So, I'm on a long drive home from a weekend in Viking Country, and am experimenting with a mobile blog entry from a microscopic keypad. Since I have little to look at, I'l just offer some random thoughts until my thumbtips are too calloused to continue.
* For all he has done well over the years, one of Ted Thompson's black eyes has been his inability to adequately replace our aging tackles. It was pretty clear last year at this time that Clifton and Tausch were potentially Plan B if TT could help it. Ten OL in five drafts, and yet we are still throwing money at our aging tackles because we had no one else on the roster we could trust to take over.
Enter the freefalling Bryan Bulaga, who for whatever reason dropped out of the top ten and to the Packers at #23. He comes off as Packer People and a guy you think has a far better shot than many of the other guys TT has brought in.
TT did little else than pull the trigger when his turn came up...it's not like he orchestrated a trade like he did for Clay Matthews. Maybe he was lucky that BB lasted that long.
Thompson is a good scout and a good drafter. But when it comes to drafting offensive linemen, and particularly tackles, he might be better off lucky than good.
* I seem to take a shine to a long-shot RB each preseason, and Starks might be this year's Tyrell Sutton. Starks sounded winded after rookie camp, and there has to be a level of alert for the kid who hasn't played for nearly a year. Time to stick around in GB and hang with the trainers and get back in playing shape.
Starks has boom or bust written on him, a coulda-been second rounder that the Packers got for a throwaway sixth- rounder. Another injury-prone Brandon Jackson, or a potential backup and future starter? Didn't we spend a sixth on Ryan Grant?
* Is the selection of Quarrels a statement on the fading of Donald Lee? Or the doubts surrounding Spencer Havner's legal issues? Or wanting to match Jermichael Finley's explosive playmaking potential?
Regardless of the reason, I plead caution. Both Finley and Quarrels are receivers first. Great receivers, yes, but blocking is secondary for these guys.
Finley showed good improvement in his blocking last year, but this is still a critical concern when you think about the number of sacks Rodgers took last season. Add to that the potential declines of Tausch/Clifton and the developing of successors, having that sixth blocker on the line isn't just nicw to have, it could eventually become a necessity.
No gloom and doom, just hoping McAdoo has some way to turn these guys into Chmura and Jackson...guys who were solid in blocking and playmaking.