Packers XLV

A Win Is A Win Is A Win

Posted October 28th, 2012 @ 09:10pm

Shorthanded as they were, the Packers offense did just enough to win an ugly game at Lambeau Field, lifting the team to a 5-3 record at the halfway point.

I didn't see this one coming. I believe I called it a gimme. I'll learn someday. I tweeted this after the game and I truly believe it: You could count the number of teams the Pack would have beaten today on one hand. And you wouldn't need your thumb and pinkie.

I know it's asking a lot to remove Jordy Nelson, Greg Jennings, John Kuhn and Cedric Benson and expect Aaron Rodgers to not miss a beat. But against the 32nd ranked run defense, I thought Alex Green would find his legs, the team would control the clock and coast to an easy win.

It didn't quite happen that way. Rodgers never really got in sync and dealt with three key drops--one by DJ Williams that killed a promising drive. The biggest head-scratcher to me was the inability for James Jones and Randall Cobb to get open against the Jags' backup corners. Jones caught a few late, but the offense never found a rhythm and #12 finished with less than 200 yards passing for just the 11th time in 70 starts.

The running game has to be a concern. There's a reason Benson was brought aboard in the preseason. Alex Green is not breaking any tackles and James Starks has not yet been trusted to take on a major role. He showed fresh legs in limited action but was responsible for one of those drops.

The trade deadline is Tuesday and it's a longshot the Packers do anything, but I'd sniff around for a proven back who might be available on the cheap (Steven Jackson?).

The defense was just okay, giving up 300 yards passing to Blaine Gabbert and allowing Cecil Shorts to gain over 100 yards. That's a lot of yards surrendered to the 32nd ranked offense. BJ Raji returned, but two of his linemates left early: Jerel Worthy with a concussion and Mike Neal with an ankle (shocker).

The blocked punt by Davon House and subsequent TD by Dezman Moses was the Pack's first in more than 20 years and was just what the doctor ordered on a day when the offense was off kilter.

Good teams find a way to win ugly games and the Packers did just that. But in his post-game presser Mike McCarthy hinted that the same 46 guys might be up next week for the Arizona game. With the bye week looming the team will not put anyone on the field that isn't 100% healthy.

That means the offense will likely still be without Nelson and Kuhn, since hamstrings can nag and recur and the team will likely be extra careful to ensure both are ready for the road tests in Detroit and New York, following the bye. The Cardinals' defense is infinitely tougher than the Jags' so the offense will be tested big time next week.

The Cards will be working on a short week and coming off what's likely to be a very physical game with the 49ers on Monday night. That plays into the Pack's favor as they look to grind their way to a 6-3 mark at the bye next week and 13 days of rest and recovery before the challenging back half of the schedule.

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Comments (8):

Whew! Or is it "Phew?" A win's a win's a win but I sure was expecting more. Quite clear that Alex Green is NOT the answer as an every down back. Even Rodgers mentioned the poor running game. I do not understand why they aren't at least letting Starks carry 10-12 times in one half of football to see what he can do. He was going to be the starter when camp opened so what happened? Is he not fully recovered from his injury or is he in McCarthy's doghouse for some reason or ?? Can't see how he can do less than Alex. When do we get Ced back and is it for sure? If not, we need something else at RB but I get the feeling Ted will pass on a RB this season just like he did in 2010 with Lynch. (And to those of you that predicted a close game, I hereby fall on my sword. You certianly saw things clearer than I did. Jsut glad they got the WIN)

on October 28th, 2012 at 05:45pm

OK, the Pack was a little off the mark today, but they got the "W". But the one thing I think we're mssing out on here is even though the running game still isn't where we'd all like it to be, the important part is that they stuck with it. Granted it helps when you're playing with the lead, but it was enough to get the job done. Hopefully some of these guys can start getting healed up soon. If TT can strike a trade or score some sort of bargain by the deadline, that's cool, but I'm not betting on it either. For those of you going to the Pack/Cards game next week, I'll see you there!

