This Feels Different, Packers Not Having Fun

21
Randall Cobb and Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers have been down before, but apparently not like this.

We all remember the R-E-L-A-X season in 2014. We remember the run-the-table season in 2016. This season seems different. The Packers are in a 3-4-1 hole after losing to the Patriots. The Packers are two games back of the Bears and Vikings in the win column. After facing Miami at home this weekend — a very winnable game — they face the Vikings in Minnesota. That seems like a must-win game if the Packers are going to contend for a playoff spot.

Pile the recent losses onto general manager Brian Gutekunst’s tear-down of the roster and it’s easy to see how this year is different for the Packers. And no one is having any fun.

“We’ve lost games before here, but this just feels different,” said receiver Randall Cobb. “And it doesn’t feel good. It’s not fun. But we’ve got to figure something out.”

Cobb went on, using “not fun” again.

“Yeah, I mean we definitely need some momentum, we need to get a win,” Cobb said. “I can tell you, this isn’t fun. Very frustrating and it’s tough. Because I know what we’re capable of and we’re not there. I don’t know what it is, but we’ve got to find a way to get it done.”

Clearly, everyone is frustrated. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers used that term after the Patriots game — frustrating.

Part of the frustration is no doubt coach Mike McCarthy’s offense. No one has pointed the finger at McCarthy yet, but no one has come to his defense when asked about the offense either.

“It’s kind of like each play is a new experience because they find different ways and obviously Bill [Belichick] being a really good coach, he knows what he’s doing out there,” said receiver Davante Adams. “He knows how to take people out of the games. Unfortunately that somewhat happened, but we’ve got to do a better job of making sure that we’re still finding guys — if there is a double, a guy can still be open whether it’s me, Cobb, Jimmy [Graham] or whoever it is. We’re scheming things, but we can always do better obviously.”

Better scheme… hmmmm.

Rodgers alluded to something similar, although he also shouldered the blame.

“We’ve got to keep finding ways to get guys into one or two spots, open on time and when they’re open, I’ve got to make the throws,” Rodgers said.

It doesn’t seem like a secret that the team is frustrated with McCarthy’s offense. We’re frustrated with McCarthy’s offense. McCarthy hasn’t been innovative in years. That’s why he needs to go.

It looks like the players are starting to believe that as well. I cannot recall a time when Packers players have been so openly frustrated and didn’t enjoy playing the game. Maybe under Forrest Gregg.

Seems like this is going to end the same way.


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.

21 Comments on "This Feels Different, Packers Not Having Fun"

  1. PF4L

    Randall Cobb may not be having any fun. But he should thank the good Lord for the compensation he has received the last 4 years. He should also be thankful he isn’t brought up on felony theft charges.

    Thoughts…..

    What the players are trying to say is that this shit is broken.

    Based on this season so far, i understand that the Packers could be…5-3. But i also understand that they could also be 1-7.

    Luckily for the Packers, they have Miami at home. The bleeding will stop for one week…one week (maybe).

    Broken.

    • Kato

      I am in no way convinced this team can beat Miami. I havent been this down on a packers team since 2006. At least in 2008 Rodgers was playing well and they were losing games narrowly. At least last year they had a backup QB in that you can blame some struggles on. Now, you can see it in their body language as well as comments. They are a defeated team that cant find a way to win games or play 4 quarters. They have lost in a variety of ways, whether it was a terrible call, or savage fumbles. Or sometimes just plain ineptitude. There is no leadership in the locker room.

      Btw, when are we going to start talking about what’s up with Aaron Rodgers and his play? He deserves some blame here. It can be argued on the WR screen to Cobb could have been a TD had he not thrown a poor ball low and away forcing Cobb to pivot rather than turn upfield and get caught from behind

      • PF4L

        If you read my post i toss Rodgers blame all the time, The latest being that i lose my mind when he throws the ball out of bounds like he did 6 times before halftime against the Pats. Or that his completion percentage sucks (see 2015). Although i give him a partial pass. His interior guard play is absolutely shit. We don’t know wtf is going on with the chemistry of that team because we aren’t there, but something isn’t right. Is Mike trying to play call his way out of town to go to Cleveland? I wouldn’t believe it if someone told me that Dorsey hasn’t talked to McCarthy, or at least their people.

