2017 was a disappointing season in Green Bay. When Aaron Rodgers went down with a broken collarbone in Week 6, the situation was made even worse by it happening against our biggest rivals, the Minnesota Vikings.
It would have seemed that Rodgers going down was an opportunity for Brett Hundley to step up. Though we hadn’t seen much out of Hundley (players second to Rodgers rarely will, except in the case of extreme emergency), we’d heard great things.
However, there was nothing exciting or hopeful for the Packers’ season once Hundley took the field. In the 10 games that Hundley started and played in, the team made only 21 red zone trips, Rodgers made those same 21 trips in only six games. Of those 21 red zone trips, “the team was able to move the ball inside the 10-yard line only 42.8 percent of the time,” according to Fansided.
The most excitement recently surrounding the LA Rams began even before the 2018 NFL Draft began! To begin with, the Rams already had a pretty solid roster. They then added wide receiver Brandin Cooks, defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh, cornerback Aqib Talib, and CB Marcus Peters.
I’ll admit, I’ve been a Suh fan for going on more than 10 years now, having worked with him and his agent closely at a previous job, although I recognize how polarizing he is. I was ecstatic when the Rams picked him up.
The draft may have started slowly for LA Rams fans, with no picks on the first day, but it quickly picked up momentum. On the second and third days of the draft, general manager Les Snead brought in 11 players.
The 2018 NFL Draft has been over for a few days now, and it’s given me a bit of time to research players I hadn’t known coming into it, and time to think about what our picks mean. We got to see new general manager Brian Gutekunst at work, and the draft gave us a bit more of a glimpse into his plans for our favorite team.
At the start of the draft, the Green Bay Packers had a league-high 12 picks. They made two trades in the first round and ended the draft with 11 picks that included: two cornerbacks, three wide receivers, one offensive lineman, one defensive lineman, one edge rusher, a punter and a long snapper.
So who ARE these new guys? Let’s take a look:
Jaire Alexander, cornerback, Louisville: EXCELLENT pick. The cornerback position is what I was hoping the Packers would draft first, and this is perhaps the best pick Gutekunst made this year. I think Alexander has the potential to become one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL.
Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa: Jackson is big – he’s tall and has long arms, which helped him complete eight interceptions last year. A very close second in terms of ability to Alexander. I expect him to see the field this season.
Oren Burks, linebacker, Vanderbilt: The Packers traded up in round 3 to get Burks. Starting as a safety, Burks has the potential and skill to play either safety or linebacker for Green Bay. I’ve read that there is concern about his consistency as a tackler, but he will most likely see a lot of action as a special teams player this upcoming season.
J’Mon Moore, wide receiver, Missouri: To be honest, I’m not sure the Packers will end up keeping Moore. While he had 10 touchdowns last year for the Tigers, I’m not entirely convinced he’s ready for the NFL just yet.
Cole Madison, offensive lineman, Washington State: I like him. I predict Madison will make the team as a starter on the right side of our offensive line this season.
JK Scott, P, Alabama: Let the competition begin! Scott was definitely the best punter in the draft. Who do you think will ultimately win the spot between Scott and Justin Vogel?
Marquez Valdes-Scantling, WR, South Florida: Here’s another player that I’m not sure will end up on the team. He seems to need some work on running routes and passing. What grade would YOU give this pick?
Equanimeous St. Brown, WR, Notre Dame: My favorite of the three wide receivers the Packers drafted. He’s FAST and I like that for Green Bay. I’m not sure he’s ready to be a starter, but I think we very well MIGHT see him in a game this season!
James Looney, defensive lineman, Cal: He’s fast which I like, but I’m not sure he’s NFL ready just yet.
Hunter Bradley, long snapper, Mississippi State: The best long snapper in the draft. Green Bay has Brett Goode, but we definitely saw issues early last year with the LS position. There were other positions I would have rather seen get filled at this point in the draft, but he’s a solid player, no doubt.
Kendall Donnerson, Edge, SE Missouri State: Another player that I don’t think is NFL ready at this point. Hopefully, he can become one during preseason workouts, because he is FAST and has great hands.
Overall, I give the Packers an A- for their draft picks. The excitement isn’t over yet though! Up next is undrafted free agency. Follow along with me on Twitter and here as we stay up to date with all the reported signings!
Talk all things Packers with Lucy on Twitter @Lucyrk78
AND they did it AT Lambeau. It could be said that the Packers did well at only keeping the Vikings to 16 points, but that would be one of those statements where you’re really stretching to find something positive to say about this game.
I think my breathing might JUST be returning to normal today. Some people like close games, but if you’ve been reading my column for anytime, you know I can’t stand them! Two weeks in a row winning in overtime? NOT fun for me!
Sundays OT win was the third overtime win of this season – never before has that happened in Green Bay franchise history. Never before have the Packers won more than two overtime games in a single season. Another record? Sunday was the first time in Green Bay history that the team has won back-to-back games in overtime.
The Packers got a walk-off win for the second straight game when wide receiver Davante Adams ran for a 25-yard touchdown in overtime after first tying the game with 17 seconds left. At this point, Adams has to be one of the best receivers in the entire league.
It’s odd to me that the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers have almost an even record against each other. Going into Sunday’s game, the Packers were just one game ahead in one of the oldest rivalries in the NFL. Thankfully, that number went up one with the Packers now winning 14 of their past 16 games against Chicago.
This was the first time I’ve ever been nervous when facing the Bears. The Packers have been on a three-game losing streak since quarterback Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone, and the way Green Bay had been playing, it seemed like the Bears (favored to win this game) would get the win.
It was supposed to be the perfect Packers watching day. I was at one of my favorite client’s sports bars and was going to watch the Packers vs Vikings game with my favorite Vikings fan. Before he even arrived, he was smack talking my team, and I was pretty smug, *knowing* I would easily win the day.
Within only seven minutes my perfect day was shattered along with quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ collarbone. At first, when Rodgers went down after being tackled by Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr, it looked to me like perhaps he had hit him hard in the stomach, and maybe he got the wind knocked out of him. Then the replays began and I saw just how hard Rodgers landed on his right shoulder. His right shoulder. His throwing side.
While watching the Green Bay Packers and the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, I was already thinking about writing my weekly article, and the title for this piece that kept coming back to me was “We’re Better Than This.” It was frustrating to watch the Packers and Cowboys trade the lead over and over, knowing that the Packers should have a larger lead.
It seemed like kicker Mason Crosby’s two missed field goals would make the difference between a win and a loss and it hurt thinking that this game might come down to two simple points. In all the years in the league, Crosby has never missed two extra points in a row. At the same time, this might be the first game in years where I wasn’t nervous during the times Green Bay was down.
This game wasn’t going to be easy from the start. Green Bay was playing without several key starters: wide receiver Randall Cobb, defensive end Mike Daniels, left tackle David Bakhtiari, defensive back Kentrell Brice, cornerback Davon House, and linebackers Jake Ryan and Nick Perry. Adding to the stress of injured players, the temperature made this game the warmest in team history.
If you haven’t been following Cincinnati’s season, you wouldn’t know they came into this game at 0-2. They were aggressive from the start and had a 21-7 lead come halftime. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was sacked five times and hit more than 10 times, and most shockingly, the Bengals forced a pick-six when cornerback William Jackson intercepted a pass from Rodgers to wide receiver Jordy Nelson, leading to a 75-yard touchdown. It’s pretty impressive when you think about it. Rodgers has been in the league for 10 years, and this only the second time he’s thrown an interception that’s turned into a touchdown. Another impressive stat? With this win, Aaron Rodgers has now beaten every NFL team. Except, of course, the Packers.