The Lass Word: Adjusting to the Underdog Role

Why this season will be more fun.

I know it’s foolish to watch those national sports shows for insights on the Green Bay Packers.  These talking heads know less about our team than you and I do.  They read a couple of internet articles, mostly written by the beat writers, and then go on the air with a bunch of hot takes that are uninformed at best, artificially contrived at worst. 

But it’s a long offseason, and when I need my pro football fix, I find myself watching them anyway.  And that’s been a painful experience this particular offseason.  With Aaron Rodgers gone, the national commentators have pretty much given the Packers up for dead.  Many are predicting a last place finish in the NFC North.  Meanwhile they are drooling all over themselves hyping the Jets and Rodgers. 

I get it.  I worked in that business for 43 years.  They are trying to generate ratings.  New York is the largest TV market.  Aaron Rodgers is a controversial superstar.  It’s a TV producer’s dream.  Call it the Dallas Cowboys syndrome.  Or the L.A. Lakers syndrome.  Teams that get talked about no matter how well or how badly they are doing.  Now they have an actual reason to exhort the Jets, so it’s coming non-stop.  It doesn’t help that every network anchor and analyst seems to have been a lifelong Jets fan. 

But here at the grass roots level, I am sensing a renewed excitement and anticipation amongst Packer fans.  A kind of electricity I haven’t seen in several years.  It’s an infectious sort of optimism.  Such exhilaration would seem to be counter-intuitive, considering all the uncertainty and youth of this team.  Yet, I believe I understand where it’s coming from. 

I feel it too.  In a weird way, it’s like this tremendous weight has been lifted off our shoulders.  This weight of expectation.  For so many years we’ve had these Hall of Fame quarterbacks.  They’ve brought us incredible highlights and thrilling victories.  But they’ve also brought high standards.  The highest standards.  Standards nearly impossible to live up to.  How many years have we heard, even from the ranks of our own,  comments such as “thirty years of elite quarterbacks, but only two Super Bowls.”   “What a tremendous waste of talent”.  “Management didn’t give them enough weapons.”  “Packers choked in the playoffs again.” “They won’t go all in.” 

We felt we had to win the Super Bowl every year.  Anything less is a failed season.  We have these great quarterbacks.  Why can’t we win championships?  Losses became more devastating.  The self-induced pressure could sometimes suck the joy out of being a fan. 

But now, Rodgers is gone, and with him the mandatory expectations.  For the first time in perhaps thirty years, we are approaching a season in which nobody, I mean nobody, not even us if we are honest, expects Green Bay to win the Super Bowl.  Maybe we don’t even expect to make the playoffs.  Maybe we don’t even expect to have a winning season.  And therein lies the beauty.  We don’t really expect anything! 

Not to be confused with hope.  We all hope for a great season.  But let’s be honest.  Few of us will be shocked if the Packers aren’t very good this year.  We’re hoping for the best, but fully aware the worst is a realistic possibility, and we’re prepared for it.  This year, every win will be a pleasant surprise.  Even if we don’t win, playing the good teams, like the Chiefs, tough and competitive will be a moral victory.  “We’re close” we will say.  “We’re getting better.  The future is bright!”  How long since we’ve really been able to say that? 

What all this really means is that, for the first time in forever, we find ourselves as underdogs.  And I don’t know about you, but I kind of like it.  The Packers open the season in Chicago against the Bears.  DraftKing Sportsbook has Green Bay as a 2.5 point underdog.  The Packers have only been underdogs to Chicago four times since 2007.  I love it.  No pressure.  Just a bunch of fired up young players with nothing to lose, eager to show the world what they can do against the franchise’s arch rivals.  This will be so much fun.  If Rodgers was still here, my attitude would be completely different.  I would expect a convincing victory, and anything less would be soul crushing. 

Know what?  The players feel the same way.  They are going to relish this new role.  Take for example these comments from Aaron Jones last week:   “I’m loving it, you know?  I’m used to being an underdog or being slept on, personally, so it’s a position I love to be in.  Nobody sees you coming at all.  Everybody’s relaxed.  They’re not thinking about you and don’t think you’re capable of it.  When you prove people wrong, it’s one of the best feelings in the world, and that’s what we’re going to do this year, prove a lot of people wrong. 

We’re not really worried about anybody’s opinion.  We know what’s going to be written out there, where they’re going to pick us to finish, but we go to battle every day.  We trust those guys in that locker room.  The scoreboard will tell the rest at the end of the day.” 

So there you have it my fellow Packer fans.  Don’t let the national disrespect get to you.  It’s going to be a fun season.  For the players, and for us. 

 

PLEASE SUBSCRIBE TO OUR CHEESEHEAD NATION WEEKLY NEWSLETTER HERE.

__________________________

Ken Lass is a former Green Bay television sports anchor and 43 year media veteran, a lifelong Packers fan, and a shareholder.

__________________________

NFL Categories: 
18 points
 

Comments (115)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:14 am

For a time, our Packers will be flying under the radar. That’s a fun place to be in, and it often equals WINS.

Green Bay will be playing with House Money in 2023.

The most pressure felt by this Packers team is on LaFleur & Barry. They have much to prove. Everything to prove.

Good. This team needs an emphasis on great coaching, the best they can provide to all of these young talents.

No more gaffes. No more crazy cushions. Football that makes sense.

Fun factor should be through the roof.

9 points
14
5
Coastalbuck's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:48 am

The pressure needs to be on our terrible GM for putting everyone in this position., players, coaches and fans. It didn't have to be this way.

-14 points
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18
Untylu1968's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:40 am

So, how would you have handled it? Fix it without using hindsight and cherry picking draft picks that you would've obviously taken. And if you're solution requires the Packers to keep Rodgers and his old buddies around, well, you've already lost me!

12 points
15
3
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:52 pm

He wouldve drafted 45 receivers in a row

1 points
3
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Tekraut17's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:39 am

Terrible GM? Yah the one that got us to multiple NFC Championships, playoffs nearly every year and NFC North dominance...terrible GM what a loser. Unlike the armchair GM's who of course would have chartered a path to multiple Super Bowls I'm sure...

-2 points
2
4
ThunderFromDownunder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:16 am

It should be an interesting year with lots of ups and down with a young QB / team , I look forward to the ride .

4 points
6
2
NickPerry's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:16 am

"How many years have we heard, even from the ranks of our own, comments such as “thirty years of elite quarterbacks, but only two Super Bowls.” “What a tremendous waste of talent”. “Management didn’t give them enough weapons.” “Packers choked in the playoffs again.” “They won’t go all in.”

Sigh... This is mostly Vikings & Bears fans saying this with a few Lions fans sprinkled in. I mean really, can they really say anything else? Bears haven't won since 1985 and the Vikings since the 70's and they never did close the deal! Hey, whatever makes you feel better about REALLY SUCKING Bears and Vikings fans!

