The answer to the question, who will replace Josh Sitton in the starting lineup at left guard? Lane Taylor.
Taylor, who thus far, only has two starts in his NFL career, will be tasked with replacing one of the best offensive linemen the Green Bay Packers have ever had. Plus, he’ll be asked to do that coming off a preseason performance that was so bad, we wondered if he’d still be on the roster come Sunday.
Good luck to you, Lane Taylor.
While the Sitton move came totally out of left field, Taylor’s ascension doesn’t. The Packers gave him a two-year contract during the offseason when he was a restricted free agent. Typically, the Packers will tender their restricted free agents and let them play the season out on that one-year deal. So clearly, there were signs the Packers valued Taylor.
At the time, we felt Taylor’s value was as insurance. Knowing the Packers couldn’t afford to re-sign Sitton, T.J. Lang, David Bakhtiari and J.C. Tretter when they were scheduled to become free agents after the season, that deal signaled Taylor as a potential replacement for Sitton or Lang.
Only in 2017.
Now Taylor will replace Sitton in 2016.
Of course, coach Mike McCarthy didn’t offer any insight into why the team parted ways with Sitton when he addressed the media today.
“There’s a lot of things that go into this decision,” McCarthy said. “This wasn’t just one thing.”
McCarthy didn’t elaborate, but predictably got defensive when asked how the Packers were a better team without Sitton.
“I believe there are positions in football that are primary positions and some positions not to that level,” McCarthy said. “It’s just like any profession, when you outline job responsibility and what you’re asking each position to do, there are some positions you put in front of the others. I think we all understand that the quarterback position is the most important position in football, that goes without being said.
“To sit there and say, are you a better team or not a better team because of one player, we haven’t even played a game yet. So this is about growth for our football program. Every decision we make is in the best interest of improving all aspects of our program. This is not about one player. This about our football team.”
We absolutely know that guard is not one of the most important positions on a football team. In fact, it’s probably one of the least important. However, that doesn’t take away from the fact that this move reeks of buffoonery, regardless of how you spin it.