To end the season it looks like there is a couple things to be happy about(Mainly young players that stepped up to end the year). I guess.....
Dujuan Harris is one of them. It honestly looks like we have a legitimate back. I was watching the game with many SF fans last night and most of the games he has played in and they are all very impressed with him. Nowhere near as impressed as I have been. They have Gore and have had him while we haven't had a legitimate back in years. For his size he runs with power and has very good burst and just overall good vision which is something keeping Green from being a good back. He catches really well out of the backfield the only concern is his durability and ability in pass pro being 5'8''.
Sam Shields and Casey Hayward give me the impression that the CB position will be one of the best in the NFL for years to come. Hayward quieted down a bit at the end of the year with his playmaking ability but his coverage never wavered. Sam Shields since coming back from injury has been exceptional. Even last year he could stick with the best WR's in the NFL but his tackling would be shoddy and would make plenty of mental mistakes. This year has been a completely different story. Not only has he stuck with every WR he has faced but he has made VERY few mental mistakes or breakdowns in coverage and has been amazingly aggressive as a tackler(Something WIlliams needs to watch over the offseason and make a quick turnaround or he will be passed by SHields as the number 1 corner). PFF has both of these players basically top 5 in nearly every advanced statistic Category.
Mike Neal has the 2nd most sacks on the team and in the last 6 games has been getting after the QB very well and has stayed overall healthy enough this year to stay on the field which is the biggest concern for him. If people or know it or not he could be key to the success of the Packers next year. Look at what Matthews has done since returning from injury and pairing with Neal who has been exceptional beside Matthews. According to PFF since week 15 Matthews has 7 sacks while Neal has 3. Matthews has 14 pressures overall while Neal has 15. If Worthy and Perry step up or they draft a different DE the nickel pass rush should be MUCH improved next year. In Perry's limited snaps to start the year he averaged a pressure in nearly half as many attempts as Walden has this year and barely more than Matthews. So his pass rush though raw was effective in his few games.
Randall Cobb didn't finish the season strong but still had an exceptional year in the slot. If Greg Jennings doesn't return the Packers should still feel comfortable with Nelson, Cobb, Jones at WR. I'm guessing a WR is drafted in the early rounds even if they move up to get some1 they fell in love with just to add depth. This team is built around 3-4 WR sets so depth is critical going into next year.
Jones wasn't the most loved WR in Pack Nation to start the year but his consistency garnered more and more fans and he quietly led the league in TD's. His hands had to be the most impressive part of the season though. He made so many impressive catches I couldn't possibly choose a favorite. Even that 1 he made last night down the sideline was very impressive over two defenders. He has been great in the intermediate game and catching the ball at his peak.
So to get a break from all the FIRE Dom Capers talk let me hear some of the things you guys feel there is to be happy about.