Right Side Of Packers’ Offensive Line Will Be Remade

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Cole Madison

It’s possible that one of the Green Bay Packers’ later draft picks could end up playing one of the biggest roles this coming season. That would be fifth-round pick Cole Madison.

Madison played right tackle at Washington State, but has been projected as a guard in the pros. Where do the Packers see him? After the draft — based on what the braintrust had to say — it looked like guard. However, Madison played both guard and tackle during the rookie orientation camp.

On one had, swell. The Packers and coach Mike McCarthy always preach about versatility and its value when speaking of their offensive linemen. And that usually translates into a backup player who maybe can play tackle, possibly can play guard and, hell, we could just give the guy some snaps at center. See: Don Barclay.

This is an interesting transition year for the Packers’ offensive line, however. There’s currently a hole at right guard. That position was filled by Jahri Evans in 2017, but he hasn’t been re-signed and probably won’t be. There’s going to be a hole at right tackle. The Packers asked the overpaid P.O.S. Bryan Bulaga to take a pay cut and he refused. If that blown ACL-waiting-to-happen isn’t released this year, he will be next year when the final year of his contract rolls around.

In short, the right side of the Packers’ offensive line needs to be remade. In fill-in duty at both guard and tackle, Justin McCray played well enough in 2017 that the Packers are likely looking at him as a possible starter at right guard. Madison should be in the mix over there as well.

It isn’t unprecedented for the Packers to start a rookie at right tackle. Mark Tauscher was pretty successful and he was a seventh-round pick.

The feeling is, the Packers will have an open competition at right guard. We suspect McCray will be the frontrunner and eventual winner there. If someone can prove capable at right tackle early, then Bulaga will be gone. It’s pretty simple there. If you’re asked to take a pay cut, don’t and the team doesn’t release your fat ass, then there’s no incentive for anyone else to accept a pay cut in the future.

Or maybe these are all just rookie mistakes by general manager Brian Gutekunst. He seems smarter than that, though.

About The Author

Mordecai is a writer living in Los Angeles. He primarily writes screenplays, but also does crap like this because GREEN BAY PACKERS, baby!

30 Comments on "Right Side Of Packers’ Offensive Line Will Be Remade"

  1. MJ

    I wouldn’t go as far as calling Bulaga a POS. He has been a serviceable-to-good RT. Yes, injuries have been a concern in the past as they currently are. However, suggesting the guy to take a paycut, him refusing, and the team simply going back to its business as if nothing had happened damages the front-office credibility. A dog that barks but doesn’t bite. They must be onto something regarding the RT position, to the point that every RT candidate has to be tremendously bad for the team to keep Bulaga. If they spot a viable starter to take his place, he will be cut. No point in having asked for the paycut if there are not going to be consequences afterwards following his refusal.

    • Cheese

      They asked the grossly overpaid Randall Cobb to take a paycut and he refused. Instead of cutting Cobb and replacing him with the no brainer, former receiver, failed 3rd string running back project Ty Montgomery, they decided to cut the always more productive Jordy Nelson, who WAS willing to take a paycut after consistently outplaying his contracts.

      • Moolla

        Was Cobb officially asked to take a pay-cut?

        All I remember was talk that the Packers should ask him to take one

      • MJ

        I don’t recall Cobb being asked to take a pay cut. However, his replacement is already there in Ty Montgomery, at least for this season. Then, Ty becomes a free agent.

        • Cheese

          He will probably be named the starter because of all the time invested into his conversion project status, you know the team likes to give at least 3-4 wasted years to see if those work out, combined with McCarthy’s stubbornness to ever admit making the wrong decision. Otherwise, I see no compelling reason to put Montgomery ahead of Williams or Aaron Jones. They both had more yards than him by a long shot. You can blame it on injury but that’s just another argument that Montgomery can’t handle the wear and tear of being a RB. He should be at WR.

  2. I don’t think an NFL team can release an injured player unless the team and player reach an injury settlement. I think Bulaga already said he isn’t taking a pay cut, so I doubt he would agree to an injury settlement.

    My guess is Bulaga starts the season on the PUP list.

    For the well being of the 2018 Packers and QB#1 if there is an open competition for right guard and tackle, and no new faces are added, then I hope all the old faces have made a massive 2nd and 3rd year jump!

    I guess it is out of the question based on some recent contracts to discuss improving the rest of the Line except LT.

  3. PF4L

    I thought about the injury settlement issue as i read the article. As usual, Howard proves once again why some regard him as the 2nd most informed Packer fan to ever grace this website.

    Props to Mordi for bringing up the elephant in the room. The current state of the O line. Some of us think this isn’t a problem, some of us know better. Bulaga realistically will be put on the PUP list and we most likely won’t see him until week 6 or thereafter. As far as guard, i think Gute is waiting to see how his guys do in camp, thinking he has Jahri on the back burner just in case. Unless Jahri is asking for stupid money, he should be signed regardless, he’s cheap, and worst case scenario is, he is a quality back up. Something the O line could use more of. McCray to me is a back up, and nothing more. Kyle Murphy, may or may not be serviceable, i’m still not sold on him. Which leads me to Spriggs, A trade up 2nd round pick. Obviously he was picked to be a starter, you don’t trade up for a 2nd rounder to use as depth. So if were not talking about Spriggs being inserted as a plug and play right tackle by now in his 3rd season, you can safely describe him as a bust.

    The O line is a serious issue. I don’t know how many times i re-watch plays where our 5 lineman can’t cover a 3 man rush and Rodgers is dodging out of trouble. Or watching Rodgers get leveled as a lineman is standing guard over empty space. Or when a guard slips out to help a tackle, or a center slips over to help a guard and a linebacker runs in untouched and levels Rodgers. I get irate watching that shit.

    As i wrote in the beginning of last season, Rodgers was on pace to be sacked over 60 times. As it turned out, the Packers QB’s were the second most sacked in the league last season. The way i figure it, no one will be held accountable until/if Rodgers suffers his next injury and McCarthy needs a fall guy.

    What else? Safety…is Jones ready to take the lead role in place of Burnett? Based on his coverage last season, the jury is out there also. We already know that Dix won’t be calling plays for the secondary.

    I can’t remember a Packer team with so many problem area’s heading into one season. This is amazing, always more than the year before. Did anyone recognize this as a pattern the last 3,4 years.

    Yes, i did.

    • Drater

      TT’s incompetence will take a few years to flush out:

      – recent draft busts (Rollins, Spriggs, Thornton, Randall, Davis, Fackrell, etc.)
      -propensity for injured players (King, Biegel, M Adams, etc.)
      -inability/unwillingness to re-sign productive DBs (Hayward and Hyde)

    • MJ

      The sack number per se is not the whole story. It would be more telling if we knew how many seconds those plays took. My point is that if the sack happens in 3 sec or less, then yes, the OL didn’t do it’s job. however, 4, 5 or 6 sec into a play, it is inevitable that the pass rush hit home. Was Rodgers holding on to the ball for too long? That was not an uncommon sight. And it can happen for three different reasons: (i) the play design, (ii) Rodgers wanting to hit a home run instead of gaining safe 6yds and (iii) the WRs taking too long to gain separation, forcing what’s known as a coverage sack.

      It would take some serious time to re watch every play to see whether (i), (ii) or (iii) is the case. The only people that have that time are beat writers and team coaches, and maybe a few really hardcore fans.

      Regarding point (ii), before someone tells me that Rodgers is the second coming of Christ on a football field and no one comes close of doing what he does, please remember that Bradford was making a living out of short quick passes before injury struck. If a play is designed like that, and the QB doesn’t mind taking the quick 6yds instead of expecting a 35yd pass on every play, it can be done without tapping into Rodgers’s superpowers.

      • Cheese

        The Packers were one of the worst in the league for giving up sacks last season and Rodgers missed over half the year. Take that however you want. Maybe Hundley holds onto the ball too long as well, or it’s play design/ receivers not getting separation.

