Less Than a Week into the Offseason, We Already See a Different Attitude in Green Bay

The Green Bay Packers surprised a lot of people by making the playoffs this season in Jordan Love’s first year as a starter. They also featured the youngest roster in the NFL and overcame a slow start to win six of their last eight games.

Now, expectations are high for 2024. But less than one week into the offseason, the changes the Packers are making show a different attitude than the one the team had a year ago.

Last offseason was a time for retooling. Players like Mason Crosby who wanted to return, were not re-signed because the team had a large dead cap hit and didn’t figure to contend for the playoffs anyway.

Matt LaFleur kept Joe Barry, his friend and much-criticized defensive coordinator for another year despite the defense’s struggles. Management was able to point towards a stronger finish to the season as a reason to keep Barry on for another year.

But this week alone, we have already seen changes in attitude after the team’s close loss to the 49ers in the divisional playoff round.

Barry was relieved of his duties on Wednesday even though the defense played better in the final two regular season games and in the playoffs. Of course, part of that was after LaFleur indicated he would be paying more attention to the defensive gameplan, something unusual for an offensive coach.

It had to be difficult for LaFleur to fire his longtime friend. But he ultimately decided it was in the best interests of the team. The attitude change was this: pretty good isn’t good enough.

Rookie kicker Anders Carlson struggled this year, missing at least one kick in 10 of his final 12 games. That included a field goal in the loss to San Francisco that could have put the Packers ahead by seven points before the 49ers started their game-winning drive.

For the season, Carlson demonstrated he has a very strong leg, but he also showed he was very inconsistent. Special teams coordinator Rick Bisaccia worked with Carlson’s brother Daniel and helped him go from inconsistent rookie to an All Pro. He hopes he can eventually do the same with Anders.

But the Packers also won’t just count of that improvement. On Wednesday, GM Brian Gutekunst signed former Georgia kicker Jack Podlesny to compete with Carlson in minicamp. Podlesny was also in training camp with the Vikings this past summer but could not beat out Greg Joseph. Still, he was the SEC’s Special Teams Player of the Year in 2022 after kicking 26-of-31 field goals and 73-of-74 PATs.

While obviously the team invested a sixth-round pick in Carlson and may give him the benefit of the doubt if the two are close in competition, the message is clear. If we can make the team better, we will do it. If Podlesny is a better and more consistent kicker than Carlson, the Packers won’t hesitate to make a change at the position.

Green Bay also moved on from strength and conditioning coach Chris Gizzi. Could that have something to do with the rash of injuries the team suffered this season? It’s quite possible the hamstring issues of Christian Watson and Aaron Jones may have had something to do with the decision to move o from Gizzi who played for the Packers in 2000 and 2001. He served as the assistant strength and conditioning coach from 2014-2018 and has been in his current position since LaFleur took over as head coach in 2019.

The Packers know that there are a limited number of choices to win a Super Bowl with any given group of players. After 2024, the price tag of keeping Jordan Love will go up significantly. In another few years, all of the team’s young receivers and tight ends will be done with their rookie contracts and will need to be re-signed.

The organization knows 2024 will be an important opportunity for the team to surround Love with talent. Gutekunst already has five picks in the top 100 in the 2024 NFL Draft to add to the current talent pool he has. He also must make some difficult decisions about veterans like David Bakhtiari, Darnell Savage, Preston Smith, and Aaron Jones.

 

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__________________________

You can follow Gil Martin on Twitter @GilPackers

__________________________

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13 points
 

Comments (105)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
Booner's picture

January 25, 2024 at 11:11 am

Glad they moved on from Barry! Get a better kicker and get somebody in there that can help with all the soft tissue injuries! Now lets draft some football players not projects!!!

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Fubared's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:07 pm

Ya. I'm not a draft and development (projects) person. Newbies get five year deals so if you spend three getting them in shape, they can go out the door well trained to help the next guy and your stuck with nothing.
Get play makers and have late rounders to fill in and give rest.

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T7Steve's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:26 pm

You really need both guys to develop (O-line), and guys that can help right away (speedy corner-return guys).

The develop guys come at around picks in the 4th round or later, but if its someone with exceptional speed, size or just an important position and just need to learn how to do it in NFL (LVN/Gary) you don't let them slip through your fingers if he's next on your draft board.

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Coldworld's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:05 pm

Absolutely. Rawness discounts value, but upside adds to it. It’s a balance whether first round or third day. Obviously the highest value is elite now, but they are very few and far between in any year.

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zeke's picture

January 25, 2024 at 10:23 pm

Absolutely! No more projects like Reed, Wicks, Craft, Musgrave, Brooks, or Van Ness. Draft someone that actually contributes!

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ChrisD's picture

January 26, 2024 at 01:44 am

HahHaha. Right on bro. Tired of all the haters too?

