The Pulse of the Nation: Has Judgement Day Come?

Is it Finally Time to Pull the Plug on Capers? (Or others):

The Fire Dom Capers articles always begin to circulate each year when the Green Bay Packers go through their first stretch of poor play of the season. A couple weeks after these articles are written and online petitions are signed, Aaron Rodgers and the offense, usually go on to win six out of their next seven games en route to capturing yet another NFC North division title.

With Aaron Rodgers potentially done for the season with a broken collarbone, “Aaron Rodgers games” and fourth quarter heroics will not be able to mask the continually deficient defensive unit. Over the years the defense of the Green Bay Packers has not shown up when the stakes were at their highest. In recent years, the Packers have seen both a weakened run defense and a depleted secondary which has caused their offense to be faced with the immense pressure to keep on scoring on every possession.

To this point in the season, players on the defensive unit have not been able to make a consistent impact day in and day out. These sentiments have proven to be the norm throughout recent memory and it has everyone thinking that a change may finally be in order.

Thinking 🤔 Out Loud:

My bone of contention that has me questioning the state of the Green Bay Packers, is that this team has proven to lack the infrastructure that is necessary to win a super bowl.

The proof of this statement is the fact that Aaron Rodgers play affects whether the defensive and offensive units have a harmonious continuity on a weekly basis. Aaron Rodgers is the thread that joins the offense and defense into one cohesive unit. In lamens terms, He makes the Green Bay Packers the Green Bay Packers. In comparison, The Patriots went had a record of 10-6 the year that Tom Brady tore his ACL. The Patriots and their offensive and defensive units rallied around Matt Cassel and went 10-5 during Brady’s season-long absence. That season would have never been possible if it was not for the infrastructure that the Patriots had in place behind Tom Brady.

The moral of the story is that an organization is in charge of drafting and acquiring talented and impactful players, that fit into the organizational scheme. The amount of these types of players that an organization can acquire, will determine the strength of the infrastructure that is in place around franchise players like Aaron Rodgers. Yes, a precipitous fall will occur when any team is faced with the reality of losing their star player, but it is amazing to consider just how vital a role Rodgers played in the success that the Green Bay Packers have had, year in and year out.

Rodgers has literally made me rewrite articles that I nearly completed that detailed the weekly struggles of the offensive line, defensive line, and secondary. It is truly amazing, how one late hit by Anthony Barr instantly changes the narrative from Superbowl hopeful to a dissection of the coaching staff and organizational regime in a matter of seconds.

Contribute to the dialogue: 

The main focus of the article this week is, I want to hear from you Packer nation. I want to hear your thoughts on the ever-popular trending topic of the Green Bay Packers defense and what parties if any are to blame.

I want to hear who you hold responsible for the continued subpar play of the defense and whether you think Dom Capers and others within the organization should be held accountable. (Say Ted Thompson for missing on defensive picks, or whether you think it may be time for a regime change)

I want to hear if you think that the defense is progressing well to this point, and you think that the poor play in recent weeks is due to a lack of continuity because of injuries. I want you to tell me whether you think it is too soon for doom and gloom because the Packers defense is close to a permanent breakthrough. (Silver lining: The Packers defense has had multiple turnovers forced in consecutive weeks)

I want to hear from you if you think that the Packers must continue to trust the process and stay the course with this regime and organizational game plan in place.

I hope to hear all of your opinions on the state of the Packers from now until the two-minute pre-game primer that I will post prior to next Monday Night’s game against the Lions.

Until then, continue to hang in there Packer Nation.

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David Michalski is a recent college graduate from Princeton New Jersey who has been a life long Green Bay Packers fan. Like the great Vince Lombardi, he values God, family, and the Green Bay Packers in that order. You can follow him on twitter at @kilbas27dave

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  • Rick

    Capers D is predicated on a strong NT winning on the double team. Raji year two in 2009/2010 season and the next year 15-1 defense was anchored by him and the first game of this season with Daniels against the Seahawks shows what the defense can do if anchored by the nose, I know we hear about NASCAR but if the gut doesn’t hold steady , the opportunistic defense with blitzers coming from different spots doesn’t work. I am unsure why Green Bay did not establish a strong look at NT after Raji retired. But the defense suffered. Daniels was finally the man but he is hurt and can not win the double team battle right now.mAdams is an injured rookie and probably needs until next season to see if he has what we are looking for. We need a beast at the nose.
    On offense we have the skill players but need a good o line.
    I would love TT to call the Texans and see if a second or third round pick could acquire LT Duane Brown. He came back from his hold out and the Texans found they do not need him. He wants his big contract. I say trade and see what he has this season. We need the depth and the Tackle position is injured or a bust. We need a quality starter and he is available to help solidify the Oline and keep Brett safe and help get the offense moving.

