ASK THE EXPERT
answered questions from readers last Friday, a day after the Packers’ win over the Bears. Read the complete transcript at jsonline.com/packers.
Q: Eddie Lacy played the Dallas game on a bad ankle with no real RB backup and wound up on IR, isn’t that on Management?
A: It might be, but that depends on the medical report, and I have no idea what the medical report said. If Lacy was 75 or 80% healthy, then we’ve seen plenty of football players take the field at less than that. If he was down around 50% or less, then yes, you could argue the front office should have protected him better. Either way, it was a risk only having Lacy on the roster for that game. But we can’t “blame” anyone without knowing the details of the medical report.
Q: Michael, with Lacy out most of the season, would it not make sense for TT to try and sign M. Lynch out of retirement? Reports are he’s ready and in decent shape, Skittles notwithstanding.
A: Ted made his move by trading for Knile Davis. If he went out and did something else, I’d be surprised. Unless Don Jackson’s hand is significantly damaged. Then he might have to make another move. However, signing Lynch is too splashy for Ted, in my opinion. Don’t think he would go that route even if he wanted to add another player.
Q: Why hasn’t Trevor Davis been given more opportunities? He’s the fastest receiver on the team and this team has virtually no deep threat? What’s up with that?
A: I don’t have a definitive answer to this question. I can posit some theories, though: 1) It takes rookies a long time to settle in with Aaron Rodgers. I remember Jermichael Finley telling me he didn’t feel truly comfortable in the offense for about 2.5 years. We’ve seen how much Jeff Janis has struggled to get on the same page as Rodgers. So it’s certainly possible Davis needs more time to develop. It’s also possible that his thin frame — he’s super, super skinny — can’t hold up for more than a handful of snaps each game. He’s not the type to run over the middle of the field, so his route tree could be limited at this point in time. Just some ideas.
Q: With Lacy and Shields on IR which one comes back in 8 weeks? Also with Lacy being in his contract year if he doesn’t come back does Ted give him another contract?
A: If both players are healthy in 8 weeks, the Packers will absolutely choose Lacy over Shields. There’s no doubt about it. Lacy is the only player on offense — aside from maybe Rodgers — who the Packers cannot replace. They don’t have another 250 or 260-pound bruiser with quick feet and toughness. Very few teams do. So unfortunately for Shields, his season is over if Lacy is healthy later this year.
Q: Does the OC make up the routes for receivers to run? It seems like the offensive woes all started when Bennett was promoted to OC.
A: I don’t know who comes up with the routes the receivers run. It’s a good question, though.
Q: Do you think that the “quick pass” offense really wears down a defense as much as a power running game?
A: Hmm. That’s a really good question. I hadn’t thought of that. It probably taxes the defense in different ways. Imagine you’re a defensive lineman busting like hell off the line of scrimmage. You’re putting all your speed and strength into each pass rush, and there’s over 50 of them. The ball is snapped, you launch forward and then... Rodgers gets rid of the ball in 1.5 seconds or less. That start-stop-start-stop is probably pretty draining.
If healthy enough, Eddie Lacy can be activated in eight weeks.