Fantasy Football Fanatics; 2012 Green Bay Packers Offseason Breakdown

Fantasy Football Fanatics

Green Bay Packers 2012 Offseason Breakdown

By, Eric Vigson


Stadium: Lambeau Field (Outdoors)

Schedule Strength: 7th

Postseason Weather issues: Det Week 14, @ Chi Week 15, Ten Week 16

Offensive Line Ranking: 1


Head Coach – Mike McCarthy;     McCarthy coaching history is entirely on the offensive side of the ball, but oddly enough all under the tutelage of strong defensive minded Head Coaches who preferred a solid running game.  Hired as the Packers Head Coach in 2006 McCarthy inherited the classic Bill Walsh West Coast Offense, the same Offensive System still utilized today.  Coach McCarthy is amongst a handful of Head Coaches who both design the weekly Game Plan and conduct all offensive play calling (except when Aaron Rodgers audibles).  Entering 2012 we should expect more of the same as the Packers will continue to utilize a high-octane / pass-oriented West Coast System.

Offensive Coordinator – Tom Clements;     Coach Clements was hired by McCarthy in 2006 as the Packers QB coach.  The recent departure of OC Joe Philbin to Miami has allowed the promotion of Clements into the role of Offensive Coordinator.  Make no mistake, this is McCarthy’s offense to run, as few changes will be made.

QB – Aaron Rodgers;    The easiest player in all of fantasy football to evaluate because no evaluation is necessary.  BEAST RATING = 9.9 (nobody’s perfect).  To be drafted immediately after the “top tier RBs” come off the board.

RB – James Starks;    Considering the recent history of a RBBC system, under normal circumstances we should be highly skeptical of any Packers Runningback.  However, the Packers chose not to resign Ryan Grant this Offseason, and backup RB Alex Green recovering from ACL surgery.  A lack of RB depth indicates the Packers are ready to roll with James Starks as their primary ball carrier; becoming an increasing rare commodity in Fantasy Football.  Starks has proven the ability to be a 3-Down-RB possessing excellent vision, speed and power, but also displaying solid pass blocking skills, precise route running and excellent hands.  Starks has the added benefit of playing in one of the league’s most prolific passing offenses, meaning NFL defenses will be in nickel most of the game constantly dealing with the pressure generated by Aaron Rodgers and the aerial attack.  The “3-Down-RB” is becoming a relic of the past, meaning digging up the limited few will pay substantial dividends in Fantasy Football.  We should project Starks with a Player Rating of 8.5, currently possessing excellent Sleeper value.

WR1 – Greg Jennings;     Jennings would be an average WR on most NFL teams, but his value is greatly increased playing alongside the best young QB of this generation combined with the attacking style of his Head Coach.  Jennings is on the smaller side, and not exceptionally fast, but what he lacks in stature he makes up for in precise route running, amazing hands, agility and a mental connection with his QB.  Jennings has also displayed a knack for breaking tackles after the catch resulting in big gains with the possibility for long touchdowns (best word in the English language).  The only downfall is Jennings smaller size reducing his Red Zone Targets.  All factors considered, we should expect another solid season with a Player Rating of 9.1.

WR1 – Jordy Nelson;      Nelson exploded onto the scene in 2011 finishing the season 2nd in WR scoring, a tremendous value considering he was drafted in the 7th round of most leagues.  With Donald Driver one year older, and James Jones roster position now in question no reason to think Nelson can’t follow up last year’s amazing performance with another solid season.  We should not expect a repeat of 2011, but factoring the talents of Rodgers in combination with McCarthy’s Offensive System, Nelson carries a very good value with a player rating of 8.6.

TE – Jermichael Finley;     Finley very quietly finished last season 5th in fantasy scoring amongst all Tight Ends.  A solid player in his own right, Finley is fortunate to be playing the classic West Coast system whereby a TE is utilized as a receiver over the middle on 80% of the play calling. Although Finley played all 16 games in 2011, he missed 15 games the previous two seasons equaling a “Yellow Flag” injury risk.  Playing with the best quarterback in the game of football, should Finely remain healthy he will once again end up amongst the top 6 scoring TEs in 2012 deserving a Player Rating of 8.6.

K – Mason Crosby;      Crosby is the perfect example of a solid fantasy kicker playing alongside one of NFL’s most prolific Offenses Systems. The one knock on Crosby is adverse weather in the fantasy Postseason including two home games, and one game being played in the “Windy City”.  If Crosby should land on our team we should make preparations late in the season, just in case.

Def – Green Bay;     The Green Bay defense is one of the more talented units at multiple positions including OLB Clay Mathews, DT BJ Raji, CB Tramon Williams and CB Charles Woodson.  However, we should always be skeptical of any fantasy defense that plays opposite a prolific offense because any team playing against the Packers will we forced to put up more yardage and points in order to win games.  Also, playing opposite a fast scoring offense means the defense is on the field for an extended period of time.  The one benefit to rostering Green Bay’s defense is their ability to intercept footballs increasing the potential to score more touchdowns. All factors considered I foresee the Green Bay defense barely inside the top 12 within Rating of 7.7.

About Eric Hartvigson