  • Richard

    To be an effective DC, many skills are needed:

    1) Choose a system of play that your players can both physically & mentally execute.

    2) Motivate maximum effort from your players

    3) Develop game plans to combat specific opponents offenses

    4) Call the defenses in game time.

    5) Make sure that position coaches are teaching proper fundamentals & holding players accountable

    If these criteria are met, the defense’s “whole” should be greater than it’s “parts”. Of course when evaluating, it is always the “chicken & the egg” , would the players play better under a different DC or would the system be much better with different players? My question with Capers has always been; “does the scheme’s complexity result in player’s having to think too much, which causes them to play slow & miss assignments”

    • dennis

      I agree with the points you msde, except that none of them are happening. Capers is in the booth eating nachos. If you watch the Patriots defense coordinator he’s down the the field coaching the plays and gathering his troops. Capers? Playing 8 ball in the booth. I have even wondered if he watches practices from the boith? MM says he’s a great defensive mind. Really? Results, eye test don’t prove this at all. Time to get rid of butt buddies!!

  • caruso81

    After nine years, the data set is large enough to answer these questions. While Ted Thompson’s personnel and draft strategies may make the fans crazy at times, the fact that we have annual hand-wringing over annual defensive ineptness illustrates the reality that the scheme and its architect is the problem. As Peter Bukowski and others put it this week, our defense has talent. So, each guy needs to be told, “go out there and cover that guy until the whistle blows.” Instead, we get a seminar on exotic defenses (from the 90s) that only work if 14 things go exactly right 60 plays a game. Zone coverages that require perfect hand-offs from LB to CB to S. Blitzing LBs that have to stunt around three people, take 4 seconds to develop, and never get home. Tackling by launching yourself 8 yards through the air at a TE on a screen pass who gains 17 yards on 3rd and 3. CMIII chasing the play from behind because he overpursued on a blitz…again. Of course this stuff looks cool in practice against your own team at 80%. And then some backup QB has a career day against us yet again by dumping yet another pass six yards over the middle where, surprise, someone was supposed to be covering the guy but missed the pickup because he’s on the sideline and there’s only ten men on the field.

    Can we stop with all the analysis saying, “well, all they have to do is clean up this or execute that”? Of course that’s the problem. But in nine years they haven’t been able to do that. It doesn’t matter who is on the field; this defense is never going to win a game because this defense doesn’t work when real players try to really play it, no matter who they are or how well they play.

    • dennis

      Agree. Capers schemes now are prevent, soft, too complicated, and try to prevent third and long and red zone. Well, they’re getting torched in both. How many would keep their jobs if they performed weekly, and yearly like Capers? Come on man!!

  • dennis

    TT has let Rodgers and the team down by being tight with the cap and his develop policy. They are not developing! This approach is nonsense in today’s game. The greatest QB ever in GB potential for superbowls is fading. Capers is stuck in an old school defense. His schemes are too complicated, the pass rush lacks, and the DB’a are confused and lost when most needed. MM is supposed to develop QB’s. Really? Rodgers had made him. He is very predictable and isn’t creative. He doesn’t use creative route running either. Always the same! He’s had Hundley three years to mold. Hundley rakes 31st now. MM says shrink the playbook?? Really? Three years he hind Rodgers and MM and he doesn’t know the playbook? Where the hell has he been? They’ve had plenty of time to prepare for the Lions. If they lose this at home I feel wholesale changes should be made, or else we’ll see the same thing next year, the year after etc. You say who should they hire ? Anyone with new attitudes, fire, energy, desire, enthusiasm, knowledge, creativity!

  • toddbook

    Not usually a guy who yells “Fire the coach! . . . Fire the coach!” But it’s time to move on from Dom Capers. A fresh look from a young hungry coach is needed for the Packers.