        Part of the problem is young players, they haven’t been around enough to know all the nuances of this offense. But hey, it wasn’t Rodgers decision who his wide receivers are. Even though i’m betting he loves him some MVS, as do i. That dude will be the #1 receiver possible next season sometime, he’s a beast.

        Jimmy Graham and his 5.8 speed isn’t exactly lighting the NFL on fire.

        Call me bias, but i’m going to give Rodgers the benefit of the doubt and let me tell you why straight up.
        You…along with others were bitching about Rodgers in 2015 playing like shit…. “bench him, start Hundley…trade him….he’s finished….he’ll never be elite again”….blah blah fucking blah blah. Yea…i know you remember.

        I’ll say now what i said then, two things. The man just didn’t forget how to play QB in the NFL. He didn’t have a great year (for him), but he had the kind of year a lot of QB’s would love to have.

        As far i’m concerned, not knowing exactly what’s going on in that locker room, i’ll say what i’ve always said, i’ll roll with Rodgers. If you guys wanna start the “Give Kizer a chance chant”…knock yourselves out.

        Maybe someday we can talk about why the defense is giving up more points per game ( with T Willy) than last season, but that’s probably Rodgers fault.

        lol….Maybe it’s something sinister, maybe Rodgers is orchestrating some changes in Green Bay, like McCarthy and Murphy being ousted. If that proved to be true, i wouldn’t be calling him Rodgers anymore, i’d call him “Mistro”.

        • Kato

          I wasn’t directing the Rodgers question at you necessarily. I probably should have made that a separate post. I just think it’s a little weird that hasnt been discussed yet. At least not at much length. I really hope it is simply his knee still not being 100% or the window with Rodgers might be even smaller than thought at 5 years

        • MJ

          Nice try. But no, Rodgers playing “just OK” and way down from his 2014 form does not mean he is finished, nor that anyone wanted him replaced. But he does not come out clean in this season’s mess. No, he was shown to be missing open receivers on short routes because he seems to be scanning the field from the top down, looking for that 35yd play first. He bolts from the pocket as if he were as fast as he was six years ago, when he could buy time exiting the pocket and extending plays. He lost speed, and defenders are now much younger than him now, so they catch up quickly and do not give him enough time to scan the field and find an open receiver. His accuracy also seems off from his characteristic standards. He keeps stubbornly holding on to the ball expecting to complete very long passes, because highlights are cool, right? Less talented QBs are now making a living of quicker passes that can negate the pass rush, thus not needing to leave the pocket in the first place. We also see that he runs the clock down to 1sec before starting the play, making it easy for the defenders to time the snap. It was not clear what the reason was for wasting timeouts to avoid a delay-of-game penalty. I now recall an example where he was basically moving receivers around, or as Lewis said, making up his own plays, and yes, time ran out. It can also be due to McCarthy not having the play readily chosen, or not relayed in time, but there is a significant chance part of the reason is Rodgers himself, rewriting plays on the fly. It may seem unfair to hold him up to an inhumanly high standard, until you recall he signed an inhumanly juicy contract. So he IS expected to play at MVP level, period. I wouldn’t be ranting like this if I hadn’t seen him at times getting rid of the ball quickly and taking what the defense is giving, but when given the choice he seems to refuse that and go for the home runs time after time. We keep complaining that Cobb, Matthews, Perry and Bulaga are underperforming their contracts. What about Rodgers and his mega extension, then? This brings us to the following point…

