With everybody debating whether it should be head coach, Mike McCarthy or associate head coach Tom Clements calling the plays for the Green Bay Packers this season and even further beyond that, I have an alternative solution.
Hire a real offensive coordinator.
Many people are vouching for McCarthy to take over the play calling for Clements now — And for this season, maybe that is the right call.
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But through the off-season, I would like to see the Packers hire somebody to really re-vamp this offense. I was not thrilled with McCarthy’s play calling last season, and I do not feel that is the long term solution.
Even with Clements, who has virtually been McCarthy’s understudy, I have not been satisfied with his ability to run a balanced offense. The play calling is questionable at best, and even the personnel the Packers are putting on the field at times, has been questionable. (See Davante Adams) I don’t like Clements as the offensive play caller, while not assuming the role of an offensive coordinator.
It’s just something I am not in favor of.
Having your offensive coordinator be an after thought and not calling the plays behind your head coach or associate head coach is strange to me.
But it is what the Green Bay Packers have been accustom to in the McCarthy era, and I think it is time for a change. Up until this season, McCarthy has called the plays as the head coach since 2006. From my observation, I think his purpose is better served as the sole leader of this football team.
Now I am not looking to slam Clements or offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett, but I feel their roles could be utilized better in other situations.
Clements, as an offensive consultant or as the quarterback coach over the current quarterback coach, Alex Van Pelt, and then Bennett as the running backs coach.
Oct 12, 2014; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin (right) greets Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy (left) after their game at Sun Life Stadium. The Packers won 27-24. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
The only real offensive coordinator, you can look at in the Mike McCarthy era, is Joe Philbin who was apart of the Packers’ Super Bowl Championship in 2011.
Although Philbin did not call the plays, he is the closest thing to a real offensive coordinator I have seen in the McCarthy era. Philbin carried the title of ‘offensive coordinator’ from 2007-2011, before the Miami Dolphins named him their head coach.
Philbin has since been fired from Miami, and I wouldn’t be overly opposed to bringing him back.
Even if Philbin isn’t the guy the Packers see fit to run their offense, there are many other names to throw out as a potential offensive coordinator.
Sep 19, 2015; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers offensive coordinator Cam Cameron before a game against the Auburn Tigers at Tiger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Cam Cameron, the current offensive coordinator of the LSU Tigers, is another name I wouldn’t be opposed to seeing in Green Bay. Although Cameron has struggled in Death Valley this season, he led the San Diego Chargers to rank as the NFL’s top scoring offense in 2006, as their offensive coordinator.
He was the Chargers offensive coordinator from 2002-2006, the head coach of the Miami Dolphins in 2007, and the offensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens from 2008-2012. He was fired from Baltimore half way through the 2012 season, despite the offense being ranked 9th in scoring. The Ravens went on to win the Super Bowl that year.
He took over the offensive coordinator duties at LSU in 2013.
Ken Whisenhunt will be the final name I throw into the equation, as somebody who has won a Super Bowl as an offensive coordinator, (Pittsburgh 2006) before leading the Arizona Cardinals to a Super Bowl runner-up effort in 2009 as their head coach. Whisenhunt was fired as the head coach of the Tennessee Titans this season, and is somebody I could also see being a fit in Green Bay.
Look the reality is, I don’t see the Packers doing something like this. The organization has faith in the product they are throwing on the field through all aspects, and it’s rare you see a change like this.
But if the offensive struggles continue this season, you have to ask the question of why not?