The Winds of Change Are Blowing in Titletown

There’s an air of finality heading into Sunday’s game against the Lions, and not just because, hello, it’s the final game of the season. A number of fixtures on the roster will likely be playing their final game as a Packer. Expect this roster to  look very different in 2019, especially if the next head coach changes the schemes on both sides of the ball.

This could be it for the likes of Clay Matthews, Randall Cobb, Bryan Bulaga, Nick Perry,  Tramon Williams and Jake Ryan, as Brian Gutekunst will have loads of cap room and draft picks to remake the roster the way he sees fit. The players know this and I expect them to play hard, as they did last Sunday at MetLife. That goes for some of the younger guys too, who are getting one more opportunity to show why they should be in the mix next year; guys like Tyler Lancaster, Montravius Adams, Jake Kumerow, Tony Brown, Eddie Pleasant and Lucas Patrkick (questionable).

When the phrase ‘bottom dwellers of the division’ is uttered, what comes to mind is Bears-Lions. Unfortunately, playing the part of the Bears this season is the Pack, who play a second straight meaningless game in week 17. Monday will be a very interesting day at 1265 Lombardi Avenue, as we see which coaches are let go and what some of the exiting players have to say.

We will hear about more head coach candidates being brought in beyond the initial two that have been reported: Jim Caldwell and Chuck Pagano, Let’s not freak about these two–you have to believe they are both long shots, but they are out of football right now and that represents the only pool the Packers can work with until the NFL season ends, or when a college coach has finished his season.

As for this last game, Davante Adams is within reach of the receptions and yards receiving records, but didn’t practice all week as he nurses a knee injury. If he plays, watching him duel with talented corner Darius Slay will be one of the very few intriguing matchups to pay attention to. EQ will miss the game with a concussion, so MVS and Kumerow will get some run and I expect Rodgers to look early and often for Cobb, looking to make one final statement to illustrate why he’d like to see his good buddy back in 2019.

This is one final opportunity for Mike Pettine to show that he deserves the chance to return to run this unit in 2019. Now, he’ll be down about eight opening day starters and he won’t be facing the guys from the Lions that usually haunt the Pack, i.e. Golden Tate and Marvin Jones. But his unit has played well, despite the revolving door roster that has forced him to mix and match every week. I still like the idea of Pettine taking the head coaching job and identifying the right offensive guy to fix Rodgers and the offense–more on that down the road. I know it’s a long shot, so far he’s made it clear he prefers to be a coordinator–but maybe he’s Belichick 2.0, ready to rise up after failing in Cleveland.

Packers 27  Lions 17

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11 Responses to The Winds of Change Are Blowing in Titletown

  1. Packerlifer says:

    They should be playing Auld Lang Syne on the Lambeau PA system today for all the changes that will be coming after this season is done. For a team that had such high expectations coming in to this year it’s worth a look at what went wrong as they are playing out the schedule on a second straight losing, non-playoff season. A lot has already been said and done with the removal in January of GM Ted Thompson and the firing in season of HC Mike McCarthy. The men in charge of the football operation were failing in roster building and coaching. But some other things went amiss as well. Injuries, although long a recurring problem in the Thompson-McCarthy era, decimated the team. The Packers have 16 players on IR, 11 of them starters and at least 10 who missed from a quarter to the entire season. Nine more are listed on today’s injury report as doubtful or questionable. By comparison Chicago has 6 on its IR, only 3 starters. Minisota has 8, 2 starters. Getting Aaron Rodgers back did return the offense to “top ten” again in yards and passing. But only 17th in td passes, 19th in net yds. gained per pass and 12th in scoring. Injuries, again, had a big role in that. How many games this season did Randall Cobb and Geronimo Allison miss? The Jimmy Graham for Jordy Nelson swap out didn’t pan out. While Jordy may not be a thousand yd. receiver any more he could hardly have been less productive than Graham. Nelson’s experience and connection with ARod would probably had produced 6-8 more td’s than Graham’s 2 and he might have been a difference maker in some of those critical third and fourth down conversion situations. McCarthy scrambled his offense too much this season. Besides new and inexperienced receivers he had 5 new offensive assistants or assistants in new roles at coordinator, wide receiver and quarterback. And in addition to a coordinator he confused the flow chart further by having a new member as “passing game coordinator” and adding “run game coordinator” to o-line coach James Campen’s job description and keeping play-caller himself. No wonder things didn’t work smoothly with so many cooks in the kitchen. Although the Packers ranked second in the league in ypc rushing at 5.1 they were only 20th in rushing yds. and dead last in attempts, which says something about how MM was running the show. Mike Pettine has been a bright spot on the defense. He’s gotten his unit ranked in the top half of the league in total yds. and top ten in pass defense. But only 22nd in scoring defense, 29th in INT’s and 26th in takeaways. And those are the things on defense which win football games these days. Pettine could turn out to be like Jim Bates 15 years ago; a great hire too late and with a head coaching change coming just a one year show in town.

  2. what a gutty performance... says:

    Looks like the Pack would have been better to just forfeit this one and give the fans their money back. Yikes. Absolutely no effort and on top of that, a timely Rodgers “concussion” to take him out of the game. Gutey sure has some work to do with off season…

  3. svenveader says:

    absolutly brutal game 4 da pack… rogers concusion and 21-0 at halftime… the Roar has been restored

  4. Greg says:

    Davey, Maybe stay out of the prediction business next year. Good Grief!

  5. Tom Possley says:

    As we say in Wisconsin after a game like this “Oofdah”. Elvis completely left the building today.

  6. Uperpackfan says:

    Your right Greg,he also picked the queens,thought you said cousins was going to the playoffs,what a choker,o line sucks defense is overrated,Zimmer is an idiot!!!

  7. Packerlifer says:

    The Packers were a dud but the Queenies hit with a thud. So that’s two years out of the playoffs for us. But how can they live over there with 52 with no Super Bowl win or 42 without even a Super Bowl appearance?

  8. Vikes ZERO World Championships says:

    Funny to see the trolling of the Vikings fans come to a screeching halt tonight. Too bad that you are now in the same spot we are in, but with a worse draft pick and a more difficult schedule. Bye, Felicia.

  9. Moron mudduck says:

    Yeah where are the trolls,I tried to warn the stupid mudducks that we would choke and we were highly overrated,Zimmer and spiel woman have to go,lots of finger pointing now,Cousins is terrible,he looks scared and has happy feet,who cares if thielen had a 100 catches,85 of them were for 4 yards,whining pussy!!

  10. Greg says:

    I never said any such thing Uperpackfan. Also, if the defense is overrated and the oline sucks……how the hell does one choke? Are you drunk?

  11. Uperpackfan says:

    Go back to your December 20th post Greg,I quote,84 million dollar man ain’t going to the pro bowl but he is going to the playoffs,end quote,your the one who was drunk!! Chokers

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