          The defense keeps getting maligned for conceding a lot of points. But the fact that the offense can’t stay on the field on most of those occasions isn’t taken into account. Furthermore, take a look at the contracts on offense and defense. Matthews, Daniels and Perry are the only highly paid defenders, and granted, they ARE underperforming (Matthews and Perry vastly so). But that’s it. Nobody else gets paid that much on defense. While that does not leave them off the hook, they certainly could complain that the highly-paid offense is not making things easier on them. The heavy money-burning party is being run by the offense: Rodgers, Graham, Cobb, Adams, Linsley, Bakhtiari, Bulaga. Bakhtiari is the only one strongly overperforming his contract, while Adams is now playing at a commensurate level. Linsley is slightly overpaid. Graham and Cobb are seriusly underperforming here, and so is Rodgers to a lesser extent. With MVP-worthy contracts comes MVP playing responsibilities. And that’s where the player-blaming stops. The offense is decently loaded, even if some players are not earning the entirety of their pay. It is still on the offense to keep the team moving, with the defense coming in for the ride and helping here and there. It is the offense that should keep us in games or win them, keeping our defense off the field. Aided a couple of stops by the defense we should be winning games. But when constantly giving the ball back to the opposite team and spotting them great field position, it is an uphill battle for a defense that does not have many stars and has to rely on inexperienced players.

          The offense-nuisances issue is entirely McCarthy’s fault. In today’s NFL, every year you have new guys coming, and you should do your best to incorporate them to the offense, which, quoting other commenter, is complex for our own guys, but simple for opposing defenses. A scheme should be as simple as possible to benefit from rookies and second-year players before they become expensive. In simpler terms, let’s say you can buy car A or car B. Car A is 5% more fuel efficient, but replacement parts are expensive and have to be shipped from Germany on demand and taking weeks to arrive, whereas car B’s replacements are cheap and produced locally. Are you so sure car A is the wise choice if you know you will be replacing parts every year?

          • PF4L

            Yes, people did say they wanted him replaced, and the other things i stated.

            I don’t just make shit up when i post.

          • Icebowl

            Nice job MJ – excellent point on $$$$-Offense.
            I believe the huge disparity in salaries is casing dissension in the locker room – like you the lower paid guys must be asking themselves – are these guys really playing at a level commensurate w the pay level – not to mention the TV ad deals income….

            The locker room dissent is contagious – Rookies are playing w heart now – only a matter of time before they become disenchanted or get “injured”

            Pretty sad watching this team disintegrate before our eyes….

  2. Tmr

    I recall my years playing football. Having a great team but unable to win games consistently. Not clicking as a team despite having proven coaches. Point is, it’s hard to explain the feeling.

    But this is the NFL. Everyone has talent so it’s up to the coaching staff to make the pieces work. MM seems too wrapped up in analytics and has terrible feel for the pulse of the game. It’s stale and broken with our beloved team, duh. I like the moves Gute is making thus far, but this coaching staff blows. Murphy can go too, he’s an embarrassment every time he opens his mouth.

    • Adam

      I’ve never considered McCarthy to anything remotely analytical, or rely on any kind of analytics themselves whatsoever. If he was, he would have leaned on Aaron Jones and his league-leading yards-per-carry a long time ago. Or re-evaluate his down & yardage play calls, or ditched those never-fucking-works WR screen calls that net 1-yard gains.

      Instead, he’s refused to evolve his playbook and his philosophy with the rest the league. He’s buried his head in the sand and stubbornly maintained the same offensive design in his own echo chamber of a bubble, and watched as every team has cracked his code and passed him by. He’s stunted player development and mismanages assets. He makes more changes to the off-season training schedule than he does his own offensive scheme. All the same wondering why things aren’t working like they used to.

      • Cheese

        Oh my God, the 1-yard WR screens. I absolutely loathe those. They never work, yet McCarthy calls like five of them a game.

          • PF4L

            Cheese, the number of passes that Rodgers threw laterally behind the line of scrimmage shocked me, as i commented after the game, i had to make sure #7 wasn’t our QB.

