Mike McCarthy wants his defense to be better prepared next time it faces a versatile quarterback with the skill set to do some damage on the ground.
Much better prepared.
So, McCarthy is sending his defensive coaching staff to school. Literally. McCarthy announced this afternoon that the Green Bay Packers defensive coaches will visit Texas A&M to study how to defend the read-option offense, the latest offensive twist in the NFL.
As Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports, it’s not a novel approach. Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees sought some help from the NCAA ranks two weeks before facing Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl. Kaepernick and the Niners ran up 579 yards offense in a playoff whipping of the Packers.
“Definitely there’s a lot of conversation about the read option – rightfully so,” McCarthy said. “Five hundred seventy-nine, that’s a number that will stick in our focus as a defense throughout the offseason. We’re studying the read option, the teams that are doing it in the NFL.
“We’re even going to the college ranks, we’ll have a couple college coaches come in, spend some time with our staff. Actually, our defensive staff is going to take a trip to Texas A&M, Kevin Sumlin is someone I have great respect for and with his ability to share from both the offensive side and the defensive side his experience in the read option.
“It’s something from an education, preparation standpoint that we will grow as a staff and be better prepared for in the future.”
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune