Stacking Up the NFC North

RepStar15

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I love the drive-by disagree @KyraReppe5. Very convincing.
Touché. I just simply do not think Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. Do not get me wrong, I like AJ and obviously the better value player considering he was a 5th round pick. But Dalvin Cook is a day 1 RB1 on any team in the NFL (perhaps with the exception of the Steelers). We do not even know if Aaron Jones is our RB1, RB2 or RB3 at this point.
 
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Touché. I just simply do not think Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. Do not get me wrong, I like AJ and obviously the better value player considering he was a 5th round pick. But Dalvin Cook is a day 1 RB1 on any team in the NFL (perhaps with the exception of the Steelers). We do not even know if Aaron Jones is our RB1, RB2 or RB3 at this point.

It seems that the primary argument for Cook is that he was the starter out of the gate. What are the arguments for him in terms of actual talent or production?
 

RepStar15

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It seems that the primary argument for Cook is that he was the starter out of the gate. What are the arguments for him in terms of actual talent or production?
The argument is that he was a starter out of the gate. Which means a handful of coaches evaluated his talent and decided he is a #1 back. You know, NFL coaches that do this for a living? Coaches still have no idea where Aaron Jones falls in the depth chart.
 

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Touché. I just simply do not think Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. Do not get me wrong, I like AJ and obviously the better value player considering he was a 5th round pick. But Dalvin Cook is a day 1 RB1 on any team in the NFL (perhaps with the exception of the Steelers). We do not even know if Aaron Jones is our RB1, RB2 or RB3 at this point.
Every time he touched the ball, he showed he has very good RB ability, vision, instincts. The only thing that will keep him back is injury (like anyone else) and pass blocking. He has to get better at that.

I never watched a Vikings game with the other guy running. But AJones is clearly a talented runner
 

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Touché. I just simply do not think Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. Do not get me wrong, I like AJ and obviously the better value player considering he was a 5th round pick. But Dalvin Cook is a day 1 RB1 on any team in the NFL (perhaps with the exception of the Steelers). We do not even know if Aaron Jones is our RB1, RB2 or RB3 at this point.

Cook is not the rb1 on a few teams for sure like dallas, Arizona, St Louis, new Orleans, San Diego, buffalo and there is the argument of teams like Kansas City, new york Giants (I would take Barkley) and other second year guys like at Cincy, and Carolina who produced well last year.

I would definitely take Cook over Jones but he is coming off a major injury and had some injury concerns coming out of college. I also like our top 3 more when adding in depth. The Vikings took a hit losing Mckinnon. Murray is just a guy. Nothing special. I would definitely rather have Williams and Montgomery backing up. More upside. That said I would give the Vikings the edge at rb.

I would say I would rather have Graham than Rudolph. I am not sure who the Vikings second tight end is though.
 
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The argument is that he was a starter out of the gate. Which means a handful of coaches evaluated his talent and decided he is a #1 back. You know, NFL coaches that do this for a living? Coaches still have no idea where Aaron Jones falls in the depth chart.

How do we know that?

And yes, it is common that high draft picks are slotted into starting roles out of the gate. Mid to late round rookies typically have to do some work to break in. Take Jordan Howard, for instance. His rookie season, he was playing behind Jeremy Langford for the first three games. In time, it proved that he was far and away the best back on the team, and yet his draft/rookie status kept him out of the lineup.

It's funny to me that the primary argument for why Cook is better is that he started right away. If he was "head and shoulders" better as @Raptorman stated, shouldn't there be an easy case to be made based on actual production?
 
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Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. He’s way, way more talented. He was more productive on a per snap basis despite playing most of his snaps with Brett Hundley. If Cook was the UTEP grad who went 5th round and Jones was the FSU guy who went round 1, perceptions would be totally flipped.

It's a way too small sample size to make a fair evaluation based on last year's numbers. While I expect Jones to be a productive player I think Cook will have a better career.
 

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Cook is not the rb1 on a few teams for sure like dallas, Arizona, St Louis, new Orleans, San Diego, buffalo and there is the argument of teams like Kansas City, new york Giants (I would take Barkley) and other second year guys like at Cincy, and Carolina who produced well last year.

I would definitely take Cook over Jones but he is coming off a major injury and had some injury concerns coming out of college. I also like our top 3 more when adding in depth. The Vikings took a hit losing Mckinnon. Murray is just a guy. Nothing special. I would definitely rather have Williams and Montgomery backing up. More upside. That said I would give the Vikings the edge at rb.

I would say I would rather have Graham than Rudolph. I am not sure who the Vikings second tight end is though.

I agree with you about McKinnon. He really gashed the Packers bad. Dalvin Cook + McKinnon would have been scary.

