Archive for the ‘nick collins’ Category

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 18:  Play is stoped as Nick Collins #36 of the Green Bay Packers is injured against the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 18, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The Green Bay Packers have released safety Nick Collins for injury reason.

The Packers weren’t comfortable with Collins returning after his neck injury that occurred last season, and doubts have surrounded his ability to ever play the game again.

Collins’ agent confirmed that the Packers told Collins of his release by text messagethis morning.

He played in 102 games and had a key interception for a touchdown in the Packers’ Super Bowl win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2011.

Collins’ agent and Mike McCarthy said if Collins’ was their son, they would not him let him play football again. According to ESPN, McCarthy said the following at the NFL Meetings held last month:

That’s probably one of the worst parts of your job (as a coach), walking out on the field, looking over a player—especially when it didn’t look very serious, and then you get out there…I don’t want to be put in that position again. And this is not about me. I’m just talking about, if that was my son, If Nick was my son, I would not let him play.

Collins faces the same decision that Terrence Murphy did after he was released by the Packers in 2007. According to the same article referenced above, Collins, a father of four, said this about his injury status:

“When your kids grow up and they get into sports, you want to be there for them, cheering them on. And I’d rather do that rather than being in a wheelchair. I don’t want to be like that. I want to be there for my kids, my family.”

With the news of releasing Collins, the safety position is now a big need for the Packers in the draft this weekend. Could they take Harrison Smith out of Notre Dame or find a guy in the later rounds? Other possible options are Montana’s Trumaine Johnson, Oklahoma State’s Markelle Martin, South Carolina’s Antonio Allen, or Boise State’s George Iloka.

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The Green Bay Packers are coming off a 15-1 season after which they fell short in the NFC Divisional Round, losing to the eventual World ChampionNew York Giants.

So what do the the Green Bay Packershave to do get back to the playoffs and another Super Bowl?

The Packers have 12 total draft picks, so they should have a good chance to reload and get back to the playoffs and beyond.

Green Bay’s needs include a pass-rushing linebacker, defensive lineman, cornerback, safety, quarterback, running back.

1st round: 

Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State: Ryan Pickett isn’t getting any younger, and ever since Cullen Jenkins departed the defensive line has struggled in getting to the quarterback.

Worthy is 6’2″, 308 pounds, All-American, had 10 tackles for a loss and helped lead Michigan State to the No. 1 rushing defense in the Big Ten. He had 11.5 sacks and 27.5 tackles for a loss over his career at MSU. Worthy is more likely to play end in a 3-4 than a nosetackle.

Nick Perry, OLB/DE, USC: Perry is 6’3″, and 271 pounds. He fits best as a 4-3 defensive end and a 3-4 outside linebacker. His strength is rushing the passer.

Shea McClellin, OLB, Boise State: McClellin is this year’s Brooks Reed, a player who rode a hot combine and soared up draft boards.

Boise head coach Chris Petersen on McClellin, “You know Shea McClellin’s a trained assassin on the football field. That guy’s been such an unbelievable player for a long time for us and completely and totally underrated, I think maybe, in the public’s eye. I don’t think so much in our opponents’ eyes, certainly not on our coaching staff. And, I just think that’s coming to light right now.” (KBOI2.com)

McClellin is 6’3″ and 260 lbs—undersized to play defensive end. When he gets in the backfield, he finishes plays and runs down the quarterback and would be a great complement to Clay Matthews.

He is explosive with a great motor, plays with hand on the ground and can stand up and rush the passer. (National Football Post).

Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame: With the Green Bay Packers releasing Collins this morning, this makes safety a bigger need.

Smith is 6’2″ and 213 pounds. He is athletic, smart, and has shown ability to step up in the run game as much as the pass game. He is also similar to Packers defenders, especially Charles Woodson, as they like to get up in the passer’s face a lot.

Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama: At 6’2″ and 272 pounds, Upshaw comes from a great defense and is best when paired up with another outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme. (NFL.com)

After the first round, the Packers might look into taking these players:

Possible centers:

Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin: Jeff Saturday is 36 years old, and would be great to help bring Konz up into the NFL after playing with Peyton Manning for his whole career and now Aaron Rodgers.

Konz is 6’5″ and 314 pounds but has some durability issues, suffering a blood clot, a dislocated and sprained ankle in his college career. He was once a possible first-round draft pick but should be selected in the second round.

David Molk, C, Michigan:Remington award winner for best center last season. Is 6’1″ and 298, did 41 reps on bench press at the Combine. Good speed, and a strong player. Could put some weight on. Solid in pass protecton, but needs work when setting in for bullrushes. Can be late in blitzes and needs work with technique. (NFL.com).

Gino Gradkowski, C, Delaware: He can play guard and center, and can learn from Jeff Saturday, while playing guard too until Saturday retires or leaves.

Possible running backs:

Chris Rainey, RB/WR, Florida: He is dynamic and can play two positions. Also incredibly fast—ran a 4.45 40-yard dash.

Chris Polk, Washington

Isaiah Pead, Cincinnati

Cyrus Gray, Texas A&M

Defensive Lineman:

Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska: Crick is 6’4 and 294 pounds. While he did get injured last season, he used to be a first-round prospect, and benefited greatly playing alongside Ndamakong Suh his junior year.

At 6-feet-4 1/4, he might not be able to hold a lot more weight, and a lot of teams project him more as a 4-3 guy who can move inside on third down, but he has some natural 3-4 skills, and is getting to play as such. – Len Pasquarelli

Billy Winn, DE, Boise State: Chad Rueter says he is athletic and is a five technique prospect. 6’4, and 294 pounds.

