Jermichael Finley - will the Packers take a chance on bringing him back? Raymond T. Rivard photograph

Here’s One Jermichael Finley Didn’t Drop



Jermichael Finley, probably best known to Green Bay Packers fans at this point as the guy with untold potential who keeps dropping the damn ball, has turned the tables a bit.

Finley has pledged to donate $500 for every dropped pass during the 2013 season to One Fund Boston, a charity set up by Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino to help raise funds to help those most affected by the bombing attacks at the Boston Marathon this week.

Hey, it’s an absolute PR coup for a guy who’s painted himself as a me-first player the last couple of years.  Finley also pledges to donate $500 for every touchdown he scores this year – a number that was woefully low in 2012 at just a pair.

“Now fans can cheer & boo me @ the same time!” Finley tweeted. Nicely played.

Green Bay Packers tight end Jermichael Finley (88) misses a catch while defended by San Francisco 49ers inside linebacker NaVorro Bowman (53). Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Jer-Mishandle dropped seven of his 87 targets last year, scoring only two touchdowns after racking up eight scores in 2011. He also made worse his slow start to last season by basically blaming quarterback Aaron Rodgers. He essentially pointed the finger at everyone but himself.

A repeat of last year would net One Fund Boston $4,500. Now it’s going to be tougher to curse him and throw chicken wings at the TV screen when he makes one of his patented bone-headed drops.

But Coach Mike McCarthy praised Finley’s finish to the season, even as fans and NFL prognosticators predicted the Packers would part ways with the freakishly talented tight end.

“I was very pleased with the way Jermichael played there in the second half,” McCarthey said in February at the NFL Scouting Combine, “and he improved a number of different areas of his game.”

The Packers were so pleased with his strong finish that they brought him back at his full $8.25 million salary amidst a flurry of cuts and restructures designed in part to make room for big new contracts for stars such as Rodgers and Clay Matthews.

Perhaps this is Finley’s way of bringing about a better sense of focus on the field. James Jones made a turnaround in 2012 after being drop-prone in his first few seasons with the team, so why not Finley? Speaking as a long-time Packers fan, it’s nice to finally see some maturity and humility in the guy.

Still, it will be fun to see if Rodgers puts a little extra zip on the ball when he passes to Finley this season, just to make him put some of his money where his mouth is. Or at least where his mouth used to be.

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Tags: Aaron Rodgers Clay Matthews Drop Green Bay Packers James Jones Jermichael Finley Mike McCarthy One Fund Boston Touchdown

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