The Packers were a team to be feared coming into the 2009 season. With the Brett Favre shadow almost completely gone, this team was Aaron Rodgers' to lead to supremacy.
In the preseason, the team showed a lot of promise and looked to take the NFC North. But with injuries and inconsistency on the O-line, the Packers really struggled in the first eight games, including a loss to the then-winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The team's record pace for giving up sacks was nothing short of nauseating, and our franchise QB was in jeopardy just about every game. Our line basically sent every defensive end we faced to the Pro Bowl, so to speak.
However, with the re-signing of Mark Tauscher, the team really began to rise once again. Bringing a much-needed constant to the offensive line, the Packers finally trotted out the same line for the last eight games.
Allen Barbre is obviously not the answer, and with Jason Spitz coming back, Daryn Colledge can move back to his normal guard spot.
The security of the line caused the Pack to go on a 7-1 tear to end the regular season, that loss coming on a last-second TD to the Steelers.
The loss of Al Harris really showed up as Jarrett Bush, Tramon Williams, and Josh Bell were all exploited by Ben Roethlisberger. The coverage skills definitely diminished when Harris went down. That left Clay Matthews to cover deep downfield without Bush’s help over top.
That proves the Packers' needs for OLB, CB, and safety help to complement Matthews, Harris/Charles Woodson, and Nick Collins respectively. Big Ben and Kurt Warner destroyed our secondary, which leads to three other needs besides tackle: a pass rusher to complement Matthews and some cornerback and safety help.
Look for the Pack to address these needs in this month’s draft.