Is Dom Capers Finally Done?

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Dom Capers

With the Green Bay Packers out of the playoffs for the first time since 2006, anything seems to be possible. At least when it comes to change.

At the top of pretty much everyone’s list would be defensive coordinator Dom Capers. Once again the Packers needed the defense to step up and once again, it did not. The Packers currently rank 26th in total defense.

Usually we have these conversations after the Packers flame out in the playoffs. This year, there won’t be any playoffs. This year, the Packers’ final two games of the season will mean nothing. And it sounds like coach Mike McCarthy has already started to evaluate potential change. It sounds like Capers — finally — may not be safe.

“We have to be honest about the patterns of negativity and positivity,” McCarthy said. “What comes from that, how do you learn from that, how do you improve? To win championships, you have to go through adverse moments. We’ve had plenty this year. Not hitting our goal, not playing to the standard of the Green Bay Packers is definitely an adverse situation we need to learn from.”

While we fully expect team president Mark Murphy to keep the status quo, McCarthy runs the coaching staff and is free to make changes there as he sees fit.

He certainly didn’t seem opposed to that when he spoke on Thursday.

“Unfortunately, I can do that right now,” McCarthy said. “That’s the unfortunate part of where we are as a team. Listening is probably the most important part of communication. Watching is another very important nonverbal information that you can gather in these next two weeks. I think you have to make sure you look at everything and be direct and honest and keep the emotion out of it. I think having two weeks to think about it will take the emotion out of it. We have to get better through the adversity that we’ve been through this year.”

We don’t know what’s going through McCarthy’s head, but he clearly isn’t happy with how this season has gone. Unlike past years when the Packers actually made the playoffs and then flamed out, McCarthy would call it a successful season. He obviously isn’t calling this a successful season.

If we had to bet, some sort of change is coming. Capers has coordinated some very successful defenses, but none of them have been in Green Bay lately.

The Packers haven’t had a top-10 defense since Capers’ second season as coordinator. Is that all on him?

Not necessarily. Capers’ defense only works when the team is able to rush the passer effectively. So some of the problem is lack of strong enough personnel. We know this, the Packers know this and GM Ted Thompson knows this. Thompson hasn’t done a good enough job of supplying the defense with what it needs.

Still, it seems somewhat clear that the game has passed Capers by.

Remember the revolutionary nitro package the Packers developed this season? Well, when the hell do they use that anymore? Certainly, injuries are an issue, but we expect that with the Packers every year. To assume anyone on the Packers will be healthy for 16 games is a fool’s errand. It never happens.

While I am certainly not opposed to Capers hitting the road, he definitely isn’t the only culprit in the failure of this season.

About The Author

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

15 Comments on "Is Dom Capers Finally Done?"

  1. Kato

    I will believe it when I see it.

    Listening is probably the most important part of communication? Wtf is he even trying to say? And how does that relate to this situation? Capers should be done, but let’s be honest, he hasn’t gotten much help from the personnel office.

    • Empacador

      I was ready to comment before I read your comment Kato. Couldn’t agree more. Reading or listening to the McNugget spew his verbal diarrhea makes me hear fingernails raking across a chalkboard. “We have to be honest about the patterns of negativity and positivity,” or “We have to get better through the adversity that we’ve been through this year.” WTF? Your defense has adversity written on it in big capital letters every season ending crash and burn you dipshit.

  2. PF4L

    At the top of my list is Ted, hire a new GM, he takes care of the rest underneath him.

    As i said a long time ago, Capers will be the fall guy. I don’t remind you that to blow my horn, it just simply makes sense. This current Hierarchy isn’t exactly hard to read.

    Murphy wouldn’t dare make a football decision about the direction of this team. As President of the Green Bay Packers, that “apparently” isn’t his job.

    Ted won’t do anything – hell, we don’t even know if he’s still alive.

    Mike isn’t going to fire himself.

    Bye Dom.

    Lets make a list of all the team needs this off-season, just to make it easy, simply take last years list and add to it.

    This team is fucked.

  3. Gort

    Unfortunately P4FL is probably right.
    I again urge others who own a proxy vote to vote “no” along with me.
    Will it matter? Who knows, but most of us either didn’t vote or were a simple “yes” to all.
    Maybe enough “no” votes will help shake something loose.

  4. Cheese

    “With the Green Bay Packers out of the playoffs for the first time since 2006”

    They didn’t make the playoffs in 2008. #FakeNews

  5. MJ

    Even if we had strong pass rushers, Capers takes two years too late to address an issue. We finally contain the Seahawks a year ago… on a regular season game, after we had been eliminated from the playoffs by: Kaepernick x2 and Wilson the three previous seasons. In 2012 we couldn’t stop a run up the middle (bad DL plus aging AJ Hawk plus Brad Jones). In 2013 we started strong against the run, but by midseason our DL crashed down. Safeties were an issue that year (McMillian, MD Jennings). The year 2014 saw a pretty decent defense. Barrington and Matthews at ILB solidified the middle. In 2015 the run defense softened, but the pass defense was pretty good, with Randall and Rollins contributing as rookies. 2016 saw a horrid pass defense that made our run D look better than it was: we defended the pass so badly that there was no motivation there to run on us, since every pass resulted in 1st and 10. Pass defense continues to be awful as of now. And the run defense wasn’t satisfactory either. The bright spots this year are Martinez and Clark. Sometimes it was bad personnel, but then why insist with playing those guys. Other times it is assignment issues or inability to adapt once they find a crack in our defense. That is on scheme and coaching. Capers keeps lagging two to three years.

    • PF4L

      If were pointing to Martinez and Clark as successes on this team, the bar is set pretty low. I don’t mean to disrespect Martinez and Clark. But they are serviceable players, they are not play makers. Hell, last season, Martinez got benched for awhile.

      This defense needs play makers. Seems like i keep writing that every season….smh.

      To go one further, to hell with all the players that fans like to name that have “potential”. I never saw a Championship caliber team built on potential.

      Potential is a dream, that hasn’t come true.

  6. Deepsky

    I could see the Packers firing Capers, but the question I have to ask is, who do you get?

    McCarthy wants a head coach of the defense. That means someone with experience who knows more about defense than he does. That means he won’t hire someone who is a position coach and would get a promotion to coordinator.

    The only guys I could clearly say would be better than Capers would be Wade Phillips, Vic Fangio, Romeo Crennel, Gregg Williams, Dick Lebeau (welcome home), Leslie Frazier, Steve Spagnuola, maybe Jim Schwartz, but they won’t leave their current teams.

    Maybe Mike Nolan?

    • Empacador

      McNugget has an entire laundry list of assistant head coaches on the team. He titled them himself. He’ll promote from within, they’ll be fine, pick up right where they left off. /s

  7. PF4L

    Does NOT matter, if Ted is still the Circus Master, it doesn’t matter. Are we thinking Capers has been holding Ted back? Is that where were going? I have never seen a GM fuck the pooch as Ted has on so many personnel matters.

    The more i think of Capers being the fall guy, the more i want to call bullshit on Ted Thompson. Fire Capers because he isn’t performing, like maybe years ago. don’t fire him now because you need a fall guy.

    Capers has had worse seasons than this in the past, why wasn’t he fired then?

    • Empacador

      Seems like they only commence with a token firing when they don’t make the playoffs. Bob Sanders in 2008 anyone? Other than Slocum who was sacrificed after the 2014 NFC championship fiasco. And that was how many years too late?

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