I haven't posted a blog on the APP site in some time, mostly due to the fact that it has been the offseason and my personal/work schedule has been a disaster in terms of trying to find time to write a coherent blog. I promise I will try to write more blogs now that we are in the throes of Training Camp in Green Bay!
As everyone knows there has been a ton of buzz with the new coaching staff, free agent signings and draft picks...Most offseasons and training camps have consisted of nothing new to speak of, save for a draft picks so talking about so many changes is actually very fun, engaging and exciting.
I am not going to use this blog to break down film, draft picks running around in shorts or little soundbites that get taken way out of context. I want to take more of a holistic, 500 feet up approach to this Packers team. Here goes nothing...
The Packers desperately needed to find a way to look to the future with EVERYTHING - coaching, player/personnel, hell they need to look at the music they play on game day because it feels like 1988 when it's actually 2019. If I hear "roll out the barrel" after AC/DC "Thunderstruck" one more time I am going to scream - ha, ha. Ok, I'm just kidding about the music...or am I?
There are a lot of telling signs that it was WAYYYY past time to move on from the previous regime. Mike McCarthy, who was fired with 4 games left in order to give him a head start on finding a new NFL coaching job, hasn't been mentioned or connected to the NFL at all in 6 months. Some opposing teams' players have come out publically basically saying that the GB offense under McCarthy was the most laughably simple scheme in the league. McCarthy basically said that "scheme is a crutch" whereas coaches like Bill Bellichick consider scheme so important that they scheme for every game they play.
It's way too early to give grades to Matt Lafleur and his staff but the fact that he is a young, fresh offensive mind that values scheme (and a running game) is great to see. Brian Gutekunst inherited a mess of a roster from poor drafting and a complete lack of looking outside the organization for other players and talent - while the Packers are the archetype in terms of an NFL team and brand, "Gute" did not inherit an easy situation in terms of the roster. His aggressive approach is the antithesis of what Ted Thompson did during basically his entire tenure as GM. At this point, I like the uber-aggressive nature he is taking to building a roster...I guess it's better to swing for the fences and crash vs. hoping that every draft pick makes a huge leap from year one to year two.
The only aspect I am leary of the with the "New Packers" is the front office structure. Mark Murphy was basically hands-off with the football side of the operation for most of his tenure, he basically let Ted Thompson & Mike McCarthy do their thing without any oversight. Mark Murphy was probably at least 2 if not 3 years late in recognizing how stale and predictable things were getting on the football side. While he needed to make big changes, it worries me how much he has injected himself into day-to-day football operations. It is laughable that the head coach & GM both report to him...that doesn't make sense and it undermines the hierarchy of the head coach/GM dynamic. Lefleur and Gutekunst both publically state that they are fine with the structure but who knows what they think behind the scenes. Unfortunately, Murphy has opened up a can of worms that resembles the Lindy Infante era more than the Bob Harlan era. The Packers as an organization really suffered when they had too many "suits" meddling in the day-to-day football operations.
2019 is going to be a HUGE year for everyone that matters at Lambeau, to include Aaron Rodgers. For the most part, they have gone forward into the future but there are some instances where it looks like a regression.