Morning Buzz: Packers face plenty of decisions

Aaron Nagler
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Welcome to your Morning Buzz, rounding up news and views regarding the Green Bay Packers from around the web and here at Grab a strong cup of coffee and get caught up on everything you need to know about the Packers.

Packers general manager Ted Thompson has many decisions to make in the upcoming weeks when it comes to his team’s pending free agents, but two of the biggest issues he needs to deal with are a couple of players who aren’t living up to their contracts. Pete Dougherty a high-priced duo.

From Pete:

Thompson has to decide what to do about linebacker Clay Matthews and receiver Randall Cobb.

Matthews ($11.1 million) and Cobb ($9.5 million) are paid like stars. They have the second- and third-highest salaries on the Packers’ roster in 2017, so they have to produce big. But after the last two seasons, there’s good reason to question whether they’ll provide enough bang for that buck.

We’ll know Thompson’s thinking in the next six weeks. His actions, or non-actions, will tell all. But from where I sit, he needs to do something about Matthews and Cobb.

Packers director of football operations Eliot Wolf will be interviewing for the Indianapolis Colts’ open general manager position. Ryan Wood has all the latest.

Ryan also has a numbers-based look from PFF on the decline of the Packers’ young cornerback trio:

I spoke with ESPN’s Matt Bowen about the importance of the Senior Bowl in the draft process:

Packer Plus looks at the top plays on offense and defense and asks for your votes on the most important ones.

Elsewhere, Albert Breer writes in his latest for The MMQB that he wonders if the Packers might possibly change their weekly practice routine.

From Breer:

It’ll be interesting to see if the Packers tweak how they manage game weeks in 2017 based on all the injuries that decimated their secondary and running backs. Green Bay went to a revised schedule a couple years ago that was similar to what Chip Kelly did in Philadelphia—with a regular practice on Saturdays before Sunday games, rather than just a walkthrough.

This is truly impressive from Ha Ha Clinton-Dix:

The Packers will officially have the 29th pick in April’s draft:

What happened the last time the Packers selected a player at 29?

ESPN’s Rob Demovsky writes that Jordy Nelson did not actually wear a Kevlar vest in the game against the Falcons, despite reports to the contrary.

Smart stuff from Zach Kruse on beleaguered second-year cornerback Damarious Randall:

More smart stuff, this time from Paul Noonan, on how sometimes it just isn’t as easy as blaming one person or aspect of a team for its failings.

From Paul:

It’s natural to want to blame someone for a playoff loss, but in truth the culprit was almost certainly bad luck. Blaming bad luck is extremely unfulfilling, but Shields was just the tip of the iceberg. You could complain that Dom Capers has worn out his welcome, and that he should have coached up his team, but Capers was playing with a decimated secondary that had Gunter as its lead, was missing Morgan Burnett, and after a few plays was even down Micah Hyde. Clay Matthews has looked either old or hobbled all year and Nick Perry still has a cast on. The Packer defense was bad, but they were bad for a good reason.

That might lead you to blame Ted Thompson, his draft and develop strategy, and the personnel problems he created, but doing so is also problematic. While it’s true Capers has had his share of bad defenses, he has also coached some top 10 units for the Packers, and the 2015 version happens to be one of those. The Packer defense was 9th overall, and against the pass they were 6th .

I don't necessarily agree with everything Paul writes in the piece, but it's all very good food for thought.

Twenty years ago today, the Packers brought the Lombardi Trophy home:

And now for something completely different:

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