September 20, 2014

Slocum leads Packer’s special teams to success

Coach Slocum (L) at practice

With an erratic offense and defense, the Green Bay Packer’s special teams have been a consistent high point of the season.  They reversed the momentum of both home games which resulted in wins for the Packers.

The dynamics of the games against the Bears and Saints changed when a fake field goal was scored for a touchdown, and a fake punt allowed a drive to continue for an eventual touchdown.

Head coach Mike McCarthy credits the improvement over the years to special teams coach Shawn Slocum and his philosophy on special teams.

Audio: McCarthy on improvement on special teams :20

The proof of this improvement in special teams lies in the numbers.  2009 was Slocum’s first year as head special teams coach.

2009 saw the Packers average 6.9 yards per punt return while allowing 10.1 yards per punt return. Currently, they average 13.5 yards per punt return and allow 6.2 yards.

As for the fake and trick plays that have occurred this season, Slocum has deemed the plays “necessary.”

Audio: Slocum not surprised at use of fake plays so far :11

Tight-end D.J. Williams says the success of the trick plays take pressure off other special team players.

Audio: Williams says fake plays relieve pressure :20

Since Slocum took over, it has been a steady growth and improvement process and coach Mike McCarthy said its been fun to watch.

The Packers face the Colts in Indianapolis on Sunday and the Packers have brewed the perfect storm.  They’ve shown the ability to pull off some special plays and the opposition must now spend much more time concentrating on the possibility of a fake here or an on-side kick there.  It may open the door for the Packers in other areas.