The Green Bay Packers, for the first time in a long while, participated in Black Monday by firing defensive coordinator Dom Capers. Capers had been with the Packers for nine seasons before the organization broke things off. When the relationship between the team and Capers began, it seemed like a match made in heaven. The Green Bay defense was in the top ten in points against, yards against, and turnover ratio. Their partnership even led to a Super Bowl in 2010. Things were looking up for the pair. It seemed as if the bond between the two would never waver, however, some doubts about the relationship began to creep in. Capers’ defenses started to become spotty and ranged from 11th to 32nd with an average of 20th in the league in yards against over the next five years. The final two years of the relationship between Capers and Green Bay may very well have been the tipping point. The Packers ranked 22nd in yards against both years and 21st in 2016 and 26th in 2017 in points against. This led to a sour fan base who believed Capers was not good enough for their beloved Packers to urge them to dump him.
Right now, this break-up feels liberating for the Packers. They feel free to make the interview room fancy and go out and take a look at other coaches. There is no one holding them back from having a little chit-chat with Jack del Rio or Vic Fangio. All in all, the Packers are a strong, independent football team and they don’t need no… wait… they definitely need a defensive coordinator. The reality that the poor defense of the Packers needing a solid leader to put them in the right position hits quickly, leaving that independent feeling as a distant memory. The loneliness begins to creep in for the team as it begins to remember the Super Bowl. They begin to look at all the playoff appearances and wonder if it was really THAT bad that they needed to split up with Capers. After the Packers cleared out all of Capers’ old stuff, there was still a sadness about them, but with that sadness comes hope. A hope of a new life with a new defensive coordinator who can provide schemes that allow for inside linebackers to continue to run and hit while providing a consistent pass rush. Here are a few coaches the Packers could have interest in:
- Current Chicago Bears Defensive Coordinator
- 30 years of NFL Defensive coaching experience, 19 as a Defensive Coordinator
- Tenth in yards allowed and ninth in points allowed with the Bears in 2017
- Chicago is currently viewing him as a candidate for their Head Coaching vacancy
- Notable Players Coached: “Dome Patrol” (New Orleans LBs from 1986-92), Patrick Willis, Ray Lewis
Joe Whitt Jr.
- Current Green Bay Packers Cornerbacks Coach
- 11 years of NFL Defensive coaching experience, ten with the Packers, eight as a Cornerbacks Coach
- Valued highly by current players as a good teacher
- Overcame dyslexia which may be a reason why he excels as a teacher
- Notable Players Coached: Charles Woodson, Casey Heyward, Sam Shields
- Current Green Bay Packers Associate Head Coach and Linebackers Coach
- 19 years of NFL coaching experience, 12 with the Packers, four as an Associate Head Coach
- 11 years of NFL playing experience as a linebacker
- Sought after by other teams, specifically the Detroit Lions, for Head Coaching jobs
- Notable Players Coached: Clay Matthews, Julius Peppers, AJ Hawk
- Former Indianapolis Colts Head Coach
- 16 years of NFL coaching experience, five as a Head Coach
- 42-38 regular season record and 3-2 playoff record as a Head Coach
- Third in yards against and points against as a Defensive Coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens in 2011
- Notable Players Coached: Ed Reed, D’Quell Jackson, Robert Mathis
- Current Oak Creek High School Outside Linebackers Coach
- Two years of *cough* high school *cough* defensive coaching experience, two as a Linebacker Coach
- Four years of college playing experience as a linebacker and defensive end
- Hey, a guy can dream, right?
The Packers have a multitude of options available; the question is, who is the most suitable candidate for the franchise? Could it be some brand new person who takes the defense by storm, or could it be someone who has been right there in front of the Packers all along?