On Aaron Jones. I think he hasn't had enough touches to really conclude that he's that good. He certainly has the potential, but until he starts several games in a row with 15-20 touches per game, it's too early to evaluate his real talent.
 

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Aaron Jones is better than Dalvin Cook. He’s way, way more talented. He was more productive on a per snap basis despite playing most of his snaps with Brett Hundley. If Cook was the UTEP grad who went 5th round and Jones was the FSU guy who went round 1, perceptions would be totally flipped.
Conversely, if GMs perceptions were flipped, then Jones would have been taken in the 2nd round and Cook would have been available in the 5th.

I like Jones and Cook looked good before getting injured. It remains to be seen how well he comes back from injury. Cook could not afford to lose even a 1/2 step. Jones will likely improve this season. Going forward, it is possible Jones is better, but he needs to prove it before being crowned.
 
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Defense...

Interior Defensive Line (4-3 DT's, 3-4 DL): One could make the case that Minnesota has the single best player in this group in Linval Joseph, a guy I really love. However, if one decided that he's the best of the bunch, I think you'd still have to admit that Mike Daniels and Kenny Clark are close on his heels and they happen to play next to each other on the same team. Mo Wilkerson is a high upside gamble, but even if he doesn't pay off, Dean Lowry proved to be a solid starter as the 5 technique. So the Packers are #1 here. The aforementioned Joseph and Sheldon Richardson are a strong #2, but I think solidly in 2nd place when you look at their depth. I like Jaleel Johnson, but there isn't much else to impress. Akiem Hicks is a good player in Chicago, and Eddie Goldman is respectable. The Lions are a distant 4th to me. A'Shawn Robinson is a decent run stuffer and he's surrounded by a bunch of JAG's.
  1. Packers
  2. Vikings
  3. Bears
  4. Lions
Edge Rushers (4-3 DE's, 3-4 OLB's): The Vikings have this spot on lockdown. Griffen is a strong player, obviously, but Hunter is actually even better on a per snap basis. Brian Robison is still a useful player, while Holmes, Bower, and Weatherly are projects for Zimmer to develop. I give the Lions a slight edge for the #2 spot because their 3rd guy is much more proven than Green Bay's. Ansah, Zettel, and Hyder are unspectacular but all above average. The Packers have two such players in Matthews and Perry, but really need some more help to emerge. The Bears are an easy choice for 4th place as their best hopes are the disappointing Leonard Floyd and Aaron Lynch.
  1. Vikings
  2. Lions
  3. Packers
  4. Bears
Off-Ball Linebackers (4-3 LB's, 3-4 ILB's): This is another area where I think Minnesota is an easy choice for the top spot. Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr is probably the two best off-ball backers in the division and they play next to each other. Gedeon is fine as a 3rd player, especially considering that 3 linebacker sets aren't very common in the league any more. Second place is a little difficult to figure, but I think the Bears deserve it. Trevathan, while a crap sack, is an above average player and they just added to him the best linebacker I've seen come out since Kuechley. The Packers take 3rd with an above average player of their own (Martinez), but a much lesser prospect added (Burks). Detroit has tried to address the issue in Davis, but until he starts playing well I'm not giving them credit.
  1. Vikings
  2. Bears
  3. Packers
  4. Lions
Cornerback: On February 21, 1809 Abraham Lincoln, our eventual 16th president and the man who preserved the union, was born in Hodgensville, Kentucky. Terence Newman was six. Seriously, how does that happen? Given the Newman and Waynes are solid, Hughes was a good rookie addition, and Rhodes is the best corner in the division, the Vikings take the cake here. The Bears take the 2nd spot on the strength of Fuller's good (if uneven) play, Amukamara's solid consistency, and Bryce Callahan's ability in the slot. The Lions have the only player in the division who could challenge Rhodes for the claim to being the best corner in Darius Slay, but I really don't like their depth at all. Nevertheless, Slay and a bunch of guys puts them ahead of the Packers for the time being, as Green Bay has to count on a lot of unproven (though high end), talent.
  1. Vikings
  2. Bears
  3. Lions
  4. Packers
Safety: Harrison Smith isn't often in the conversation for the league's best safety, but he ought to be. In combination with the solid Andrew Sendejo, the Vikings claim another top spot for me. The Bears have an underrated tandem in Adrian Amos and Eddie Jackson-- those two could be good together for a long time. I think the Packers have a chance to outperform this ranking depending on how guys respond to Pettine, but given the down year in 2017 I won't put them any higher. The Lions again bring up the rear. Glover Quin is a solid starter, but he's getting up there in age and it remains to be seen how Diggs will transition to safety (which is the plan, IIRC).
  1. Vikings
  2. Bears
  3. Packers
  4. Lions
 
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Conversely, if GMs perceptions were flipped, then Jones would have been taken in the 2nd round and Cook would have been available in the 5th.

