To the OP.. don't we in a way reload each season under Ted. He is not shy about keeping youth over age, he is not afraid to keep a un-drafted free agent over a drafted player. We are in a constant flux of reloading.
And in terms of starting players, yes we need a couple more impact players, most notably in the box on defense.. but for the most part our depth is inexpensive and serviceable.
If anything, I think we really need to look at the training staff and injury prevention as we seem to be consistently placing high numbers on IR or the inactive lists. Some of that talent is impact type talent at their positions.. IE Bishop and Bulaga, a healthy Bulaga.
I really think we are missing a head knocker of a player on defense to demand excellence and effort snap in and out.. someone on the field that is going to hold players accountable. It doesn't have to be lambasting them in the open, but an "understanding" in the huddle that shit will be dealt with off the field.
I firmly believe this team isn't that far away from being able to get there..
Hey nice post again.
Yes, I do agree that Thompson reloads and is frugal about cost and youth vs. veterans.
The thing I'm noticing is that Thompson's reload was based on the landscape of the NFL as we saw it a year ago. But within this year, there has been an emergence of a different style that we are not designed to stop/account for.
The best example I could give are the 90-93 SF 49ers. They were always reloading and had the offense to handle the rest of the NFL. However, they were NOT designed to stop the Dallas Cowboys.
The Cowboys had a massive offensive line that had not been seen before and a stout running game with a young QB(Aikman) with a strong arm. Within a year, those young players of the Cowboys changed the landscape of the NFL under all that reloading from the 49ers.
The niners could NOT beat the Cowboys for 3 years, until they found a way.
The same example goes for the niners and Green Bay. The late 90s Packers were younger, faster, and more dynamic than the 49ers. They only got over the hump when a DYNAMIC player emerged(Owens).
This comes back to the current packers. They remind me of the early nineties 49ers with a team that can outpace most of the league.
BUT there is a new dynamic team on the block that they do not match up well against. The 49ers and in some respects, the Seattle Seahawks. Both teams have dynamic young QBs and super athletic defenses.
Thompson's reloading for the near term has to be predicated on how to solve matching up against these teams. Even with the full squad of packers players, I do not believe it would have made much difference against that San Francisco team.
Like you mentioned, we need some real impact players on defense AND on offense who are game changers. Easier said than done.
Rebuilding with drafting or signing low cost, servicable character guys who don't have break away speed or can't disrupt the line of scrimmage is not going to get us past the niners or seahawks next season. In my opinion.
It just feels like the Packers are not upper tier anymore but just under and that gap are those impact players. If we don't get them, we will always be on the cusp for a long time to come.