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WestCoastPackerBacker's picture

January 26, 2024 at 12:17 pm

Yeah, cuz there are so many plug and play NFL starters in every draft at the late picks GB has each round. I read recently that 50% of first round NFL draft picks are not productive for the team that drafts them, so good luck with your expectations for the draft.

How did you feel about Wicks, Reed, Valentine, Heath, Brooks, Van Ness? Brooks and Van Ness each had 4 sacks as rookies. And neither of them started a single game.

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splitpea1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 11:18 am

The Packers moved with surprising alacrity in their efforts to improve the team. No diddling around and procrastinating, which shows they are very serious. I wouldn't be surprised if MLF received a little tush push from the front office to get him over the hump with Barry, and the decision was probably made a while ago.

Whoever the new DC is, he had either be an expert at coaching the secondary or bring along an assistant that is. I believe we have one safety under contract, a star CB with bad shoulders, and another who has hardly played in a season and a half. We should be investing heavily in DBs in the draft, as well as maybe signing someone in FA, so this collective unit is going to need some serious coaching.

Aaron Jones and P. Smith are going to be very difficult decisions, but the other two mentioned should not be at all; goodbye. Jones and Smith have both been very productive Packers and I'd hate to see either one of them go, but we'll see what happens.

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Doug_In_Sandpoint's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:03 pm

I may, or may not agree with you. Need to get out my dictionary.

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Packerpasty's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:20 pm

you must mean "procrastinating" big word it only means "thinking fast" or something like that ...maybe..

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13TimeChamps's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:43 pm

No. No it doesn't.

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RichBeckman's picture

January 26, 2024 at 11:45 am

You left the second half of the definition off.

"Thinking fast for a very long time." Or something like that....maybe.

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Irish_Cheesehead's picture

January 26, 2024 at 02:07 pm

Hey ChatGPT, translate this in simpler words so we can understand it!

The Packers worked really fast to make their team better. They didn't waste time, which means they are very serious. Maybe the boss helped the coach to make a decision about the team. The decision was probably made a long time ago.

The new person in charge of the defense needs to be really good at teaching the players in the back, or bring someone to help. We only have one player signed, a great cornerback with shoulder problems, and another who hasn't played much lately. We should get good players in the draft and maybe sign someone to make our defense strong. They will need a coach who can teach them well.

Deciding about Aaron Jones and P. Smith will be hard. The other two shouldn't stay on the team. Jones and Smith have done a lot for the team, and it would be sad to see them leave. We'll have to wait and see what happens.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:14 pm

Except they haven't improved the team until new DC and strength coaches are signed.

I know, patience; the process takes time. Meanwhile, coaches are getting signed in a hurry. Fortunately, nobody I recognize as "the one that got away."

Yet.

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CheesedDeadHead's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:12 pm

"I wouldn't be surprised if MLF received a little tush push from the front office to get him over the hump with Barry, and the decision was probably made a while ago."

Maybe someone reminded him a lot of the top candidates were already interviewing for other open jobs and dragging his feet meant a smaller/lower quality pool to pick from. Or not.

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splitpea1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:16 pm

The Eagles have already hired Fangio, so that's one name gone from the pool. We could be competing with them as well at draft time for DBs.

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Houndog's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:33 pm

Yeah, but that was predetermined. Fangio was a Defensive consultant on their staff in 2022 and the "deal" was struck in about 18 hours after Miami let him go.
No surprise there!

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Guam's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:07 pm

I would really like the new DC to evaluate the play of Savage before any cap decisions are made. I think Savage may be salvageable with the right DC although he would have to stay on a team friendly deal.

I think P. Smith's retention got a lot more important with the injury to Enagbare. Enagbare won't be back until mid season or later next year and losing P. Smith would leave the Packers thin at OLB.

Cutting Bakh gets the Packers back to a tolerable cap position. I suspect the rest can be worked out by Ball without limiting the team's options too badly.

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Lphill's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:51 pm

a scout wrote that Barry was not playing Savage to his strengths' which is playing up and not back in deep coverage . that's how he excelled in college.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:18 pm

Absolutely, the new DC should have considerable say in the defensive roster. That's also a key consideration in the interview, I'd think; who does he want to keep on the roster and more importantly, what would he do with them. A deep look into that should be possible in a couple days, but that's AFTER the candidate has a chance to prepare.

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Houndog's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:25 pm

Wow!

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BAMABADGER's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:41 pm

SP1:
The only folks I know that use the word "alacrity" are from the U.P. As in, " how bout yous guys alacrity grab us a couple two tree beers..."

GPG!!

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GregC's picture

January 25, 2024 at 11:29 am

I would've liked to have seen LaFleur move on from Joe Barry after last season, but maybe it will work out better to get a new DC this year. The QB transition has successfully been completed, and Green Bay now looks like a very attractive place for a DC to make a name for himself. Much more than it was a year ago. There will be a lot of pressure, but that goes with the territory.

