Packers XLV

Where Does the Pack Go From Here?

Posted October 17th, 2016 @ 01:10pm

I'm going to make it brief. After a performance like we saw on Sunday, the Pack's season can go in one of two directions. It can be a wake-up call or it can be a knockout punch. With four road games coming up in the next six games against pretty good teams (none have a losing record), we'll find out pretty quickly which direction it will go.

You all watched the game. It looked the same from my vantage point, up high in the south end zone. The Packers were dominated in all phases, including coaching. Scott Linehan knows how to dial up plays to confuse Dom Capers' defense. Mike McCarthy seems unable to tweak his predictable offense.

The best quarterback on the field was not the preseason MVP, it was the fourth round rookie who will cause Tony Romo to get very accustomed to wearing a headset for the rest of the season. The Cowboys also have the better running back and offensive line. The Pack did an okay job bottling up Ezekiel Elliott early, but once the league's rushing leader warmed up, the defense had no answers.

Obviously, the game turned at the end of the first half, first when the Pack couldn't move the ball after a nice Trevor Davis punt return and had to punt, trailing 10-6. With the 'Boys backed up to the three McCarthy did what he always does. He took defensive timeouts, believing he'd get a three and out and get the ball back. Two problems with that strategy: the Pack's offense had shown no reason to believe they would strike quickly and the defense wasn't prepared for Linehan's creativity. Five plays and 97 yards later, the Cowboys had silenced Lambeau Field and taken a 17-6 lead. The Pack never recovered.

As impressive as Prescott and Elliott were, and they deserve to be the major talkers coming out of this game, for Packer nation topic number one is the offense: the sudden penchant for turnovers and the mediocre play of Rodgers. It's hard to believe our eyes when we see him throw a ball right into the willing arms of a defender or put the ball on the ground when the team is about to score to get within shouting distance.

The truth is, Rodgers has looked like Rodgers for exactly one half of one game this season. He missed about a half dozen throws on Sunday and I had a good view to see for myself that the receivers, for the most part, were not getting open. It's up to McCarthy to find ways to jump start this offense. So far, he's been too hard headed or just unable to make the changes needed.

After Sunday's performance, there's plenty of soul searching needed and not a lot of time to do it. They'll take the field again on Thursday night with a chance to wipe the taste of this one off their lips. A chance to get a little revenge for last year's loss to the Bears--the low point of the season. After that, it's four out of five on the road and if they don't figure out a way to protect the football and make some plays on offense, they'll be in danger of becoming a blip in the Vikings' rear view mirror.

 

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Comments (19):

Whoofda. Things have really gone down the toilet around here since the Week 2. I don't even know what's going on. Rodgers definitely doesn't seem himself. Dave, (or other Packer fans), what are your realistic expectations for Thursday night? With Shields and Randall most likely still out, I don't know how you'll stop the Bears O (who, have been moving the ball well but not scoring a lot of points.) And with Lacy playing inured still, things could get awfully one dimensional. I know the Bears did a pretty good job of focusing on shutting Robinson down last week, so I'm thinking Jordy may have another down day, and most of the work goes to Cobb. Any thoughts?

on October 17th, 2016 at 03:59pm

I am shocked by the behavior of Packers fans. Shocked. It's common knowledge that they're the most obnoxious in the NFL. The drunkest. The most inbred. These are undeniable facts. However, it was also an undeniable fact that they were the most supportive in the league. But after this game, IDK anymore. Booing your team that early in the first half? Before they were even down by very much? Frankly it is pathetic. This whole idea of Packer fans being the best in sports is pure garbage. It's easy to be supportive when you have 20+ years of HOF QB play in a row. But in reality you're the same fickle idiots that every other team has, just more obese. I can't imagine how happy Brett was walking out of that stadium after that train wreck of a game. LOL! Dude could still sling it better than Rodgers did yesterday.

on October 17th, 2016 at 04:17pm

I keep going back to the fact that there's still 11 games to go, and I can't realistically expect the Vikings to keep chugging along at their current pace. That being said, this team has some issues they need to figure out. The TE position was addressed in free agency, but too bad Cook got hurt. That's one of the risks of free agency. Suppose it had been a high buck FA? But the point here is Rodgers, Matthews, Peppers and Nelson are supposed to be the experienced leaders of this team (not necessarily an outside FA - this is where OSSG and I disagree on philosophy), and so far it hasn't been the case. Regardless, I'm sticking with them.

on October 17th, 2016 at 05:32pm

R-E-L-A-X

on October 17th, 2016 at 05:50pm

McCarthy's timeouts at the end of the first half were mind-boggling. Pretty stupid move. Dallas gets credit for going 97 yards and effectively icing the game before halftime. Rodgers looks broken.

on October 17th, 2016 at 08:16am

Might have to get used to your fans booing your team at home, THC. Where the hell were your two ILB's Ryan and Martinez? I thought they were supposed to be run-stuffers? Is Sam Barrington still available? You guys might have got that onside kick if Bostick played for the Cowboys though.........Also, another Bret Favre honor--another loss at Lambeau. Can he become a permanent fixture at home games? Did you notice he told Dak to "kick the Pack's a$$" down there on the field? LOL

on October 17th, 2016 at 08:29am

At what point in the first half did the Packers have Elliott bottled up? 12 carries for 60 yards in the first half isn't very 'bottled'. The Packers 'great' run defense was inflated as they played four teams with crappy run games the first four weeks of the year. The WR corps for the Packers is weak, Jordy isn't nearly as good as he was before the injury, and without him being able to take the top off the defenses, the defense is able to control the short passing game that Rodgers used to feast on. On top of that Rodgers, for whatever reason, isn't able to throw the wide receivers open like he used to do. With the offense struggling, the defense is as mediocre as ever. A good pass rush is being wasted with the D-backs unable to cover or cause turnovers. Packers D has a lot of sacks, but is also giving up a ton of passing yards. What is all boils down to is that the Packers are a very mediocre team this year. This team has 9-7 written all over it.