12 points
13
1
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:25 am

Detroilet…

LOL

0 points
2
2
Untylu1968's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:03 am

Hey, hey, hey now! I'm my neck of the woods, the Lions are superbowl bound this year, again...🤣🤣🤣

4 points
4
0
BradHTX's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:38 am

The Detroilet Bowl?

3 points
4
1
Minniman's picture

May 15, 2023 at 02:41 pm

As pithy as Detroilet Bowl sounds, they managed to flush the Packers down there TWICE last year (and one of them being a "win and you're in" game for the Packers). I think that's an appropriate name for the performance that the Packers (Rodgers) put up at the end of last year.

1 points
1
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egbertsouse's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:24 am

Yeah, the same Detroit Lions that swept the Packers last year, with the darling Diva at QB.

1 points
3
2
dobber's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:59 am

The same Detroit Lions who can't get out of their own way for more than about 6 games at a time.

3 points
5
2
mrtundra's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:26 am

"Detroilet" has beaten the Packers, three straight times, over the past two seasons. They will be our main competiton for winning the NFC North, this season. Dan Campbell has the Lions playing better ball than we've seen, in recent years. I think the vikings were overrated, last season, and their play in the last few games of the season and their lone playoff appearance proved that. To me, it looked like the League was trying to give the vikings a clear advantage, with their schedule, to take them deep into the playoffs. Luckily, for us, they still have Kark as a QB. GO PACK, GO!!!

3 points
4
1
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:40 am

Oh, mrtundra, I know. I just like saying that... that's all.

I saw all the games as well. There was one helluva lotta hootin', hollerin', high fiven' goin' on in Detroilet's um... "War Room."

Ooof! Do not go in there!

-5 points
0
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mbpacker's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:23 am

Yeah, my in-laws, all Bear fans, have spent 30 years chiding the Packers/ Farve & Rodgers. Love it because they have nothing to talk about with their own team. And how many Super Bowls did the supposedly dynasty Bear teams win in the mid 80"s? One!

4 points
4
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The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:01 pm

Next time they're giving you crap, remind them that Packer back up qbs Matt Hasselbeck and Mark Brunell wouldve been the best qbs in Bears history lmao

3 points
3
0
Paul Konieczny's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:19 pm

Evidently they aren’t considering the fact we have more SB victories in the last 37 years than all 3 division opponents combined. You could go all the way back to 67, still the same.

-1 points
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1
PackEyedOptimist's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:31 am

This is a great take, Ken. I have always loved rooting for the underdog in anything, so I completely agree. Reading this also reminded me of back when I played basketball, and my least favorite times were when I was matched against someone clearly inferior to me, and my favorite times were when I was matched against someone clearly SUPERIOR to me. I loved that “can’t lose” mindset, where I could use moxie and craftiness to get some little victories. Those were more valuable, because they were “against all odds.” I think that’s how many of the young guys will be feeling, and that’s FUN. It’s the same reason I LOVE preseason games: I love seeing the young underdogs get little “wins.”
As fans, we’ll have to accept the stumbles and embrace every one of those “little wins” this year. If you can’t, I suspect it’s going to be a looong year.

11 points
13
2
Johnblood27's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:23 am

What you describe, PEO, is the phenomena of being a die hard fan/supporter of your favorite sports team in your favorite sport.

NOT a bandwagon jumping, fantasy playing, gambling addicted run of the mill human being.

True fans of the GBP are different, and I hope our team continues to attract and breed TRUE fans and not the detritus described above that floats around among sports leagues and players.

Hope springs eternal... especially where Love exists!

7 points
8
1
NickPerry's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:47 am

I think the main reason I'm so stoked for this season and 2024 is the last two drafts the Packers have had and the 24 players they picked in those drafts. That's damn near half of the 53 man roster selected just these last two years. That's a really young team.

There's plenty to like about these youngsters coming in and the ones from last year. There's also plenty other "Younger" players who are anywhere from great to good football players on this roster. IMO it's going to come down to coaching...PERIOD.

Can MLF find his balls after Rodgers was holding them the last 3 years? Will Joe Barry ACTUALLY play more like he did towards the end of the season, or resort back to that same tired defense we saw for 2/3 of the season last year? Whatever the answer is to these and the many other questions are, it's going to be a blast. I haven't looked forward to a season like I have for the 2023 season in a number of years. As long as they get better with each passing week and show a really strong nucleus from these last few drafts, I KNOW I'll be better off and a happier fan than I was in 2022.

13 points
16
3
BradHTX's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:41 am

“Will Joe Barry ACTUALLY play more like he did towards the end of the season, or resort back to that same tired defense we saw for 2/3 of the season last year?”

The question is, did he change because he realized his strategy sucked, or was it mutiny by Jerry Gray and the DBs? And what happens now that Jerry Gray and Amos (the DB “elder statesman”) are gone?

5 points
5
0
NickPerry's picture

May 15, 2023 at 02:37 pm

That's a question I've wondered myself Brad and I honestly don't know. I'm hoping it was maybe a bit of both because IIRC it was some of his players who came to him as well. Alexander specifically...

He wanted Jefferson and he shut his ass down the 2nd game. When you compare that to the first game you'd think and really hope Barry had that awakening and realized IT SUCKED!

2 points
2
0
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:51 am

Totally agree on 2023, Nick. I haven't been this stoked about a season getting under way since the McCarthy era.

There's all kinds of dancing around what Jordan Love will bring to this Packers team, most of it highly guarded & measured.

I'm the opposite. I firmly believe Packer fans are going to freak out on how good he is, delivering high powered, accurate rockets all over the field to any number of receiving targets. And, I think he's the kind of guy who will spread it around too, not playing favorites. Lastly, he understands the balance we suspect LaFleur will call for in the run game. Can't wait to see what Aaron Jones & AJ Dillon do with a respectable number of touches.

Then there's these two yutes at TE...

Just a ton of highly talented & gifted skill players ready to set this NFL on fire. There's much to be excited about.

-2 points
3
5
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:11 am

What I expect from LaFleur is to give Love a system that gives him as good a chance as possible. What I expect from love is moments of inspiration and others with my head in my hands. That’s typical of new starters. The thing about Love is there’s no doubting he can do things most QBs can’t. That means there is upside worth being excited about.

The question is whether those outweigh his mistakes and how soon they do so. We said the same of Rodgers in 2008, and he admits he was so much better by 2009 after a year starting. Love is more Favre like, or was coming in. I expect that to make for higher highs and lower lows than we’ve seen in a decade and a half, all the more so with this much talented inexperience around him.

If Love grows through this year and LaFleur proves competent, this O has the potential to be more threatening and fun than we’ve seen since 2014. That may not really materialize until 2024, but the green shoots alone could have us excited this year.

6 points
6
0
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:33 am

Yeah. My excitement assumes LaFleur takes charge, makes better decisions, and Barry unveils a shinny new hot rod defense to blow the doors off the rest of the NFL.

Those are big assumptions. I know that, but, I'm trusting what little we've seen in its inception, both sides of the ball.

Let's put it this way: the only other reason I could see for the Packers D playing so far off the ball last year, was a mandate from above to do what we could to lose football games in order to help the PR in moving AR out the door. That decision could have been made after Rashan Gary went down in our Week 9 matchup with DET...

It was either that, or Joe Barry was trying to illustrate how much he needed DBs capable of playing zone & man at a very high level. He stopped blitzing entirely on 3rd down, after guiding his D to be one of the best 3rd down blitzing teams in the NFL.

I'm in agreement with everybody here that there's question marks all over the place with Barry. I'm hoping the moves were not of a dereliction of duty kind, but rather the opposite. Testing our positional strengths/weaknesses in what essentially was a lame duck year with AR being ushered out.

I spitball a lot, trying to figure out what is going on with our team. Cause-effect. Action-reaction stuff.

Do I have concerns about LaFleur? YEAH!!! HELL YEAH!!!! I mean, I've suspected he wanted to run the ball more, that AR was shutting a lot of that down. However, was it Vrabel mandating a power running attack in TEN and LaFleur simply complying as his OC in his experiences there? Possible. I've wondered about that...

Am I concerned this is going to be too much throwing all over the place again, like LaFleur allowed with AR? YES. I'll believe LaFleur understands the importance of a balanced attack when I see it. In all of my previous thoughts to date, I've been assuming that he does.

LaFleur has to show he belongs now, as does Barry.

Considering all these angles like we do together here is what I find to be cool. The more gray matter on any problem provides the best solutions, and there are a ton of great contributions from our fellow Packer fans at CHTV. As fans, we're all just trying to figure out what the hell's going on with our team.

-3 points
2
5
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:53 am

"Were nobody's underdog."

-Mike Mccarthy

5 points
5
0
croatpackfan's picture

May 15, 2023 at 02:47 pm

I'm late here, but you take the text I intended to write here. Kudos to you.

0 points
0
0
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:59 am

I miss Rodgers already.
"He was the security blanket. "
His assurance was comforting.
It’s put up or shut up for the entire organization.
Issues: slams of hero ball. Attitude. Swagger.
This team is damaged now.
Removing the band-Aid. Has left a hemorrhage.
And I expect Love to be better than Rodgers.
Don’t give me the Double Talk now.
Don’t EXPECT less. The old is gone.
And underdog fits those that bet only.
You praised Gutey for change.
But his playground gave you ups and downs.
And Nobody will have fun, if you lose.
In the KNOW: The only guys that feel the same way,
are those that had mental farts and had screw ups.
You can’t tell me Bahk feels that way.
And those whose jobs are on the line.
The pressure to win is gone.
The approach is pre-season.
If you think this is like the minor leagues.
Think Again.

-18 points
5
23
Johnblood27's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:28 am

you make no sense at all.

please stop posting and making a fool of yourself and anyone who spends a single second reading your drivel.

But his playground gave you ups and downs.
And Nobody will have fun, if you lose.

WTF? Really? Winning is the only thing about watching a football game that provides 'fun'?

That is soooo wrong and reason enough to pull your stock and fan card.

Love your team like your best friends. Ups and downs are part of life. Nobody walks through life with only wins. The epitome of joy is in succeeding AFTER you have tried and failed. Nobody doesn't fail.

I would rather fail with dignity and total effort than to succeed by being a prick. Have fun in Prickville.

17 points
22
5
Untylu1968's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:43 am

👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍!

4 points
7
3
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:31 am

I make perfect sense.
I'm not smoking the same cigarettes as you.
Replying to my comment tells me exactly that
you did understand it.
Watching college football is for fun.
The packers get paid to win!
You need to change your views and excuses.
It's not try and try again. But having your WAY!
Do you understand the difference? You don't.
Any winner would call you a LOSER.
You should watch the Bears.

-8 points
2
10
Johnblood27's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:28 am

absolutely delusional

5 points
8
3
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:30 pm

Define Chance?
Thats all management tried for.
The Nailed it was Gone.
(When Love was drafted.)
Sure I can say All-in.
But when the trenches
don't get the attention first.
All-in are just words.

-3 points
2
5
Leatherhead's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:23 pm

""The packers get paid to win!""

I couldn't let this pass. The Packers and the NFL are in the entertainment business. They get paid to entertain. The team has to run a profit. The players are paid to follow the rules, attend meetings, practices, offseason conditioning, etc. In some cases, their salaries are tied to the number of wins they get, but they get paid for a helluva lot of stuff other than winning.

0 points
0
0
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:46 pm

I wonder if he realizes that publicly criticizing the team as a shareholder can result in a 6 figure fine? Would be a shame if somebody were to report him to the team.

http://www.espn.com/espn/page2/index/_/id/7332292

2 points
4
2
jont's picture

May 15, 2023 at 03:17 pm

Interesting find!

One point, though: it says he can't "criticize the NFL or its management, coaches or officials" so he's OK dumping on the GM, players, or the team in general.

0 points
0
0
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:11 pm

I guess its open to interpretation, but i would assume "managers" includes front office people. I could be wrong tho.

0 points
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0
Tundraboy's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:39 pm

Excellent points Johnny Blood. Thank you.

0 points
0
0
dobber's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:42 am

The ARod era was closing soon--either he was going to close it or the Packers were going to close it. They corrected the mistakes they made last off-season and took control of the situation. I applaud them for finally growing the balls to do it.

Eyes ahead, man.

"And I expect Love to be better than Rodgers."

It won't matter. Whatever Love does, you'll keep moving the goalposts.

17 points
18
1
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:20 am

The refusal to see that the Rodgers era was inevitably coming to an end baffles me. It was inevitable, the only question is when and whether it’s by choice or the theft of ability or durability from the passage of time.

Rodgers himself has pointed to a 2 year window with the Jets. If that proves true, just as our current roster ascends we’d be faced with a QB reboot. It makes no sense for us or him on such timelines.

It was time to heal our cap and regain the ability to add FA talent. It is time to accept growing pains and realize that the bulk of this roster, however good those players can be, will be better in 2024/25 and beyond.

It’s also time to find out if our coaching staff has it in it to elevate that roster and coach us to key victories. At the same time, we need to find out what Love is and, if necessary move on from one or both over the next year or two.

I seldom listen to national pundits these days. The requirements of modern 24/7 chatter render them, as Ken says, little more than the vocal equivalent of the pro bowl voting, driven by name, reputation and the past. Old and known is their stock in trade. It’s easy and fast. It’s also frequently wrong as a result.

This year may be the most interesting in years. A lot of youth means surprises and errors but also brings the potential for unexpected surprises, true competition and an opportunity for coaches to shape players and use them optimally to fulfill their vision. No one knows what this team will be. We don’t even know how LaFleur/Barry intend it to look and nor do any pundits.

Love too is going to be an adventure. It’s simply foolish to claim he doesn’t have all the physical tools. There is hours of film showing he does. The question is, does he have the mental attributes and can he build consistency. Not one of us knows that at this point. It’s all guesswork.

This year isn’t about where we finish in the standings, it’s about growth and what we learn about our players and coaches, and how good we feel about that for 2024 and beyond at season end. That’s going to be as fascinating as it is revealing and it will be a rollercoaster.

Yes, this is a season of revelation. It’s going to be interesting for sure. It won’t always be easy, but it’s a voyage that was inevitable. Now we’ve upped anchor: enjoy the ride, you just might like it.

“If you fight with all your might, there is a chance of life; whereas death is certain if you cling to your corner.” Sun Tzu

6 points
8
2
PackAttackJack's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:16 am

Sun Tzu....... Yes!!

2 points
3
1
Johnblood27's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:48 pm

Isn't he from Wuhan?

0 points
0
0
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:24 am

I've been really, really hopeful we are witnessing this Art of War direction with regards to our Packers Defense.

In essence, winning the battles before they are fought with QUIET preparation, planning, talent acquisition in building a defense that has otherwise been unheard of to overwhelm our opponent's weaknesses. Attacking any given offensive strategy. A defense readily able to counter a given opponent's strengths, and turn their shortcomings to our advantage.

I don't believe our Packers coaches are stupid people making huge judgement errors. I think those things we witnessed towards the end of 2022 that we all were confounded by were actually done with a purpose, exhibiting a kind of self awareness of our own strengths/weaknesses. Finally?

Sacrificing 2022 to better evaluate/plan/adjust upgrade choices for 2023?

Possible. Figure, we hadn't been able to stop the run throughout Matt LaFleur's tenure. Every single defender added this offseason is great in RUN STOP. Pure pass rush depth was also shown to be an issue to address.

On the other side of the ball, we went all-in with our TE & WR additions. We even added a RB with top notch pass pro, one who had over 1,800 yds rushing in 2021.

What gives me hope that this might actually be happening is the purposeful hush that has surrounded Joe Barry and his perceived failures (as we fans assume them to be) by those in charge.

If the Packers are feigning weakness where they are actually quite strong (in theory post draft/UDFA), they've done a very nice job. Even Vegas bought it. My own mind is blown knowing Barry is about to begin his Year 3, and I cannot exactly say what his scheme is. I suspect it will be something never before seen.

It's not always going to be pretty, with all the new, young players, and Barry showing his true intentions for the first time. We all can't wait to see a good/great defense in GB again.

They still have to play the games, of course. I think there's a lot to like for this 2023 season, despite the questions that abound.

-3 points
2
5
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:15 pm

At his core, he is a Vic Fangio/Cover6 disciple. But none of Fangio's understudies have ever ran this defense even remotely close to the level Fangio does.

3 points
3
0
Minniman's picture

May 15, 2023 at 03:01 pm

yep - Rodgers is cooked, anyone who really observed that last Lions game realized this; And the whole NYJ thing. when it's all said and done, is just a massive no-lose marketing play for that franchise........ and the Packers franchise is lucky enough to benefit from it.

P.S: People keep saying how unlucky Zack Wilson is - I'd say that their entire TE room got the rough pineapple treatment at the same time!

In 2023, for me, the Packers player that is going to be under the most scrutiny is not Jordan Love, it's actually David Bakhtiari (with his rather large salary cap number). He's really taking a loooong time recovering from that knee injury....... a bad place to be in for a ~330lb guy...... I really hope that he turns a corner this year and plays to his cap number again.

If not, is there potential for Rodgers to summon another of his personal favs - and the Packers to clear even more cap space off of their books for 2024??????

-1 points
1
2
Packers0808's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:25 am

God what an awful human being you are and the life you have in it. Aren't you tired of reaching out every column for reactions that you try to get out of people. It has become extremely boring as are your rantings!

5 points
9
4
HarryHodag's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:55 am

The problem is the more you complain about his nonsense the more he thrives on it. Best to just pass over it like some doo-doo left on the sidewalk.

4 points
6
2
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:19 am

If it’s anything like his venomous disdain for TT for his treatment of Favre and willingness to base our future on a glass pretender, we’ve a few years of it to endure yet, filled with reminders of every good thing his hero did that the usurper could never replicate. It’s not rooted in fact or analysis, but in a crushing inability to accept change and his battles with that.

2 points
5
3
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:46 am

I don't have a computer chip in me.
I was created with a mind and body.
You want me to be a Packer Clone.
Following the pack to the slaughter house.
How's this for a Rant?
Packers management never did enough
Since 2010.
If I look at it like you and others.
It will be another decade of waiting.

-4 points
2
6
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:48 am

It’s 2005 to the first half of 2010 from you all over again and got exactly the same “reasons”.

5 points
6
1
Packers0808's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:46 pm

When you have nothing to say that makes sense best to shut up.

2 points
3
1
HarryHodag's picture

May 15, 2023 at 02:59 pm

I rest my case.

0 points
0
0
croatpackfan's picture

May 15, 2023 at 03:05 pm

You are full of pure fear on changes that happens everyday. From electric cars, energy from clean sources, to rise of younger, smarter people than you are or ever been, to development of new ideas and products, to new start of AI era, simply to everything that change your surroundings.

I pitty you. You are robbed of joy and happiness we all have. And that is why you constantly complaining and crying for old good times.

You were that way 2008, you are that way 2023!

0 points
1
1
LLCHESTY's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:54 pm

"Created with a mind and body."

And a apparent disregard for anything that would pass for sentence structure or punctuation.

1 points
1
0
Tundraboy's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:46 pm

At least StarrtoRodgers is gone!

2 points
2
0
jannes bjornson's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:50 am

There is the element of Rationalizing loss by whining about being the underdog before the first snap. The QB is in year four and a One pick. He's as ready as he'll ever be. The rest of the crew is another story. The Infill provided by Gutedkunst is the Black Hole. Will these Players show up? A defense loaded with top picks that fail to tackle, understand basic zone concepts and plug the run. Hopefully, Bisaccia gets a chance to run this squad as the season unfolds.
Bhaktiari is now the Leader. He gets paid to be the man. The Right Flank of the offensive line is still a cluster.
If Rhyan doesn't earn a spot, then another Whiff de trois is tacked on the Wall. The biggest question mark is the coaching. You get what you pay for.

-1 points
2
3
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:22 am

“The biggest question mark is the coaching.” Yes, it’s also the one to which answers will start appearing most quickly. Even in preseason there should be signs of change in approach on field and in terms of how camp is conducted and individuals handled if the answer is to be positive.

As to the “ready as he will ever be” comment. Emphatically no! There is no test comparable with the real one. He’s as ready to face that test as he will ever be perhaps, but the true learning and test begins in September, and it will not be over quickly.

3 points
3
0
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:59 am

Coaching- Thats exactly why I said they will
Miss Rodgers. Their job now depends on Love.

-1 points
2
3
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:52 am

Are you saying Rodgers was the coach? I’m not sure that that would be a positive for him if true. We were outcoached regularly, particularly when it mattered.

2 points
4
2
stockholder's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:06 pm

You know he made their life easier.
Thats all I'm saying.
Quote: He gives us are best chance to Win.

0 points
2
2
LLCHESTY's picture

May 15, 2023 at 06:56 pm

Can you introduce me to Miss Rodgers? Was she a Misses Rodgers but now back in the market?

0 points
0
0
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:50 pm

Yeah we know you miss him. You are a meme at this point.

1 points
3
2
crayzpackfan's picture

May 16, 2023 at 01:51 pm

"I miss Rodgers already.
"He was the security blanket. "
His assurance was comforting.
It’s put up or shut up for the entire organization.
Issues: slams of hero ball. Attitude. Swagger.
This team is damaged now.
Removing the band-Aid. Has left a hemorrhage.
And I expect Love to be better than Rodgers.
Don’t give me the Double Talk now.
Don’t EXPECT less. The old is gone.
And underdog fits those that bet only.
You praised Gutey for change.
But his playground gave you ups and downs.
And Nobody will have fun, if you lose.
In the KNOW: The only guys that feel the same way,
are those that had mental farts and had screw ups.
You can’t tell me Bahk feels that way.
And those whose jobs are on the line.
The pressure to win is gone.
The approach is pre-season.
If you think this is like the minor leagues.
Think Again."

Stockholder---
When I read your post (I mean poem that made me feel like I was sleeping in a hammock woven from the feathers of an angel's wings), I could hear the sounds of Bongo Drums and Maracas guiding the audience towards an inspiring, powerful and emotional crescendo. I could see a small, unbathed audience within a smoke filled lounge who's very souls were being challenged by unspeakable forces of introspective and crisis of the human condition. I'm a much better version of myself for having read this. When I get home from work, I am going to hug my wife and kids like it is my last day on earth. There will be tears......Yes......There will....be....tears..

1 points
1
0
greengold's picture

May 16, 2023 at 02:06 pm

crazypackfan,

Was Kettle of Fish a beatnik paradise before it became a Packer Bar?

Asking for a friend.

2 points
2
0
crayzpackfan's picture

May 16, 2023 at 02:35 pm

GG-
I don't know what that means and I don't have time to google. :)

0 points
0
0
ko40489's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:03 am

No question there's a sense of anticipation and excitement with a young team under a new leader. We all hope that the youthful enthusiasm will make up for the lack of experience. Being competitive and even a few surprise upsets is a realistic expectation for this year. But losing gets old very quickly--it's not fun. I just hope we don't end up in football purgatory like we did in the pre-Favre/Rodgers eras--never really bad, but never really good enough to be a serious title contender. And never able to put together a plan to get to the next level. Time will tell.

2 points
2
0
T7Steve's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:58 am

" I just hope we don't end up in football purgatory like we did in the pre-Favre/Rodgers eras--never really bad, but never really good enough to be a serious title contender."

Those teams all had one thing in common. Bad coaching. They rarely had even two phases that were good, let alone all three. At best we had some exciting offenses that could score on anyone in three plays then leave the D on the field the rest of the game.

This team is improved from last season in ALL three phases. Last season took 5 games just to decide the O line! With these 3 playing complimentary football, these QBs won't have to do much to out preform last season's QBs. If they show just a little bit better, we'll win the division.

-1 points
0
1
LambeauPlain's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:05 am

Flipping the script on expectations for certain!

The MLF era began with promise and grew into seasons of over-promising and under-delivering.

13-3 and losing to the Niners. Rodgers MVP seasons and cap gymnastics to keep the band together. Playoff losses in Lambeau two years in a row. More cap contortions to keep Rodgers happy and sky high expectations for the defense. Season ending loss in Lambeau...losing record...no playoffs.

2023? Playoffs? Playoffs?? Most of the anointed "wise" in the NFL Kingdom see the Packers as a bottom 10 team. Rebuilding. Too inexperienced. Untested QB. Defense arrow pointing down.

Perfect. I recall McCarthy's first season after the 4-12 Sherman swan song. An 8-8 2006 and no expectations for 2007.

Table is set for a season of under-promising and over-delivering. I like it.

6 points
6
0
HawkPacker's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:15 am

I admit that I am excited for this new year. We have a new QB, lots of new young players, the opportunity to actually see MLF's offense the way it is designed and also to see just what Barry's defense will be like.

We have all of these young receivers. That, and along with a new QB, how well will they work together. How long will it take for them to be a cohesive unit?

It is exciting right now but if they lose a bunch and I can't see them with a winning record, how long will it continue to be exciting?

We are excited for basically the unknown! Once we know how well we can develop, we could be even more excited about the future. However, if we do not look good, we may not be looking forward to the games like we have the past 30 years. We do not want to go back to the 70's and 80's. That was a bad time to be a packer fan.

The one thing I would like to see this year is does it appear that Love is or is not the answer at QB, which is the most important position in the game today. I can see that after 17 games, we may really not know for sure. I want us to know, either way, if he is our future or not. If we have a stud QB, we will be in almost every game. Go Jordan Love!

6 points
6
0
dobber's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:54 am

"We do not want to go back to the 70's and 80's. "

I'll offer you consolation in the point that the 70s and 80s happened in an NFL that no longer exists. No salary caps, no free agency, and the only meaningful way to build was through the draft--which took time and a lot of luck. Only 5 NFL teams have not made the playoffs in the last 3 years. FIVE! This is a league meant to cycle...some teams hang near the top for awhile, some move in and out of relevance, but teams don't languish in the cellar as they used to.

https://champsorchumps.us/drought/longest-nfl-playoff-drought

"The one thing I would like to see this year is does it appear that Love is or is not the answer at QB"

The key question of 2023. The draft capital is there if they need to make a move on a QB in the 2024 draft, and they'll know by December whether 10 is a gamer. Many say that 10's growth was the main reason why the Packers moved on from 12--I disagree. They needed to cut the cord on 12, take control of the team narrative, get out from under the heinous contract of their own making, and recoup some value while 12 still had some. Love is the first in line, and it's entirely possible he's not the answer...but we know that 12 likely wasn't the answer in GB anymore either, regardless of what he does in NY.

This is a young and green team in many places. This is a developmental year...where will they be on the curve? If they stay relatively healthy, are they playing better ball in December than they were in September? What will this team develop as an identit? Is the coaching staff one to retain or not-for-long? Wins are the benchmark that establishes team stability, but they need to grow into whatever they will be.

6 points
6
0
egbertsouse's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:33 am

Packer fans probably need to tone down the crapping on other teams in the NFC north until we see how well the Packers play the year.