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ricky's picture

January 25, 2024 at 11:38 am

I don't see Bakhtiari being a difficult decision. He played one game in 2021, 11 in 2022, and one game this season. He is also scheduled to make about $40 million next year. If he is cut before June 1, there would be about $19 million in dead cap, but a cap savings of about $21 million. Trading him is also an option, but unless the Packers were willing to pay part of his salary, and make any draft pick contingent on his playing time, I don't see it happening. He was a terrific player before the freak injury. At this point, it seems the team would be better off cutting ties with him. As far as Jones, reworking his contract would make sense. But only if the deal were "team friendly".

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Fubared's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:05 pm

I agree. You got the best out of him and unfortunately hung on and got the worst out of him to. Thats one thing I've noticed about the Vikes over the years and it must be part of their management mantra: get what you can then trade for value rather then pay up and get stuck with an older player and nothing in exchange.
Daniel Hunter asked to come back for less money to stay a Viking. Thats a good deal for any team to pay less, a short term deal and get production.

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CheesedDeadHead's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:10 pm

Yep, the Vikings are really the model for how a good football team should be run. Save money on trophy display cases and Hall of Fames and sink that money into team building, like a river cruise...

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Houndog's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:29 pm

Right deadhead, and..........
I'm surprise they haven't swooped in and hired Barry already!
They love to grab Packer cast-offs.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:21 pm

They're competing with da Bares for that.

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LLCHESTY's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:08 pm

Have to give him and Fubared credit. Their purple team is bad and yet they still attempt to troll. E for effort I guess.

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Bitternotsour's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:08 pm

they're the same person

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davekenya's picture

January 25, 2024 at 09:44 pm

...and whizzonators

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dobber's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:59 pm

https://overthecap.com/player/danielle-hunter/3936

Go to this page.
Read it.
Reconcile it with what you just said about Danielle Hunter.

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13TimeChamps's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:09 pm

Why do you even engage this clown?

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Johnblood27's picture

January 26, 2024 at 07:10 am

I almost replied to your post, then I read it again...

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dblbogey's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:09 pm

I think Aaron Jones is one of the few who might take less to stay with the team. I believe he already did that once. He's surely got another good year left, but tends to miss a few games. I wouldn't mind a RB on the 2nd day of the draft. If Bakh were finally healthy, he probably could have 2-3 more high quality years left, but there is no getting around the $40 million salary.

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4thand10's picture

January 25, 2024 at 03:20 pm

@dblbogey
We have a team set at WR and most likely QB, on OL we need a better right guard and to get rid of Hanson , possibly Runyan. So I d say a day one starter at RG. Jones will be in year 8…the best of RBs you don’t get much more production after year 8. I like Jones…but there’s the injury history the last few years. But I’d prefer a day one starting RB picked in a high round if it’s a good year for RBs to go along with Dillon and Wilson.I also see a huge need at safety and a minor need at CB if stokes is t able to improve and get on the field. Balentine was a 30 yr old stop gap. But yeah, I’m right there with ya on a day1 or day 2 pick at RB for the teams future.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:26 pm

Hanson was gotten rid of earlier in the season.

We need 3 strong picks on the IOL, early rounds.

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TOMMY'63's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:07 pm

Unfortunately Bachtiari is finished, his knee probably is left with little carthilge scraping the knee cap. Can't be traded because no team will take him. Gute will most likely use a high pick to replace him. My opinion, walker plays quite well, but he's not or will ever become a top lt.

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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 09:49 pm

Bakh was finished 3 years ago. Giving him a 4 yr. contract - while he was on the wrong side of 30 was dumb. A 3 year contract would have been OK. Now because he is physically unsound - the Packers can neither trade or release him to realize any significant cap relief. In short, they are screwed. As a result, I too think that Gutekunst will pick an OT in the first or second round.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:26 pm

Thank you Dr Tommy.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:23 pm

Actually there is getting around his salary, he said he knows his contract needs to be re-negotiated no matter what. It's the $19MM dead cap that can't be avoided.

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Fubared's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:00 pm

Bravo to LeFleur who I've beaten like and ol mule on this board at times. He saw the light got rid of Barry and moved to find kicking competition so things are looking up.
In reality, he has seen the rise of the Lions who are also young, and aren't going away soon, The Bears going to be vastly improved with lots of new guys but guys with skills, the Vikes with a rejuvenated cousins and it position to draft one of the best DE coming out to pair with Daniels. He cant sit on his laurels, he must improve this team also and fill gaps on D and make changes to keep up with the Jones as they say and he is doing it.

