Preseason Week 1 Green Bay vs Tennessee Thread

Mark87

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  • For the second consecutive season, the Packers open the preseason at home.
  • Dating back to 2000, it is just the fifth time Green Bay has started the preseason on a Thursday (2005, 2012, 2015, 2017).
  • The Packers and Titans had previously opened the preseason against each other in 2014 in Tennessee.
  • It is the Titans’ first preseason trip to Green Bay since playing in the finale in 2008.
  • The Packers and Titans have faced off in the preseason nine times in the previous 16 years, including each preseason from 2002-09.
  • This is preseason meeting No. 12 between the two organizations, with the Titans holding an 8-3 advantage.
  • The Packers will stay at home for their second preseason game, welcoming the Pittsburgh Steelers to Lambeau Field for Midwest Shrine Game at 7 p.m. CDT on Thursday, Aug. 16.


WITH THE CALL
  • Preseason games are televised over the 18-station Packers TV Network throughout the state of Wisconsin, Upper Michigan, northeastern Minnesota, Peoria in Illinois, the Quad Cities, Cedar Rapids-Waterloo and Des Moines in Iowa, Omaha in Nebraska, Sioux Falls in South Dakota and Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau in Alaska.
  • The top-notch broadcast team includes CBS’s Kevin Harlan (play-byplay) alongside fellow CBS broadcaster James Lofton (analyst), with Lance Allan of WTMJ-TV serving as the sideline reporter. Allan will also host an informative half-hour pregame show.
  • In addition to flagship stations WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee and WGBA-TV in Green Bay, the game will be televised over WKOW/ABC, Madison, Wis.; WAOW/ABC, Wausau/Rhinelander, Wis.; WXOW/ABC, La Crosse, Wis.; WQOW/ABC, Eau Claire, Wis.; WLUC/NBC, Escanaba/Marquette, Mich.; KQDS-TV/FOX, Duluth/Superior, Minn.; WMBD/CBS, Peoria, Ill.; WHBFTV/CBS, Davenport, Iowa (Quad Cities); KCCI-TV/CBS, Des Moines, Iowa; KWWL-TV/NBC, Cedar Rapids/Waterloo, Iowa; KMTV-TV/CBS, Omaha, Neb.; KDLT/NBC, Sioux Falls, South Dakota; KYUR/ABC, Anchorage, Alaska; KATN/ABC, Fairbanks, Alaska amd KJUD/ABC, Juneau, Alaska.
  • Milwaukee’s WTMJ (620 AM), airing Green Bay games since November 1929, heads up the Packers Radio Network that is made up of 50 stations in four states. Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) and two-time Packers Pro Bowler Larry McCarren (analyst) call the action. McCarren first joined the team’s broadcasts in 1995 and enters his 24th season calling Packers games. After originally being paired together in 1999, McCarren and Larrivee enter their 20th season of broadcasts together. They will surpass Jim Irwin and Max McGee for the most regular-season and postseason games broadcast for the Packers with 313 at the season opener against Chicago.

BREAKING DOWN THE ROSTER
  • The Packers have a 88-man roster that is composed of 44 offensive players, 40 defensive players and four specialists.
  • Of the 88 players on Green Bay’s roster, 43 of them (48.9 percent) were draft picks of the Packers. Green Bay has nine players that were drafted in the first round, including seven that were selected by the Packers.
  • Green Bay has 40 players on the roster that began their careers as undrafted free agents.
  • Over 50 percent of the players (50 of 88, 56.8 percent) on Green Bay’s roster entered the league as a sixth-round or seventh-round pick or as an undrafted player.
  • Of the 88 players on the roster, 76 of them (86.4 percent) are 28 years old or younger (as of Aug. 9) and 47 players (53.4 percent) are 24 years old or younger.
  • The Packers have 11 players that have made at least one Pro Bowl, with seven of those players being draft picks of Green Bay (Davante Adams, David Bakhtiari, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Randall Cobb, Mike Daniels, Clay Matthews, Aaron Rodgers).
  • Of the 88 players on the roster, 66 began their pro careers with the Packers (75.0 percent).
  • Only 23 of the 88 players on the roster (26.1 percent) were selected in the first three rounds of the draft, with 18 being drafted by the Packers.
GREEN BAY'S ROSTER ...
BY AGE (as of Aug. 9)