3 points
5
2
Untylu1968's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:56 am

Sorry, but that's just not how it works. It's really easy to only talk shit ,when you're on top and winning, and none of my NFC north rival buddies have ever held back on an opportunity to take a big steamy dump, when something bad happened to the packers. That's what makes it so fun!🍻

1 points
2
1
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:51 am

I look around the NFC North and don’t see a fan base that’s really got a basis for trumpeting their team. Interestingly, outside if Detroit, I see doubt and I doubt what I see in Detroit. None of them are sure what we are. Only Detroit seems confident of what they are. That may yet prove awfully dispiriting.

So a year of development and facing up to many questions. That means a wide spectrum of outcomes, both positive and negative and Father Time is now back on our side, not bearing down our neck. Grounds for uncertainty, certainly. Grounds for curling up in submission to negativity? That’s just foolish.

4 points
4
0
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:50 pm

No. Were turning it up.

0 points
1
1
Renllaw's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:08 am

This sentiment is exactly why I found the 2010 Super Bowl run more exciting than the 1996 run. We were SUPPOSED to win '96 It was still awesome to end a long drought and bring the trophy back to Title Town. But that 2010 run, we were young. We were 10-6. With every playoff road win I was convinced it was a successful season and the next game was just icing on the cake.... All the way to the championship. It was awesome. Time to bring that back! GoPackGO!

7 points
8
1
barutanseijin's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:00 pm

After a 28 year drought, including years of getting utterly stomped by the competition, dominating the NFL in ‘96 was sweet. I’d say it was sweeter than 2010, which came after a shorter stretch of mostly winning seasons. Besides, after Rodgers’ excellent 2009 season, the Packers were a preseason pick to go all the way. They ran into some very bad injury luck that year. Otherwise, they would have probably had a higher playoff seed.

2 points
2
0
Guam's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:19 am

Thank you Ken Lass for perfectly capturing my feelings about the upcoming year. This will be the first year in many that I am not burdened by feelings of "yeah, we're good, but we will probably find a way to blow it in the end". That is a very disheartening lens through which to view a season. I look forward to watching the young players and their growth as the Packers build toward a better future.

Your best article of the year Ken!

5 points
5
0
Swisch's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:50 am

Over the past couple of seasons or so, it's been so frustrating to me to see that the dysfunction within the Packers was almost inevitably going to lead eventually to headache and heartbreak.
As it turned out, the Packers went on to suffer three devastating losses to end the last three seasons, and all on our homefield advantage of Lambeau Field.
As important as is talent is teamwork, which means an orderly operation of the team according to clearly defined roles taken on with character.
The weak capitulation to our former quarterback in his arrogance and intrusiveness was indeed the fault line around which the Packers cracked and crumbled under the pressure of the biggest moments of the biggest games.
***
It seems to me the main frustration of the recent past is seeing a team not reach its potential due to issues of character resulting in disorder.
If the Packers have the same record of 8-9 in this upcoming season as it did in this past season, it will seem a lot more satisfying, even exciting, if it appears the team is coming together in preparation for going somewhere.
It's not about MVPs but about Super Bowls -- or at least doing everything possible to fulfill a team's potential in pursuit of winning them -- which is why it is supremely fitting for the symbol of triumph to be named the Lombardi Trophy.

-1 points
3
4
T7Steve's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:22 am

I don't know which Bear's fan downvoted you, but it should be ALL thumbs up just for "why it is supremely fitting for the symbol of triumph to be named the Lombardi Trophy."

0 points
1
1
Swisch's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:15 am

Thanks, T7Steve, plus we share the same first name.
As I remember it, the notable late sportswriter Dick Schaap, in the 1980s, said the Lombardi Packers were the greatest professional sports team of all time -- not necessarily the most talented or successful, but the group of individuals who most maximized their potential as a common unit.
The gruff Lombardi described that dynamic of camaraderie of his Packers -- with self-sacrifice and mutual respect and shared glory -- with the word "love."
What a great heritage to have as Packers fans, and as Americans -- and what a timeless example for today.

0 points
1
1
The_Baloney_Stops_Here's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:26 pm

It was just Stockholder. He downvotes anyone who doesnt mourn for his hero.

0 points
2
2
PackfanNY's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:27 am

Yes I am excited about seeing the 2023 Packers. I feel like we had some exciting young players starting to emerge (Doubs, Nixon and Watson) and drafted even more exciting talent. I can’t wait to see Van Ness and our two new toys at TE etc.

However, the entire season and the FUTURE really rests on two things. Two things that impact 2023 and BEYOND.

1- Jordan Love must be THE GUY or at least show us enough that we aren’t searching for the NEXT guy as soon as 2024. Some of us are old enough to remember Randy Wright, Rich Campbell and so on. Without a good or at least competent QB the entire operation is in doubt. With Jordan Love we don’t know what we have yet. One problem in college was interceptions. Probably many reasons why. However, that can’t happen in the NFL. Turnovers are killers as we all know. Hopefully, they lean on the run and use the TEs for some easier completions so Love can get his footing.

2- The Defense must be better. The Packers have used significant Draft capital on defense including another #1 pick on Van Ness. Joe Barry doesn’t have any more excuses. Gutekunst has given him another infusion of talent. He should be getting Gary and Stokes back at some point. Keeping our fingers crossed. The pass rush must improve and “soft” coverage must be a thing of the past. One way to help a young QB is to have a stout defense behind you. I am somewhat worried that Barry can make the adjustments necessary. Of course, LaFleur and Gute are all in on him and that is all that matters …for now.

If both these things happen next year’s draft (Two #1s) can be focused on building a playoff and Champion level team. If not, the Draft becomes about finding and drafting the next QB.

6 points
6
0
dobber's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:42 am

I would argue that the future rests on frank assessment of what the Packers have. They need to be honest with themselves about...
1. ...whether Jordan Love can be a QB who leads a high-end offense. I think you hit on a lot of those things that would signal that.
2. ...whether the current OL depth chart has the pieces to support said offense.
3. ...whether or not the current defensive coaching staff and scheme can elevate the play of the defensive two-deep. We've seen too many seasons in recent memory where the play is inconsistent and uninspiring, only to go on stretches of adequacy and even good play.

It's all about honesty in assessment, and making the necessary moves to clear the chaff from the grain. I think the majority of us understand that the best thing for the Packers is that Jordan Love plays as a quality QB, but I would argue that the worst thing for the Packers would be for him not only to be bad, but for the front office to cling to him for 2-3 seasons hoping he'll pick it up. It would be best for the Packers to be able to use their high picks in 2024 to build around a franchise QB, but adding pieces around a QB who can't play (if it turns out that way) rather than finding ways to address the QB issue is just stupid.

It was stated yesterday that the current front office has started to collect its own pet projects. The Packers need to be on-the-mark in their assessments and can't allow vanity and posturing in projects to cloud their judgement.

3 points
3
0
HawkPacker's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:01 am

Dobber, that is why I stated above that the most important thing for us this coming season is to know whether or not if Love is the QB of our future. If we know that he is or isn't, we can address the proper needs in the next draft plus our CAP will continue to improve so we can sign the right players that we need.

