Four Downs 一系列的文章出自於footballoutsiders這個網站,基本上他對於數據非常重視,而且提供球迷一些非常不一樣的觀點,譬如非常紅的Vick在這個網站中基本上被認為是一名不合格的四分衛,愛好美式足球的朋友建議可以常去逛逛。
Green Bay Packers

What Happened Last Year?

所有糟糕的情形都發生了。Javon Walker在第一場比賽就因為ACL(膝蓋十字韌帶)撕裂整季報銷。因為傷病使得包裝工必須動用到第五名跑衛;Brett Favre在季初打得相當不錯,但是隨著球季的進行而表現每況愈下,到了球季尾聲他就好像只是把球丟出去而希望它能夠飛到正確的地方。防守組跟進攻組一樣爛;而特別組甚至更爛。

Who’s Leaving?

可想而知,第一個問題就是Brett Favre下一季還會不會回來。從上一次他說要開始考慮退休為止到目前都沒有明確的答案。對綠灣來說在這個位置上最好的解答會是Jon Kitna;從在Cincinnati開始他就是球隊需要時就會站出來的人;但相對的,他也不會是球隊未來支柱的那一類型球員。

即使Favre會回來再打一季,包裝工的進攻也會跟以往不同;三名跑衛Ahman Green、Najeh Davenport和Tony Fisher今年都是非受限的自由球員,即使他們都能走出那個受傷病所困而表現不佳的球季,也沒有任何理由花大錢把他們三個都留下來(註一)。防守組跟上一季相比則不會有太大的變動,但是防守第一線的Aaron Kampman和Grady Jackson也都是非受限的自由球員。(註二)

Whom Should They Sign?

一旦Favre退休,去年第一輪選進的Aaron Rodgers在這個位置上會得到非常多的機會。但是包裝工應該也會簽下一些老兵以防Aaron Rodgers並未準備好。Craig Nall,這名包裝工於2002年第五輪選進的在過去四季都跟在Favre身後學習,如果新的球季包裝工想使用他們過去所習慣的進攻方式(西岸式進攻),Nall會得到非常多的上場機會。但是新教練Mike McCarthy有他自己的想法,Nall不見得會在計畫之中。

假如Green、Davenport和Fisher全部都離開了,綠灣應該會在市場上簽下一名明星跑衛,像是Shaun Alexander、Edgerrin James或Jamal Lewis,但那會是個大錯誤;他們應該嘗試去留下並使用Samkon Gado和Noah Herron;兩人上一季都是新人並且領的是最低薪資,先不論他們是否值得栽培,至少上一季他們和Green過去一樣有效率。

一旦Kampman和Jackson離開防守一線,西雅圖的防守絆鋒Rocky Bernard會是一個非常好的選擇;Bernard的跑陣防守或許不如Jackson那麼好,但是他對傳球防守相當有一套,況且有他在,可以減輕中線衛Nick Barnett的壓力


註一:包裝工已於3/6和Green簽下一年短約。
註二:包裝工已於3/11和Kampman簽下一紙複數年合約。

原文

by Michael David Smith

What Happened Last Year?

Everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Javon Walker was lost for the season with a torn ACL in the first game. Injuries reduced the Packers to their fifth-string running back. Brett Favre started the season playing well but regressed badly as the season wore on, and by the end of the season he was just chucking the ball down the field and hoping it would land in the right place. The defense was every bit as bad as the offense, and the special teams were even worse.

Who’s Leaving?

The first question, of course, is whether or not Brett Favre will be back at quarterback. There haven’t been any clear indications, but when he last spoke publicly he said he was leaning toward retirement. The best choice for Green Bay in that case would be Jon Kitna, who showed in Cincinnati that he is a capable player when his team needs him, but also that he won’t stand in the way of the development of the team’s quarterback of the future.

Even if Favre is back, the Packers’ offense will look different. Running backs Ahman Green, Najeh Davenport and Tony Fisher are all unrestricted free agents. Given that they’re all coming off injuries and subpar seasons, there’s no reason to think Green Bay should spend a lot of money to keep them.

The defense will return most of its starters, but two starting defensive linemen, Aaron Kampman and Grady Jackson, are unrestricted free agents.

Whom Should They Sign?

If Favre retires, Aaron Rodgers, last year’s first-round draft pick, will get every opportunity to earn the job. But the Packers will sign some veteran free agent to be there in case Rodgers shows that he’s not ready. Craig Nall, the Packers’ fifth-round pick in 2002, has spent the last four seasons on the bench behind Favre and is now an unrestricted free agent. If the Packers planned to use the same offense they used in years past, it would make a lot of sense to keep Nall around. But with new head coach Mike McCarthy bringing in his own schemes, Nall might not fit with the plans.

Assuming Green, Davenport, and Fisher all go elsewhere, Green Bay might be tempted to sign one of the big-name free agent running backs, like Shaun Alexander, Edgerrin James or Jamal Lewis. That would be a mistake. The best choice would be to keep Samkon Gado and Noah Herron, two players coming off their rookie years and making the league minimum, and see whether they can develop. Gado and Herron were just as effective last season as Green was.

With Kampman and Jackson leaving the defense, Seattle defensive tackle Rocky Bernard would be a good signing. Bernard isn’t as stout against the run as Jackson was at his peak, but he’s a very good pass-rusher, and he’s sturdy enough on the inside that he’ll take some heat off middle linebacker Nick Barnett.
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