The Packers lost to San Diego last week, 21-13, in their first pre-season game of the 2012 season. The attention to fundamentals (tackling) on the field fell far short of our expectations after the ugliness we witnessed last year on the defensive side of the football. Now, in Mike McCarthy’s defense, training camps in the NFL now are kinder and gentler than any other year in history. In addition to the softer side of August, the Packers have had a monumental amount of injuries thus far and I don’t blame the Packers head coach for easing up a bit in fear of others going down to the injury bug.
That said, we are now on the cusp of the second pre-season game and here are the 5 things to watch for;
1. Can (DE) Jerel Worthy and (OLB) Nick Perry grow from their first NFL experience last week. Pay attention to the trenches.
2. (T) Marshall Newhouse is back from concussion, let’s see his progression.
3. (RILB) D.J. Smith has moved up the depth chart since Desmond Bishop went down for the season with the torn hamstring, watch Smith’s movement on the field and see if he can bring some of the toughness that Bishop displayed.
4.Can the Vanderbilt Dynamic Dou (S) Richardson and (CB) Hayward continue to improve and add the necessary depth to the Packers seemingly thin secondary.
5. Look for Aaron Rodgers to play 3-4 series and work on rhythm after last week’s short performance. Rodgers, who uses motivation better than almost anyone, will look to dramatically improve on his numbers vs. San Diego (2 of 8 pass comp. / 16 yards / 1 int).
Look and hope for a dramatically improved Packers team tonight, at Lambeau, in front of their own sold out crowd.