1 points
2
1
Handsback's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:30 am

The Packers have two strikes against them when it comes to the MSM in regards to sports. First off there is uncertainty within the football writer's world if MLF is really a good coach or not. Let's face it, even within the realm of Packer fans do we attribute the great won/loss record to Rodgers or MLF? Second strike is losing a HOF QB and questioning if Love is the answer. Again even some in the fan base wonders about that.
If BB was the head coach, everyone would speak about the strength of the oline and running game along the strong CBs and conclude that the team would contend. Fans of the Packers are used to being marginalized by the football writers, and most of the time use their own past statements to show them how wrong they can be about the Packers. This year is different. Will MLF step up and show us how his offense can be run? Will Love show his abilities and run the offense and get the Packers back into the playoffs?
I want that to happen. I think that it can happen, and I doubt many beyond our fan base believe it could happen..
Ken is right, I think this will be a fun season for Packer fans.

Just MHO

6 points
6
0
Spock's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:47 am

I've been saying for the last several seasons that I just haven't been able to get behind a Rodgers led team. I'm stoked for a win or lose season just for that! Hopefully, Love will turn out to be a decent NFL QB and maybe (just maybe) MLF will turn out to be a good coach. Wish we were playing Sunday! GPG!

4 points
6
2
crayzpackfan's picture

May 16, 2023 at 03:39 pm

Spock..
My Rodgers experience was like going from eating fine steak and drinking a really nice bourbon to a 2:00 AM convenient store run for nachos and cheese on the way home from a party where warm beer with cigarette butts floating within was your last call.

In other words, the last 3-4 years, he really only managed to leave me with false hopes and a really bad taste in my mouth.

1 points
1
0
HarryHodag's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:51 am

Lets take a moment to analyze this 'young team'.

QB-Ok, Love is inexperienced but he's been around awhile.
Aaron Jones and A.J.Dillon-experienced.
Tight end-young and mostly inexperienced.
LT-long time veteran
LG-veteran
Center-veteran
RG-veteran
RT-veteran
WR-mostly inexperienced but some playing time for each

Defense-
Gary and Smith-both experienced, Van Ness is young
Kenny Clark-long time vet
Wyatt-some playing time, though young
Slaton-young but experienced

Campbell is a long time vet and Walker started all last year

Alexander-experienced
Stokes-experienced
Savage-experienced
Other safety-toss up at this point.

What I see is a bunch of veterans mixed with some younger, experienced players and a couple of rookies.
This is not a wholly inexperienced team. In reality this is a team with a nice mix of older players, not-so-old players and some 'greenies'.

Don't sleep on the Packers. They might be better than you think.(Unless Joe Barry blows it).

6 points
6
0
dobber's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:10 am

There are four big-money guys on this roster right now (Clark, Jenkins, Alexander, Bakhtiari), and some cap-clearing dead money that eats up cap space. . So we also need to think about this in terms of contracts...which tells us something about who will need to get paid and how that might impact who stays and who goes. We can couch this in different terms for the top of the depth chart:
QB--First contract guys
RB--aging vet, first contract guys
TE--First contract guys
LT--aging vet
LG--established vet (2nd contract)
C--first contract guy
RG--first contract guy
RT--likely RFA or first contract guy
WR--all first contract guys

Defense:
DL/DT/DE--Aside from Clark, all first-contract guys/UDFAs/street FAs
Edge/OLB--aside from P (aging vet), first contract guys (Gary on 5th year option)/UDFAs
ILB--established vet (Campbell), plus first-contract guys
S--first contract guy (Savage on option)/UDFAs/street FAs
CB--two established vets, First-contract guys

The cap requires that most teams are built around a smaller number of long-term vets and fill out with younger guys...the Packers were 21st in average age in 2022 (25.9 yrs) which was up from 2021 (15th) and 2020 (5th). If you remove Arod, Crosby, and Lewis from the Packers and replace them with players of average league age, the Packers are about the 5th youngest team in the league in 2022.

5 points
5
0
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:57 am

dobber, I'm wondering if we don't get younger still...

June 1st is coming in hot, only 17 days away. David Bakhtiari's contract is a nightmare for the Packers future, with a $21M cap figure this year, and a $40.5M cap figure in 2024.

I have zero faith that he plays for the Packers in 2023, as much as I would love to see him stick around.

Trading the 32 year old DBak after June 1st would save the Packers around $3-4M? The Dead Cap Charges drop from $38M to just under $17M.

My guess has always been that he follows AR to NYJ. Selling high right now, getting the best price return in exchange for him may be a smart move. We got two R1s for Davante Adams? How much would it be worth to the Packers to move on from Bakhtiari?

The thing that makes me think this happens is that Bakhtiari is the only player contract extension (in that entire mad flurry of extensions to clear dead cap for the AR trade) that did NOT include void years... ***

Everybody says it won't happen, but, how does one explain that? Especially with the poison pill $40.5M cap charge for next year? Is keeping him long term an option, kicking that massive cash can down the road?

I'm not saying I want to move forward without David Bakhtiari. Just that we might want to brace ourselves for that to hit in less than 3 weeks.

-4 points
0
4
LeotisHarris's picture

May 15, 2023 at 08:57 am

It feels good to be looking forward to watching a young team of talented athletes improve each week. I don't think there is a more talented team in the NFC North. This new Packers team will find their identity, and we'll see where that leads.

It's also great that Jets fans are excited, and I hope 12 does well. Take a look at their schedule. It could very easily be a 1-4 start for the Jets. That'll draw some media attention.

5 points
5
0
BirdDogUni's picture

May 16, 2023 at 02:30 pm

8 - You hope 8 does well. AR12 is now, AR8.

* I hope AR8 plays great, right up until the final two minutes of the Super Bowl when he chucks one up into double coverage to Wilson and Alexander picks him off to seal the Packers 14th World Championship... ; )

3 points
3
0
mbpacker's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:16 am

Ken- I feel much the same way, as long as this underdog situation doesn't last too long, like 30 years for the Bears. For this year it's sort of refreshing. I guess it all depends how we loose or if we see growth in the team, particularly Love. Pretty much an evaluation year. But if we pick up and win more than expected I won't complain. GPG!

2 points
2
0
PatrickGB's picture

May 15, 2023 at 09:39 am

This is really a fan base narrative. I still expect that the standard is the standard for the players. I agree that, as a fan, my expectations are hopeful. But I want the players to still give it their best.

5 points
5
0
splitpea1's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:21 am

The bar is too low here. Maybe we're not Super Bowl contenders, but we should be competitive most of the time. The fans should have high expectations for the defense with all of the resources that have been spent here. The offense is going to go through some growing pains, but I'm not expecting a disaster unless Love gets injured.

