Joe Barry comments on linebacker in Thursday’s press conference
The Green Bay Packers’ defense gave up some big plays against the New York Jets in Week 6. The Packers’ loss to the Jets looked about as bad on the defense at times as the unusually light offense. Jets rookie running back Breece Hall had a day to remember at Lambeau Field. He ran for 166 yards on 20 carries. Packers rookie Quay Walker took heavy criticism for his play against the run. Joe Barry commented on Walker in Thursday’s press conference.
Fans complained on social media Sunday that Walker was out of position on multiple plays. One poor play by Walker led to a Hall touchdown. Walker was rated 45.9 overall in Week 6 by Pro Football Focus. His run defense was graded at just 42.1, as he gave up a missed tackle. Walker played well in his first two games for the Packers but has struggled since Week 3 in Tampa Bay. PFF gives Walker an overall grade this season of just 41.2., and his run defense a miserable 28.9. The rookie has missed three tackles this season
Joe Barry gave his opinion on Walker
Joe Barry was asked in Thursday’s press conference if teams were taking advantage of Walker biting on plays. His answer should send confidence to the Packers first round draft pick. Barry said he didn’t think teams were taking advantage of Walker’s inexperience but that he’s just going through the growing pains of being thrown into the fire early. He said that after about ten practices, the coaching staff knew Walker needed to be on the field this season.
“We made the decision, ‘hey, this our guy, and he’s going to be on the field all the time,'” Barry said. “Rookies are going to have good days; they’re going to have bad days. They’re going to have good ebbs and flows of the game. They’re going to be up and down. That just kind of comes with the territory of being a rookie. I know one thing, he’s got a very bright future, he’s a heck of a player. I think he’s playing really good ball. Now has he had a moment here or there? But so have I.”
Barry said that Walker is a special player and likes how the rookie is coming along.
Walker will need to show progress soon
Walker is playing a challenging position in the NFL. The linebacker hasn’t played well recently. But then again, the Packers haven’t played well much this season. What’s concerning about Walker right now isn’t that he’s making a few bad plays; it’s that he appears to play worse most weeks. Savvy coaches are taking advantage of his sophomoric understanding of NFL play, and it’s up to Barry to help Walker come along this season quickly.