  • 21-24: 47 players
  • 25-28: 29 players
  • 29-32: 8 players
  • 33-plus: 4 players

BY EXPERIENCE
  • R-1: 34 players
  • 2-3: 30 players
  • 4-5: 8 players
  • 6-9: 11 players
  • 10-plus: 5 players
BY DRAFT ROUND
  • 1st: 9 players
  • 2nd/3rd: 14 players
  • 4th/5th: 15 players
  • 6th/7th: 10 players
  • Undrafted: 40 players
THE DOPE ON THIS WEEK'S OPPONENT:

  • Packers vs. Titans
  • All-time, Preseason: 3-8-0
  • All-time, Regular season: 5-7-0
  • All-time, Postseason: 0-0
  • All-time, in Green Bay: 2-4-0
  • Streaks: Tennessee has won four of the past five regular-season meetings.
  • Last meeting, regular season: Nov. 13, 2016; Titans won, 47-25, Nissan Stadium
COACHES CAPSULES
  • Mike McCarthy: 131-78-1, .626 (incl. 10-8 postseason); 13th NFL season
  • Mike Vrabel: 0-0, .000; 1st NFL season
  • Head to Head: McCarthy 0-0
  • vs. Opponent: McCarthy 1-2 vs. Titans; Vrabel 0-0 vs. Packers
MIKE MCCARTHY ... Is in his 13th year as the Packers’ 14th head coach
  • Led Green Bay to their eighth consecutive playoff appearance in 2016, tied for the fourth-longest streak in NFL history. Has also led the team to nine playoff appearances in the last 11 years (2007, 2009-16).
  • Ranks second in franchise history in total victories, trailing only Curly Lambeau.
  • Guided the Packers to top-10 finishes in scoring in eight straight seasons (2007-14), joining the Patriots as the only other team to accomplish the feat over that span; Packers led the league in scoring in 2014.
  • Reached the 100-win plateau faster than any active NFL head coach, needing just 155 games.
  • Joined Vince Lombardi and Mike Holmgren as the only coaches to guide the Packers to a Super Bowl title with a win over Pittsburgh in Super Bowl XLV.

MIKE VRABEL ... Is in his first year as the Titans’ 19th head coach
  • Ascended quickly to his position after spending three years as an assistant coach at Ohio State (2011-13) and four years on the Houston Texans’ staff (2014-17), including one season (2017) as the defensive coordinator.
  • Coordinated a Houston defense in 2017 that boasted the fifth-best third-down percentage in the NFL and allowed a franchise-low 3.57 yards per carry by opponents.
  • Helped coach a 2016 Texans defense that ranked No. 1 in the NFL in total defense, surrendering only 301.3 yards per game.
  • In 2012, helped guide Ohio State to a 12-0 record and was named Big Ten Recruiter of the Year by ESPN.com
  • A former NFL linebacker, appeared in 206 games, totaled 57 sacks and 496 tackles, earned one Pro Bowl selection (2007) and contributed in three Super Bowl wins (2001, 2003 and 2004) as a member of the New England Patriots.
THE PACKERS - TITANS SERIES
  • The teams split the six matchups from 1972-92 when the Titans were the Houston Oilers.
  • The Packers won the first matchup of the series (Dec. 13, 1998) after Houston relocated to become the Tennessee Oilers.
  • Green Bay has been held to less than 10 points in the series only twice, scoring three points on Dec. 14, 1980, and Sept. 7, 1986.
  • The Oilers never defeated the Packers at home, but since relocating to Nashville following the 1996 season, the Titans are undefeated against Green Bay in Tennessee.
NOTABLE CONNECTIONS