Mike Martin, DT, Michigan: At 6’1″, 306 lbs, he ran a 4.88 40-yard dash. He is strong, and racked up 88 tackles, 17.5 for a loss, and six sacks in his career at Michigan.

A sleeper at cornerback might be,

Josh Norman, CB, Coastal CarolinaA confident, hard worker. I interviewed him on my radio show, the Fan interference (@USFinterference), today and he showed that he will do what it takes to be the best.

He plays with a chip on his shoulder and compared himself to Deion Sanders. At 6′ and 197 pounds, he led the Big South in pass break-ups along with 62 total tackles, two for a loss, two forced fumbles, and a blocked kick.

He also set a school record at Coastal Carolina and conference records with 35 pass break-ups. He could get bigger, stronger and a bit faster, along with improving his technique.

Quarterbacks:

Russell Wilson, Wisconsin or Kellen Moore, Boise State: Both need some development, but as seen from Rodgers and Matt Flynn, Mike McCarthy is a great quarterback developer.

Chad Reuter of NFL.com has the Packers taking these players in this order:

Shea McClellin, Billy Winn, Dequan Menzie, FS, Alabama, Shaun Prater, CB, Iowa, Kyle Wilbur, OLB, Wake Forest, Tauren Poole, RB, Tennessee, David Molk, Patrick Witt, QB, Yale, Deangelo Tyson, DT, Georgia, Gino Gradkowski, Chris Owusu, WR, Stanford and Duke Ihenacho, SS, San Jose State.

127297039_crop_650x440The Green Bay Packers have been great to start the 2011 season.
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Green Bay Packers are off to a 4-0 start and tied atop the NFC North division with the Detroit Lions. Here are the winners and losers for the Green Bay Packers at the season’s quarter mark:

The Packers have been great so far this season as it is has been hard not to be impressed with the undefeated start for the team.

However, there has been some hiccups for the team. Injuries, and perhaps the lack of offseason workouts, hurt the defense so they could get the right chemistry.

Winners: 

Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers has been one of the best quarterbacks in the NFLthis season.

Rodgers has a league-leading 73.1 completion percentage, 1,325 passing yards, a 12-2 touchdown-interception ratio and a 124.6 passer rating. Not to mention he averages 331 passing yards a game.

On Sunday he set a new NFL record, becoming the first quarterback to throw for 400 yards, pass for four touchdowns and rush for two more.

That’s incredible.

Rodgers has the playmaking mentality in him, along with his leadership and clutch performance.

Charles Woodson

Charles Woodson isn’t playing like he is 34 years old.

Yesterday, Woodson had an interception for a touchdown, along with four tackles and a pass defense.

This season, Woodson has played with an energy that won him the Defensive Player of the Year two years ago.

Woodson already has three interceptions, one touchdown, four pass defenses and 14 tackles on the year.

Green Bay Packers Wide Receivers

The Green Bay Packers wide receivers are about as good and young as any team in the NFL this season.

Just about everyone has caught passes from Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers hit nine in his first two games, seven two weeks ago and eight last Sunday.

Greg Jennings has been Rodgers go-to receiver. Jennings has 25 receptions for 366 yards and three touchdowns.

Jordy Nelson has caught 15 passes for 292 yards and three touchdowns.

James Jones has nine catches for 88 yards and a touchdown. Donald Drivers has eight grabs for 71 yards and a touchdown.

The youngster Randall Cobb has seven grabs for 148 yards and a touchdown.

Perhaps Rodgers biggest target, Jermichael Finley has 18 catches for 234 yards and three touchdowns. All of his touchdowns came against Chicago.

Green Bay Packers Rush Defense: 

The Green Bay Packers rush defense has been the most solid while the offense isn’t on the field.

They gave up their first 100-yard rushing game last week to theDenver Broncos, allowing 119 yards. In the previous three weeks, they gave up 81, 71 and 13 rushing yards.

On the season, they are giving up 77 yards per game on the ground and averaging 3.7 yards per rush to opposing running backs.

The Packers defense has also recorded seven sacks on the season.

Losers: 

Green Bay Packers Secondary: 

It was a bummer losing Nick Collins for the season due to a neck injury.

The Green Bay Packers secondary has been relatively weak this season, outside of Charles Woodson and Morgan Burnett.

They gave up 265 yards and 384 total yards yesterday. The defense had given up 403.3 yards in the first three games. The Packers rank 28th in the league in yards allowed.

Last year, the Packers gave up 320 yards in six of their first eight games of the season, they only allowed that once in their final eight games. (Green Bay Press Gazette).

Perhaps they start to defend the pass better as the season goes on.

To be honest, the Green Bay Packers linebackers haven’t been that bad. They are getting pressure and blitzing the quarterback, and are attacking the run, but perhaps they should help the secondary stop the pass in the future more.

This linebackers have combined for 4.5 sacks.

Desmond Bishop leads the team in tackles with 36 total tackles.

Clay Matthews is off to a slow start with 14 tackles and just one sack. Matthews has been solid in the pass rush, teams are just blocking him.

The Packers linebackers will only continue to get better. It just takes time.

Green Bay Packers Linebackers: 

To be honest, the Green Bay Packers linebackers haven’t been that bad. They are getting pressure and blitzing the quarterback, and are attacking the run, but perhaps they should help the secondary stop the pass in the future more.

This linebackers have combined for 4.5 sacks.

Desmond Bishop leads the team in tackles with 36 total tackles.

Clay Matthews is off to a slow start with 14 tackles and just one sack. Matthews has been solid in the pass rush, teams are just blocking him.

The Packers linebackers will only continue to get better. It just takes time.