Julius Peppers Didn’t See Backup Role Coming
This is textbook Green Bay Packers. Outside linebacker Julius Peppers just hasn’t been paying attention.
As we’ve noted, Peppers barely played in week 1. Nick Perry starts opposite Clay Matthews and, it appears, Datone Jones is the first outside backer off the bench.
This, despite the Packers pretending all throughout training camp that Peppers was still No. 1 on the depth chart. We knew better. Julius didn’t.
And now it appears he’s not too happy.
“Look, this is what I’m doing: I’m playing the game plan the way that it’s written up and the way it’s presented in the meetings on Wednesday,” Peppers said. “Less opportunities is something that’s going to be an adjustment. It’s a long season. A very long season. I think we all are going to have to figure it out.
“Me, I’m going to have to make that adjustment and see how I fit into the role that I am being asked to play. I think the coaches upstairs are going to have to figure out the role that they want me to play – when they want to put me in, what’s enough, what’s not enough.”
Here’s the thing.
Peppers isn’t an every-down player anymore. He’s terrible against the run, although it’s possible he just doesn’t care (much like Clay Matthews).
Either way, he’s a liability in that part of game, whereas Perry excels.
Many of us have talked about the need to limit Peppers’ snaps throughout the offseason. At 36, we’d rather see a fresh Peppers make a couple plays a game as a situational player instead of giving up big gains and turning in the occasional play.
The Packers’ coaching staff would probably like to see that as well.
However, typical of Mike McCarthy’s regime, no one bothered to tell Peppers. They just ignored the elephant in the room and didn’t play him much in week 1.
Why be up front with a guy when he’ll find out eventually anyway?
Look, this is the best plan for the Packers, but we have zero respect for the cowards who couldn’t tell the player involved the plan to begin with. We’re not talking about an undrafted rookie, either. We’re talking about a future Hall of Famer.
Not even those guys get respect from Mike McCarthy.