JUST IN: Packers’ Offense Isn’t YAC Enough to Attack…..

Packers’ Offense Isn’t YAC Enough to Attack

Dontayvion Wicks, a receiver for the Green Bay Packers, caught six passes for 97 yards in last week’s loss to the Buccaneers. Of those yards, nearly half were gained after the catch.

Yards after catch, or YAC, has always been a strength of the Green Bay attack. But not this year. Jordan Love is ranked 17th out of 30 eligible passers by league statistics, averaging 5.10 yards per completion.

Wicks, a fifth-round rookie who is rapidly improving, has performed admirably. 6.1 YAC is his average, according to Pro Football Focus. Among the receivers for the Packers, that is the best mark. Wicks is tied for eleventh place among 100 receivers who have been targeted at least 29 times this season, according to PFF.

“If you really watched the tape, you kind of saw it in college,” passing-game coordinator and receivers coach Jason Vrable remarked. “He has a great mentality, but when you watch him closely during a contact, you’ll notice that his lower half is strong and he kind of has a running back lower half.

“When the first player taps him, he does an excellent job of running through his low pad level. Because of his YAC mentality, he has performed admirably from the Atlanta game, where he broke the tackle and scored his first touchdown, to last week.

What kind of thinking is that?

Wicks remarked, “You’ve got to prove to me that you’re stronger than me while we’re out there.”


The Packers haven’t had a strong YAC attack outside of Wicks.

Wicks has broken 10 tackles, based on the game charts maintained by Packer Central. That is more than the entirety of Green Bay’s tight ends and receivers put together. Wicks has reportedly forced nine missed tackles, according PFF. The tight ends and other receivers together have eleven, while the remaining receivers have six.

“You will frequently go out of bounds if you’re a receiver who plays outside the numbers and you’re on the sideline. However, we want to force the first [defender] to miss. Then, if you’re between two numbers, your thinking is just north-and-south. We want excellent ball security, but we also prefer to finish with violent intentions, which means our pads should be level with the defenders and you should obtain what you can.

It’s possible to learn how to improve after the catch, so that’s definitely a plus. According to PFF, Christian Watson caught 34 passes as a rookie and forced four missed tackles, but he has only made one out of 28 receptions so far this season. Out of 94 career catches, Romeo Doubs has missed just one tackle, and it was last season.

Thankfully, rookie tight end Tucker Kraft (two out of eighteen catches) and rookie receiver Jayden Reed (five out of fifty-four catches) have demonstrated potential as after-the-catch playmakers.

“We talk a lot about body-ball-boundary first and foremost,” Vrable stated. “You may utilize a stiff arm and be forceful when running on the sideline if you get it in the outer arm and the DB’s inside arm. The ball ends up on the inside if you’re moving into the middle and the DB is on your outside. After college, some receivers find it difficult to carry the ball with both arms. It may seem easy, but there have been men here for three years before, and I would tell them, “Man, you really need to start using your left arm.” There will be more YAC for you.

We emphasize a lot of key concepts. “Hey, that’s a great play but if you get the ball here right away on the catch-tuck transition away from the defender in the middle, you’ve got a chance to get more yards,” is a common thought that occurs at the start of practice, throughout practice, and while viewing the clicker. There are many of things in the world that allow you to keep developing.

Many things affect yards after catch (YAC), including the coach’s play-calling and scheme, the pass-catcher’s athleticism and mentality, and the quarterback’s accuracy and timing.

The numbers here are interesting:

Under LaFleur, Rodgers’ yearly average YAC rankings were sixth in 2019, second in 2020, fourth in 2022, and ninth in 2021. He finished in the top 10—typically well within the top 10—in all but three of the seasons from 2009 to 2022, with a low ranking of 12th in 2015 and 2016.

His only real anomalous season was in 2008, the year he debuted as the team’s starter and finished 24th.


“A lot of factors go into that. Coach Matt LaFleur stated, “It depends on the kind of route they’re running, the coverage, and where the ball is placed.”


Following a few follow-ups, LaFleur questioned why he was being questioned about YAC so frequently. Simple: According to Sport Radar, the Panthers have the second-highest missed-tackle % in the NFL while the Packers have struggled.

It all relies on the notions we’re calling, according to LaFleur. “Are we making a lot of quick run alert calls, and then you usually gain a few extra yards after the catch? There are simply a ton of variables involved with that.











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