Bryan Bulaga is Packers New Left Tackle

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Bryan Bulaga

Bryan Bulaga

We knew the Green Bay Packers were intent upon replacing Marshall Newhouse at left tackle and they’ve done just that — with right tackle Bryan Bulaga. Surprisingly, the Packers are also switching guard positions, moving Josh Sitton — the team’s best offensive lineman — to left guard and T.J. Lang to right guard.

Coach Mike McCarthy made the move on Monday.

“I sat down with Bryan and Josh on Monday and I told them I wanted to make the move to where they’re on the left side,” McCarthy said. “Those two are our most accomplished and experienced players. I told them about the responsibilities and my expectations about playing the left side.

“Some of the things we’ll want to get into schematically as we move forward. They were excited about it.”

So what about right tackle? There will be an open competition between Newhouse, former first-round pick Derek Sherrod and Don Barclay, who started several games in place of Bulaga at that position last season.

The Packers feel Newhouse is too soft to play left tackle and he gave up some of the highest sack and pressure numbers on the team. Obviously, this is a move to try to keep the $110 million man off his ass.

We’d love to hand the right tackle job to Sherrod because, well, that guy has to get on the field and show why he was a first-round pick at some point. However, he’s still not cleared medically.

Until he is, the edge has to go to Barclay, who proved to be a road grader in the running game last season. He did have some issues in pass protection, but you’d expect those to improve dramatically in his second year in the system.

About The Author

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

17 Comments on "Bryan Bulaga is Packers New Left Tackle"

  1. Lars

    Sherrod = Justin Harrell. If he wasn’t a first round pick we wouldn’t have the incessant cheerleading and wishful thinking. Sometimes they bust. I’ll be rooting for barclay to keep the RT job. That seems more realistic than hoping Sherrod becomes an NFL player in his third season.

  2. Vijay

    This is laughable…Bulaga wasn’t even elite as a RT in my opinion and now you plan to “fix” the passrush pressure by placing him on the blind side…good luck with that. They will need to run multiple TE sets and back sets to protect Aaron regardless.

  3. the real russ letlow

    pick the five guys who have the nastiest attitude & can kick some ass, then put them on the line and let ‘er rip!! We need OL dudes who can pass block and keep the best QB in the NFL off of his rear end, for obvious reasons, and who also can do a good job of run blocking because we now have legit running backs. They don’t have to be “great” at either one. I think the key to our offense being off the charts dominant this year is going to start with the OL. Get the right 5! We do have enough to pick from……

  4. GBslacker

    While I applaud McCarthy’s effort to do something… anything… to bolster the oLine, I get a bad vibe about his “oversell” of the whole scenario.

    Why did he have to say anything?

    Why couldn’t his plan have been discovered by reporters covering some of the first public practices of the season?

    By going public and rationalizing it, justifying it — it’s almost as if he’s painting himself in a corner. What if it doesn’t work? Will he be so entrenched with the idea that he can’t move past it? We’ve seen some of his “good” ideas in the past, like having Sherrod play guard… and looking like a fish out of water.

    I don’t really think Bulaga is an elite tackle, but that he can over-achieve at right tackle. While he is the team’s best tackle, I wonder if you don’t weaken the right side of the line considerably, while marginally improving the left.

    I’ll be very interested in following the futures of Newhouse and Sherrod — can’t help but to wonder if it’s a bad omen for them, to move from the position where they’ve logged so much time…

  5. Shawn Iltarion

    I don’t get how you make this decision without even practicing with these guys in their new positions.

    Slacker is right. By making this announcement, MM backs himself into a corner he may be reluctant to come out of.

    Bryan Bulaga could have been a Top 5 RT. I think he lacks the athleticism to be anything but an average LT. The only thing he really struggled against was speed rushers (see Seattle), and now you move him over to where he’s going to see mostly speed rushers. Stupid move.

    On top of that, Josh Sitton and Don Barclay were the best run blockers you had last season. So, you split them up by flipping Sitton to the other side??

    I’m already wrong because I predicted the OL would stay the same, barring Sherrod having a say, but I hope I’m really wrong about this. Cause personally, I predict a complete clusterfuck.

  6. nurseratchett@work

    I’m up for them to try ANYTHING to help with protection as well as run blocking…..

    GO PACK GO!!!

    • Phatgzus

      Except for EDS and potentially Barclay. Haven’t a bunch of people been requesting MM to move Bulaga to LT, or have I gone crazy? As for Sitton, I don’t necessarily understand the need to move him, perhaps to maintain continuity with Bulaga as adjacent linemen understand how each other plays and thinks better than those farther down the line, plus there’s not a major diff. at the two guard spots, and he is our best linemen (far and away). That said the right side of the line is now a bit worrisome, Lang with either Barclay, Newhouse, or Sherrod-a two poor pass blockers so far (Newhouse and Barclay) and a young man recovering from a broken leg who has almost no experience playing pro football, maybe Finley will lineup on the right side and chip every single pass play this year; at least it’s not A-Rodg’s blind side (the side he’s, understandably, worse at detecting pressure).

  7. NachoDan

    Wether it’s announced or not you fine folks will still critique these moves after all that why we read these articles. And as far as I can tell the O line is a living breathing organism meaning it could change at the drop off a hat or person.

  8. Kristofer from Oshkosh

    The move to switch sitton to the left side makes perfect sense. Aaron Rodgers is mobile enough to avoid pass rushes, except when he cant see his blind side so the 2 best offensive linemen need to be on the left side of the line, hence the move of sitton to the left. Putting Bulaga on the left side make a lot of sense too because that is his natural position. Bulaga never played right tackle until he came to the NFL. Put him back to his natural position and watch why he was drafted in the first round. I don’t understand some of you on here that are posting stuff like they havent even practiced yet or Bulaga isnt “elite”. The only player on the Packers offensive line that has shown he is elite is Josh Sitton. Bulaga, imo, will show eliteness on the left side. Another good point to why to move both to the left side is that they know how each other plays because they played together on the right side long enough. Also, I can’t wait to see Sherrod back on the field because he was really starting to show why he was a first round pick right before he got injured and leg snapped in half. MM knows what he is doing in this case.

    • Phatgzus

      My sentiments on the Sitton-Bulaga flip as well, although I’m not sure Bulaga will be an elite LT, hopefully he will.

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