I like Jones and Cook looked good before getting injured. It remains to be seen how well he comes back from injury. Cook could not afford to lose even a 1/2 step. Jones will likely improve this season. Going forward, it is possible Jones is better, but he needs to prove it before being crowned.

Both players need to "prove it." But in my opinion, Jones proved more in year one.
 
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It's a way too small sample size to make a fair evaluation based on last year's numbers. While I expect Jones to be a productive player I think Cook will have a better career.

It is too small to be definitive either way, but this is my guess and I think there's a strong case for it in their performances in 2017.
 
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I agree with you about McKinnon. He really gashed the Packers bad. Dalvin Cook + McKinnon would have been scary.

On Aaron Jones. I think he hasn't had enough touches to really conclude that he's that good. He certainly has the potential, but until he starts several games in a row with 15-20 touches per game, it's too early to evaluate his real talent.

Then is it also too early to evaluate Cook's?
 
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nice rankings that i pretty much agree with. it all boils down to the Packers fighting for second in the division and a wild-card spot...9-7 (maybe 10-6).

Thanks!

On that prediction-- I think these results demonstrate pretty clearly that Green Bay is second in total roster talent to Minnesota in the NFCN, but as I stated earlier, these results aren't weighted. If they were, QB would count for a lot more than any other position group. Rodgers with the 2nd best roster in the division may (again--may) well topple Cousins with the most talented roster.

These results also don't account for degree. For example, I think the Lions and Packers are pretty close to one another in the "edge" category, while both are easily well above Chicago. I essentially gave a tie breaker to Detroit because Hyder is coming back. However, despite that being a very close call, Detroit is still one full point "better" than Green Bay, which is the exact degree of separation between GB and CHI. However, these rankings are too primitive to show degree. They're just my thoughts.

I would predict 10-12 wins for this Packers team depending on health, how the SOS shakes out, how the young players come along, and how well the defense responds to Pettine in year one.
 
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What do you guys think would be worse as a Vikings fan:

a) Having your all-time franchise moment be an amazing play that got you past your first PO game, only to get absolutely trounced the next week.

b) Getting triggered because the Packers took a better player at the same position in the 5th round than the guy you took in the 2nd.

c) Being a Vikings fan.

What say you? Should I make a poll?
 

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nice rankings that i pretty much agree with. it all boils down to the Packers fighting for second in the division and a wild-card spot...9-7 (maybe 10-6).

Yeah remember Rodgers. You can't just look at who is better at each position because QB is so much more valuable. What was this teams record when he played last year? Do you think they are worse in talent around him this year?
 

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a) Having your all-time franchise moment be an amazing play that got you past your first PO game, only to get absolutely trounced the next week.
The Defining Franchise Moment was not the Saints come from behind, but when Jim Marshall got a turnover and ran the wrong way and scored a safety on his own team.

This is also a perfect metaphor for the entire organization.
 

Pokerbrat2000

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What do you guys think would be worse as a Vikings fan:

a) Having your all-time franchise moment be an amazing play that got you past your first PO game, only to get absolutely trounced the next week.

b) Getting triggered because the Packers took a better player at the same position in the 5th round than the guy you took in the 2nd.

c) Being a Vikings fan.

What say you? Should I make a poll?

You must be logged in to see this image or video!
 

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Explain to me why it makes any sense to break it up by games? As a 5th round pick, Jones took time to crack the lineup-- the job wasn't handed to him like it was Cook. Then when he did take over, he eventually suffered a knee injury that he played through for a while before getting back to 100%. By breaking it up via total games active, you're artificially including games from before he broke out and while he wasn't actually healthy (I understand-- it does take a little manipulation to argue Cook's superiority). When he was healthy, he was fantastic. On a per touch basis, he was a better rusher than Cook. He's also way, way more athletically talented than Cook, he's not coming off a torn ACL, and he doesn't have a fumbling problem. Much of his production came with absolutely wretched QB play.

But I am sorry that the Packers found a back in the 5th who is better than the guy your team drafted 41st overall. That must be hard.


Well, according to you, Cook is running behind the worst O-line in the Division, Jones the best. Believe me, the O-line makes a difference.
 

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Well, according to you, Cook is running behind the worst O-line in the Division, Jones the best. Believe me, the O-line makes a difference.

Kind of correct.

Green Bay has a very good pass blocking OL and a top 5 LT. That matters a lot because passing is the most important aspect of the game. The Packers are at best, average when it comes to run blocking, and I'm being pretty generous tbh.
 

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