The title of this post pays homage to Notes On a Scandal - one of the most underrated movies in recent years. Anyway, here are 6 thoughts from the Packers’ 24-3 win over the Chiefs on Thursday night:
1) While cornerback Sam Shields has been playing better as of late, it’s important to realize that most of his success in coverage last night came against a backup QB and backup receivers. He won’t be facing Brady Quinn and Jamar Newsome in the regular season. That said, the third-year player from Miami is definitely playing with more confidence and more physicality - a pair of very encouraging signs.
2) I don’t know if Sean Richardson has the cover skills to be a starter in the National Football League, but I do know he deserves a spot on the 53-man roster. Unlike M.D. Jennings and Anthony Levine, the former Vanderbilt star has an upside that’s worth developing. Richardson reminds me of Taylor Mays, another oversized safety with some coverage limitations who’s on the verge of winning a starting job in Cincy.
3) I still don’t think Graham Harrell can win games in the NFL, but he certainly played well against KC. He was helped by good protection and receivers who got terrific separation, but he also stepped into his throws and put the ball where it needed to be. While Harrell was probably safe going into the game, he needed to complete passes and put points on the board in order to secure his roster spot. He did just that.
4) Wide receivers Tori Gurley, Diondre Borel and Jarrett Boykin all made plays last night, but of the three, only Boykin was a consistent presence throughout camp. If the Packers decide to keep a sixth player at the position, the former Virginia Tech star deserves the spot. That said, I’m not sure he’s all that much better than Chastin West, who didn’t make it a year ago and was recently cut by the woeful Jaguars.
5) Jerel Worthy has played ahead of Mike Daniels in the nickel all summer, but that could change in the coming weeks. Both rookies flashed at times as pass rushers, but at this point, Daniels seems to be slightly more consistent. The former Iowa star isn’t as big or as strong as Worthy, but he’s very quick and his motor never stops. It wouldn’t surprise me to see Daniels have the bigger impact this season.
6) Rookie outside linebacker Dezman Moses has gotten plenty of accolades this summer, but Erik Walden has been the better player – and it hasn’t been close. While Moses is an intriguing prospect, he’s simply not ready for prime time just yet. The former Tulane star needs to do a much better job against the run. He lacks discipline. He does not play assignment-sound football or attack gaps at proper angles.