The Packers may have to rely a little more on defense, special teams, and the running game than they have in the past, so that's an interesting challenge they haven't experienced for a while. So I look at it as more of a necessary step towards building a complete team as the passing offense develops.

Another silver lining with this transition is that we should finally come to some concrete conclusions about the coaching staff. There's plenty of defensive talent and no stubborn veteran QB hijacking the offense, so.....let's see if they have what it takes and can make the proper adjustments--for the whole season, not just parts of it!

6 points
6
0
T7Steve's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:36 am

"we should finally come to some concrete conclusions about the coaching staff"

Is he a glorified OC or is he a real HEAD COACH?

2 points
2
0
Coldworld's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:57 am

And how good an OC is he?

3 points
3
0
greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:08 pm

None of us fans truly know.

Since Holmgren's teams, I've never been this unsure of what we have 4 years into a Head Coach's tenure... wow. I like our personnel, and the bag of goods we were sold upon LaFleur's hire. Still wondering what's in there. ???

Suspicions on O, and on D, only faint clues.

2 points
2
0
Lphill's picture

May 15, 2023 at 10:53 am

I think the Packers have enough talent to win 8 games, now how many more than 8 is dependent upon MLF and Joe Barry .

4 points
4
0
Starrbrite's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:00 am

I like the underdog role. Surpassing expectations is ALWAYS a huge boost to your self esteem and personal enjoyment.
But…if you continue to fall short….
Go Packers!!!!

3 points
3
0
Leatherhead's picture

May 15, 2023 at 11:03 am

Thanks for this article.

Underdog Schmunderdog. If the Packers come out in the Opener and pound the Bears 61-7 , they'll be the favorite in Week #2. Training camp, exhibitions....it's hype and hubris and entertainment for minutia freaks.

We have a lot of young players who are going to make mistakes, like dropping wide open TD bombs on the opening play. They'll also make exciting plays.

I don't see them as underdogs in this division. I think we've improved since we underachieved at 8-9 last year. I think the offense will be significantly improved from the team that opened the season last year and lost 7-23.
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8 points
8
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T7Steve's picture

May 15, 2023 at 12:33 pm

"Schmunderdog" LH? Webster is rolling over in his grave.

Seems like we're some of the only ones that think we can start off running, and have high expectations for this season.

I think last season was the "growing pains" season.

0 points
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greengold's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:13 pm

This Packers team, with this much youth at the skill positions, and a highly efficient canon for an arm Jordan Love in his 4th season, taking over at QB1?

I think JL and his receiving talents across the board are able to relate to each other more readily, simply because they're all about the same age. They know no fear. Every single one of them has speed, size, or separation abilities that sets them apart. After watching a bunch of film on our recent additions, there's some real talent added here, and Gutekunst may have unearthed some gems.

GB's offense for 2023 has the potential to be WHITE HOT as a result.

The ball comes out fast with Love, too. He knows what he's doing, and doesn't mess around. Quick release too. He's a very different QB than we've known in GB all of these years, and I'm guessing he's better than his predecessors.

We'll see, but, there's a lot to like.

Big fan of the" Underdog - Schmunderdog" too! Well said, LH.

1 points
1
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PackEyedOptimist's picture

May 16, 2023 at 07:14 am

Agree completely LH.

0 points
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Turophile's picture

May 15, 2023 at 01:22 pm

"We felt we had to win the Super Bowl every year. Anything less is a failed season. "

A few felt that way. They seemed to hate any year that didn't bring a superbowl and completely failed to enjoy the journey through the year, with its inevitable ups and downs. That's the fun, the journey.

You really can enjoy a season that doesn't end with a superbowl...............and if all you can enjoy is a superbowl winning season, you get to be happy (on average) one year in 32. That's two or three times in your lifetime.

I want more enjoyment from my team than that, and most years are rather enjoyable, even if they don't get the SB. I think making the playoffs is a success and the Packers have done that pretty consistently over the last 30 years.

6 points
6
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T7Steve's picture

May 15, 2023 at 02:50 pm

As long as the goal is to win the SB. The players and coaches can't be satisfied with anything less. For years it seemed good enough just to get an MVP or All Pro..

0 points
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Leatherhead's picture

May 15, 2023 at 05:13 pm

The goal is to win the division, because that puts you in the playoffs and the first game is at home. If you can win that, you're in the final four to go to the Super Bowl. From that point on, it's about overall health, the bounce of the ball and the officials' calls.

16 teams in our conference, but we only have to be better than the other three in our division and then we get to go to the postseason party. It's a lot easier to focus on beating three teams than 31.

2 points
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barutanseijin's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:48 pm

No.

The issue for me was Rodgers. After the exuberance of the 2011 regular season his play became increasingly joyless and constipated. Winning made it tolerable, but after the Debacle in Seattle it was clear that he lacked the mental toughness to get to another super bowl. He could have made up for all the eye-rolling and finger pointing and excuse making by winning it all. That never happened.

2 points
3
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PackEyedOptimist's picture

May 16, 2023 at 07:12 am

Singing my song, Turo!

0 points
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jont's picture

May 15, 2023 at 03:51 pm

Satisfaction is a function of expectations and reality. It's why Detroit fans are so stoked these days-- they've been so bad for so long that 9-8 seems like glory. Meanwhile, Packer fans have got used to winning-- the team finished under .500 only four times since Favre started in 1992, and each was considered borderline Armageddon by many of the most committed fans.

Now a cynic might say adjusting to an under-dog role is playing with expectations, but not me.

It's not over just because we've got an untested QB. Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?! Love's going to fine. Our hope-- a reasonable hope based on some evidence-- is that he'll be modestly better than fine in his first year, and with a good overall roster we should every expectation of 9-8 or better, and "better" means a shot at the playoffs (where the Green Bay Packers belong).

3 points
3
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Chrsa's picture

May 15, 2023 at 05:10 pm

What year did the Germans bomb Pearl Harbor?

0 points
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Leatherhead's picture

May 15, 2023 at 07:11 pm

1978. Animal House.

1 points
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PackEyedOptimist's picture

May 16, 2023 at 07:11 am

Beat me to it by seconds! 😃

0 points
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Matt's picture

May 17, 2023 at 03:32 pm

Last few years, every offseason the narrative was: "Packers didn't deserve 13 win season. They were the worst team with winning record. They had too much luck it's impossible to keep it". Even after 2020 season. We kept the most of guys on board and we were criticized. Buccs did the same and they were praised. I know they won, but I also know we were the best that year. I don't expect us to ever be experts' darlings. But one thing which bothers me is the lack of logic. They say our management is wasting HoF QB, but on the other hand they saw Rodgers as washed up. They said LaFleur is overrated and can't decide on his own, but also that he should consider Rodgers' opinions. Whatever the Pack is doing is wrong. Drafting, roster selections, playcalling, scoring. I don't care the same as I didn't care when Vikings were said to have incredible drafts, Justin Fields was a diamond and Lions will jump into Super Bowl in a minute.

0 points
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