Tag Archive | James Jones

Thank God for Randall Cobb

I was very worried that we were going to let Randall Cobb walk. It’s been known to happen before, for example, Greg Jennings.

 

However, hopefully both the Packers and Cobb came to the decision to remain in business together because of Greg Jennings.

 

Greg Jennings was our primary receiver in Green Bay before he left. We had the triple threat of Jennings, Nelson, and James Jones with the emerging Cobb. Up until 2013, we also had the threat of Jermichael Finley; despite his inconsistencies, he was still a match-up problem for defenses.

 

In 2013 we lost Greg Jennings and we then had our triple threat as Nelson, Jones, and Cobb. Cobb really stepped up to the plate by replacing Jennings. However, after week 7 of the 2013 season, we lost Finley to injury.

 

It became more apparent what a loss Finley and Jennings were.

 

Then, in 2014, we didn’t have James Jones either. With the loss of the third receiver, our production since Jennings left in 2013 seemed to be missing that killer edge. No longer did we have a consistent 3rd receiver. Davante Adams stepped up, but was still making rookie mistakes. We didn’t have a good tight-end that could consistently take the pressure off either. Every time the ball was thrown Rodgers or Quarless’s way, did you not hold your breath?

 

Which brings me back to the Cobb contract. If we had had a viable third option in the NFC championship game, we may have won the game. We only scored 6 points in the second half. A great defense like Seattle is going to have Nelson and Cobb covered, what we didn’t have was that third threat, certainly not a fourth. What made us so lethal for a few years was having Jennings, Nelson, and Jones + Finley; or Nelson, Cobb, and Jones + Finley. What if we had had Jones, Finley, or Jennings? I think we would have won.

 

We could not afford to lose Cobb, too. That would have put us with only Nelson remaining, no slot, no second receiver, and no developed tight-end. It would have been a huge problem.

 

Davante Adams seems like he will make the leap from rookie to second year receiver. Perhaps if Cobb’s contract was after the 2015 season, it would be a different story. Apparently, Aaron Rodgers loves tight-end Rodgers. Aaron states he has the best hands he has seen. Just think, now that we have secured Cobb, if Davante Adams can become that third receiver and Rodgers can become a well-rounded tight-end we will be as lethal as the year we won the Super Bowl.  A great well-rounded tight-end or 3rd receiver will also free up Lacy to being more productive as a running back. Plus, if Rodgers can block more too, then that will open running lanes as well.

 

The second thing that Jennings may have contributed to Cobb resigning with Green Bay is that Jennings looks miserable in Minnesota. His production has fallen off, and now, after only 2 years, the Vikes are considering releasing him. A similar situation has occurred for James Jones in Oakland. Yes, he was our third receiver and put up more yards in 2013 than any other receiver in the NFL, but once he went to Oakland, that production dropped way, way off. Leaving Green Bay has not been kind to these receivers. Cobb may have learned from their mistakes. Taking a few million less is the best deal because he can remain competitive in Packers nation, get himself in some record books, and perhaps win a Super Bowl. Us common folk know this for a fact — being in a crappy job is the worst thing. Coming to an environment that you hate is the worst. I would certainly take a small pay cut if that meant that my every day life would be better.

 

Here are some other things to look at. Cobb is the second best receiver on our team right now. People love the Packers. People love Cobb. Look at all of the endorsement deals that Aaron Rodgers gets. Greg Jennings even had old spice commercials while he was with the Pack. Matthews has endorsement deals, too. Cobb remaining with a good team and putting up good numbers will attract endorsements. That will by far make up the remaining difference between the contracts.

 

Look at how many endorsements Greg Jennings has now? None. What about James Jones? None.

 

Some say that with Cobb signing 4 years with the Packers may improve his chances at getting a large contract again when the 4 years are up. He will only be 28 years old at that time. This is another thing Cobb may have learned from Jennings. Yes, Jennings deal with the Vikings got him a big deal, but he might not even finish his current contract before the Vikings release him. Someone might sign him again, but chances are for very low money. By Cobb taking a few million less now, it may help a future contract if he has a Super Bowl under his belt and the same type of yards he has last season.

 

All I have to say is I am super happy to have Cobb on our team for the next four years. I love my team. I love the players. There isn’t a bad seed amongst them.

