Random Thoughts Heading Into the Opener

The Pack hasn't won a game in Philadelphia since the year I was born.And I'm pushing 50...The Eagles enter this season as a lite version of the '08 Packers: pushing their heir apparent onto the field to replace a superstar (almost) QB. Andy Reid is hoping Kevin Kolb's on field script reads like Aaron Rodgers' did...

I can't wait to watch what Dom Capers does to try to confuse Kolb. In preseason week 3 against the Chiefs, DC Romeo Crennell started throwing exotic looks at Kolb and he wilted like the lettuce at a taco buffet. Though Matthews and Jones only returned to practice this week, I expect some funky looks from the defense, beginning in the second quarter.

Aaron Rodgers is being hyped by many as an MVP candidate and Jermichael Finley is being seen as the next Tony Gonzalez. Neither has to happen for the Pack to get to the Super Bowl, but if both happen this will be the most entertaining team to watch in the NFL this season...I'm very leery about Ted Thompson's decision not to have a dedicated return guy. To risk Tramon Williams on punts and Jordy Nelson or Brandon Jackson on kickoffs is an unnecessary risk. Find a capable return guy on the waiver wire and put OL Nick McDonald on the practice squad where he belongs.

With rookie Michael Neal missing practice Thursday with a side injury, I'm concerned about the rotation on the DL this week. This is a team that will test the Pack's secondary and pass rush. They'll throw 2/3 of the time, and Neal is being counted on to be on the field a lot on passing downs. Behind him, there's virtually no experience--yes he's a rookie too, but he's being lauded as a guy who's ready to contribute. Wow, a good second round pick by TT, to make up for Brohm and Lee perhaps.

Good first test for Tim Masthay. I'd really, really, really like to not have to worry about our punting game this season. Rodgers and crew might take care of that for me...Finally, Morgan Burnett is a starter at safety as a rookie. With two Pro Bowlers around him in the secondary, Reid will be sure to test him and see what he's got. It would be nice to see enough to make Atari Bigby expendable.


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