Saturday, February 23, 2013
On the Packers' Kaepernick Commission
By Mike Sando
This just in from the NFL scouting combine: The Green Bay Packers have called off the search for San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. They're now focusing on ways to stop Kaepernick and other fleet quarterbacks from replicating the 181-yard rushing performance Kaepernick unleashed upon Green Bay in the divisional playoffs last season.
Kevin Seifert has the details on the NFC North blog.
Turns out the Packers are sending their defensive staff to meet with Texas A&M coaches for a clinic on how to defend the read-option running game. Kaepernick gained 99 of those 181 rushing yards on option runs during the 49ers' 45-31 victory on Jan. 12.
There was nothing all that complicated about what happened to the Packers' defense in that game. Green Bay lacked sufficient speed at linebacker. The Packers' defenders played too much pass coverage with their backs to the quarterback. Also, Green Bay's defensive ends weren't always as disciplined as they needed to be.
Scouts and football people from other teams couldn't believe what they were seeing from the Packers' defense in that game. They faulted the Green Bay coaching staff for failing to adjust. And they pointed to that speed disadvantage at linebacker, where A.J. Hawk and Brad Jones had trouble keeping pace.
A visit with Texas A&M coaches can't hurt, of course. Adding speed at linebacker would seem to help more, however.