Type to search

defensive line

Defensive Line is the Weak Spot

The Green Bay Packers have a lot of depth at a lot of positions. The position they don’t have depth at is defensive line.

That could prove to be a problem.

The Packers are set at two of the positions, so long as no one gets injured. Mike Daniels will start at one defensive end position and Letroy Guion will start at the nose. The other defensive end spot is complicated.

It’s complicated because Mike Pennel can’t stay off the drugs and is suspended the first four games of the season. The Packers supposedly took care of that position when the drafted Kenny Clark in the first round.

But…

For whatever reason, Clark didn’t even start the Packers’ first preseason game. Fourth-round pick Dean Lowry did.

As we’ve predicted all along, Lowry was overmatched. He got pushed around on running plays and didn’t display any pass-rush ability.

Perhaps this was just a message to Clark — first-round pick or not, you’ll need to earn your spot. Pick it up.

Unfortunately, Clark didn’t make much of an impression when he did get in the game either.

While we fully expect Clark to be the day one starter at the other defensive end position, the Packers — to borrow a line from Full Metal Jacket — are in a world of shit if Daniels or Guion gets injured.

And it may be even worse than that.

The Packers will be relying on a rookie — one who may or may not be starting-caliber — for the first four weeks. They’re also counting on their top four staying healthy.

Lowry isn’t ready to contribute and we have our doubts he’ll ever be more than a backup-caliber player.

Clark needs to come on and he needs to come on soon. Then, all three starters need to stay healthy at least until Pennel returns.

If that doesn’t happen — and those are plenty of ifs — the Packers will have the same defense we’ve come to know.

Can’t stop the run, can’t keep up with the offense.

And that’s tiring.

Tags:
Joseph Bonham

Joseph is a fiction writer when he isn't doing this. In his spare time he likes to do manly things like drink beer and procreate.

    1

14 Comments

  1. Feck August 15, 2016

    I expect a Capers has bunch of 0-2 man fronts featuring his elephant LB’s.

    1. Phatgzus August 15, 2016

      Considering that’s about 80% of their defensive sets from the previous two years that’s a bold prediction.

  2. Cheese August 15, 2016

    Seriously?!?! You now have multiple pop up ads on the bottom of the page that overlap each other so we can’t close out of them because they cover up the others X button? Fuck you. This site has turned to such garbage.

  3. PF4L August 15, 2016

    It’s never a good thing when a high draft picks name doesn’t come up in training camp. Or when a 4th round pick starts before him in a preseason game. I understand it’s early, and clark got a little bit of a late start.

    Two things have me concerned though, not many projected this guy as a 1st round pick. Also, big Ted doesn’t exactly enjoy a reputation for success on drafting def. lineman with high draft picks. It was noted that the Packers had a goal of getting bigger, so maybe that’s what swayed them. This man is truly big, but now what?

  4. Howard August 15, 2016

    I believe punter to be the weakest position and if no one believes that look at how many yards Masthay provides the other teams on shanks, over kicking the end line, and short punts. I have not studied like maybe Rob would or could but I would guess in some games including important playoff games Masthay provides the opposition close to 70 + unearned yards in field position a game. Unacceptable!

    The D line does have some depth problems. They always do as they have recently been keeping only 5 bigs on the roster, and in some games they only activate 4. As all of us know Peppers, Jones, and Perry can and will play in the defensive front. The problem this year is 2 rookies are being counted on to be part of the big 5. I don’t care how strong, or big a rookie D or O lineman are they just are not NFL strong or smart. Rookies except in unusual circumstances are going to be taken advantage of by veterans. Rookies may get smarter as the year progresses, strength comes in the offseason. Guion is going to need someone to spell him at the nose. Hopefully Clark can fill in. If not I would look at one of the free agent nose tackles (not sure Ringo can play nose) or a veteran pickup from other teams cuts.

  5. MJ August 15, 2016

    Regarding the adds, could you tone it down on cell phones? Some times the site doesn’t scroll because one has not clicked a mistery pop add. That leads to clicking”close” on adds that carry redirects or open extra annoying tabs (and my carrier thanks you…). When that happens I just leave for other sites.
    I completely understand that you have to make a living, but does it have to be at the cost of ruining an otherwise fun and sarcastic news site?

  6. Phatgzus August 15, 2016

    Clark did some good things vs. the run on Friday.

    He is NOT going to be a game-changer immediately, maybe not even this year, he is a young, unpolished player. He will be able to contribute and not be a liability this year, but he needs time to develop. FFS, I can already see the bust talk vamping up, SMFH. He needs TIME, people.

  7. Killer August 15, 2016

    The Packers likely have one of the weakest front 7s in football. They can’t be the weakest because the Browns are still in the league (I think).

    Mike Daniels is legit. Peppers is 36 and was on the juice and may now be off the PEDs. Same thing with Matthews (except not 36 obviously). Datone Jones and Nick Perry, let’s be honest, are failed #1 draft picks. Clark was a reach especially with better 3-4 D-linemen on the board such as Vernon Butler and Chris Jones and Javon Hargrave. Clark’s ceiling is basically “starter”. Of course, with this level of talent that is also his basement.

    The ILBs are all basically back-up types. Martinez should have gone in round 5 or so. TT certainly had better options — for instance Kentrell Brothers who went to the Vikings a round later than Martinez was selected is a much better prospect. But certainly a more bizarre selection was Dean Lowry. He would have been a reach in round 6. Round 4? Are you kidding me?

    Guion is basically a criminal wearing a football uniform instead of the orange one-piece he belongs in. His over/under on tackles and sacks would be about 29 and 3. To put that in perspective, even a blind squirrel finds an acorn every one in a while and my 67yr old neighbor would probably have an over/under on tackles and sacks of about 24 and 2. Granted they would both be coverage sacks when other players flushed the QB into running into him and he would likely die every game and need to be risen from the dead weekly but, still, Guion does not provide much more impact.

    Compare this front 7 to say, the Chiefs or the Broncos. I think Daniels would still be a starter but all the rest would be on the bench and might not even be 2nd stringers. (Matthews could not beat out Justin Houston or Tamba Hali in KC nor DeMarcus Ware or Von Miller in Denver. But he might be able to get a starting spot inside if the NFL drug testing stays fantastically weak and he stays on the juice.)

    It is not like the front 7 has been ignored in the draft and free agency. There are five 1st round picks! (Clark, Matthews, Peppers, Perry, Jones) Draft resources spent versus actual production is a damning indictment of TT. (Sure, Clark is a rook but I’m not even counting Justin Harrell — a washout #1 pick by TT who was expected to be chosen in round 3 — or Khyri Thornton — a washout #3 pick by TT who was expected to go in round 6.

    TT seems to have no concept of where players are expected to go and that he could get these same players much later in the draft. Then you see him bypass players at the same positions who are bigger or faster or more productive in college or, usually, all three.

    TT got very lucky — it was pure dumb luck — that Rodgers drifted all the way down to him. Take away that one stroke of incredible luck and what kind of team do you have, personally constructed by TT? I’d guess 5-11 or 6-10 battling with the Bears to be the division cellar dweller while looking up enviously at the Lions and Vikings.

    1. MJ August 15, 2016

      Actually, the Vikes and Bears have been moving in the right direction lately. It is the Lions who would be our cellar dwelling rival in that hypothetical case.

    2. Empacador August 15, 2016

      How many teams ahead of the Packers royally fucked themselves by not drafting Rodgers? Lucky or not, Thompson drafted him. And every single year there is some player that falls and someone gets lucky by drafting them, like Brady back in what, 2000? Jesus H. Christ. And you think the Lions are better than the Bears? Wow, just wow…

      1. Killer August 15, 2016

        Yeah, the Lions went 7-9 last year while the Bears went 6-10 so, yes, it looks like the Lions are better. Now, you may argue the Lions only beat Green Bay in Green Bay 18-16 while the Bears beat Green Bay in Green Bay 17-13. In your mind you may think that since the point differential was 4 vs. 2, double, that the Bears are twice as good. But! The Packers beat the Bears in Chicago by 8 points and only beat the Lions in Detroit by 4 points, 27-23. So, overall point differential vs. Packers the Lions were -2 and the Bears were -4. In addition, as is a recognized fact, really the 2nd Detroit game would have been another Lions victory for a sweep had there not been poor/incompetent (or, dare I say, purchased) officiating.

        So, let’s recap. In overall record last year the Lions were better than the Bears. In the individual games vs. the Packers the Lions were the better team over the Bears.

        Going a little deeper the Lions last 8 games of 2015 they went 6-2. The Bears went 3-5. So, looking at the trending and upswing and all that the Lions are clearly far superior to the Bears.

        I guess you could make the Megatron loss argument, or the Head Coach improvement record argument, or the Trevathan and Freeman to Chicago argument. But that can be countered with the Jim Bob Cooter and Stafford last half year improvement arguments. In those last 8 games (which included both Packer games) Stafford threw 19 TDs vs. only 2 INTs, a 70 percent completion percentage, and a 110.8 rating. Aaron would be (probably was) very jealous of those numbers.

        Tell me, are you really more scared of a team with Cutler at QB or a team with Stafford at QB?