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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:19 pm

I have to think that it is also Gutekunst asserting his influence with the current decisions. We know that in the past the GMs role has been reduced due to an impaired management structure. Perhaps Gutekunst has been unshackled (I hope).

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LLCHESTY's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:11 pm

Daniels? You can't even get your favorite team's players names right? For shame!

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Oppy's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:51 pm

The Vikings will be cellar dwellers in 2024.

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croatpackfan's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:48 pm

"For the season, Carlson demonstrated he has a very strong leg, but he also showed he was very inconsistent."

"But the Packers also won’t just count of that improvement. On Wednesday, GM Brian Gutekunst signed former Georgia kicker Jack Podlesny to compete with Carlson in minicamp.... ...he was the SEC’s Special Teams Player of the Year in 2022 after kicking 26-of-31 field goals and 73-of-74 PATs."

I have 2 questions for you Gil.
1. How would you evaluated Packers LS for this, past season? And, does LS & holder have any influence on kickers precision/consistency?

2. Do you check data about Jack Podlesny in detail? If you do what was his percentage of succesful kicks from 40-49 yards? You might be surprise to find out that Carlson is better in that range than Podlesny...

Thank you on your answer...

4 points
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Houndog's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:38 pm

I too read the stats on Podlesny and wasn't impressed.
The take on him is that if its over 45 yds, either go for it on 4th and 6, or punt!
Not exactly what we were looking for.

2 points
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dblbogey's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:12 pm

Jan Stenerud is still alive, but at 81 years old, has probably lost some range.

5 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:57 pm

Thinking that he could today, still kick extra points better than Carlson.

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mrridgman's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:59 pm

I saw Jan last summer at a golf course in Bozeman MT. He's bigger than I remember, over 6' easily. Looks 60, great shape. He CARRIES his clubs. He probably can still stick it.

2 points
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TOMMY'63's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:15 pm

Gutey might use a 7th round pick on a new kicker, no? They're are good kickers ,also a new long snapper is a must. The one we have is completely rubbish!!

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golfpacker1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:43 pm

Croat, I guess I am just happy that GB is not considering that Carlson is their only option. And not waiting until summer to find competition. Two kickers I would look at late in the draft or as UFDAs are Josh Harty-Stanford and Harold Mevis-Missouri. Both had similar stats and % as Podlesny, but have stronger legs. Way more touchbacks on kickoffs and both kicked 60 plus yard FGs in college.

Carlson had one good year in college, all three of the other guys were more consistent too.
I would feel better about Carlson this year without the missed extra points and if his kickoffs at least got to the end zone. He is always short and not because that was the gameplan. No team wants a kickoff returned.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:31 pm

Absolutely false about Carlson's kickoffs. ST coach said Carlson kicked those the way he was told to.

1 points
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GilMartin's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:56 pm

Carlson has a stronger leg for sure of the two. As for the long snapper, it was definitely a problem this season and it almost certainly hurt Carlson. I would like to see Carlson succeed. I do think it was wise to bring in competition. Thanks for the comment croatpackfan.

4 points
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GregC's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:14 pm

Good points. The reality is that there are not a lot of good kickers in college. Not good by NFL standards anyway. You can't just go with the ones who have the best field goal percentages because there are so many variables and often a small sample size. Being a good NFL kicker is a high level skill, sort of like hitting a 280-yard drive down the middle of the fairway almost every time.

At least Carlson is not usually missing by much. I don't get the impression that he has a case of the yips. It's more like he's developing his craft. Good that they brought in some competition though.

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golfpacker1's picture

January 26, 2024 at 12:38 pm

A miss is a miss is a miss. Whether by 3 feet or 33 feet. Missing extra points, missing field goals, short kickoffs that are returned. What else is there?

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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:49 pm

Action solves indecision, postponement and dread. In the past, managerial inaction and procrastination have cost the Packers dearly. All of which we have seen and experienced this season - with the spectacular ascension of Love and the team - could have been possible last year - had there been more dynamic and prescient management. Nevertheless, better to have learned late than not at all.

4 points
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Packerpasty's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:22 pm

more dictionary stuff

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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:29 pm

Your point?

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13TimeChamps's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:41 pm

Apparently, he wants you to dumb it down for him. Anyone who couldn't understand your post without a dictionary is seriously challenged. Apparently using words like prescient and procrastination shouldn't be used on a football site.

4 points
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Johnblood27's picture

January 26, 2024 at 07:17 am

His point may well be on that cap he wears while in that corner...

1 points
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Coldworld's picture

January 25, 2024 at 12:50 pm

Perhaps LaFleur was nudged, as it’s rumored he was with Bissacia. Perhaps it’s now dawning on him that he has to strive to be better throughout his coaching structure. Who he appoints and what that leads to in terms of retooling personnel and philosophies—all we may have done insight to in winter—will soon tell us much more.

As to the atmosphere, the real excitement is the youth, talent and bonding wise as a unit and with Love. Love looks like he could be a leader into the 2030s, early still, but there are tangible signs that this a plausible hope. The WRs and TEs look like we have a great core for the O. And now we should have a new vision to frame Gute’s draft ammunition on D in a draft that probably goes heavily that way. Let’s hope he drafts well and for the right defensive mind.

The right new D could have me enjoying the D like the days of Collins and Woodson again. It’s been a long time. Maybe a few players will emerge under a new leader and usage. A lot to be excited about.

Now let’s see who we pick as DC and who we let him bring with him. Touch wood this isn’t just changing the face but an influx of ideas and expertise capable of reassessing and elevating.

5 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:08 pm

Prior to this year I regarded MLF as a one-dimensional (offensive) and thereby incomplete HC. He had glaring blind spots - i.e., special teams, defense and coaching hires. However, he may now finally be regarded as a bona fide NFL HC. The hire of the next DC will be a big tell as to his continued development and maturation.

5 points
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Swisch's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:57 pm

LaFleur is a young guy as a head coach in the NFL, and so we can hope he is growing into the job.
This past season of 2023 seems to have been a significant display of progress by LaFleur as both a tactical genius and a leader of men.
I'm rooting for him to keep it going for his sake and that of the Packers becoming champions.

4 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:19 pm

What came first - the chicken (LaFleur's growth and development) or the egg (Love's)?

1 points
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Swisch's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:31 pm

Let's hope it was a mutually beneficial relationship that will grow over time in genuine respect and affection as we win championships with kudos liberally shared all around.

1 points
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Johnblood27's picture

January 26, 2024 at 07:19 am

Swischer, you must have been listening to Joan Baez this morning...

1 points
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Swisch's picture

January 26, 2024 at 11:56 am

:-).
Maybe James Taylor.

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RichBeckman's picture

January 26, 2024 at 12:34 pm

The departure of Rodgers.

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SicSemperTyrannis's picture

January 26, 2024 at 10:39 pm

This is only one aspect of being HC. When there are time constraints to do several of them at the same time, such as clock management, challenge flag decisions, in-game adjustments that include personnel and play calling - that's repeatedly proven to be too much. Which is not at all a knock on MLF; who can do all that at the same time? His strengths all fit within the OC job description.

I do not expect him to step down from HC, so I hope he's getting input about these big decisions. I think doing that is probably one of his strengths. This is just the nerve racking part of the process ...

0 points
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Guam's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:10 pm

I was happy the Packers moved on from Gizzi. The author mentioned Watson and Jones, but left out Stokes who basically missed the entire season due to hamstring issues. The Packers need all three of those players available and not sitting on the sideline with perpetually pulled muscles.

9 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:24 pm

Reminds me of the time during the McCarthy era - when there was a plague of hamstring injuries - that the front office was hard-pressed to understand the cause(s)..

5 points
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Coach Cleve Steamer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:45 pm

Clay Matthews’ career was perennially hampered by weak hamies.

3 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 09:30 pm

I have begun to wonder if Watson will experience the same as Mathews.

1 points
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TOMMY'63's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:27 pm

Stokes had multiple fracture in his leg, when he returned to play he injured his hamstring.
Hopefully the pack finally realised they don't have good training &conditioning coaches. We've been plaqued with the injuries for well over a decade. Yes ,injuries are unavoidable, every team has injuries, but we endure them much more than others. Shit , we had a bunch of a crippled players before the season began, lol.

3 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 09:34 pm

This may be more than meets the eye.

2 points
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CheeseEdWest2's picture

January 26, 2024 at 07:57 am

The pattern of injuries, the plague of hammies, was a signal and I'm relieved to hear LF honored it. I liked the commentary of Mike Wahle on that--fascinating to hear his analysis of how you structure a workout program to prevent injuries by building stamina in the right way. Hope the new guy is strong in that area.

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Swisch's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:16 pm

Good presentation, Gil, about exciting times for Green Bay.
As put forth, the Packers have to seize this opportunity by seeking the best person for every coaching and playing position.
That's not only about statistics, but also about character, and combining individuals into a real team.
That's why a guy like Aaron Jones is so integral, for his dynamic skills plus his excellent character.
Preston Smith may be worth keeping for similar reasons.
***
It's hard to see coaches and players go, and decisions to move on from anyone with a good measure of character and good will should not be taken lightly.
At the same time, we can't keep everyone on the team forever due to age and salary and a reasonable desire to upgrade in any position for the good of everyone involved with the team.
I'd like there to be a symbiosis between the players and the management, as well as between the players and the fans, in which the players find that if they give themselves generously to the Green Bay Packers, they will get plenty back in return as far as respect and appreciation and opportunity.
***
In summary, I'd like the Packers to be known for two complementary things that are keys to winning:
(1) Smart management always striving to get better.
(2) Caring management in which players and coaches (and all staff) are genuinely treated as persons of importance.
If Green Bay is seen by players as a premier destination where the standards are high but also the treatment of them is fair and favorable, then I'm hopeful the Packers will win a couple of Super Bowls before 2030.

