to see Thompson acquire the best OT backup he can. I don't care if it's one of the OTs mentioned in the article, a player currently on another roster, or one released in one of the roster cut-downs, but I don't see a realistic risk of missing out on a young OT's upside, which is usually the argument against bringing a vet in. If Thompson does acquire a better backup plan at OT, they could assign Datko or one of the other OTs on their roster (or on someone else's) to their practice squad for seasoning. The likely price: Losing the services of a player who hasn't played in the league in three seasons - and not because he was injured.
    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/packers/165223566.html

    BTW, if they think Lang to LT is the best option or him to RT with Bulaga goint to LT of course we have no choice but to accept that and hope for the best. But doing so would affect the play at multiple positions rather than just one. So here's hoping Newhouse and Sherrod return to full health quickly and that Newhouse plays much better than he did last year. And (for me at least) here's hoping Ted Thompson decides to shore up OT depth because risking Rodgers' health by not doing so is just not worth it.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    A terrible LT has little affect on an offensive production or ability to get to the Superbowl.

    My biggest concerns on the roster are the corner play and the back up QB situation.
     
  11. DevilDon

    DevilDon Inclement Weather Fan

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    Though it's early in camp, OL health and depth is always a concern. I have no reason to believe this but I have a feeling Datko is better than anybody thinks. He's not played football in quite awhile. He's already made huge strides since last week.
    I want to believe the Packers got a steal with him because of injury concerns. It has been noted that he's improved tremendously from week 1 to week 2.
    Nobody is doing anything with current free agents out there so the Pack has time to weigh everything before they grab a free agent. I'm at peace with waiting a week or even two.
    In the meantime just don't play Rodgers at all on Thursday. It's not like the guy needs reps against San Diego.
     
  12. 13 Times Champs

    13 Times Champs Cheesehead

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    I remember a few years back when we didn't have either a right or left tackle and how that effected our play that year. Make no mistake the OL is important especially when you factor in a QB as effective as Rodgers and what his loss would mean.
     
  13. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    I assume you are talking about 2009? We had the 3rd highest scoring offense that season.
     
  14. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    I disagree - the LT doesn't have to be great but he has to be adequate. Both OTs do. Exhibit A: Allen Barbre. IMO if Clifton played the last six games of the 2010 season like he did last season's playoff game, the Packers wouldn't have made it to the Super Bowl.

    BTW, if a team can get to a Superbowl with a terrible LT are GMs (like Thompson) foolish for "wasting" first round picks on them? Why not just go with UDFAs? Perhaps Thompson should have been drafting QBs with those picks?
     
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  15. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    Mediocre usually does it. I think LTs are over drafted and over paid. Great ones are on bad teams and alot of bad ones are starting for great teams. It's not something I would put a premium on. But I know it's conventional wisdom that has been held in high reguard for years, like defenses win championships, and you need to run to set up the pass. It's hard to get people to have an open mind about those types of things bc they have been drilled into us since we started watching ftball.

    In the other thread "if you could steal one player" you have several posters saying joe Thomas, which confuses me as we had such an amazing offense last season, what could he bring that would improve it so much you wouldn't want another player? Joe Thomas is a great player and a possible 1st ballot HOFer, but I don't see what he would bring to a 15-1 team that put up record numbers on the offense.

    I don't think Ted has really screwed up with taking tackles where he has, it wasn't a top of the draft pick so I don't think it's a bad pick. It's Minnesota that I think screwed up by taking a tackle so high. But a Vikings GM making a mistake? No that never happens :p
     
  16. AmishMafia

    AmishMafia Cheesehead

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    Jack, may be the first time we have ever disagreed.

    I feel our OT Is as strong as its been in TT's reign. Newhouse is average, improving rapidly, andi with potential for all pro. Sherrod has even more potential.
     
  17. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    I'm excited to see Sherrod this season. Tough break last season
     
  18. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    A few points:

    Terrible does not equal mediocre and I wouldn't call the difference semantics. Terrible is starting Datko Thursday night which is OK unless you care about the health of any of the team's QBs.

    My concern is not about Newhouse, it's about depth and I'm not suggesting Thompson has to do something now, but if Sherrod isn't ready to start the season IMO Thompson should acquire a vet for insurance.