      • PF4L

        MJ, i don’t re-watch every play, not even close. But what i do, is i DVR every game, but while i’m watching, if i want to know how, who and why a play went the way it did, i will replay it until i know exactly what happened.

        So this does two things, informs me on what really happened, and why it happened. Also it puts the game on delay enabling me to watch the game and fast forward over the commercials. When i watch a Packer game, i NEVER watch, or wait for commercials. I don’t ever have to be a slave to live tv this way, plus…i don’t ever have to rush to get home for the start of the game.

        Plus, i never miss watching a game. If someone were to ask me whats the last Packer game i missed. I wouldn’t have an answer.

        • PF4L

          Drafter….what you wrote, isn’t recognized enough. Big Ted set this team back years. It won’t get repaired in one draft.

          It MIGHT get repaired before Rodgers retires, but they have to have about a 70% success rate regarding future player acquisitions in the next 2 or 3 years. Not to mention Pettine living up to his billing.

          Good post Drafter.

      • tupac

        TIL: Every time Rodgers tries to make the best out of a play and doesn’t, there was an obvious 6-yard play that he decided not to take just waiting to happen.

        • PF4L

          I don’t think it’s that simple Tupac, i have a feeling there are more dynamics at work during a play.

          At the end of the day i’m not going to question Rodger’s decision making, or want to tell him what “he should be doing” during a play. i think he’s done ok for himself without my assistance.

          If anyone else wants to pick apart his faults, i say go for it, it’s entertaining to read. I just don’t want to be that guy.

  4. PF4L

    Well, maybe the reason the O line looks terrible, out of position and missing assignments …is because Rodgers holds onto the ball too long. Sure, we could go with that i guess.

    But i’ll stick to my original post, as i always do.

  5. PF4L

    Fun Fact: This just came to mind, if anyone has access to the end of the Dallas/Packer game in week 5 last season.

    About 39 seconds left in the game. Rodgers gets sacked. Not sure if it was Joe Buck, but the announcer was questioning why Nelson was on the sideline during this drive. Troy Aikman then says….paraphrasing: If Rodgers keeps getting hit like that, he’ll be on the sideline next week against Minnesota.

    How did that proclamation turn out?

    • Kato

      Holy shit. Well, I know a lot of packers fans hate Troy Aikman, but the guy is smart, and him basically predicting Rodgers injury isn’t even close to the only reason why. I generally tend to like his insight. There is a reason Fox has him in basically their #1 broadcast crew

  6. tupac

    This idea that offering a pay cut, but not cutting if they refuse, is only opening the door to no one ever having to agree, is baseless. You only offer a pay cut to someone you want to keep.

    It’s as simple as saying we don’t feel you are worth what you are being paid, to the point that it could effect your employment with us, but we like you as a person and an asset enough that we are willing to make sure you are in our plans at the right price point.

    And that is the deal, every team is always exploring options to get better. It doesn’t mean the team will find a better option, but it means if they do they will probably go that route.

    Any player thinking that being offered a pay cut is some kind of bluff in the future is just dumb.

    • PF4L

      So, here’s what i got out of this….

      Jordy, we don’t think you are worth what we’re paying you, but we like you as a person and still think you are an asset to this team. So all we are asking of you is to take a small pay cut of only 87.6%. You’ll barely notice a difference in your check.

      Sound reasonable Jordy?

  7. TyKo Steamboat

    I see those bizarre advertisement/click-bait pics finally transitioned from toenails, lard asses & gross nuclear disaster pics to far more appropriate ass & titties pics. It’s about time… this is America becoming great again.

    • Cheese

      I don’t know about you, but I’m still getting pictures of one of the nastiest looking girls I’ve ever seen. To the point where I curse and have to cover the screen with my hand every time it pops up. Thanks Monty.

    • PF4L

      I thought i settled the labor dispute issue Kato. Maybe i was wrong. If i am wrong, and this places is disbanding, i’d like to take this time to acknowledge all that read my post through the years.

      You’re welcome.

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