The 2009 Green Bay Packers season was one of the most bittersweet seasons in recent memory, providing an exciting glimpse of what is to come, while feeding the fantasy realm with a myriad of quality players to choose from.
Last year, Aaron Rodgers showed that he can in fact be the new leader, and the 3-4 hybrid scheme—brought in by Dom Capers—produced a top-five defense all year that led the league in rushing yards allowed, while placing second in interceptions.
In addition, it was the first time in league history that a team produced a 4,000-yard passer (Aaron Rodgers), a 1,200-yard rusher (Ryan Grant), and not one, but two 1,000-yard receivers (Donald Driver and Greg Jennings) in a single season.
With so many impact players on the Packers offense and defense it will be difficult to choose from the lot of them, but remember, whoever you draft, you’ll be getting nothing but elite players, my little kiddies.
Aaron Rodgers has proven that even with an O-line that coughed up 37 sacks in the first half of a season, he can still put up elite numbers—just imagine if those sack numbers were cut in half.
Aside from those two 1,000-yard receivers Rodgers has, remember that there is a rising star in tight end Jermichael Finley, alongside a host of other options making Rodgers’ value something to take notice to.
Ryan Grant got off to a slow start and looked as if he had issues finishing the end of his runs up the middle—but in the end, nobody really cared!
The guy finished with 11 TDs (a career high and second-most in the NFC) as well as 1,253 yards (third-most in the NFC).
The Packers will stick with a zone-blocking scheme in 2010, which means more of the same is on the horizon for Grant.
Aside from Grant, backup Brandon Jackson will be in a primary blocking role, and fullbacks John Kuhn, Korey Hall, and Quinn Johnson won’t offer much fantasy value.
Sheesh, where to begin!
Many thought with the rise of Greg Jennings that Donald Driver was going to slip, until he topped 1,000 receiving yards for the sixth straight season, and you can confidently assume 2010 will be number seven for the ol’ veteran.
Jennings is now a polished, speedy, downfield threat who can adjust to damn near everything, making him a PPR-leaguers wet dream, and oh—by the way, let’s not forget James Jones and Jordy Nelson.
Jennings should have the better season out of him and Driver, but don’t count out Driver in the slightest. In addition to the mainstays, keep an eye on a promising Brett Swain, and don’t forget Spencer Havner, who scored five touchdowns on nine catches in 2009.
See what I mean? The Packers even offer quality bench and watch-list players! This team should own a large block in the 2010 WR rankings!
This will be real quick, okay?
Donald Lee has zero value and Jermichael Finley is an over-the-middle threat, a speedy downfield threat, and a huge target that messes up most defensive schemes, and he should be targeted as early as possible in your draft.
As mentioned earlier, the team ranked second overall in interceptions, thanks largely to Charles Woodson. So for those of you in IDP leagues, Woodson is the obvious mention.
Let’s not forget about Tramon Williams. Yes, Williams didn’t play that well in coverage last year, but that should change, as he has had a year to mature and he could wind up being a sleeper grab.
CB Al Harris will be available this year, but the team has already admitted that he will not be 100 percent at the start of the season. He may not hold a lot of value this year.
2010 Regular Season Schedule
Wk 1. - Sun., Sept. 12 @ Philadelphia Eagles
Wk 2. - Sun., Sept. 19 vs. Buffalo Bills
Wk 3. - Mon., Sept. 27 @ Chicago Bears
Wk 4. - Sun., Oct. 3 vs. Detroit Lions
Wk 5. - Sun., Oct. 10 @ Washington Redskins
Wk 6. - Sun., Oct. 17 vs. Miami Dolphins
Wk 7. - Sun., Oct. 24 vs. Minnesota Vikings
Wk 8. - Sun., Oct. 31 @ New York Jets
Wk 9. - Sun., Nov. 7 vs. Dallas Cowboys
Wk 11. - Sun., Nov. 21 @ Minnesota Vikings
Wk 12. - Sun., Nov. 28 @ Atlanta Falcons
Wk 13. - Sun., Dec. 5 vs. San Francisco 49ers
Wk 14. - Sun., Dec. 12 @ Detroit Lions
Wk 15. - Sun., Dec. 19 @ New England Patriots
Wk 16. - Sun., Dec. 26 vs New York Giants
Wk 17. - Sun., Jan. 2 vs Chicago Bears
On offense, the Packers will once again ride the fruitful play of the zone-blocking scheme up front, which allows for a nice, ventilated passing game, both underneath and downfield.
In addition to the passing game basically being a wide open flood gate, the ground game will see much of the same success it did last year as most of the defenses in the league will have their hands full in coverage alone.
Interceptions should be low for Rodgers, and for those of you in PPR leagues, the Packers are a definite team to consider when searching for players to draft given Joe Philbin’s pass-first attack.
And on the defensive side, the Packers made the transition to the 3-4 scheme unexpectedly well, which has only been done by a few teams in history. As mentioned above, I would shy away from Al Harris unless you hear something concrete later on out of camp, but the rest of the team is yours to choose from.
Clay Matthews, A.J Hawk, and Nick Barnett lead the linebackers, which should also have a ton of IDP value in the “stay home and sweep to the ball” approach employed by Capers.
In short, the offense is a scoring powerhouse and the defense is tenacious and adept at forcing turnovers—a perfect fantasy combination.
If you enjoyed this article feel free to check out the rest of our 2010 fantasy football team analysis.