RECAP: LaFleur's end of the season presser

Dan Plocher
January 22, 2020 - 4:09 pm
© Kirby Lee | 2020 Jan 19

© Kirby Lee | 2020 Jan 19

The Green Bay Packers season came to a disappointing end in the NFC Championship game after an embarrassing loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. Head Coach Matt LaFleur had his end of the season press conference on Wednesday. Here is a quick recap of what he said:

  • LaFleur started by discussing how disappointed he was in the play of the defense in the NFC Championship game, and he was asked about Defensive Coordinator Mike Pettine. He said they were "still in the evaluation stage" when it came to if Pettine would return. However, reports came later on Wednesday that Pettine would be retained as the head of the defensive side of the ball. LaFleur went on to praise his whole staff and the players: "We had one common goal, and that was to win."
  • The first time head coach went on to discuss the Packers offense and how it could be improved. He said the No. 1 goal when you have a veteran quarterback (like Aaron Rodgers) is to make sure he is comfortable with any changes that may come with a new coaching staff. LaFleur was proud of how Rodgers adjusted and believes this offense can still evolve. But how? "I'd like to implement some more up-tempo." Reporters asked if that meant the offense would look more like Kyle Shanahan (49ers Head Coach) and Sean McVay (Rams Head Coach) who LaFleur coached under/with. Although LaFleur praised his mentors, he also said that they two coaches who "are very different, but both cater to (their) personnel." He plans on doing the same in an offseason that he is looking forward to. However, one thing that LaFleur wants to replicate is the quickness of those rosters; "You can never have enough speed, and that is something that we will look at going forward."
  • One thing Matt LaFleur has been pushing all season is the importance of communication within the organization. He praised Mark Murphy and Brian Gutekunst several times for their transparency and looks forward to building the team with them this offseason. However, he noted one difference between former Head Coach Mike McCarthy and LaFleur's coaching staff, and that was that the weekly meetings with the new head coach and members of the front office no longer took place. LaFleur then praised the players and the overall camaraderie in the locker room as well, "It was definitely one of the closest locker rooms I've been a part of, that's why it hurt so bad to go out (the way that we did). I know it wasn't always pretty but as a team we found a way to win 14 games."
  • After the disheartening loss to the 49ers, LaFleur didn't hold much back when talking about his team's effort in the blowout in the NFC Championship game, "(San Francisco) definitely outcoached us. I didn't feel like we played with the same urgency, tenacity, or toughness. It's disappointing because we knew exactly what they wanted to do. We just didn't play with the same effort that we (saw) earlier in the season." He was then asked if that was because there was a large talent gap between the two teams. His response? Not one you would hope for... "There obviously is, we played them twice and they took it to us two times. Right now, they are the top-class of the NFC. It was disappointing to go out there and get beat like that."
  • Every offseason people start to wonder when the team will draft their replacement for Aaron Rodgers, and Matt LaFleur didn't shy away when he was asked about it, "(It's) the most important position on the field, so if there is someone there, I think you have to take a chance on them. It's much like the past (in Green Bay) you can never have enough great quarterbacks." However, he still thinks Rodgers can run his system for several more years to come, "(Rodgers) is still one of the most talented players out there. It totally depends on how his body holds up. He seemed energized all season long and his mind is as sharp as they come. He's a true professional and he does a great job of keeping care of his body." At the same time, LaFleur acknowledged the subpar statistics from the superstar quarterback, "(Rodgers) executed, for the most part, at a pretty high level. I know the numbers weren't what you guys say were up to the standard or whatever, but I do think there was some really good play in there... and I'm excited for another offseason with him."
Comments ()