  3. Ferris

    This feels different…..AR was quoted as saying “It feels like I have a 375 pound tub of goo sitting on top of me.” Gute has a cure for that feeling.

  4. MM²SUCK

    As many of you know, I have been railing since 2010 (yeah! the year they won the SB) to rid this team of
    3 people. TT, MM and DC! At the time, they were the culprits, I knew it then as I now fully realize just how poorly that they each performed their jobs since 2010. Take the SB for example, MM nearly shit the bed in that game! Hence, my desire to see him tarred and feathered after that game. MM’s game-time adjustments and feel were well on the “sub-standard” side way back then, believe me! they have NOT become any better at all since. From playing people out of position, to playing favorites, this Buffoon has done Aaron Rodgers and all of the Packer fans a huge disservice. He seems to make physically limited players attempt to do it his way instead of “scheming” plays that enhance their attributes. This Buffoons loyalty to his coaching staff is only second to him finally throwing these same coaches under the bus 5 years too late to save his own gravy-puffed skin. The packer nations’ sad realization of just how MISERABLE of a GM Ted Thompson was, is now finally showing more than ever before. Regarding Dom Capers? I still believe he was at fault for being way too quiet about his acquired players from TT, and the fact that his “schemes” were also 5 years too long in the tooth.
    What I did not fully realize until later on (just about 3 years ago) was just how piss poor that this Mark Murphy guy was doing (or not doing in this case!) at his job! From the myopic attention to land procurement and ridiculous “sledding hills” that removed this charlatan’s attention from HIS ONE TRUE TASK of sustaining and building upon the FOOTBALL LEGACY of the great Green Bay Packers. This is what would continue to create the desire and the reason for making the trek to GREEN BAY. Which this narrow-minded charlatan completely missed because of his singular lust for future land to build these ridiculous 2nd rate theme-type park abominations upon! First things first Turbo! Who would want to come to Green Bay if the Packers were not relevant any longer?
    In essence . . . MM and this charlatan Packer President need to be shown the door NOW. They are destroying the future of this proud team . . .

      • PF4L

        I wanna give you a HELL YEA!!! for that post, and i do for the spirit of it as it’s spot on, God knows that i have written, i don’t know how many post about that same shit, as has Cheese. There is a small handful of us. Its like, how long is this fucking Super Bowl honeymoon going too last.

        Fuck….enough already.

        • Cheese

          Yeah, I’ve said it before but even the year they won the Super Bowl I wasn’t confident in them winning. Deep down I knew that they COULD win because of all the talent they had and the potential that they could play up to. But it seemed like there was ALWAYS some colossal game time fuck up based off of stupidity, ill preparation, or McCarthy constantly taking his foot off the gas while Capers went into prevent defense after taking the lead. Somehow it all worked out for that year, but every year after that… not so much.

    • Skinny

      I would personally call the Packers open landline and tell them your concerns if they still do that? I use to call Bob Harlan all the time about what should be done with this team. Bob would say to me, “aha, yes, aha, we have been talking about doing that, aha, okay, the Packers thank you for your call.” He told me those exact words every time I called.

  5. Number one, Cobb hasn’t played or contributed much st all. One time against the bears. As far as offense, Rodgers is off, too much Danica. We rank 32nd, yes 32nd in red zone offense. Isn’t that last?? Players aren’t having fun because they have a boring offense, no mojo, no swag, and no support for each other as a team. Talk all you with, but they’re becoming losers before our eyes. Our most major problem is one thing, and one thing only. MM! MM is not inspirational and will NOT CHANGE the offense. He won’t use our running backs correctly and passes 69% of the time, highest in the league! Were a west coast offense playing 80’s football.

    • PF4L

      It’s Danica’s fault! She’s fuckin up our red zone!

      Where have you people been? No one else thought of this?

      Thanks for enlightening us Dennis…You Rock!

      Mordi……wake up my man…you’re slippin.

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