What’s wrong with the Packers offense this season?
Packer fans this season have been scratching their head as the historically potent Packers’ offense has fluttered and fallen far short of expectations. Green Bay so far this season is 24th in total yards, gaining only 341 per game. Despite an up-and-down year overall rushing, they still rank 15th in yards per game, getting 111.7 yards per game. The problem has been the passing game, getting only 229.8 yards per game through the air, good for only 22nd overall.
What has been the cause for such a collapse? The answer is three fold: simplistic route trees & play calling, a regressing offensive line, and the lack of a true dynamic weapon have caused this offense to become one that ranks in the bottom third.
Simplistic route trees:
Since Mike McCarthy has handed play calling duties to Tom Clements, the offense has gotten significantly less complicated. Very few crossing routes causing legal pick plays, wheel routes around a receiver who cuts in, bubble screens to wide receivers…the list of unique looks McCarthy had executed for years has dwindled to simple curl and drag routes, as seen above.
Denver was the first to spot this during their bye week and subsequently has given teams a blueprint on how to beat the Packers. Line up man coverage, with bracket (meaning two or more defenders) coverage on Randall Cobb, and do not worry about anything deep. Defenses have been dropping safeties into the box, both to stop the run as well as guard the first down marker because they know Green Bay no longer attempts to hit it deep. Read more... (1288 words, 2 images, estimated 5:09 mins reading time)