Packers senior advisor to football operations Ted Thompson played linebacker for the Houston Oilers from 1975-84, appearing in 146 of 147 games...Green Bay T/G Byron Bell started all 16 games for the Titans in 2015...Packers G Justin McCray spent the 2014 season on Tennessee’s practice squad...Green Bay equipment manager Red Batty served in the same role for the Oilers for 13 seasons (1981-93)...Titans LB Nate Palmer played in 24 games with 12 starts for the Packers from 2013-15 after being drafted in the sixth round by Green Bay...Green Bay special teams coordinator Ron Zook coached defensive backs for the Tennessee Volunteers from 1984-86...Packers WR Randall Cobb (Alcoa), G Lucas Patrick (Brentwood) and LS Hunter Bradley Collierville) hail from Tennessee...Green Bay LB Oren Burks played at Vanderbilt (2014-17)...Titans strength and conditioning assistant Taylor Porter played wide receiver at Wisconsin-Oshkosh (2005–2008)...Tennessee T Tyler Marz played for the Wisconsin Badgers (2012-15)...Packers secondary coach Jason Simmons played with Titans head coach Mike Vrabel on the Pittsburgh Steelers defense from 1998-2000...Zook served as the Steelers’ special teams coordinator from 1996-98...Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin coached with Titans defensive line coach Terrell Williams in Miami in 2015...Philbin also coached Tennessee WR Rishard Matthews in Miami from 2012-15...Packers offense–pass game coordinator Jim Hostler and quarterbacks coach Frank Cignetti Jr. coached Titans TE Delanie Walker in San Francisco...Hostler also spent time with Titans defensive coordinator Dean Pees from 2010-13 and S Brynden Trawick in 2013 in Baltimore...Green Bay CB Tramon Williams played one season (2017) with Tennessee QB Blaine Gabbert in Arizona...Packers TE Jimmy Graham and Titans CB Tye Smith were teammates in Seattle in 2015...Green Bay TE Marcedes Lewis (2006-17) spent time with Tennessee special teams coach Craig Aukerman (2011-12), S Johnathan Cyprien (2013-16) and Gabbert (2011-13) in Jacksonville...Packers CB Davon House also teamed with Cyprien in Jacksonville from 2015-16…Green Bay DL Muhammad Wilkerson played alongside Titans DE Claude Pelon in New York with the Jets for two seasons (2016-17)...Packers running backs coach Ben Sirmans coached on Pees’ staff at Kent State from 2000-04...Green Bay defensive line coach Jerry Montgomery spent two seasons (2011-12) with Tennessee T Taylor Lewan at Michigan...Angelichio coached Titans RB Dion Lewis for two seasons (2009-10) at the University of Pittsburgh...Vrabel (2011-13) was on staff at Ohio State for three years (2011-13) during Packers C Corey Linsley’s career as a Buckeye…Former college teammates include: Packers S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Tennessee RB Derrick Henry (Alabama), Green Bay P JK Scott and Titans LB Rashaan Evans (Alabama), Titans DT Jurrell Casey, Packers LB Clay Matthews and LB Nick Perry (Southern California), Green Bay WR Davante Adams and Titans OL Cody Wichmann (Fresno State), Marz, Packers LB Vince Biegel and DL Conor Sheehy (Wisconsin).
 

TW

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That's one heckuva breakdown on a preseason game. Lots of data there. Chances are we'll see very little of any players that will be part of our starting lineup when preseason ends. With the injury fears as high as they are, that's just not something the Packers need to be fearing. What this game is, an opportunity to get a first look at the guys vying for the back-up QB role, and some of the guys who show promise, and could be special teamers, and "future" contributors on the roster.
 

rpiotr01

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Two things I'm interested in:

1. Cornerback play - King and Alexander will not play, Tramon and House are vets and likely won't play much if at all. Big chance for Josh Jackson to gain some confidence and experience. Look for Pipkins to get a lot of work too.

2. DL play. MM has specifically said they've been working more on pass rush than run D, so the guys on the DL really haven't had a lot of opportunities to shine. I'm looking forward to seeing what Adams looks like, and at getting a hopefully long look at Lancaster. He seemed like a good get as a UDFA but he's just not going to give much pass rush so it's really hard to stand out in camp setting. This is his first opportunity to show he can be a solid NT against the run.
 

