Packer Update

Packers Release Rehabbing Bishop

Veteran inside linebacker Desmond Bishop missed all of last season with a leg injury

Veteran inside linebacker Desmond Bishop missed all of last season with a leg injury

The Green Bay Packers released Desmond Bishop on Monday – making official what was first reported last week. The veteran inside linebacker missed the entire 2012 season after rupturing a hamstring in August. The team will immediately gain $3.46 million in salary cap relief (there will be a hit of $800,000 in 2014).

While surprised by the move at first, I can understand GM Ted Thompson’s rationale. The Packers have been decimated by injuries in recent seasons, so the thought of relying on a 29-year-old player coming off a serious leg injury couldn’t have been appealing. Plus, even in today’s NFL, $3.46 million is a decent amount of money – especially when you consider how many key players will be free agents next spring.

So I’m OK with getting rid of Bishop. What I’m not OK with, however, is willingly going into a season with A.J. Hawk and Brad Jones as the starting inside linebackers. It’s one thing to start them due to injury; it’s quite another to start them by choice. At a position that screams out for physicality, Dom Capers will employ two of the least physical inside linebackers in the league. Hawk hasn’t forced a fumble since George W. Bush was in the White House. That’s almost impossible. Jones, to his credit, tries to smack people, but his linear build and lack of power seldom causes ball carriers to go backwards.

Some fans are holding out hope that Terrell Manning will show enough this summer to supplant either Hawk or Jones, but that’s probably wishful thinking at this point. While the former North Carolina star has talent, he was a non-factor as a rookie due in part to a serious stomach ailment that plagued him throughout his first training camp. At best, Manning might get some snaps in certain packages, where his knack for blitzing the quarterback can be taken advantage of. But when it comes to the base and the nickel, expect to see plenty of Hawk and/or Jones. And that’s apparently just fine with Thompson. Something tells me that’s also just fine with every opposing offensive player on Green Bay’s upcoming schedule.

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7 Comments to "Packers Release Rehabbing Bishop"

  1. Saguaro says:

    It’s an understandable move. When Bishop was still out for spring training, that showed he would have to go for Defensive MVP on some other team. His release doesn’t really create a hole; it just exposes a hole that has been there since he first went down.

  2. [...] And this was made official yesterday, Packers Release Rehabbing Bishop. [...]

  3. Hands says:

    My belief is that Bishop wasn’t ever going to make it back to 100%, and if he did….it wouldn’t last. TT could have kept him long enough to see if his injury was systemic or not but that would have limited Bishop’s options in landing w/ another team. This way, Bishop gets a chance and the Packers move on w/o him and a major thumper in the middle.

    Bigger question is TT’s thinking of replacing Bishop. He didn’t use a high round pick to replace him so maybe he’s confident in his current roster. Also, they need more athletic players at LB than thumpers. So probably w/ his salary…..the writing was on the wall.

  4. Archie says:

    Wow, seriously…..Hawk & Jones. Packers defense is marshmellow in the middle. AP will eat us up again. What is wrong with Thompson? We need 2 Bishops and 0 Hawks. Instead, Thompson goes for 0 Bishops & 1 Hawk. OK, we get it, Hawk was your highest draft pick ever and no way are you going to admit he sucks.

    The onlyt way I condone this move is that the doctors have told TT that there is a 50-50 chance or greater that Bishop will be severely hampered by this injury or that it will re-reputure. Anything less than that and we should have given him a chance in pre-season to prove himself. Same with DJ. Why jettison these guys when you don’t have to? Especially when your starters suck and you have no depth. Thompson has done lots of things I have faulted but cutting these two guys rather than give them a fighting chance to make it back is something I will never get. Both guys were young too. And the money wasn’t bad either. Heck, Bishop has delivered far more value to this team than Hawk ever has. I guess TT & Moss love being SOFT.

  5. Aron says:

    These reminds me of Wells, Jenkins and Barnett releases. Not good.

    • Joe in Madison says:

      Wells & Jenkins left through Free Agency, only Barnett was released. Also, while it’s true that the Packers struggled to replace Wells & Jenkins, neither of them lived up to their contracts in their new cities. Barnett on the other hand was replaced quite well by Bishop.

      I agree with Michael – the problem isn’t with moving on, it’s what they move on too. Hawk is what he is at this point in his career but I am interested to see what Jones can do in his second year as a ILB.

      IMO the success or failure of this move will most likely be determined by Bishop’s replacement rather than his play with a new team.

  6. Tangysizzl says:

    Its a real bitter pill to swallow thats for sure. Sounds like at best he has a 50-50 chance that he returns this year healthy and stays that way. Can’t blame the Packers for making this decision but im just sick of losing good vets or decent young players because of injuries whether its by retirement or release. .

    Its the nature of the beast and I get that TT can ‘t see the future but he better be right on this one. I really hope that none of the teams looking at him take the risk and give him a contract so he comes back here on a 1 yr prove it deal with a split salary injury clause if he ends up on IR again. I want Bishop to be healthy and continue his career even if its not with the Packers but Id really like to see him make a go of it here. Was happy to read that he really understands the move and even left the door open for return if the money isn’t right elsewhere.

    Can’t imagine someone won”t take the risk and sign him up despite the uncertainty of the injury, hes that good.

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