Thoughts after Packer’s preseason game 2

The good

  • Eddie Lacy looks as good as advertised.  He showed a great combination of power and quickness and as a bonus he even showcased his signature spin move.   Barring significant injury, and by the way I think he has already proven concerns about his toe fusion surgery where highly overrated, he has demonstrated all the tools to be a top flight running back in this league.
  • Johnny Jolly is a naturally gifted football player and a 3 year layoff has done nothing to change that.  Last night he demonstrated the power, quick twitch and football IQ that we have been hoping to see again.  I know keeping him on the roster is still a risk, after all another off the field slip-up would result in a lifetime ban from the NFL, but I just don’t see how the Packer’s could let him go.
  •  Backup QBs Graham Harrell and B.J. Coleman –  I thought Harrell had one of the best games I have ever seen him play.  He ran the offense with confidence and threw the ball with surprising velocity and good accuracy.  Unfortunately his stats did not correctly reflect how well he played based on several drops.  Harrell had the look of a competent NFL backup.  Coleman also had his best performance, he showed a lot of natural ability and made me think he is still a guy the Packers should continue to develop on the practice squad.
  • Tight end depth was clearly on display.  If there were any remaining question why the Packers did not match the offer for Tom Crabtree they were certainly answered last night.  Both  Brandon Bostick and Jake Stoneburner showed enough talent to make an NFL roster.  Add Mathew Mulligan, Andrew Quarless and Ryan Taylor to the mix and it is clear the Packers are going to have some very tough decisions to make in the cut down to 53.
  • Micah Hyde – Sure he got burned on the long pass…. It happens, every corner back in the NFL will get burned occasionally.  However, Hyde displayed a short memory and followed up with an outstanding game.  The thing that really impressed me  last nigh was he seemed much bigger and powerful than I expected.

The Bad

  • Special Teams –  Although the kickers had a good night the blocking on both punts and kicks was terrible.  One kick was partially blocked and several others, including one punt, were very close to being blocked.  I know the preseason is not the time to panic, since many players are being shuffled in and out on special teams, but this is an area that must improve for the regular season.
  • Mike Neal at OLB.  I thought Neal showed good quickness and power as an inside pass rusher, however his time as an OLB brought back memories of watching Aaron Kampman struggle at the position.    Yes Neal can occasionally line up at OLB, but if he has to drop into coverage he is a liability.
  • Overall staring defense –  Capers defense is all about scheming and creating mismatches so I know not to expect too much during the preseason, but I was still disappointed in how easily the Rams moved the ball up and down the field.   Although the defense should be commended for keeping the Rams starting offense out of the end zone, it appeared the Rams incompetence (missed passes and fumbled snap) had more to do with that than the Packers defense.

The hope

  • The Packers demonstrated significant improvement from game 1 and have a lot to build on for the remainder of the preseason.

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