 

On a final note, I feel so bad for the Lions losing Suh. It’s excellent news for the Pack, but, oh, man, the Lions. That defense was what got it done. It is remarkable that Suh who is known for his bad attitude and crappy moral code, went to the Dolphins where the culture fits his had attitude. Man, how things work out.

 

 

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Go For Two: NFL week 7 games of the week

What a week 6! Cowboys beat the Seahawks? God, now the Cowboys will never stop being the game of the week, or the game picked to be shown on regular television when the Niners or Raiders aren’t on. Blech.

Some things we learned, Patriots were counted out too early. Joe Flacco had a huge week. The Falcons are on a downward slide, and the Browns are a legit, winning football team? Well, let’s not get a head of ourselves, but they are 3-2 and are at .600.

Who’s the best in the NFC East? Well, the Eagles made fast work of the Giants, so they aren’t going to be too keen on all the glory going to the Cowboys.

The week had some very, very thrilling games. Green Bay Packers versus the Miami Dolphins goes without saying. It came down to the last 3 minutes and Green Bay needed a lot of heroics to win that game. A Rodgers fumble almost ended the game with 1:37 remaining, but a head’s up play by Lang occurred when he quickly fell on the ball. In all actuality, it really came down to the last six seconds. The play before went to a rookie, Adams, on a fake snap and the last play to a backup now starter (?) tight end in Quarless.

The Bengals and the Panthers went into overtime and they came out the other side STILL tied. San Diego and Oakland was a close game, but I didn’t see it, as I don’t give two craps about either of those teams.

This all begs the question, what surprises will come during week 7?

Week 7 games:

Bengals (3-1-1) at Colts (4-2): This should be a good game. The leads in the AFC North and AFC South will battle it out. It was a big disappointment when Cincinnati did not get a win against the Panthers. They had every opportunity. The kicker missed the big one, and that was that. The Bengals and the Colts have good offenses, but where this battle will be fought is on the Bengals defense, which is ranked 28th overall. Andrew Luck and company have the potential to put up big numbers and this Bengals defense is going to have it’s hands full. It could be a shootout, but if the Bengals defense doesn’t step it up, the Colts might do a repeat of the Jaguars or the Titans, and have a blowout.

Panthers (3-1-1) at Packers (4-2): This is a tough game. Even our Eligible Receiver writers can’t decide to get on, or off, the Panthers bandwagon. One week they look great, the next week, not so much. What will they bring against the Packers?

The Packers are obviously coming off a huge high from their last drive-for-a-win against the Miami Dolphins. The thing is, on paper, the GBP look like crap. 26th overall offense, 19th on overall defense. I get the offense because Eddie Lacy keeps shitting eggs every week, save for one – the Vikings game (not really too competitive eh?) I know this not only because the GBP are my favorite team, but I have him on my fantasy team and his ass is getting benched. If he improves later in the year, I’ll give him the start, but right now, come on dude — get it together.

A little more surprising is that the GBP are 20th in passing. Really, the great Aaron Rodgers isn’t up there in the stats? That’s concerning. We’ve been missing this season a great third receiver option. Perhaps after last week in Miami, Davante Adams, the rookie who had the head’s up play of the game by catching Rodgers faked spike, will now fulfill that role left vacant my James Jones from last year, and two years ago from Greg Jennings. (FYI, I always get a little happy when receivers leave a team for more money and then they wind-up on shitty-shitty teams. You’re welcome to the money Raiders James Jones and Minnesota Vikings Greg Jennings.)

49ers (4-2) at Broncos (4-1): These two teams are pretty evenly matched, save for the Broncos poor showing at the run. It will be interesting to see how the Niners do against the Broncos. Niners have won against two good teams, Dallas and Eagles, but were a little too close for comfort against the Rams who had to get their quarterback off the street and was actually released from the team at one point. One of their two losses was to Chicago, which is still trying to determine it’s identity. The Cardinals are also a mixed bag, as they are a good team with a lot of injuries. The Broncos will prove to be their hardest challenge yet.

As for the Broncos, they have handily beat all the teams they won against. Their only loss was to Seattle, in Seattle. I feel as if, much like the GBP Achilles heel is the Niners, so is Seattle the Achilles heel of Denver.

Therefore, the Niners will be a great challenge for Denver and I think that absolutely can win.

I look forward to this game. I do believe it is the game of the week.

Side notes:

Are you thinking I left out the Saints at the Lions. No, no I did not.