TW

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Good points on Pipken and Jackson. Playing for a spot on the team? Could be. The defensive line is pure mystery at this point, and I want to see if Adams has been worth the wait, and if Lancaster plays up to the hype for a UDFA they've stated.

It's time for some unknowns and step up, make a name for themselves, and guarantee they have a roster spot.
 

rpiotr01

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Jackson has a roster spot locked up, but certain Pipkins and Hawkins and Donatello Brown are not only fighting for a roster spot but potentially even for a PS spot.

Adams is interesting. Last year was a wash and he has the reputation of being a bit of a dog. On the other hand, he's big and he's quick, and guys like that can really make a difference on the interior. The cautionary tale is always Jerel Worthy, who was also big and quick, but who had no ability to counter when his first move didn't work against NFL guards.

Vince Biegel is another guy who should get a ton of work tonight. I think you'd like to see him and Reggie Gilbert entrench themselves as the back ups at OLB over the course of the next few weeks.
 

dannobanano

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Jackson has a roster spot locked up, but certain Pipkins and Hawkins and Donatello Brown are not only fighting for a roster spot but potentially even for a PS spot.

Adams is interesting. Last year was a wash and he has the reputation of being a bit of a dog. On the other hand, he's big and he's quick, and guys like that can really make a difference on the interior. The cautionary tale is always Jerel Worthy, who was also big and quick, but who had no ability to counter when his first move didn't work against NFL guards.

Vince Biegel is another guy who should get a ton of work tonight. I think you'd like to see him and Reggie Gilbert entrench themselves as the back ups at OLB over the course of the next few weeks.
I'll second the Biegel/Gilbert interest, but I'll add that I want to see Chris Odom's as well. I've read that he dropped weight from a year ago and looks like a strong fit for Pettine's defense. Last year was a wash for him because he played DE for ATL, who tried to sneak him through to their PS (he was their pre-season sack leader). He, basically, spent last year transitioning from DE to OLB. The Packers continue to tinker with the OLB group by recently signing James Hearns.

I also want to see how far along Oren Burks has come so far, since they are likely counting on him to start alongside Martinez.

Plus, is Jake Kumerow for real? Does he render the 3 WR draft picks mute with a strong performance?
 

Ron Hallstrom

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I love preseason. Those young guys battling for roster spots play hard. I don't know who's starting but the backup job is Kizer's to lose. We traded a starting CB for him, he'll be given every chance to be the backup. Hard to gauge QB's without starting WR's and OL in the lineup.
 

rpiotr01

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Plus, is Jake Kumerow for real? Does he render the 3 WR draft picks mute with a strong performance?
I think some perspective is needed on our WR draft picks. Yes, they are drafted. Yes, there are three of them. But look at it this way: they are all studs in the size/speed department, the overall draft class was weak at WR, and yet they went in the 4th, 5th and 6th rounds. The reason is because they each have serious flaws that may or may not prevent them from ever contributing in the NFL. Furthermore, the investment in each is not great. Corey Rodgers was a 4th round pick. Trevor Davis and DeAngelo Yancey were 5th round picks. Despite the intriguing and exciting measurables of the 2018 guys, that's generally the caliber of player you're looking at in those rounds.

Which is a long winded way of saying that hell yes, Kumerow could be for real. He is as big as the draftees, no he isn't as fast but he ran the same 40 time as Adams, and right now he's showing that he may have what it takes between the ears to overcome that lack of top speed and undrafted status. I see no reason to write him off any time soon.
 

TW

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Totally correct. It was a weak draft at WR, and we picked guys later in rounds. Kumerow is a little different because he's been able to benefit from coaching help beyond college. He's learned the importance of running routes, using his hands to catch the ball, and keeping his body between the ball and the defender. Learn these three things well, and you end up being a better receiver than those guys who are a little quicker, and considered better receivers.

I too think he could end up sticking, and could actually move up the ladder fairly quickly, if Rodgers finds he trusts him to run routes like he wants.
 
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