4 points
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Alberta_Packer's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:50 pm

benevolence + intelligence = a better team.

1 points
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Packerpasty's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:24 pm

go get a young up and coming DC like Minter (who's probably going to Chargers) not some retread like that Dink Wertidale guy...

-4 points
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golfpacker1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:52 pm

Any DC who gets the most out of his players and can make per game and in game adjustments is what we need. Experience with DBs would be a huge bonus. I actually think Wink would be a good choice for us, but I would prefer a really good younger coach. Evero would be #1 but I don't see more than a 10% chance. Carolina has him under contract and other teams want him as a HC.

I would offer the ex Wisconsin guy again, Jim Leonard. Younger, proven winner, and great with DBs. Offer him big $$$ and force him to make a decision.

1 points
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Bitternotsour's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:19 pm

Where exactly was he great with DB's? He was a great DB, sure, but I'm not seeing any evidence he's an NFL level coordinator in his resume. Lot's of better names out there who actually have NFL experience. This job can't have a learning curve. The future is now.

1 points
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TOMMY'63's picture

January 25, 2024 at 07:41 pm

I don't understand this love and appeal for Leonhard. His defensive schemes are those
Of Staley, Pettine and Barry. They all come from the rex ryan tree, Leonhard would bring more or less the shite we saw from the previous, except he won't play passive on short yardage with dbs too far from scrimmage. Lesley Frazier or mink. Fuck the position coaches venturing to dc for the first time! We need an experienced dc to bring out the maximum of the 8 1st defenders that we have.

2 points
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golfpacker1's picture

January 26, 2024 at 12:44 pm

AT Wisconsin. He had the #1 defense in the college for 2 years and top ten other years. And that's operating with a 3rd of the budget and no 5 stars like the bluebloods of college football. And obviously since MLF already offered him the job once, I would guess the Packers like him and his qualifications.

0 points
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RCPackerFan's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:53 pm

"Less Than a Week into the Offseason, We Already See a Different Attitude in Green Bay"

There definitely is a different attitude right now in GB. Last year LaFleur decided to keep his coaches all intact. I remember during his press conference right after the season, he immediately said that the coaches would be back. He didn't hesitate or say that he was going to review things. They were just coming back. Which most of us felt Barry needed to go a year ago. Now I understood why LaFleur kept him. But it was a flawed decision. They were wanting to run it back. Regardless of the why, he was retained and it was obviously a bad decision.

So from last year to this year there is already a new attitude, a new mindset. That attitude is that good is not good enough. That we demand more from this team then what we got.

We don't know who will lead our defense yet, but they will be walking into a great situation. And they will no doubt be bringing a new attitude to the defense.

3 points
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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:53 pm

I too like the aggressiveness the Packers are taking. The fact they are immediately jumping to make these changes is promising. I have repeatedly been stressing the Packers need top draft choices to select big bodies in the trenches on both defense and offense. I am also well aware of the need for Safeties and a CB, as well as an Aaron Jones clone at RB. However, I am especially concerned with our Edge/Linebackers going into the offseason.

Both Preston and Campbell are over 30 years old and Campbell has not been playing very well. Engabare will almost miss the whole 2024 season due to injury. Back-up Wilson and McDuffie both are free agents. I do not believe we can overlook this area come draft time and how the Packers prioritize these positions in the draft will be interesting to watch. We should have a much better idea leading up to the draft about how the Packers might prioritize the Edge/Linebackers by watching to see who has resigned, and who has been let go.

The draft = is my favorite time of year for Packer football! Just last night on Netflix I once again watched the movie 'The Draft' with Kevin Costner as the Cleveland Browns GM during the 2014 draft. Great show!

-1 points
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golfpacker1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 04:26 pm

You right on about the linebacker need Knock. Campbell hasn't been good or healthy. Plus he is crazy expensive. Somebody really got stupid when figuring that contract extention. For one good year. Wow. FA predictions have GB going after Patrick Queen, which would be great if we didn't have the huge boat anchor contract of Campbell. I guess they think we can just Sh*t $19 million of cap space.

The problem with P Smith's and Campbells contract are cutting or trading either only saves $2 million, Smith played well enough and was available enough to warrant another year. I don't know what you do with Campbell. Draft a replacement for sure. Payton Wilson-N C State and Junior Colson Michigan would be 2 good 3 down LBs. Neither will last past the 3rd round.

