Defeating the Bears last week was the most creative planning for a Packers game that I remember seeing. The coaching staff used both running backs effectively, used plenty of jet movement, rear side screens to catch quarterbacks, and even had a few deep shots. If call-to-play can remain innovative, the team can place points against anyone.
This week, both Rodgers and Lafleur hinted at more creativity to come. Let’s review what crime might do next.
Fun with the defenders
The 49ers and Vikings pulled the linebacker into the new generation of football. Over the past three years, they have been the only teams that have consistently benefited from full-backs. Now Dolphins (formerly Badger) uses Alec Ingold just about everywhere to attack, the Rams ran 19 plays with a wide receiver at linebacker and he’s worked, and the 49ers are doing the same with Kyle Juszczyk.
Many Packer fans were surprised when her first backhand shot was last weekend with Josiah DeGuara and Aaron Jones. Deguara was drafted a few years ago to be the Packers version of a versatile gun and got banned fairly well for the first couple of weeks.
The Packers have tried several defenders in the LaFleur era: Dan Vitale, Dominque Dafney, John Lovett, and now Josiah Deguara who is in his third season.
If Deguerre proves as dependable as Alec Ingold and Kyle Joshik in both the passing and running game, that opens the door to attack. The team can use it to go to an empty group even on 12/21 people. He can run vertical ways off the field during play. They can even hand the ball to him as a change every now and then.
AJ Dillon can also be useful on some of these sites. LaFleur has stated that he doesn’t want to be seen as a defender, but he showed at TD last week that he clearly has the blocking cut out for the lead. Keep going for Pony combos with Dillon and Jones on the court and use Dillon as a key block enough to open him up flat on some play-moving passes.
Speaking of Dillon, he had a relatively good game against the Bears, but still averaged less than 4 YPC. A large part of that average was its use, in yardage-palace situations. I think another boost to attack will come in matches when Dillon is able to cut some long kicks. Remember, he was 40 times faster than Jones.
Christian Watson started his career in a game of skill, toasting Patrick Peterson in a double move and then making a sure landing. Since then, he hasn’t been involved much in attack (he had number one shots last week) but he has shown the ability to run right by opposing corners a few times.
Boot camp star Romeo Dobbs didn’t gain much in looks either, but he did have what coach Lafleur described as perhaps the most impactful play in the game last week when he took the WR screen 20 yards at 2second abbreviation and 28.
As the team continues to ramp up the formation and run the ball as they like with pull-and-drag drills, the defenses will eventually bring safety in the box to stop the run. That’s when Watson and Doubs become important.
Not many teams have challenged Rodgers to deliver deep side kicks to fast receivers in his career and I’m sure he would enjoy the opportunity to pick young angles trying to defend the team’s deep threats without a security aid.
Look for the team to also continue to use the two rookie receivers for on-air sweeps, on-screen plays, and other miscellaneous YAC opportunities. I also wouldn’t be surprised if Watson eventually gets a nod at the payout kick and Doubs at the gambling payout. If push comes to shove and Guti needs a place on the list, I can’t imagine having that many players above Amary Rodgers.
Mike Price is a lifelong fan of the Packers who currently lives in Utah. You can follow him on Twitter at Tweet embed