There is a lot of people who are doom and gloom about the future of the Green Bay Packers - the front office stinks, the coaches suck, and when Rodgers is gone, its back to the 1970s for this franchise.
Green Bay is no longer a wasteland that will wallow for years - it is a franchise that has outperformed all but a small number of NFL teams. Should they have more than two Super Bowls in the past 25 years? Yes, but them Lombardi trophies are hard to win, unless you have Tom Brady, or Patrick Mahommes.
Clearly, this past season was not good, but in the world of parity that is the National Football League, there were only a handful of things that went wrong last year that killed the season. And while you cannot predict an injury, there were places the Packers shot themselves in the foot.
Here is my list:
1. Not securing MVS when trading away Davante - I am going to say this sunk the ship for the season, and it is completely the front office's fault on this - they did not make sure Valdes-Scanlan was returning to be WR1 when trading away Adams. Adams is amazing, and I wish he would have returned, but he wanted to go to the Raiders, and they gave him the payday. You cannot hold onto everyone, but if you are going to trade away WR1, you better have WR2 stay.
The Packers didn't and relying on too many newcomers, Lazard, and a Randall Cobb who will never be available for 17 games, well that was a recipe for disaster. Heck, I could blame this for Rodgers breaking his thumb. I really think the Packers would have won the division if they would have had MVS in uniform, and challenged Philly for the conference crown.
2. Holding onto Amari Rodgers too long - Look, I loved what Amari Rodgers said when he was brought into the Packers when drafted. I loved the reverence he gave for Cobb, and for the game. He said all the right things.
He just could not play.
Could not play receiver, could not play special teams. He hurt the franchise when he stepped on the field, and you don't need Nixon's tremendous play to improve kick and punt returns. Holding onto him just killed the third branch of the team.
3. Contract management - When Gute came in, he did all the moves the fans wanted. Dump the coordinator, dump the coach, go after free agents...he did everything except draft a wide receiver in the first round. He built 13-3 squads out of thin air.
Scratch that, it was not out of thin air, it was out of cap space.
But the franchise is where it is right now because the budget has not been handled. It feels like kind of genius the way Rodgers' contract is right now, where no payments need to be made until Sept. 1, but that still puts pressure on the situation.
And Rodgers contract played a role on everyone else. It is why Adams could not be signed, it is why ZaDarius Smith could not be restructured.
Spreading out costs is fine, older guys retire or leave, and the team can still pay with younger players.
But now the Packers really have to wait until June 2 to trade Rodgers, otherwise the sudden cap hit is so harsh there will be no team. The team could have the Jets second rounder this year, and a potential first next year, except it would mean adding 9mil to the cap hit.
Now we will have to live with two months of Rodgers whining.
What do you think of these?