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Friday, June 17, 2005
What do you want from the TE position?
by Mark Quarderer
Do you want an Antonio Gates type guy who catches 80 balls a year? Then wouldn't that mean that our WRs get 50 fewer balls thrown to them? Or does it mean we run it fifty fewer times?
Or do you just want a guy who can be the second guy in double TE sets, someone who can get deep down the middle......but who is still able to block well enough that the run threat is still legitimate?
We've already got one of the better starting TEs in the league in Bubba (the contract stuff will get worked out). He's never missed a game in his career with injury. And we've got one of the better, perhaps the best, 3rd TE in the league in Kevin Barry (yes, I know he's listed as an OT, but what position is that he's playing when he gets on the field?)
So I don't think our TE situation is as calamitous as some people seem to think. For the offense the Packers run, what they need most is a TE who can catch 2-3 balls a game, be a threat in the red zone, get his man blocked, and stay healthy throughout the year......we've already got that guy.
Now, if he gets injured......that's going to pretty much take the TE out of the passing game for us. But that's OK......we can just run 3 WR sets more (I actually think that the 3 WR package could be a very good base package on first down for us because it would force other teams to the nickel on first down....leaving only 6 guys in the box to defend against the run and leaving us with six-on-six blocking. Or they could bring a safety up and expose themselves to the pass a little more.....either way, good for us.)
I think that the majority of the better TEs in the league right now were all pretty high draft picks........if we really want to recreate the Chmura/Jackson combo we had a decade ago, we're probably going to have to spend some real resources on it....and I'm just not sure it's worth it.