Also, as is the tradition this year, yet another horrible Monday night game. Honestly? Who picks these? Yes, Monday’s game between the Rams and the Niners ended up being better than we thought, but still, come on. That wound-up being a good turn-of-luck. This week, ughh. Steelers at home against the Texans. Why? Seriously, why?

Side notes 2:

Get better guys, we need our starting cornerbacks

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com

Go For Two: Final Thoughts on Green Bay

I’m sad.

My Green Bay packers are done for the season.

This is the time to look back and reflect on the season. To appreciate the things we did well, and to take a hard look at what we need and should improve on.

Offense.

We weathered the storm of missing our two best players on offense — Aaron Rodgers and Randall Cobb. It was blatantly apparent in the last two games what magic those two can create when working together. I thought we did fairly well when we got Matt Flynn in there. Yet, it highlighted what everyone has been mumbling about for a while. The protection for Aaron Rodgers in the pocket needs to improve. Aaron is the best in the game. He has to release the ball that quick because his offensive line doesn’t allow for all that much time to throw the ball before the pocket collapses. Matt Flynn tried his best, but his inability to get the ball out lightening-quick highlighted just how bad the pocket protection is when the Packers don’t have Aaron Rodgers. What I’m trying to say, is Aaron Rodgers masks just how bad our offensive line is. That is something I would certainly like to see fixed in the offseason.

Other things I would like fixed. Our random inability to score in the redzone was a bit weird as the season wore on. James Jones, while not completely reverting to his old ways, did seem to lose some of his laser-focus he displayed last year. He dropped some mighty important throws in that postseason game. That makes me nervous.

I’d like to get rid of Jermichael Finley. He is too inconsistent. While he may be good at blocking (I don’t know), he is not a great pass-catcher. I would love a stat of how many balls he drops. I’d rather not have him open, and have Aaron Rodgers questioning whether if he throws Jermichael the ball, that he will actually catch it. Plus, then Jermichael whines and cries to the media about Aaron. How about he looks at himself before he starts complaining about others?

I have really enjoyed the emergence of Boykin.

I loved that Mason Crosby got himself back on track this year. He showed true grit when he took a reduced contract, but with multiple incentives, to stay on the Packers. That’s integrity.

Eddie Lacy. I love him. I absolutely adore him. Great running back, great person, great perseverance. He really came through for the team this year. He didn’t start off great, and I, probably like others, were thinking that he would peter out like Cedric Benson did. Nope. He excelled. Boy-oh-boy do I hope he wins rookie of the year. I love watching interviews with him. Great smile, great character. I honestly can not say enough nice things about him.

Jordy Nelson deserves an award this season. He was a rock when everything around him was falling apart. Calm, focused, never wavered. Always amazing. Great player on and off the field. Love you Jordy.

Defense.

What do I say about defense that hasn’t already been said? I did hear Aaron say something that did give me pause. That the defense held the Niners to 23 points and that’s a game the offense should win. Yes, in fact, he was right (I would never presume to argue with Rodgers). I’m constantly complaining that we allow multiple games with over 30 points. Here was one where we didn’t. I think, in this particular game, a lot of it was, for the offense, the slow start, the multiple sacks, the dropped (big play) balls by James Jones.

However, on the last drive, all I kept thinking was, just stop them here. 3rd and 8 — here is your chance. They couldn’t. mental errors, losing contain, broken tackles … all the things that have plagued the Packers defense for the last few years. Now, I know, we didn’t have any of our starts. Still, they, too, make tons of mental errors. Also? I’m not super happy with this bend not break theory of Capers. Bending is not okay because we do break on the big plays. We let a lot of big plays happen. enough.

Enough is enough with the defense. We spent the last two years working on our defense. Do something. I still think the answer is firing Dom Capers. However, we need to get a good defensive coordinator. I know, how about my alumni coach Mark Dantonio? That would be a dream. His record, especially on defense, is impressive.

Now I root for Denver. Peyton Manning — you’re amazing. Classy, talented, and a great leader. You have showed your greatness on and off the field. You have put to rest what Manning brother is the greatest – you. As if there was any debate (actually, obviously there was, which was ridiculous). Plus, this needs to be your last year brother. I worry about you. That neck of yours is made of glass. Please just win this Super Bowl and have that be enough. I don’t want to hear about you in a few years when some articles explains how you are in constant, chronic pain.

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Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com.