The Green Bay Packers became the poster children of the NFLRA lockout when they were at the epicenter of the most controversial call of the last decade back in Week 2. But although they were justified in their displeasure of that call, the Packers are continuing with their cries that the NFL and it’s refs are out to get them, despite the wins that are coming in.
After Sunday’s 24-15 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, defensive coordinator Dom Capers told the NFL world that he was bothered by some of the calls made by officials.
On one play, cornerback Davon House was flagged for a personal foul after he blasted Jaguars wide receiver Justin Blackmon — and when I say blasted what I mean is he made what seemed like normal contact. Dom Capers felt the same way and objected to the flag that was thrown and feels that the aesthetics of the hit, with Blackmon’s helmet flying off, made the hit look worse than it was.
“Davon’s doing what we ask him to do,” Capers said. “He was breaking for the ball and there happened to be a collision. That’s what this game’s about. I don’t think there was any intent. If the offensive player’s helmet hadn’t come off, I don’t think it would have been called. He’s doing what we coach him to do.”
The penalty on House didn’t end up hurting the Packers, but Capers is sick of a trend he’s seeing that has his defensive players being flagged and having those flags play into the outcome of games.
In the aforementioned loss in Week 2 to the Seahawks, linebacker Eric Walden was flagged for a personal foul that took away a decisive interception. A few weeks later in Indianapolis, Nick Perry blew up Andrew Luck on what seemed like a clean, albeit vicious, hit. Perry was not only flagged but fined by the NFL for the hit. Two weeks after that in a game against the Rams, Dezman Moses was on the giving end of another brutal hit that looked clean, only to see the hit draw a personal foul penalty.
“You know, it’s a response to the emphasis on player safety,” Capers said. “Every year, the competition committee comes up with points of emphasis and those have been points of emphasis. So they’re calling things closer. I don’t think there was any intent there other than he was breaking aggressively to go for the ball.”
The flags are no doubt coming in and the quick whistles and penalties are questionable, but at the end of the day the Packers need to ask themselves if the penalties are the problem, or their lack of defensive prowess is.