Allowing Pro Bowl Center Scott Wells to Walk May Set off Domino Effect
By now, it's all but certain that Pro Bowl center, Scott Wells, will not be suiting up for the Green Bay Packers in 2012.
It isn't that the Packers don't want him back or that they failed to try. Wells was reportedly asking for money that would reflect on his play as a top five player at his position. Wells' train of thought isn't that far from reality. He has played like a top five center over the last three seasons or so, but the Packers position is that the market for his services won't be as far reaching as Wells and his agent want them to think.
Let's look at a chain of of events that the Packers will likely have to overcome if they do indeed let Wells walk.
1. The Packers Will Have To Address Center Sooner, Rather than Later in 2012 NFL Draft
The Green Bay Packers have numerous needs that they need to address both in free agency and through the draft. Most of those needs come on the defensive side of the ball, however. Defensive line help, a good pass rushing outside linebacker, maybe another corner, and potentially a free safety depending the prognosis of Nick Collins.
With the departure of Wells, the possibility that the Packers use their first-round selection on an offensive lineman for the third consecutive year increases drastically. One prospect to keep a close eye on is the highest rated and highly regarded center out of Wisconsin, Peter Konz.
Rumor has it that Ted Thompson has made it a personal project of his to scout Konz, which should tell you all that you need to know. A position that was thought to have been on lock down is now all of a sudden at the top of the Packers draft board. Something it is very concerning with the needs on defense.
2. A Rookie Could Be Starting at Center in 2012
The Packers will undoubtedly take a center sometime in the 2012 draft. The question is when they will feel the need to address that need.
Whether they start a rookie or not, the other option currently on the roster is Evan Dietrich-Smith -- someone who doesn't exactly spur confidence in the fan base.
No matter who is starting at center, we know it will be someone other than Scott Wells. The center to quarterback exchange is an underrated and extremely important aspect to offensive success in the NFL.
Whomever will be starting for the Packers is going to have to spend hours on end with quarterback Aaron Rodgers. He will have to learn how, when and where Aaron likes the ball delivered. He's going to have to pick up all the audible calls, protection schemes and blocking assignments. And on top of all of that, he is going to have to find a way to deal with Rodgers incredible hard count.
3. Offensive Output Could Be Limited By More Frequent Mistakes
When dealing with rookies, especially ones at a position in which they touch the ball on every single snap, you have to come to expect mistakes to be made.
The Packers offense thrives on swift and efficient ball movement with limited mistakes. However, with a rookie or other unfamiliar player starting at center, the number of mistakes could and probably should rise exponentially.
Botched snaps and penalties are likely to increase in frequency which only sets up the offense in less favorable down and distance .
4. And the Dominoes Continue To Fall...
- With less favorable downs and distances, the Packers will pick up fewer first downs...
- If the Packers pick up fewer first downs, they will have to punt more...
- If the Packers punt more, they will have fewer offensive opportunities...
- If the Packers have fewer opportunities, they won't score as much...
- If the Packers don't score as much, they could win less...
- If the Packers win less, they won't clinch a playoff spot by mid-season...
- If the Packers don't clinch a playoff spot by mid-season, they can't rest starters...
- If the Packers can't rest starters, they will be able to build momentum...
- If the Packers build momentum, they will be playing their best football late...
- If the Packers are playing their best football late, they will win the Super Bowl.
Therefore, one can conclude from this unnecessarily complicated analytic chain that the ultimate fate of the Packers after letting Scott Wells walk this off season... Is another NFL Championship.
Have I ever mentioned that Ted Thompson is a genius?
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