        Anyone who reacts with, “Wow, just wow….” that the Lions are better than the Bears — when they very clearly are — there can be only one reaction to such a zany eccentric disconnected with reality thought process:

        Wow, just wow, Empacador….

        1. Empacador August 15, 2016

          Keep trying to convince yourself that the Lions are clearly better than the Bears. I don’t think there are many people here who will agree with you the Lions are a superior team to the Bears either. Reality hits when the Lions take their rightful place at the bottom of the division come end of the season. Better yet, tied. Me personally, I’m not concerned with either Cutler or Stafford. I believe Chicago has better overall coaching, JIm Bob Cooter notwithstanding, which should be evident this season. Cooter isn’t sneaking up on anybody this year. I don’t think Rodgers is envious of anyone in the NFC North no matter how much you wish that were true.

          I don’t believe I shared any details that displayed a “zany eccentric disconnected with reality thought process” other than expressing disbelief at your opinion, which obviously differs from mine. I didn’t know I needed to share my opinion with you first and get your approval before expressing it. I couldn’t care less that you disagree. You on the other hand feel compelled to come here and spew your convoluted bullshit that even you can’t possibly believe with a straight face. I personally don’t care to waste that kind of time and effort on 31 other teams I don’t give a shit about just so I can go to other team sites and be a douche.

          The fact you spend so much time here speaks volumes about you as a person, Killer. I’m sure you think it’s clever and cute, just like that Draymond fucktard that was here recently. That’s why Packer fans are classier people and have the best fan base, because most don’t feel the need to constantly talk shit for the sake of talking shit like you, Dave and some of the other asspipes around here need to in order to garner some attention. You remind me of some of the troll brigade over at PFT that loves to talk shit in every single Packer thread. That’s all you have to look forward to when all is said and done. You need a hug, bro? Keep on trolling.

          1. Killer August 16, 2016

            Empacador:

            Your first paragraph was just fine. While not persuasive in any way and empty of facts it was, at least, on subject and avoided abusiveness.

            In your second paragraph I understand you felt vulnerable that the inaccuracy of your opinion was so laid bare via a review of the actual facts. I was a little over the top saying you were disconnected with reality. In hindsight, a more accurate expression would be that you were ignorant of the facts or that you willfully ignored them. Those appear to be the only two possibilities.

            After the first sentence of your second paragraph you really went downhill quickly. I don’t know if maybe the beers were just hitting your system then. I like to give you that benefit of a doubt. First, because I disagreed with your opinion you made out like I was requiring you to get my approval of any opinion you have before you share it. This is a classic debate technique (among 2nd graders) to pretend something clearly wrong was done by the other side in order to garner support. Yes, of course it would be wrong for me to require you to clear your opinions through me. The problem with that otherwise compelling argument is that I never asked or indicated in any way that you had to get my approval before sharing an opinion. I simply disagreed with your opinion and presented facts to justify my own opinion.

            Third and fourth sentence of that second paragraph you become bitter, accusatory, and profane. You manifest as a name-caller as well which brings us right back to that 2nd grade rating. Although that is unfair to the majority of second graders. So, to be clear, the “bad element” of second graders.

            Third paragraph you continued to devolve. You never got all the way down to “primordial ooze” but you did undo hundreds of thousands of years of evolution — fortunately, limited only to your own evolution. You utilize five profanities in the one paragraph. The most onerous being “fucktard” and “asspipes” mixed with three usages of plain, boring “shit”. Use of profanity generally inversely correlates to intelligence = the more profane, the less intelligent. But you did have that whole first paragraph without profanity so I think the lack of intelligence was temporary based on your unstable highly emotional state and/or the beers. If you have sobered up and the loss of intelligence was temporary we will know it because you will post an apology on this thread. If not then we know the benefit of the doubt should be withdrawn.

            The three most compelling parts of that third paragraph are the following:
            1) You use the most abusive term against someone who is not even involved in our little debate. This shows you hold burning vengeful grudges. Or, to use 2nd grade terminology that may be more compatible with your intellect, you are who who “does not play well with others”.
            2) You talk about Packer fans being classier people with you, I guess, thinking you are an example of this purported classy Packer fan, in the middle of an abusive, profane, immature post exemplifying poor class itself. This begs the question: Are you self-aware of being a hypocrite or are you clueless about your hypocritical nature? I am intrigued!
            3) You then accuse me of “trolling”. Just because people disagree with you does not make them a troll. Wait a sec… which one of us has been abusive and profane? So, once again we must ask: Are you self-aware of being a hypocrite or are you clueless about your hypocritical nature? I am fascinated by your case!

          2. PF4L August 17, 2016

            Here’s a list of everyone who makes it past the 1st paragraph of a killer post……