Every day until the start of camp on July 26, we'll be giving you one juicy nugget to whet your appetite for the return of football. We'd give you more but the CBA forbids two-a-days. Sorry.
Bulaga and Sitton are all right
As long as Aaron Rodgers is piloting the offense, the passing game will be of paramount importance.
Still, it's nice to be able to lean on the running game, whether it's as a change of pace or the ability to move the chains on third-and-2 or burn off the final 4 minutes.
According to ProFootballFocus.com's run-blocking rankings, Bulaga was the second-best right tackle in the league and Sitton was the third-best right guard. Not only did that make them the best duo in the league, but it wasn't even close.
By giving the No. 1-ranked player at a position one point, the No. 2-ranked player two points and so on, Bulaga and Sitton combined for five points. New Orleans' Jahri Evans (No. 2 guard) and Zach Strief (No. 7 tackle) formed the second-best right-side tandem with nine points. Houston's Eric Winston (No. 3 tackle) Mike Brisiel (No. 8 guard) formed the third-best right-side pair with 11 points and New England's Nate Solder (No. 6 tackle) and Brian Waters (No. 7 guard) formed the fourth-best right-side duo with 13 points.
"You expect them to be better because they're more familiar and they've played a lot of games together," offensive line coach James Campen said. "They've started to stack games on top of each other and that always bodes well when you've got line stunts and getting a feel for a guy."
FootballOutsiders.com uses a formula called adjusted line yards to determine the value of the offensive linemen on carries by a running back. Based on that, the Packers' backs averaged 4.08 yards per carry last season, which ranked a respectable 16th in the league. Even with Sitton (14 starts) and Bulaga (12 starts) starting just 10 games together, the Packers ranked 11th with a 4.61-yard average on runs over right tackle.
Can the Packers, who scored the second-most points in NFL history last season, be even more explosive this season? Maybe not, but with a full season of Sitton and Bulaga, the offense could be more efficient.
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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at email@example.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.