The draft is my favorite time too. I am hoping we find someone who wants to trade up with us so we can gain an extra 2nd rounder. That would let us take a top 5 LB while not overdrafting a top 3 Safety @ #25. picks in first 3 rounds would be insane for the holes it could fill.

1 points
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Houndog's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:55 pm

Nice article, Gil.
The Headline says it all, there's a whole new attitude and perception now.
I think Barry's firing was the spark that set the fire, we've got more hope now.
As for the reasoning behind it, there's a lot of ideas in today's comments and who knows what the answer is?
Did MLF finally figure out that if he didn't win sooner rather than later it would be his ass and not Barry's on the chopping block? I'm thinking maybe Bissaccia whispered in his ear about that. He knows.
Did 'management' give him an ultimatum? I doubt Murphy even knew what was happening, he's too bust playing Real Estate mogul and Golf course manager. Put him on the bus with Barry! And Gutey? My understanding is that he still wears the handcuffs Murphy installed in what, 2017 or 2018 when he was given the position?
Whatever happened to send Barry down the road I'm just glad it did.
Lets hope LaFleur doesn't sit on his hands until all the good DC's are gone. I'm kinda a hoping for young blood vs a retread.
I'd love to see or hear about some interviews or a short list.

1 points
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GilMartin's picture

January 25, 2024 at 01:58 pm

Thanks Houndog. Hoping the new attitude gets better results. I'm sure there was some kind of realization that unless LaFleur hired a better DC, LaFleur would be next to be on the hot seat. Thanks for the comment.

0 points
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DeezNutz's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:09 pm

If we hire Wink Martindale, does that mean he has to quit his gig as a game show host?

5 points
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Packerpasty's picture

January 25, 2024 at 05:51 pm

No , thats off season gig...

2 points
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stockholder's picture

January 25, 2024 at 02:40 pm

The Packers are still a quagmire of confusion.
Barry did help get them to the playoffs.
The STs had their troubles even with a great coach.
Jordan Love’s 1st year might be a phenomenon.
Is a rookie going to play better than Savage?.
The rift between the Packers and Alexander.
Not to mention the out burst from Campbell.
The answer should have come from the veterans.
Re-Load or Re-Build. Who's hungry?

-6 points
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jannes bjornson's picture

January 25, 2024 at 03:21 pm

Yes, a rookie will play better than Savage who is a slot CB, not a safety at heart...

4 points
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Leatherhead's picture

January 25, 2024 at 03:27 pm

I'm kind of curious as to why we needed a new attitude. I mean, a year ago, look where we were: We had just missed the playoffs, we were in a very difficult salary cap situation, and it was time to break up with Aaron Rodgers. I was hearing the front office described as "clown show", incompetents, stooges, or even evil people bent on destroying the Packers.

Now, we have a younger, better QB, an improved offense, an improved salary cap situation, two extra picks on Day 2 of the draft, we made the playoffs and showed we belonged on the field with the best teams in the NFC.

It seems to me the old attitude, whatever that was, is doing just fine.

-1 points
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Swisch's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:10 pm

It's a good perspective to point out the good things already in place with the Packers, but there is always a need to strive to get better.
We needed a late-season surge to get to a solid but still average record of 9-8, and to sneak into the playoffs. It's no time to rest on such limited laurels, however much we are excited by the progress already made.
If the Packers have good linebackers already, but could upgrade to Fred Warner of the 49ers in a reasonable deal, wouldn't that be a move to consider strongly?
Our offensive line seemed to finish this season strong, but still we may want to draft for even better blockers for the future.
Joe Barry's coaching performance is subject to honest debate; but in any case, there seems to be a strong consensus the Packers can do much better at defensive coordinator.
In general, I don't think it's wise for a team to move on from good players and coaches lightly, but it's imperative for a team to always be seeking improvement.
After all, Green Bay needs to retain its reputation as Titletown.

0 points
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Batmouse's picture

January 26, 2024 at 01:38 am

What’s not talked about much here , is that LeFleur had to actively get involved in the defense the last few weeks to insure the defensive schemes were better .
Preparing the players to tackle better , play fun better , be consistent, Jim Leohanard would be great for ! Considering his defenses at Wisconsin were hard nose , in your face football players. If he can get that out of his players , he won’t be a project at all , he’ll be a success .

1 points
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exbody's picture

January 25, 2024 at 03:29 pm

No question these moves by the Packers to fire Barry and bring in another kicker to compete sends a clear message that this organization understands that they are not the 3 year rebuild that was the plan before the season
IMO, because Jordan Love's rapid growth, the emergence of these young WRs and TEs and the playoff run they made THIS season. This team is now clearly competing for SB appearances NOW and for the next several years. As a result, we see a more decisive and aggressive approach towards the direction and expectations this team has.
The rebuild narrative has now become what additions and subtractions must be made to put this team on the brink of a SB !!
How exciting are we fans to go along this ride. It's so easy to root for this team. You can sense the togetherness and closeness these players and coaches have for one another. It was missing the last couple years but so happy that feeling is back again!!!
GPG!!!

