We are finishing up grading out the rest of the Green Bay Packers offensive coaching staff. In part one, we graded out head coach Matt LaFleur, offensive coordinator Adam Stenavich, quarterbacks coach Tom Clements, and offensive line coach Luke Butkus. But we still have more coaches to give out grades to for their efforts in 2022. Here are the final grades for the rest of the Green Bay Packers offensive coaching staff.
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Grading out the rest of the Green Bay Packers Offensive Coaching Staff
Matt LaFleur’s “all gas, no brakes” mantra for the Green Bay Packers offense turned out to be all lip service in 2022. Even with having the defending NFL MVP, Aaron Rodgers, as his starting quarterback, the Packers offense didn’t scare too many opposing defenses.
A lot of the blame falls on the shoulders of the players. But the Green Bay Packers offensive coaching staff also deserves some blame. But of course, the person who has earned the most blame is LaFleur himself.
As we detailed in our first piece, the grades we are handed out weren’t overly impressive. In this piece, the rest of the Green Bay Packers offensive coaching staff grade out a little better than their counterparts. But not by much. Still, it’s lucky for the staff, LaFleur believes in continuity in his coaching staff. Most NFL head coaches would look at a 9-8 record and thing change is necessary. But not LaFleur, seems like mediocrity is something he is more than happy to accept.
Running backs coach
In our opinion, Packers running backs coach Ben Sirmans doesn’t get nearly the credit he should. While other Packers assistants earn promotions or get added job titles, all Sirmans does is get his unit ready to play game in and game out.
Starting running back Aaron Jones finished the season with over 1,100 yards rushing. He had only two rushing touchdowns, the lowest of his career. But that had a lot to do with Matt LaFleur’s play calling. Under Sirman’s leadership, Jones has become one of the best offensive threats as a running back.
Backup running back AJ Dillon finished the season with a career-high seven rushing touchdowns. He also chipped in over 700 yards rushing, something that is eye-popping from a backup running back. While he is still an unfinished product as a pass protector, he is a solid contributor as a pass catcher.
With the work that Ben Sirmans has done as the Packers running backs coach, you would think he would get some attention as a candidate for teams looking for a possible offensive coordinator. But until other teams start to take notice, Sirmans will keep doing his job and having his running backs produce.
Wide Receivers Coach/Pass Game Coordinator
When Matt LaFleur gave wide receivers coach Jason Vrable the title of pass game coordinator last off-season, it was a bit of a head-scratcher. Excluding Davante Adams, who was already with the team when Vrable got the wide receivers coach position, it wasn’t like the Packers wide receivers group was setting the NFL on fire.
In his first season as the pass game coordinator, Vrable was given the task to get rookies Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs ready to contribute immediately. Watson had a strong rookie campaign and showed glimpses of why general manager Brian Gutekunst traded up in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft to select him. Watson has big play potential and his speed is something the Packers haven’t seen at the position in a long time. Still, he has a lot to work on, especially catching the ball on a consistent basis and blocking.
Doubs, a fourth-round rookie, also showed some potential. But similar to Watson, he struggled with drops. It also appeared that Doubs struggled with confidence. Aaron Rodgers didn’t do him any favors by riding him hard, but it is something Doubs needs to adjust to if Rodgers returns.
Allen Lazard and fellow veteran wide receiver Randall Cobb were contributors to the Packers offense. But for Lazard, who was expected to bust out with Adams gone, he never became that consistent weapon that was expected.
Gutekunst added veteran wide receiver Sammy Watkins prior to the season. Vrable worked with Watkins with the Buffalo Bills at one time and it was reported that he put in a good word for him with Gutekunst. The signing and Watkins himself were a massive disappointment. His lack of availability and production caused the Packers to waive him mid-season. The Watkins experiment played a part in Vrable’s low grade.
Tight ends coach
When Matt LaFleur promoted offensive analyst John Dunn to tight ends coach, we weren’t impressed. Dunn brought with him a resume that was littered with working on coaching staffs that produced losing programs.
While we don’t think Dunn earned the position, we do believe he did his best with what he had to work with as the Packers tight end coach. Starting tight end Robert Tonyan caught 53 passes for 470 yards with two touchdown catches. Sadly, Tonyan doesn’t seem like the player he was before suffering a season-ending knee injury in 2021.
Marcedes Lewis is still one of the best blocking tight ends in the NFL. He doesn’t bring much to the passing game if anything. But what he does as a blocker, even at his age, is quite remarkable.
Josiah Deguara might never live up to where he was drafted (third round), but he plays a big part in the Packers offense when given the opportunity. A piece we believe should be bigger. His ability to line up as a fullback really helps out the run game. LaFleur, like many things, didn’t utilize him enough in that position.
Tyler Davis, the other tight end on the Packers roster, is a warm body. If this position was deeper, he wouldn’t even be on the roster. Gutekunst needs to bring in more talent to the Packers tight end room. Once, or if, he does, then we will see how good a coach John Dunn truly is.
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