Aaron Rodgers: Packers more flexible after TE adds

The Green Bay Packers spent the offseason upgrading the tight end position.

Ted Thompson added Martellus Bennett, the top tight end hitting the free-agent market, and accompanied that move by adding Lance Kendricks, who had 50 receptions for the Rams last season.

Adding the two tight ends, along with Richard Rodgers' return, has Aaron Rodgers believing the Packers' offense could be more balanced in 2017. Running more "12" personnel -- one running, back, two tight ends, two receivers -- allows for better run-pass options.

"I think we're going to have a lot more flexibility in that package," Aaron Rodgers said, via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "(The) '12' personnel is more of a run-pass balanced personnel and it has been throughout the league and for us the past few years. The opportunity to put two guys on the line of scrimmage and have an opportunity to run right, run left and then run all of our vertical passing game is going to be something that could definitely change and be more difficult to stop."

Added Rodgers: "I think we saw a shift last year, as we shifted away from really an '11' personnel -- three receivers, one tight end, one running back exclusive personnel -- to really mixing things up, and Mike (McCarthy) did a great job of that, of really evolving the offense and trying to get more people involved as we saw it was going to be important that we didn't just stick in one personnel group."

The Packers ran 74 plays from "12" personnel in 2016, their third-most used formation, per Next Gen Stats. That average of 4.63 plays per game was well behind the 28.69 plays per game the Packers ran from "11" personnel (459 plays). Four receiver sets – "01" personnel -- came in second last season with 230 total snaps.

Even if the mixing-up formations didn't happen on the level Rodgers seemed to suggest, it was leaps and bounds different from 2015, when Green Bay ran 688 plays from "11" personnel, and a mere 19 total plays from "12" (their seventh-most-used formation that year).

The additions of Bennett and Kendricks indicate the Packers want to diversify their offense, making it more difficult for defenses to key on formations.

With receivers Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb and Davante Adams still on the squad, there will still be plenty of "11" personnel run in Green Bay. Perhaps just not as much as previous seasons.

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