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Packer Running Game - How'd They Fix It?

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by HawkBeliever, Jan 8, 2008.

  1. HawkBeliever

    HawkBeliever Cheesehead

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    OK, so it seems like your team went from having almost no running game in the begining of the season to having one that most teams (My Seahawks included) would be envious of. How the heck did that happen so dramatically over the course of one season?
     
  2. digsthepack

    digsthepack Cheesehead

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    Development of cohesion along the O-line. That said, our O-line will be in heavy rotation again due to injuries.

    Plus, all Grant needed was a chance. Came in late in camp and needed to learn the book...took a number of weeks before he was ready to go.
     
  3. Zombieslayer

    Zombieslayer Cheesehead

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    Ryan Grant
     
  4. IronMan

    IronMan Cheesehead

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  5. kewlbeans

    kewlbeans Cheesehead

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  6. Packerfan4Life

    Packerfan4Life Cheesehead

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    Ryan Grant. Packers use a ZBS (Zone blocking scheme) similar to the Texans and Broncos. This scheme requires good cohesion on the line and a running back who will hit the hole and make one cut and go. Brandon Jackson at the beginning of the year either wouldn't have a hole to run through, or was apprehensive in his cuts and didn't make the most of the running room he was provided with. NFL.com's video section has a good portion of Grant's good runs, where you can see his cutting ability and field vision that sparks his long runs.
     
  7. packerfan1245

    packerfan1245 Cheesehead

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  8. kewlbeans

    kewlbeans Cheesehead

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    OMG !! Packerfan4Life with the combo breaker !!
     
  9. Greg C.

    Greg C. Cheesehead

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    Mostly it's Ryan Grant. He would've made an impact a few games earlier, but he fumbled late in game 4 at Minnesota and because of that he was not given a carry for the next two or three games.

    Also, the blocking has been a little better. And I think they deviated a bit more from the zone blocking scheme in the second half of the season, which has made them more able to take advantage of opponents' weaknesses.

    I think our running game is good now, but not as good as it looks on paper. There have only been a few games where we gained yards consistently. Usually Grant has had a handful of long runs and a lot that are 2 yards or less. So we don't yet have a consistent move-the-chains, kill-the-clock type of running game. But we're getting closer to that.

    At the beginning of the season if you had told someone that the Packers and Ryant Grant would have a better running game than the Seahawks and Shaun Alexander, they would have said you were crazy. (But first they would have asked who the heck Ryant Grant is.)
     
  10. nathaniel

    nathaniel Cheesehead

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    I was just reading the Street & Smith Pro Football Preseason Preview, and they listed Grant as a back to watch with the Giants. Getting him was huge. He's obviously been the key.

    By the way...welcome to the site, Hawkbeliever!
     
  11. Greg C.

    Greg C. Cheesehead

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    Yeah, it's not like Grant completely came out of nowhere. When the Packers got him and I read some articles about him, I was impressed by his potential--including the Dorsey Levens comparisons, which turned out to be accurate. And when you look at how good the other Giants RB's are, you can see how Grant fell through the cracks.

    Thompson's trade for Grant turned out to be one of the best moves any team made in 2007, and a good example of how the best moves are not necessarily the ones that cost the most money and generate the most publicity. I'm expecting Grant to get signed to a multiyear contract either in the offseason or during the 2008 season. He shows all indications of being reliable and durable.
     
  12. cheesey

    cheesey Cheesehead

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    Grant has been HUGE. He's powerful, and hits the hole hard and fast.
     
  13. Aytumious

    Aytumious Cheesehead

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    Our O-line has gelled a bit as the year progressed. Our WRs do a good job blocking downfield.

    But it really comes down to Grant. He has amazing burst and fantastic vision. I don't know if there is a back in the league that hits the hole harder. He reads holes and angles amazingly well.

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d80413594

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d804a824a

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d804ee869

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d8046d0d1

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d80452211

    http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d804526a4
     
  14. BryanAschenbrenner

    BryanAschenbrenner Cheesehead

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    "That's what she said!" Michael Scott.

    All kidding aside, Ryan Grant is a beast.
     
  15. HawkBeliever

    HawkBeliever Cheesehead

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    Good stuff. So Grant was the right man who blossomed (can I use that verb in relation to football?) at the right time.

