The new-look Packers are looking for better ways to help their players bond.
As explained by Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette, items like a basketball hoop outside the meeting rooms and an advance viewing of the latest John Wick movie have been aimed at ensuring players develop a connection.
“The gap in talent around the league is not too far,” new Packers safety Adrian Amos told Wood. “Everybody is good, everybody has great players. It’s just about coming together, and how those players mesh together, how players work well with each other. That’s why you see teams that maybe their roster may not seem like they should be that good, but they are that good, just because of how they work together, how they play together.
“The more and more you hang out with one another, you start to pick up on each other’s tendencies on the field. The more you hang out with each other off the field, you just start learning peoples’ personalities. You know how to approach somebody.”
Ultimately, it’s about finding ways to develop real trust among teammates
“With more trust, it’s easier to hold somebody accountable,” Amos said. “If I know me and you are cool with each other, I know that if I lean on you and get on you, you’re not going to get down in the dumps because you know it’s coming from a good place. I just want to see you get better.”
The process also helps to identify who’s on board with winning, and who isn’t.
“I think it’s more do you have any bad apples in the locker room, more than anything,” guard Lane Taylor told Wood. “Because, it’s like, I don’t have to be best friends with Jaire Alexander for us to be good, and vice versa, or anything like that. But I think if you have a locker room that’s really bought into the team and winning and doing the right things, that just really kind of bonds everyone together. Everyone trusts each other, and kind of lay it on the line for each other.”
So maybe these efforts to build bridges among players are more about finding the players who refuse to build those bridges. Chances are those players ultimately will become the ones who can’t be counted on when adversity inevitable strikes.