Tuesday, October 25, 2011
BBAO: Revisiting Packers' pass defense
By Kevin Seifert
We're Black and Blue All Over:
You can blame injury-induced personnel changes or opponents abandoning the run game. But through seven weeks of the season, as Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes, the Green Bay Packers have yet to patch the leak in their pass defense.
We've been discussing the issue since the start of the season, and the Packers remain at the bottom of the NFL rankings in terms of yardage allowed. They are giving up an average of 288.9 passing yards per game, the second-worst in the league. But their NFL-high 13 interceptions have helped them limit the points opponents have scored after accumulating that yardage. The most important statistic is points allowed, and the Packers' defense ranks No. 10 with an average of 20.1 points per game.
Defensive coordinator Dom Capers suggested looming improvement on the yardage issue as the health of the Packers' secondary rises.
"The first half of the season here," Capers said, "we've gone through our share of mixing and matching from one week to the next. So hopefully we can get everybody healthy and working together and get off to a good start once we get back [from the bye] and go to San Diego."
That list includes nickelback Sam Shields, who has been cleared to return from a concussion. Cornerback Tramon Williams continues to work through a shoulder injury, and safety Morgan Burnett is playing with a club protecting his broken hand.
Continuing around the NFC North: