Anthony Hargrove has played for four different teams in six seasons, including the Bills, Rams, Seahawks, and the Saints, which no doubt have had the most effect on him. Hes been through highs and lows, he won the Super Bowl with them, and sacked the quarterback five times. Unfortunately he did this all while participating in a bounty program.
Yesterday we found out our new d-lineman would not be allowed to play for the first half of the season. While on the Saints the NFL apparently found some questionable hits that all led up to him being suspended for eight games. He wasn’t the only one that will facing suspension, LB Jonathon Vilma will be suspended the whole 2012 season, DE Will Smith will miss 4games, and LB Scott Fujita will miss the least games of the bunch, only suspended for 3games. I, like most people think that Hargrove will be suspended so harshly for the big hit he made on Brett Favre in the NFC Championship game. After making a big-hit sack, Hargrove apparently shouted “Favre is down! Favre is out!” If your going to be part of a bounty program, which I strongly dissuade, don’t go and shout the big hit, basically saying how excited you are for all the money you will receive later.
Well, we can’t cry over spilled milk, the question is now, who will replace him, and how does this affect our defensive line rotation? If this were before the draft I would be panicking, would we have to suffer another year of injury-prone, and undeveloped DE Mike Neal!? Thankfully, no. Besides the fact that Neal is suspended for the first four games of the season, after the draft we have two defensive lineman that i trust. Jerel Worthy could be a great pass-rusher for the Packers, he will be moved from 4-3 DT to 3-4 DE but I am confident he can adjust with his 6-2 310 pounds side. We also drafted Mike Daniels, 4-3 DT, out of Iowa. Daniels is considered undersized being only 6feet tall and 290pounds, but hes very explosive off the snap and plays with a non-stop motor. Our rotation will miss Hargrove for half the season but I think we can cope. Worthy will immediately start as a defensive end and generate pressure and absorb blocks. Mike Daniels will see most of his game time as a nickel pass rusher. The Packers use the nickel formation more than the base 3-4 defense, and 4-3 defensive tackles can be very effective in the nickel set. Daniels will most likely play next to Worthy in the nickel, and will have to gain weight (while maintaining his explosiveness) to get more plays outside the nickel, and running downs. Also, don’t forget our free agency pick-up DT Daniel Muir. Muir will compete with Wilson and Wynn for a fourth string defensive end position (behind Worthy, Hargrove, and Daniels) during off-season position battles. Whoever comes in last place of the position battle (my prediction: Wilson) will probably be put on the practice squad. Anthony Hargrove definitely has time to reflect every Sunday as he watches his team, but I think he’s not the end of our d-line. We added good quality depth in the draft, got Daniel Muir in free agency, and I personally like Wynn’s potential as a defensive end.