The Green Bay Packers have a new defensive coaching staff that is charged with implementing a new defense. But while their role is perhaps the most prominent key to the success of the team in 2009, it comes down to the players on the field.
To that end, there are five positions that come in as potential weaknesses for the Packers. In each case, there are players on the roster the team realistically hopes can step up to keep them from being areas opponents can exploit.
The Packers have the potential of winning as many as 12 games between the regular season and playoffs. But essentially, each of these weaknesses is likely to cost them a win; thus, if none of them are shored up, the Packers could well finish with a losing record.
I will look at Mike McCarthy's key personnel choices that will shape the season—the players involved, predict who starts, and declare whether that player will succeed.
Note: there will also be two other intense positional battles (safety and cornerback) that I will not be examining in detail. Those positions are deep enough that whoever wins the starting job will be among the best at his position in the division, and the backup will add incredible depth.
(The safety depth chart will read Nick Collins, Atari Bigby Aaron Rouse, and Anthony Smith; the corner opposite Charles Woodson will remain Al Harris, with Tramon Williams being the nickelback.)