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2014 GREEN BAY PACKERS FOOTBALL PREVIEW

July 4, 2014
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



2014 GREEN BAY PACKERS FOOTBALL PREVIEW

Green Bay Packers (1980 - Pres)

HEAD COACH: MIKE McCARTHY

RECORD: 82-45-1 @ GREEN BAY

OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR: TOM CLEMENTS

DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR: DOM CAPERS

OFFENSE PPG: 26.1

RUSHING: 133.5

PASSING: 266.8

TOTAL OFFENSE: 400.2

DEFENSE PPG: 26.8

RUSHING: 125.0

PASSING: 247.2

TOTAL DEFENSE: 372.3

INTERCEPTIONS: 11

SACKS: 44.0

TO MARGIN: -3

Green Bay Packers (1980 - Pres)

Somehow the Packers made the playoffs last season despite going 8-7-1.  There has been a steady decline in Green Bay over the last three seasons. The Packers were Super Bowl champions in 2010 and won 15 games in 2011.  In 2012, the Packers won 11 and then declined to 8 last season.

It all starts with QB Aaron Rodgers when you talk about the Packers. He will return as one of the top signal-callers in football but won’t have the same playmakers around him that he had earlier in his career. Rodgers suffered a broken collarbone in 2013 and the Packers used four different starting QB’s looking for an answer. Green Bay signed former back-up Matt Flynn to make sure they have a capable back-up just in case Rodgers goes down again. Scott Tolzien will be the third string QB.

Green Bay should have an excellent running game behind Rodgers after Eddie Lacy ran for 1,178 yards in 2013.  If Lacy and Rodgers stay healthy, it will be difficult for opposing defenses to concentrate on either one consistently. Green Bay has depth at RB after they re-signed James Starks and should have Johnathan Franklin and DuJuan Harris back and healthy.

The receiving corps isn’t as deep as it used to be but still can be very effective with Jordy Nelson (85 receptions and 1,314 yards) and Randall Cobb returning. Cobb missed 10 games after suffering a leg injury. The number three man will be Jarrett Boykin (49 receptions, 681 yards). Rookie Davante Adams was drafted in the second round out of Fresno State to provide more depth. Andrew Quarless returns as the starting TE.

The offensive line will see a new starter at center for the fourth straight season. JC Tretter, Corey Linsley, Josh Sitton and TJ Lang will battle for starting spots. LT David Bakhtiari will be joined by RT Bryan Bulaga if he can stay healthy.

Green Bay’s defense needs work, a lot of work! Keeping LB Clay Matthews healthy is the biggest key. Matthews suffered a broken thumb twice and had surgery both times. If Matthews isn’t healthy, the Packers defense isn’t the same. It’s also time for the defensive line begins to living up to expectations. 2013 1st round selection Datone Jones didn’t play as well as the Packers expected him to. BJ Raji is back at NT but Green Bay needs him to return to how he played in 2010. Mike Daniels played well with 6.5 sacks. The Packers signed an aging Julius Peppers to play OLB.  They are hoping to get a couple of good years out of Peppers. LB AJ Hawk remains steady as does LB Brad Jones.

The secondary will see immediate improvement with Alabama FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix picked in the first round of the draft. Clinton-Dix gives the Packers an upgrade in their weakest spot. Sam Shields and Tramon Williams will start at CB and Morgan Burnett will start at SS. Micah Hyde and Casey Hayward will push for starting spots in camp.

There won’t be many football experts picking the Packers to win the NFC.  In fact, many don’t think Green Bay will have enough to win the division. Don’t count out a healthy Aaron Rodgers and a running game led by Eddie Lacy. The defense will have to be MUCH better in 2014 for the Packers will be in the discussion of a playoff contending team!

Green Bay Packers (1959 - Pres)

Meet the Green Bay Packers' Draft Picks:

Round 1 (21) - Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix - S - Alabama

"Clinton-Dix bolsters the safety position for the Packers beside Morgan Burnett, and will allow Micah Hyde to be used as more of utility defensive back, likely splitting time at both safety and slot cornerback.

 

This pick is a perfect example of Ted Thompson drafting the best player available."

Round 2 (53) - Davante Adams - WR - Fresno State

"At 6-1 212 lbs., Adams compares favorably to Michael Crabtree. Like the 49ers' top receiver, Adams doesn't have elite timed speed (4.56 at the combine, 4.51 at his pro day). However, Adams excels in winning jump balls as indicated by his 39.5" vertical.

Despite being one of the youngest players in the draft, Adams caught more passes (131) and touchdowns (24) than any other receiver in the nation last season. Most of that production came off fades and quick hitches, so refining his route running will be crucial to winning playing time in Green Bay."

Round 3 (85) - Khyri Thornton - DT - Southern Miss

"Thornton, who measures in at 6'3" and 304 pounds, played a number of interior positions on the line for the Golden Eagles. Based on his size, one might think that the 3-technique end position might be his ideal spot in the Packers' 3-4 defense, but there is some thought that Thornton could add some bulk to his frame and slide inside to nose tackle."

Round 3 (98) - Richard Rodgers - TE - California

"Rodgers, a former wide receiver, certainly fits the bill of an athletic pass catcher. Few tight ends averaged more yards per catch (15.6) than he did in 2013. At 6-4, 257 pounds, Rodgers can create matchup nightmares for linebackers over the middle. He also projects as a fine red zone target even though he only caught one touchdown last season."

Round 4 (121) - Carl Bradford - OLB - Arizona State

"The knock on Bradford is that he was an undersized defensive end at Arizona State, and much like Nick Perry, will have to make the adjustment to either outside linebacker or inside linebacker at the next level. At 6-foot-1 and 250 pounds, he will have to work on his pass-rush moves and hand use while rushing the quarterback in order to be an effective player at the NFL level.

The positives on Bradford are that he is an explosive tackler who is very quick to the ball. He takes good angles, is a very good blitzer, and is athletic enough to be solid in pass coverage. He recorded a 37.5-inch vertical jump and 122-inch broad jump at the combine which highlighted a dynamic leaping ability. He ran a 4.76 forty-yard dash, which suggests he is fairly fast for his size, and his 20-yard shuttle time (4.3 seconds) is also impressive for his relative size."

Round 5 (161) - Corey Linsley - C - Ohio State

"At 6-3 and 296 lbs., Linsley plays with great leverage. As his tape demonstrates, he is a mauler in the run game. With Eddie Lacy and James Starks in the backfield, adding a powerful center that won't get pushed back at the point of attack is critical for Green Bay.

Linsley may have his work cut out for him, however. 2013 fourth-round pick J.C. Tretter possesses far better athleticism, something coaches Mike McCarthy and James Campen favor. Tretter will get the first shot at securing the starting center job."

Round 5 (176) - Jared Abbrederis - WR - Wisconsin

"In the short term, the Packers again possess one of the league's deepest receiving corps. That's good news for Aaron Rodgers, and bad news for opposing defenses.

Better still, Abbrederis and Adams step into defined roles. Abbrederis can work the slot along with Cobb, creating a security blanket for Rodgers. Adams will do his damage on the boundaries, playing pitch and catch the way James Jones did in past seasons."

Round 6 (197) - Demetri Goodson - CB - Baylor

"Goodson's size (5-11) and speed (4.52 40 time) don't jump off the page, but his 6.80 3-cone time suggest great agility and the ability to quickly correct mistakes. Those measurements mirror Hayward's combine figures almost perfectly. This is the type of corner Dom Capers has been successful with.

That said, there are always huge question marks with players taken this late. Goodson's endured several injuries during his college career and may not be able to stay on the field. This will be Goodson's biggest impediment to establishing a professional career."

Round 7 (236) - Jeff Janis - WR - Saginaw Valley

"You can see all of his combine numbers below, and they're super impressive. Normally I'd wonder why the Green Bay Packers have decided to select three wide receivers, but based on the guys they picked, it's entirely plausible that both Janis and Abbrederis were the best player available on the Packers' board when they were taken.

Janis' DII stats are, unsurprisingly, excellent. He finished his career with 4305 receiving yards and 46 TDs. He hardly played as a freshman, so that's mostly over three years. Crazy."