    IMO Newhouse is not average. As I've posted several times, according to McGinn he allowed 41.5 pressures, including 10.5 sacks while playing about 77% of the offensive snaps last season. That's twice as many pressures as any Packers O lineman has had in the past 13 seasons. Twice as many as any Packers OL in more than a decade. I don't think you can look at those stats and characterize him as average. I hope he becomes average this season.

    What I saw of Sherrod last season was not good. But he didn't have a full off season. IMO he really needed the off season this year and of course he was recovering from a broken leg instead. He has potential but sometimes I think "potential" can be defined as "no damn good now".
     
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  19. Shawnsta3

    Shawnsta3 Cheesehead

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    Think Jake Long for your first paragraph
     
  20. 13 Times Champs

    13 Times Champs Cheesehead

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    Well I for one don't think the Packers can allow 51 sacks like they did in 2009 and still have Rodgers playing 16 games. Mediocre line play will not be good enough to take us far, as it didn't in 2009. Jack has nailed it with his posts.
     
  21. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    This reminds me of a story (apologies in advance if I've posted this before). First, the '96 team was a lesson in the need for adequate LT play. Before that season it was obvious Ken Ruettgers was nearing the end of his fine career so Wolf picked John Michels with the 27th pick in the '96 draft to be the heir apparent at LT. Unfortunately Ruettgers' career ended that season because of injuries and Michels wasn't the answer at LT that season or thereafter. Bruce Wilkerson was actually signed before the opener - Jacksonville waived him and Wolf picked him up days later. As I remember it, toward the end of that regular season a couple of vets on the team lobbied for Bruce Wilkerson to step in at LT. He started the last regular season game and for the rest of that great playoff run. The difference was night and day and at the time Wilkerson was just one season away from retiring from the game. (That's the kind of signing I'm hoping for if Sherrod can't play - but I've already made that point, haven't I?)

    Anyway, one of the O-line adjustment calls the play-side OT had to make in that offense was "Cow!" Not a problem except Bruce had a problem stuttering. In a game prior to that Super Bowl after struggling with the "C" in cow, he finally shouted, "Moooo!" While everyone knew what he meant, half of them were laughing too hard for the play to be successful.
     
  22. ivo610

    ivo610 Cheesehead

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    Wilkerson was far from elite but adequate. I think it's something we can still find at that level if we don't have an in house solution
     
  23. DevilDon

    DevilDon Inclement Weather Fan

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    Jack, I agree with almost every single post you have here. I'd like to ask you something since I don't think the position is that dire: Who would you bring in?
    I have to tell you that I guess my difference in opinion from yours is that I think Datko is going to make a difference at some point this year. Maybe not right away but at some point he will have a real impact on the season.
     
  24. TJV

    TJV Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    As I posted above: My concern is not about Newhouse, it's about depth and I'm not suggesting Thompson has to do something now, but if Sherrod isn't ready to start the season IMO Thompson should acquire a vet for insurance. So I wouldn’t categorize the situation as dire at this point. If Sherrod gets healthy, activated, and looks improved I don’t think Thompson has to bring in a vet. OTOH, if Sherrod starts the season on the PUP list I think they should bring in the best vet backup OT available. I don’t have a name in mind but somewhere at 1265 Lombardi Avenue is a prioritized list just for this situation – I’d go by that list and even pay a late round pick if I had to.

    Hey, maybe Herb Taylor will defy his history and do OK tomorrow night. But chances are there’s a reason he’s been out of the league for the past three seasons, save one game. As a Packers fan I’m rooting for him but if I were McCarthy I’d be extra careful regarding Rodgers’ health. Regarding Datko all I’ve read about him so far in camp is he hasn’t looked good. And it’s one thing to be injury prone but even more concerning IMO that he’s battled (only) shoulder injuries through high school and college and missed most of his senior year. I don’t think it’s realistic to expect him to contribute this season. Again, I’m rooting for him but if I had to guess I’d guess the practice squad is his destination.

    Of course as a Packers fan I would prefer my opinion is wrong if the result benefits the Packers. So I think it’d be fantastic if Taylor, Datko, McCabe, or Allard step up and provide adequate depth at LT this season if Sherrod can’t go. But in addition to being a Packers fan, I try to be a realist and realistically I don’t think that’s likely.
     
  25. HyponGrey

    HyponGrey Caseus Locutus Est

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    Got vet, Reggie Wells. Guess we couldn get anyone better
     

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