Things are clearly different with the Packers defense this season. But you can’t merely see the changes, you can hear them.
After nine years of the calm stylings of long-time coordinator Dom Capers, having his more vocal replacement Mike Pettine stop a drill to yell at guys when mistakes are made is a bit jarring.
Williams played under Pettine for a year when he was head coach of the Browns, so he had a preview to what’s coming.
“From Dom to coach Pettine is totally different,” Williams said. “Two different personalities. Dom was just a laid-back guy. He commanded it with his experience and presence, but coach Pettine, he’s going to let you know. He’s going to let you know, but he’s been highly successful in this league with every team he’s been on. He has the resume to back it up, and you can see it in his attitude also.
“Coach Pettine believes in football stuff, not schematics stuff. As a player, that’s what you love in a coach. If he tells you to go out there and do what you do, that’s what you love to hear from a coach. That’s what coach Pettine is really about.”
Part of that’s out of necessity, as the Packers have gotten younger on that side of the ball.
“Dom was more quiet,” defensive tackle Kenny Clark said. “We had a lot of older guys. I would say our defense is more younger. So Julius (Peppers) and Mike (Daniels) and Clay (Matthews) and all those guys, if we did get one of those situations, I think Dom would let the leaders do that. It was just different coaches and different people, how they handle things.”
And it’s a difference the Packers can hear.