    Aytumious - Great selection of vids to show his skills. He doesn't look huge but he sure has strength on the second efforts. Man, the O-line gives him some nice holes. He seems like he is skilled at waiting for the hole to open up. Its hard to find RBs who are confident enough to wait for that these days.

    Greg C.- You talked about signing him to a multi-year contract in the offseason. Does that mean he's available at the end of this season? :)
     
  16. Packnic

    Packnic Cheesehead

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    why did our run game suddenly improve?

    because we wanted it to.

    I dont know that our run game was bad. we went 13-3 this year... doing what ever the hell was needed to win.

    If we needed to pass 100 times to win we did it.
    If we needed to run the ball... we just did it.
    were THAT good.
     
  17. Obi1

    Obi1 Cheesehead

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    VERY well put!

    EVERYBODY talks about the run offense but we fell 2 games after the running game came alive. I like the "...doing whatever the hell was needed to win"

    Packers should do all they can to win. IF we play our game, we will win.
     
  18. Green_Bay_Packers

    Green_Bay_Packers Cheesehead

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  19. Tylaa

    Tylaa Cheesehead

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    I wouldn't say were THAT good, cause there were days when we tried both and couldn't do either.
     
  20. Obi1

    Obi1 Cheesehead

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    True but we're that much better than Seattle.
    We play packer football, we win this one handily.
     
  21. TOPackerFan

    TOPackerFan Cheesehead

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    He's an "exclusive rights free agent", which is a bit of an oxymoron if you ask me. He's not under contract, so he's technically a free agent, but can only negotiate with the Packers unless we decide we don't want him (fat chance of that). Bottm line is, I'd look for Grant in the Green and Gold next season.
     
  22. Zombieslayer

    Zombieslayer Cheesehead

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    I can see Grant being locked to a 3 or 4 year contract next season. That's my prediction. He has really helped the Pack this year, and is one of the more important players.
     
  23. favre2driver

    favre2driver Cheesehead

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  24. MarkAshton

    MarkAshton Cheesehead

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    I snipped this froma post I made elswhere. The answer to the question of how the Packers improved their running game is...they sort of didn't.

    Someone posted stats showing how the average yards/rush for the Packers increased month by month through the course of the year. So I looked at those numbers from a few perspectives. First, how did those yards/rush by month match up to the winning percentages of the teams they faced during those months. Here's the result:

    September-4.5 avg per rush (Opponents Win %: 57.8)
    October-4.7 avg per rush (Opponents Win %: 47.9)
    November-4.9 avg per rush (Opponents Win %: 40.6)
    December-5.5 avg per rush (Opponents WIN %: 42.5)

    So, they sucked early against better teams and cleaned up later against weaker teams. Just to show it's not smoke and mirrors, you can also look at this stat by comparing the Packers average yards/game gained vs. the average yards allowed for the Packers opponents. In 11 of the Packers games this year they gained FEWER yards than the average allowed by their opponents over the course of the season. It was only against five teams that the Packers actually gained more than the average allowed by their opponents.

    But wait, the story gets even uglier for the Packers. If you look at their actual yards gained rushing game by game (yes, I have too much time on my hands) you see that they only outgained the average yards allowed by their opponents five times...against Minnesota, Dallas, Oakland, Chicago (barely in one game) and Detroit.

    By the way, of the total yards the Packers gained rushing for the year (1600 and change), 14% of those yards came against Detroit (23rd worst rushing defense in the NFL) in the last game of the season and another 11% came against Oakland (31st worst rushign defense in the NFL). That means 25% of the total yards gained on the ground by the Packers for the year came against two very bad teams.

    And finally, you seem very confident in your nice young running back Ryan Grant. Well, he was the 19th best rusher in the NFL this year with 956 yards gained. Of those 956 yards, 418 came in four games - two against Detroit, Oakland and Denver. In the other 12 games of the year he average (DRUMROLL) 44.83 yards/game. OUCH.

    The more I look at this the more I start to think that the Packers won't be able to run the ball against Seattle. Oops. Just jynxed the team!
     
  25. gopackgo

    gopackgo Cheesehead

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    Wow, talk about skewing facts. Sure he played 15 games, but he only had 6 carries in his first 5 games for 27 yards. So subtract the games where he wasn't even part of the gameplan and you get 929 yards for 10 games, just under 100 ypg.

    That is the Brian Grant we all know and love.
     

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