May 18, 2021

Pro Football

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They have a plan in mind

4 min read
They have a plan in mind

I know it’s early, but I am starting to get concerned with Rashan Gary. He has played a lot of snaps in the first two games, many against second- and third-stringers. And yet, he doesn’t have a single tackle or sack. In fact, he really hasn’t come close to sacking or pressuring the QB. The guy has been a stud in practice, what gives?

I think it’s worth heeding Pettine’s thoughts from Saturday. He noted they’ve played Gary a lot of preseason snaps as a stand-up outside linebacker to help his transition to a new spot, but his role will be honed as we get closer to Week 1. He added they’re asking him to do things now he won’t be asked to do when the games count. They have a plan in mind for Gary and it’ll be what they determine he can do best right away.

It seems that scheme has a much greater impact than it was thought to have, as in the McCarthy tenure, simply basing it all on mano-a-mano competition, e.g. receivers gaining separation. From what I’ve been seeing throughout the league, scheme allows for lesser quarterbacks to be a lot more effective. Can’t wait to see 12 perform this season.

To suggest McCarthy didn’t have schemes to get guys open is ludicrous. But he also did employ concepts that primarily required receivers to beat their man. He felt that was the best way to develop football players, get a team maximizing on its ability late in the year, and give the team more to lean on than simply X’s and O’s when games and seasons were on the line. And the man won a lot of games, plus a lot of postseason games, with that approach. Perhaps schemes have evolved and expanded now to where the long-term “players vs. plays” balance can and has shifted a little. But I also know the Rams’ vaunted scheme didn’t look like much in the Super Bowl last year. It’s becoming clear the right mix is required, and every team that doesn’t have Belichick and Brady is trying to find it.

At the end of the postgame video interview of ML one of the reporters wished him a safe flight. I realize that the Packers media and reporting staff are on the flights with the team. But do the beat reporters from Wisconsin accompany the team on its flight? Or do they have to make their own arrangements?

They’re on their own. If there’s one thing I’ve always appreciated about being a team website reporter, it’s that my plane is in the air to come home two hours after the game ends. I’m not away from my family as much as others.

If you were the coach, how much would you play AR in the final two preseason games?

If he’s not 100 percent healthy this week, I wouldn’t play him, and I don’t see any value in playing him against Kansas City’s backups next week. If he doesn’t play, he doesn’t play.

Wes, you’re a genius. If you and Spoff are not level-headed or hard-headed, we need to get the two of you bobble-headed! Forget the goal-post lasers, forget the football sensors, forget the stolen lunches, forget the offices. Hodkiewicz and Spofford bobble heads. Home game No. 5 against Oakland or No. 6 versus Carolina so we don’t have to worry about them freezing. If someone named Duke Bobber can’t make this happen, who can for crying out loud! We need to get people on this.

Guys, I see Mike Pettine has made the move to coaching from the sidelines. Any idea if it was his decision completely or maybe he was encouraged to? Either way I think it may help. I know you can see the field better up top but I think it’s more important to have the face-to-face contact, especially with the younger players.

Pettine explained on Saturday it was his decision, driven by a couple of different factors. He was able to train and familiarize other defensive assistants up in the box last year with regard to the information he’s looking for from up top. He also found the process of getting down to the locker room at halftime and back too onerous at Lambeau Field.

Derek from Eau Claire, WI

When one eats baloney, one must remember to judge it as baloney. To ask it to be anything more leads to disappointment.

Indeed, and even the best baloney is still baloney.

No question, just a comment. I wholeheartedly concur with Steven from Charleston. I have completely weaned myself from the click-bait malarkey and am so appreciative of the II. I happily visit daily, and am sometimes slapped in the face on Sundays when I sadly realize I must wait one more day to resume my Inbox perusal. Keep on keeping on Wes and Spoff. I am sure I am not alone when I say we cherish your contributions to our daily lives.

Kind of you to say, and now I have to give a shout-out to Wes for handling everything over the weekend except this column so I could attend an important event with my daughter. But now I’m back. Happy Monday.

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