Packers defense again non-existent, blown out in Washington
From Brian E Murphy, PackersInsider.com senior editor
~The Packers lost their 4th straight game, and in doing so, Dom Capers’ defense has allowed 153 points in that 4-game stretch.
This is the worst four-game stretch any Packers defense has produced since at least the 1950‘s, back before the Lombardi Era began.
That’s obviously terrible, and it was on full display last night for all the world to see under the lights, on national television.
38.5 points per game.
The Seattle Seahawks defense has allowed a total of 173 points on the whole season, just 20 more than the Packers in these four games have. They (Seattle) have had some injuries too, although nowhere near what the Packers have.
But they also do not have nearly as many first round draft picks stacked on their defense. Sherman, Chancellor are mid-round picks. Bobby Wagner was a second rounder. Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril were signed as free agent bargains.
Dom Capers has first rounders Kenny Clark, Clay Matthews, Nick Perry, Datone Jones, Julius Peppers, and Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix, as well as Damarious Randall who’s still out injured.
Injuries, contrary to the patented cliché, are a valid excuse. You can’t take away a Richard Sherman or Earl Thomas and replace them with a Kentrell Bryce or Makinton Dorleant and expect no dropoff.
The Packers have been asked to do so with Sam Shields and Randall being out for so long.
Clay Matthews missed the first three games of this skid, and his absence was obvious. Having him back last night, however, didn’t solve anything.
Kirk Cousins was made to look like 1984 Dan Marino last night, dropping dimes all over the field, and over the top of the swiss cheese Packers secondary. Where was Morgan Burnett? Where was Clinton-Dix?
They weren’t filling holes on the touchdown runs. They weren’t jumping into passing lanes, making big plays, getting any interceptions. They weren’t over the top, preventing the speedsters Jamison Crowder and DeSean Jackson from getting deep. They were often having to cover for the fact that the Packers were playing missing their best two corners, as well as losing Demetri Goodson to a wicked knee, leg injury, on special teams during the game.
It’s hard to blame Dom Capers with the guys in the secondary now.
However, remember the 2007 NFC Championship game, the home overtime loss to the NY Giants. That Giants team was playing with a bunch of scrubs in the secondary. But they played smart, and their front-7 helped to cover up the deficiencies on the back end.
This Packers front-7 is actually pretty healthy, still stacked with talent. Four guys at LB are first round talents, as well as Kenny Clark on the DL. Mike Daniels and Letroy Guion are healthy there as well.
The front-7 did not make Cousins jittery and uncomfortable. He has, in his career, had a tendency to throw bad balls when he feels that pressure. Not last night.
Last night he was throwing bombs 50, 60 yards downfield, with that wind, and hitting guys right in stride. Not overthrowing them, not under-throwing them.
While I don’t blame Capers totally for all this mess, it’s time for a change after this season, at defensive coordinator. Just like after the horrible defense of the 2008 season that prompted a change which led to Capers coming in, the time has run out. Ted Thompson has consistently provided Capers with talent on defense, using the majority of his premium picks on defense, and this defense continues to allow third down conversions left and right.
Capers has six games left.