Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Packers Nation, Take a Deep Breath

This offseason has gone exactly as Ted Thompson had planned.  Maybe not to the t, but pretty close.  Draft and develop.  Draft and develop.  No matter how many times TT comes out and says this, Packers fans erupt in madness when NFL Free Agency opens every offseason.  The fans are frustrated by the lack of free agents signed by the Packers and letting some of their own players get away for modest prices.  He let Charles Woodson go?!  He wouldn’t pay Greg Jennings?!  Fans were enraged, calling for his head.  Let’s take a step back and look at what TT HAS done for the Packers.

He does not overspend on players.  The NFL salary cap is a delicate issue and TT knows how to play with it.  He let Charles Woodson walk because as valuable as Woodson is, he is not worth the $10 million cap hit.  So many teams go out into free agency to fill needs and end up over paying (Hello, Colts and Erik Walden).  In the long run, the Packers are much better off, paying their own players who perform, which is exactly what TT does.  Aaron Rodgers is due the largest contract in NFL history and contracts for Matthews and Raji are not far behind.  TT is trying to put together as much cap space as possible for players he KNOWS will contribute.

You have no idea who this is.
He knows how to draft.  Every GM has a few misses in the draft, but let’s focus on the positives for a minute.  Aaron Rodgers (best pick yet) Greg Jennings, James Jones, Randall Cobb, Jermichael Finley, Casey Heyward, Bryan Bulaga, James Starks, BJ Raji, Clay Matthews, TJ Lang, Brad Jones, Josh Sitton, Desmond Bishop, Mason Crosby, AJ Hawk, Daryn Colledge, Nick Collins.  All big impact players and he drafted countless other role players that fit well in the Packers scheme. Don’t forget about all of the undrafted rookies he signs that turn into talents such as Frank Zombo, Sam Shields, Don Barclay, Dezman Moses, to name a few.  The man flat out drafts well and this is why the Packers have been so good since he took over in 2005.

He puts a winning team on the field.  TT has a knack for finding talent and putting the team possible out there to represent the green and gold.  Since 2005 (the year TT took over GM) the Packers are 78-50, tied for 5th best in the NFL.  Now, if 2005 is taken out (team was 4-12) because that wasn’t really TT’s team on the field and start in 2006, the Packers are 74-38, second to only the New England Patriots.  Throw in a Super Bowl victory, three division titles and five playoff appearances in TT’s tenure, Packers fans don’t have much to complain about.

Packers fans need to take a deep breath and have some faith.  TT knows what he is doing.  Barring a major injury, the Packers should win the NFC North again and be in the playoffs.  All Packers fans should be ecstatic that TT is their GM.  It could be a lot worse, since 2006, the St. Louis Rams are 30-81-1. The Packers don’t sign free agents, get used to it! 

Until next time, Beers, Brats, and Championships.

Steve Perhach (@Stevie2Westside)

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