Another NFL season in the books. Another ring for Tom Brady and the Patriots. Okay, enough. The Green Bay Packers are creating their blueprint to Miami by finalizing their coaching hires including hiring the nephew of a Bears great, a rising star calls his shot and some former players missed the mark in their criticism.
Again with this?
Butkus Hired as Assistant Offensive Line Coach
The Packers have hired Luke Butkus, the nephew of Bears linebacker and Pro Football Hall of Famer Dick Butkus as their assistant offensive line coach. Butkus has spent his last three years as the offensive line coach for the University of Illinois from 2016-2018. The two-time All-Big Ten center has spent his time with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Seattle Seahawks while starting his coaching career as a graduating assistant at the University of Oregon. Stenavich/Butkus could be a interesting combo to revamping the Packers offensive line for the future.
Aaron Jones Guarantees Super Bowl LIV for Packers
Well, this is not new. Super Bowl guarantees as soon as the season ends. We have heard it all before from teams. Most famed one always will be in 1996 after quarterback Brett Favre came back from rehab for his painkiller addiction. During the press conference, Favre sat there (with a slight smile) near head coach Mike Holmgren told talking heads to bet against the Packers. Lombardi Trophy back for the first time since 1967.
Packers running back Aaron Jones spoke to WBAY-TV’s Dave Schroeder last week about the future. Jones was quick to his point.
“Miami next year,” Jones said. “We’ll be there.”
While I appreciate his optimism, the Super Bowl guarantee has lost its luster for a long time now. Because we hear it EVERY YEAR from a team who has no chance to making it. In the past, teams like the Jaguars (Sacksonville no more), Browns (not since the 50’s), Eagles (dream team) have called their shot and failed. It used to be great when someone out of nowhere would truly mean what they said. Now it is dismissed as “revving up the fanbase for the upcoming year” and disappointment sets in.
I’m not saying that fans should not be optimistic about the 2019 season for the Packers. I am saying though that it is hard to take a Super Bowl guarantee seriously anymore. Instead of saying it, commit action to your promised words. At least, the Packers have a confident player in the backfield.
Former Packers Fire Off on Rodgers
I cannot help but laugh when I read about what former teammates say about their leader. Especially ones that turned their back or walked away disgruntled but they would not say it if they did not want the attention. Forbes.com caught up with the likes of Jermichael Finley, Kabeer Gbaja-Biamilla and…Greg Jennings to ask about how Rodgers and new head coach Matt LaFleur will work together? Well, they fired on Rodgers and patronized LaFleur in the process.
“Once you try to overcoach him, that’s when he’s going to do his own thing. With McCarthy, McCarthy used to call a play and Aaron would look at him and it’s a whole different play. … And we just ran the play No. 12 called. Sorry. And I think it’s going to be a lot worse with a young guy and with where Aaron’s at in his career.”
First off, just want to say congrats to Finley for having a successful recovery from the neck injury that forced him to retire. However, the one thing I will never forget how disgruntled Finley was during his time in Green Bay. Aside from a solid 2011 season where he had eight touchdowns and 767 yards. Finley looked like he did not care out there and is always quick to fire off on the Packers on Twitter.
The “hot take” came spewing from Jennings though.
“Can you be thick-skinned enough, strong willed and strong minded enough to butt heads with that at times and tell him, ‘No. This is how we’re going to do it. This is what you need to know and this is how I can help you grow.’ That’s going to be the challenge for the Green Bay Packers.”
More salt, sir?
The same player that signed with the Minnesota Vikings after his unprofessional exit from Green Bay. Later in 2015, he admitted that to Fox Sports. He signed a five – year contract worth 47.5 million with 18 million guaranteed. He traded in Rodgers for…Christian Ponder and his career was never the same. Jennings could have been a Hall of Famer if he would have stayed in Green Bay. Instead his career ended with the Miami Dolphins at age 32, due to injury and decline in play. Finished his post – Packers career with 11 touchdowns and 1,754 yards in 33 games. I have more but I would be here all day.
I love it how former players think because they have a voice that their own transgressions when they were playing will go unnoticed. No, that is not how it works. That quote perfectly described Jennings since he left Green Bay.
Next time you run into my friend, Karma. Tell him I said hi.
Until next week, Packer fans!
Jake Turner is the host of the passionate Turning Points podcast on iTunes and co-host with Mark Eckel on the Pack a Day podcast. Follow him on twitter at @JakeTurnerSport Instagram: jaketurner61.