Green Bay Packers (1959 - Pres)

SCHEDULE:

PRESEASON
  DATE     OPPONENT   KICKOFF TV
  Saturday, August 9   at Tennessee Titans   7 p.m. state
  Saturday, August 16   at St. Louis Rams   3 p.m. state
  Friday, August 22   OAKLAND RAIDERS(Midwest Shrine Game) GOLD PKG.
7 p.m. CBS
  Thursday, August 28   KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (Bishop's Charities Game)   6 p.m. state
  REGULAR SEASON
  DATE     OPPONENT   KICKOFF TV
  Thursday, September 4 at Seattle Seahawks   7:30 p.m. NBC
  Sunday, September 14 NEW YORK JETS   3:25 p.m. CBS
  Sunday, September 21 at Detroit Lions   12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, September 28

at Chicago Bears    12 p.m. FOX
  Thursday, October 2 MINNESOTA VIKINGS GOLD PKG.
7:25 p.m. CBS
  Sunday, October 12 at Miami Dolphins   *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, October 19 CAROLINA PANTHERS   *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, October 26 at New Orleans Saints   *7:30 p.m. NBC
  Sunday, November 2

BYE      
  Sunday, November 9 CHICAGO BEARS   *7:30 p.m. NBC
  Sunday, November 16 PHILADELPHIA EAGLES GOLD PKG. *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, November 23 at Minnesota Vikings   *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, November 30 NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS   *3:25 p.m. CBS
  Monday, December 8 ATLANTA FALCONS   7:30 p.m. ESPN
  Sunday, December 14 at Buffalo Bills   *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, December 21 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers   *12 p.m. FOX
  Sunday, December 28 DETROIT LIONS   *12 p.m. FOX

  * Start time and broadcast may shift due to NFL flexible scheduling

  ** All times are Central

Green Bay Packers (1980 - Pres)


ROSTER:

Active

#NamePos.Ht.Wt.AgeExp.College
84 Abbrederis, Jared WR 6-1 195 23 R Wisconsin
77 Adams, Aaron T 6-5 303 25 1 Eastern Kentucky
17 Adams, Davante WR 6-1 212 21 R Fresno State
69 Bakhtiari, David T 6-4 300 22 2 Colorado
32 Banjo, Chris S 5-10 207 24 2 Southern Methodist University
67 Barclay, Don T/G 6-4 305 25 3 West Virginia
58 Barrington, Sam LB 6-1 235 23 2 South Florida
86 Bostick, Brandon TE 6-3 250 25 2 Newberry College
93 Boyd, Josh DE 6-3 310 24 2 Mississippi State
11 Boykin, Jarrett WR 6-2 218 24 3 Virginia Tech
91 Bradford, Carl LB 6-1 252 21 R Arizona State
75 Bulaga, Bryan T 6-5 314 25 5 Iowa
42 Burnett, Morgan S 6-1 209 25 5 Georgia Tech
24 Bush, Jarrett CB 6-0 200 30 9 Utah State
25 Clay, Charles S 5-10 204 23 R Hawai'i
21 Clinton-Dix, Ha Ha S 6-1 208 21 R Alabama
18 Cobb, Randall WR 5-10 192 23 4 Kentucky
2 Crosby, Mason K 6-1 207 29 8 Colorado
76 Daniels, Mike DT 6-0 300 25 3 Iowa
35 Dennard, Antonio CB 5-11 189 24 1 Langston
6 Dorsey, Kevin WR 6-1 207 24 2 Maryland
45 Doughty, Jake LB 6-0 234 22 R Utah State
47 Elliott, Jayrone LB 6-3 255 22 R Toledo
10 Flynn, Matt QB 6-2 225 29 7 Louisiana State
79 Fullington, John T 6-5 300 23 R Washington State
72 Gerhart, Garth C 6-1 310 25 1 Arizona State
1 Gillett, Alex WR 6-1 214 23 1 Eastern Michigan
61 Goode, Brett LS 6-1 255 29 7 Arkansas
39 Goodson, Demetri CB 5-11 197 25 R Baylor
74 Gray, Carlos DE 6-2 313 22 R North Carolina State
98 Guion, Letroy DT 6-4 315 27 7 Florida State
13 Harper, Chris WR 6-1 228 24 2 Kansas State
26 Harris, DuJuan RB 5-8 203 25 2 Troy
50 Hawk, A.J. LB 6-1 242 30 9 Ohio State
29 Hayward, Casey CB 5-11 192 24 3 Vanderbilt
22 Hill, Michael RB 5-10 210 24 2 Missouri Western
31 House, Davon CB 6-0 195 24 4 New Mexico State
49 Hubbard, Adrian LB 6-6 257 22 R Alabama
33 Hyde, Micah CB 6-0 197 23 2 Iowa
83 Janis, Jeff WR 6-3 219 23 R Saginaw Valley State
59 Jones, Brad LB 6-3 242 28 6 Colorado
95 Jones, Datone DE 6-4 285 23 2 UCLA
30 Kuhn, John FB 6-0 250 31 9 Shippensburg
27 Lacy, Eddie RB 5-11 230 24 2 Alabama
70 Lang, T.J. G 6-4 318 26 6 Eastern Michigan
57 Lattimore, Jamari LB 6-2 237 25 4 Middle Tennessee St.
54 Lewis, Shaun LB 5-11 226 22 R Oklahoma State
41 Liaina, Ina FB 6-0 250 24 1 San Jose State
63 Linsley, Corey C 6-3 301 22 R Ohio State
46 Lyerla, Colt TE 6-4 247 21 R Oregon
8 Masthay, Tim P 6-1 200 27 5 Kentucky
52 Matthews, Clay LB 6-3 255 28 6 Southern California
62 McCray, Jordan G 6-3 322 22 R Central Florida
40 Miller, Tanner S 6-1 211 22 R Iowa
55 Mulumba, Andy LB 6-3 260 24 2 Eastern Michigan
96 Neal, Mike DE/LB 6-3 285 27 5 Purdue
34 Neal, Rajion RB 5-11 220 22 R Tennessee
87 Nelson, Jordy WR 6-3 217 29 7 Kansas State
51 Palmer, Nate LB 6-2 248 24 2 Illinois State
64 Pennel, Mike DT 6-4 332 23 R Colorado State-Pueblo
56 Peppers, Julius LB/DE 6-7 287 34 13 North Carolina
80 Perillo, Justin TE 6-3 250 23 R Maine
36 Perkins, LaDarius RB 5-7 195 23 R Mississippi State
53 Perry, Nick LB 6-3 265 24 3 Southern California
81 Quarless, Andrew TE 6-4 252 25 5 Penn State
90 Raji, B.J. DT 6-2 337 27 6 Boston College
7 Rettig, Chase QB 6-2 215 22 R Boston College
28 Richardson, Sean S 6-2 216 24 3 Vanderbilt
97 Robinson, Luther DE 6-3 301 23 R Miami
12 Rodgers, Aaron QB 6-2 225 30 10 California
89 Rodgers, Richard TE 6-4 257 21 R California
20 Rolle, Jumal CB 6-0 188 24 1 Catawba
78 Sherrod, Derek T 6-6 321 25 4 Mississippi State
37 Shields, Sam CB 5-11 184 26 5 Miami (Fla.)
71 Sitton, Josh G 6-3 318 28 7 Central Florida
44 Starks, James RB 6-2 218 28 5 Buffalo
85 Stoneburner, Jake TE 6-3 249 24 2 Ohio State
65 Taylor, Lane G 6-3 324 24 2 Oklahoma State
82 Taylor, Ryan TE 6-3 254 26 4 North Carolina
48 Thomas, Joe LB 6-1 227 23 R South Carolina State
94 Thornton, Khyri DE 6-3 304 24 R Southern Mississippi
68 Tiller, Andrew G 6-4 324 25 2 Syracuse
16 Tolzien, Scott QB 6-2 213 26 4 Wisconsin
73 Tretter, JC C/G 6-4 307 23 2 Cornell
60 Vujnovich, Jeremy T 6-5 300 23 R Louisiana College
19 White, Myles WR 6-0 182 24 2 Louisiana Tech
43 White, Ryan CB 5-10 197 22 R Auburn
38 Williams, Tramon CB 5-11 191 31 8 Louisiana Tech
99 Worthy, Jerel DE 6-2 304 24 3 Michigan State



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