2 points
2
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CanPackFan's picture

January 25, 2024 at 04:44 pm

I like it! Attend to urgent change urgently! No more procrastination please. We have a good young nucleus. Let's not fritter the seasons away like we did with Rodgers! GPG

0 points
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golfpacker1's picture

January 25, 2024 at 04:47 pm

The only position group that needs rebuilt now is Safety. we need 2 in the draft and a good FA. Trade back to late first or early second and select Tyler Nubin, Kinchens, or Bullard. One of the top 3 with our first pick and then another mid draft, Ball hawks and good tacklers. Plus extra picks for trading back.

A couple of IOL to strengthen them. One in the 2nd and one in the 4th. Cooper Beebe, Zac Zinter, or Van Pran-Georgia can play center or guard. Zinter might fall because of injury.

A good CB that isn't always hurt. probably late second or third round. I like T J Tampa-Ia State and Kyree Jackson-Oregon. Both big, fast, and physical.

A good, fast LB to play alot this year and replace Campbell next year. How about Payton Wilson-N C State? 6'4 240lbs and runs 4.5s.

Another RB to spell Jones and take over in the next 2 years. Braelon Allen or Marshawn Lloyd.

MIx in Edge, maybe WR late. another RB, and ? Fill the holes.

1 points
1
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Swisch's picture

January 25, 2024 at 06:21 pm

Emanuel Wilson may just be the successor to Jones, and in the meantime a good backup to keep Jones rested.
It seems Patrick Taylor also made some good gains this season, literally and figuratively, and has likely learned of the urgency in certain situations to get out of bounds to stop the clock.
Although I'm a big fan of A. J. Dillon, I'm not sure what to make of his future with the Packers and the appropriate salary for him. Sad to say, he may not be enough bang for the buck.
We may still want to take a running back in the draft, but perhaps can wait until the later rounds.

0 points
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harleycops's picture

January 25, 2024 at 05:16 pm

It's time! Time for a new DC that will finally scare opponents, time for schemes that puzzle the offenses and allow pressure from everywhere. Let's build a defense with who we have and who we'll draft and kick ass in 2024. It's time to explode with this defense with a DC that creates chaos and turnovers. Barry is gone and good riddance. MLF, do this hiring right and get a dude in there that demands his players to ball out with abandon. It's time.....!

-1 points
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1
Cheeseheadinseattle's picture

January 25, 2024 at 05:34 pm

I'm relieved the Packers finally did what they should have done 2 years ago after the Tampa Bay fiasco; fire Joe Barry! I don't know if the order came from management or LaFleur finally figured it out, but either way I'm elated. I believe they will be a legitimate Super Bowl contender next season, and hopefully into the foreseeable future. The bow on the package would be landing Jim Leonhard. GO PACK!

0 points
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SinceLombardi's picture

January 25, 2024 at 08:22 pm

I think the decisions on Bahktiari, Smith, Stokes and Savage are easy.

-1 points
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dpwiener's picture

January 25, 2024 at 11:45 pm

The Packers are in pretty good shape, and they know exactly what weaknesses to address, which they're doing: Get a top DC to replace Barry, get a strength/conditioning coach who's an expert at minimizing injuries such as hamstrings, get a more consistent kicker.

Jones and Smith must be brought back; it's merely a question of how their contracts will be restructured. But the Packers must also draft their long-term replacements, probably with high picks. When Jones is healthy, he plays at an elite level. He's well worth his high salary; the difference between him and an average plow horse running back is enormous. But we need to find a backup with Jones-type talent to minimize the drop-off when Jones is injured. That won't be easy.

Players with injury histories should have their contracts restructured to emphasize game-day bonuses. That includes Bakhtiari, if he'll accept it. Otherwise cut him, and let him sign with the Jets.

Finally, the Packers are going to have to sign Jordan to a long-term contract which is competitive with other elite QBs ($35 to $45 million per year with escalators). That will soak up a lot of cap space, but much of the cap hit can be postponed to 2025 and later when they'll have more space.

0 points
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golfpacker1's picture

January 26, 2024 at 12:57 pm

Braelon Allen-Wisconsin would be my first choice for RB. He is 20 years old, had great production for 3 years, is never hurt, 6'2 240 and runs 4.5. He could easily fill Dillons role but he is a future lead RB.

Marshawn Lloyd-USC, is an Aaron Jones clone. Same size, speed, and catching ability.

Ray Davis-Kentucky, 5th rounder probably.5"11 215lbs, runs and catches equally well. Had like 20 total TDs this year.

Sleepers Dillon Johnson-Washington. Isaiah Davis-S Dakota State.

0 points
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