Players awaiting defensive changes

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- We've known for several months that changes are coming for the Green Bay Packers' defense.

Coach Mike McCarthy first hinted at such shortly after the season, when he said: "You don't ever stay the same. I'll set the vision for the defense. Dom Capers and the defensive staff will carry it out."

He expanded on that several weeks later at the NFL scouting combine, when he said: "There's some things that I feel we need to change."

But here we are in mid-April, and not even the players know the full extent of those changes yet.

"I'm not sure," linebacker Brad Jones said this week before he hit the road as part of the team's five-day Tailgate Tour through northern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Jones and his teammates will get the first significant dose of those changes next week, when the Packers' offseason program kicks off on Tuesday.

Jones and the rest of the linebackers already know their position group will be expanded. With the departure of outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene, who resigned shortly after last season, both the inside and outside linebackers will come together under assistant coach Winston Moss, who previously coached only the inside linebackers.

"I think with coach Moss coaching the whole pack there, I think it will be some good stuff honestly," said Jones, who started all but four games last season. "Honestly, I don't know the exact changes, but I'm excited. I'm definitely excited."

Last offseason, Jones signed a three-year, $11.75 million contract that included a $3 million signing bonus. A year later, he could be fighting for his starting job after an inconsistent season.

"I think every year is a competition, every year you have to go back out and prove yourself like you did the year before," Jones said. "I don't think anything changes."