on October 28th, 2012 at 06:03pm

Well Dave, it sounds like your finally going to listen to me. and packerlifer too. but u guys are so wrong on a rb. it's the line. and mostly saturday. where did they run the most the last 2 years? right next to wells. I sent dave a article on how other defensive coaches from teams commented on how saturday is just average now in the passing game and blocking for the rush he is horrible. there is no holes to run, and he can't get to the 2nd level to the linebackers. Benson only averaged 3.4 per carry.someday u guys will give me the credit that Wells is a big loss. we will get by, but I wish they would put Deitrick- Smith in and try it. I seen today how n.e. ran on the rams, how did we do? I know I'm ranting but it pisses me off we let 63 go when he was awesome and wanted to be here. now we start over again with a center. we better get the screens and draws worked on this week. Az. will kill us up the middle next week if we don't . we will take the win as everyone says, but u can't predict blow outs when 1/3 of your stars are out. see ya next week.

on October 28th, 2012 at 08:23pm

It's easy to get in the habit of analyzing like a rube when all our team had been doing is winning. It was hard to be wrong last year, or at least wrong enough that anyone cared. This year is different. This team hasn't shown the fortitude of a champion. This team hasn't shown the mental toughness to do what is necessary no matter the opponent. The difference between winning and losing in the NFL is having that edge. There are no easy games. If the game looks easy on Sunday it is because of the preparation and work put in during the week. Which leads to execution and production seen on Sunday. When a team only seams to do just enough to win I am left wondering if they are holding something back or if that is all they have. Neither thought makes me particularly happy. Either way, we survived. We move on, and hopefully, we move forward.

on October 28th, 2012 at 09:46pm

One of the commentators on one of the preview shows last week warned this could be a trap game for the Packers because, he said, when teams look at film of the Jaguars nothing scareds them about that team. The Packers played down to the opponent. I don't think the injuries were the decisive issue of how the team came out yesterday. Fortunately they got away with it and came out with the win; which is the only thing that really mattered at this point. The first half of the NFL season now is not much more than an extended preseason, with teams still trying to figure things out and find their "identity." The real season comes after the bye, when the contenders will start to emerge and separate from the pretenders. But the Packers better not play down again this Sunday or an effort like yesterday will result in a trap in Titletown. Hopefully McCarthy will have the team look at some film of the Cardinals beating the Patriots in New England earlier this year, in case they need a little fear of an opponent to motivate them.

on October 29th, 2012 at 06:50pm

Rodgers looked a bit concussed out there. He got hit hard and didn't protect the ball against a pretty piss-poor pass rush. Congrats on beating the worst team in the NFL on a blocked punt. Also, they should have had Crosby miss that last FG so AR could improve that dismal W/L record of his in games decided by a TD or less.

on October 29th, 2012 at 07:25am

I got to say Dave, I don't usually disagree w/you, but listening to Packer Preview I didn't get the arrogance that you spoke with yesterday. It wasn't too long ago that this team lost to the Colts (after leading @ half time). Yes, they had played well the past couple of weeks but it was way too early to act like this team would walk all over the Jags even w/out some of the Pack's eye players. Also, listening to you on KFAN right now, I can't disagree more on Alex Green. I think the issue is the 2 guards for the Packers who called out their head coach for not running enough a couple of weeks ago and then when McCarthy started to run the ball more, they didn't back up their words. Hard to run through holes that aren't there. Sorry Dave, but I think you are wrong on Green and were wrong on claiming that the Pack would stomp the Jags.

on October 29th, 2012 at 10:38am

"Playing Fast".....I have been on this concept for weeks....and it seems we are regressing to "Outsmart Ball". Yes...we have a lot of key injuries....but MM and Capers are now falling back on aggresiveness again. Outside of the blocked punt...we showed that loose zone defense allowing way too many converted passes. If Capers decides to go this way against a good QB....we are toast. Yes...Woodson and Shields are better suited in the aggresive, checking at the line pass defense and we do not have them and it shows when we revert to this defense. The bending and not breaking approach may work against the Jags but not future opponents. I know that those guys were out but that loose zone drives me crazy and allows teams to ball control against us and keep it out of ARODs hands. As to the offense...I will have a minor disagreement with some of you....our OL is not great....but if you look back at the game as I did....Alex Green had some holes....I thought he was a lot quicker....but we are starting to see he does not hit the opening holes quick enough for a starting NFL back. It would be great if TT would pursue Stephen Jackson if we could reasonably aquire him....but that is not TT's style....he loves his draft choices too much. And why....does MM go away from the "no huddle hurry up when it is working? He must not have enough confidence with some of the starters out. Finally....Randall Cobb.....why not some rushing touches out of the backfield.?I not saying....10 carries a game....but 2-3 would keep defenses honest. A win is a win....but lets not develop any negative trends. GO PACK GO !!

on October 29th, 2012 at 12:50pm

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