Monday, August 11, 2003
I missed the Packers preseason game at Atlanta on Saturday, not on TV in my area, but it sounded like a stinker. The special teams allowed big plays by Allen Rossum, and the defense couldn't recover from them allowing two early touchdowns, on what I would assume was the Packers first team defense. Yuck. It almost replayed like the wild card loss at Lambeau against these same Falcons; big special team plays, and no big plays on offense or defense put the Packers in a hole they couldn't come back from. They eventually came back to win this game, but neither team had a first team players left on the field at the end either. Maybe I would have felt better watching it, but reading the scoring drive descriptions and the box scores on jsonline.com left me disappointed. The team doesn't seem any better now then they were at the end of last year. Individual player notes: Torrence Marshall had a big game. I am really surprised, but he has finally come on after a couple of season's on the roster, similar to another linebacker the Packers drafted in the 3rd round a few years ago named Brian Williams. Marshall might keep his roster spot after all, which is good because the player he backs up, strongside linebacker Hannibal Navies, has had a history of injury problems. Bryant Westbrook is playing safety and he might make a good safety, but the Packers need a quality 3rd cornerback more than they need a quality 3rd safety, so I don't know if this is a good idea. Akili Smith, not surprisingly, did not have a good first game. I am still not a fan of Smith, and I would have like the Packers to have at least given Eric Crouch a chance before he quit on him. Crouch might not have been great, but neither the Packers nor Rams even gave him a chance at QB in a preseason game, and I would have liked to have seen him play. Could he have been worse than Smith's first couple of NFL seasons? Is Carl Ford the Packers best WR so far? That is really disappointing. I wouldn't be surprised if some "Antonio Freeman is coming in for a work out" rumours started up if Javon Walker continues to disappoint as he did for me in the game vs. Kansas City and Donald Driver and Robert Ferguson's injuries persist. Gilbert Brown; after the promise he showed in 1996, basically everything since has been a disappointment. Almost signing with Jacksonville, injuries, weight problems, almost signing with Washington, and now a possibly career ending injury. I didn't like Gilbert's 6 year deal he signed just a couple of weeks ago and I hate it now. Big Daddy Wilkenson's name has been mentioned as a possible signing, but anybody with some size and can plug the middle might be useful at this point. Better luck to the Packers next week. Three more preseason games to go to sort out the roster, defensive line starters, and starting wide receivers.