Thursday Q & A: John from Green Bay Packer Nation
Our guest this week is John Rehor from Green Bay Packer Nation. John is one of the more prolific Packers ‘tweeters’ out there as well as contributing to Green Bay Packer Nation. We’ll get his take on the recent Redskins game as well as other info about GPN and the Packers in general.
So what is the story behind Green Bay Packer Nation?
Green Bay Packer Nation was founded in by Brady Augustine (twitter.com/bradyaugustine) and J.R. Augustine (twitter.com/GPN_JR) late in 2009. GPN actually has several different areas. “Quick Slant” is a shorter blog post which tackle a specific subject “GPN Insights” are longer posts which may pull from a number of different areas to make a specific statement. Mike Davidsen (twitter.com/michaeldavidsen) and myself focus our attention on these two blog areas. “By the Numbers” is J.R.’s areas of expertise and focuses on statistics. Finally there is “The Cheese” , the humor portion of the site, which Brady oversees. The four of us all came together as a team in April of 2010, and the rest as they say is history.
Beyond blog posts, what other content do you serve up at Green Bay Packer Nation?
Aside from blogs, GPN features unique Facebook style content that enables site members to “friend” other members. We allow for video uploads, pictures, wall postings just like Facebook has. There is also a MyBlog section for members where they can post their own Packers related stories for all to read, and if the post is especially well written, it gets placed on the front page of the GPN site. We also have the 5th quarter podcast, done by Brady and J.R. immediately following every game. The Atrium video podcast is posted mid-week every week.Of course, no mention of GPN would be complete without mentioning Larry Garry, from The Cheese, the humor blog of GPN. He does his own podcast throughout the season, and one has to see it to fully understand it.
I suppose we have no other choice than to touch on the loss to the Redskins here. If you have to name one thing that was the reason/cause for the loss, what was it?
Failure to adapt to what works. Repeatedly in his tenure, Mike McCarthy has shown a tendency to remain stubborn to his game plan that he takes into the game. For example, the running game was seen as a weakness this season when Grant went out. The team struggled to run through the first 4 games. So when the run game kicks in (17 carries, 157 yards) McCarthy sticks by his pass first philosophy. A 2:1 pass ratio during a game where the offense struggled to score TD’s makes no sense. Running the ball controls the clock-flashy stats doesn’t.
In the losing effort, what was one positive that Packers fans can hold on to?
Twice in the last 4 seasons McCarthy’s teams have started slow only to finish strong (4-8 in ’06, finished 8-8; 4-4 last season, finished 11-5). This team despite all of the injuries they have endured is still extremely talented, and if they can weather this storm, stay focused, and finish strong, they can be a playoff team. Getting in the playoffs is the key-anything can happen in the playoffs (see ’07 Giants).
Brandon Jackson had a pretty good game against the Redskins. Do you think this means our issues with the running game may be behind us? or was it just a lucky day?
I wouldn’t say the running game issues are behind us, as I still would rather see someone else ahead of Brandon Jackson as the starter. I wanted the Marshawn Lynch trade to happen to force McCarthy to run the ball more than he has so far this season. However, if Jackson and company can gain around 100 yards every week, it should be enough to take the pressure off of Rodgers to move the ball.
If Jermichael Finley & Clay Matthews are out for an extended period of time, should we as Packers fans give up all hope for the season?
True Packer fans never give up hope. All through the 80′s I watched less than stellar teams take the field, waiting for a return to glory. Far too often, they came up short, but I never gave up hope. Fans cannot rest their hopes on two players; they have to believe in other players than the starting 22.
What’s your take on Ted Thompson not securing the service of Marshawn Lynch, or anyone else for that matter?
I agree with Thompson’s approach of building from the draft and not making a splash in free agency. What I do not understand is why last year when the team needed something, he went out and signed Ahman Green and Mark Tauscher to solidify his team, the veteran presence that was needed, and this year to date, he has done nothing. Either he is sold on the roster as is, and is content to try and make a deep playoff run with his players, or he has something cooking that none of us know about. I don’t think he can ignore some of the flaws forever, not if the team that was built to win this year is going to survive.
What is your general opinion of the job that Packers head coach Mike McCarthy has done this year?
I think this year has been his worst year coaching so far. As I stated previously, his unwillingness to change his game plan is exceptionally frustrating. It seems like he was over confident in his team heading into the season, and does not know how to deal with the loss of players on offense. Penalties continue to be an issue; Special Teams continue to be an issue. At times, he just looks lost, and that is not how I want the Head Coach of the Packers to look.
Atari Bigby & Al Harris will be coming off the PUP list soon, how big of a difference will those two make?
I am hopeful that they can make some difference, but considering they have been on PUP, I am not confident that they will be able to make a huge impact out of the gate. It took Tauscher 2 weeks if memory serves to step in last year, and I would expect the same from Harris and Bigby.
Assuming you had one, what was your pre-season prediction of the Packers record and given the chance, which you are right now, would you change it based on the season so far?
I predicted 11-5 at the start of the season, and I’m sticking by it. This team has the talent to win, it just hasn’t played like it so far. They need to stop the Super Bowl talk, stop the t-shirt selling, move past the injuries and play like the team that was picked by many to make a long run into the playoffs.
Time to play professor, what advice would you give to sports bloggers (or bloggers in general) as it relates to starting or maintaining their blogs?
Communicate with your readers. They are the ones who offer the best advice, suggestions, and criticisms of your site and writing. Twitter, Facebook, and other forms of social media are great ways to find out what people are talking about. Once something is posted, follow up with the comments. Someone took time to read your work, pay the reader the same respect.
…and now for the lighting round.
Your all-time favorite Packers player is:
Your favorite Packers blog to read that is not named Green Bay Packer Nation is:
If there were no Packers, you would have a blog about:
If you were a pro football player, your position would be:
Nose Tackle-right in the heart of the action
Should I ever run into you at a bar, I should buy you a _____________ for taking the time to answer these questions.
Miller High Life, just so Windell Middlebrooks (Miller High Life driver) can show up and tell us we’re living the High Life
Would you like to be the guest for a PocketDoppler.com Thursday Q & A? Let us know!