Every year at this time we are facing many of the same questions. That is just the nature of the beast. And we as fans must endure all of the fan-fare that goes with it. First are the questions regarding the draft choices that the Packers organization decided to go for. Were they the best available at the time? Were they considering what our teams’ needs really are? Then we have the undrafted free agents to deal with. Then comes the questions of any “baggage” that these players may be bringing with them; i.e. not being a team player, injury problems, reasons for suspensions, etc. All of this tends to be good fodder for the press and as such, makes for interesting reading for most fans.
This year is no exception. Announced by Ben Ericksen on his Twitter account.
Ericksen told the Pantagraph, the Illinois State paper, “There is no better opportunity I could put myself in. They didn’t take a safety in the whole draft, and they have five total safeties on the roster.” Ben Ericksen is a safety who came from Greendale, WI and played at Illinois State. He is the third Redbird to be taken by the Packers. The others were sixth-round draftee Nate Palmer and a fellow undrafted free agent Matt Brown.
While I am on the subject of safeties, we have to acknowledge that with the departure of Charles Woodson, we definitely can use some extra depth in that position, so it will be nice to see what the competition in camp has to offer us.
Another area that really needs beefing up is at running back. It seem as though our management felt that way also and ended up choosing some great choices by my standards (of course I am only a fan, so my opinion doesn’t really count, except here, of course). Obviously, I am referring to Eddie Lacy of Alabama and Johnathan Franklin of UCLA, our second and fourth round picks of the draft. I have to admit that I was a huge Jim Taylor fan, always was and always will be. I remember him and Paul Hornung giving defenses the fits. They were such a formidable combination. The Green Bay Packers, of the past, had other great duos for running backs as well, but that was all some time ago. Now let us fast forward to the present.
Both Lacy and Franklin appear ready and up for the challenge. I was really impressed with a comment that Franklin made recently: ”Competition is going to bring out the best in you,” said Franklin. “We’re definitely going to find out what kind of men we are and what kind of athletes we are, so I’m excited to compete with Eddie and learn from Eddie and get better with him as well.” This was spoken like a true team player who is genuinely respectful of his fellow teammate and has the well-being of the team at heart. I am really looking forward to this year’s games. Add these two to the mix with Cobb and I see great things happening.
Does anyone think it was accidental that Lacy and Franklin were put together as roommates during last week’s rookie camp?
To quote Mike Vandermause, USA Today Sports:”"
“It was a perfect opportunity for them to get to know each other and build chemistry. If the Packers have their way, Lacy and Franklin will be competing alongside, not against, each other to form some kind of yet to be determined one-two backfield punch.”
Hang onto your hats Packer fans, things are just starting to get interesting.