If you were paying attention to the Green Bay Packers during OTAs and minicamp, you probably heard that all the offense was doing was throwing the football.
There was no focus on the running game, even though the Packers are overly green at that position. Instead it was pass, pass, pass.
At first, we didn’t think much of that. One, the Packers are a pass-heavy offense that often ignores the running game anyway. Nothing new here. Two, the Packers’ passing game is complex and should be an obvious early focal point.
But there was a third reason we overlooked — pass defense.
You well know how poor pass defense derailed the 2016 Green Bay Packers. The team finished 31st in the league against the pass. That lackluster pass defense was on full display in their NFC Championship loss to the Falcons, when Matt Ryan threw for 392 yards and four touchdowns, mostly before halftime.
So the Packers used their offseason program primarily to install their passing offense and test their defensive backs. We’d bet training camp will have a similar focus for the defense.
In reality, the Packers don’t care that much about stopping the run. Look no further than Joe Thomas’ expansive playing time at inside linebacker last year. They want to stop the pass first.
They just need the personnel to do so.
We’ll soon find out if they have that personnel.