on October 17th, 2016 at 09:04am

-First, let's give a large commendation to 2nd yr starter Jake Ryan and Rookie starter Blake Martinez for anchoring this struggling defense, they were a major reason for the highly ranked rush defense coming into this game, they are playing their tails off every play, and they are also doing double duty on the kick return team. -Clay Matthews, he has been a non factor, he was was on the sideline watching for many plays, he gets blown away on outside run plays and fails to keep the outside edge, and seems to be made of glass now. -The whole offense is flat and the personnel seems the be in the same malaise we experience after being at the same employer over 15 yrs. -Is there something behind the scenes we need to know about Jared Addrederis and Jeff Janis? I thought they both showed a lot of potential last year and fired off the line of scrimmage unlike the starting recievers. Janis finally saw regular snaps after Adams injury, but seemed like the last option for Rogers. -Last, time for Shields to return!....and can we not go with a empty backfield on 1st and goal when the game is at crucial point and then run a beat up Eddy Lacy late in the game when you need to go 70 yards in 70 seconds. The play calling is "grinding my gears" .

on October 17th, 2016 at 09:07pm

First....To my good friend The Voice...You will not like this post because you probably will continue to defend the system. That is fine...but we are both long time Packer loyal fans just with different perspectives. I will address Packer issues from a micro and macro view point. First the micro....We all know Rodgers has problems so lets give that to all the other experts ad nausau. But you have to question MM's play calling with the timeouts at the end of the first half. And possibly the worst call of his career....WHY oh WHY are we going in the shotgun on first and goal at the 2 yard line. If Lacy was not available why not try Ripinski with a couple of blasts. MIND Boggling. Also we are getting killed by young free agent DBacks and in the past young free agent LB's. This is on the Pack and their personnel decisions. I sense that there is an arrogance on the part of management and some players to adapt to needed change. Now to my Macro point which leads to causing some of this micro funk. TT's reluctance or maybe arrogance to suppliment this roster with veteran free agent signings. I am not talking about season added scrap heap additions...think Jake Long for the Vikes...but quality free agent additions in the free agent signing period. TT loves his draft and free agent college signings but look at all the professional sports...baseball,hockey, basketball all the good teams supplant their roster with quality signings. The Patroits and Seahawks do it every year. I am sick of hearing we are one of the yougest teams in the league every year (third youngest this year). A Super Bowl built team has quality veterans in key spots. We lack a pass catching tight end...quality back up running back and some veteran DB's who dont fall down on every high school fake. MM and TT get with the now age football or you could go the way of a fellow baseball executive who had prior success but refused to adapt from his old ways. ala..Terry Ryan of the Minnesota Twins. Finally....Voice... I know you like the current system but we are still both of us loyal passionate Packer Backers. GO PACK GO !!

on October 17th, 2016 at 09:36am

Well Dave, it might be time to ask your son if you can hop on the Minnesota bandwagon.

on October 17th, 2016 at 09:38am

ARodgers looks very Christian Ponderesque ..... scary ! (for packer fans)

on October 17th, 2016 at 09:58am

What can I say? I swallowed my whistle when you needed it, but the pack's not good enough to win even with my help.

on October 17th, 2016 at 10:05am

Son, I think it's time we consider trading Aaron Rodgers while we can still get a couple of draft picks for him and let the Brett Hundley era begin. At the rate A-Rodge is declining we'll have our own version of Jay Cutler by the middle of next season and then we'll be stuck with him and his bloated contract.

on October 17th, 2016 at 10:32am

I am sure I have the same sentiment as many Packer fans and Voice. What the heck was that? I am shocked at how calm and confident Prescott was against the Packers Defense. Although you did turn him over for the first time. And Rodgers continuing to put the ball on the carpet. My worst fear was that Dallas actually have a really good back in EE. I don't think the rest of the league learned much about Defending Dallas from that performance. Admittedly so I am a bit puzzled!

on October 17th, 2016 at 10:45am

1st off, any coach who wouldn't use his timeouts when other team is at it's own 10 with 40 seconds to go should be fired. if you don't have confidence in your d to stop them, and get the ball at the 50 with 25 seconds to go, one 10 yd. pass and Crosby is in within range, what are you guys talking about? if you play scared , you lose. that td b4 half sure, easy to say now,hurt, not why they lost though. what did I say 3 weeks ago, turnovers beat you. I'm with OSSG on roster by TT, don't even have a backup rb on practice squad, what the hell are u doing? Then MM with 27 hurting, and 2 guys out in secondary for the boys, were trying to run the ball, 12 had all day to throw, again, WHAT the hell r u doing? when we lost McAdoo, to the giants, this offense started to sputter. 12 loved him not mant packer fans noticed that, but htat is when it started.look at the numbers. I have been telling you Davey on this site for 2 years receivers are not getting open, 12 has not played well we know that, but if they don't get open he can't get any rhythm and flow AND CONFIDENCE> yes, even 12 has lost some, no doubt in my mind.time will tell, could be 16-13 on thursday we lose, or 31-20 win, whoever thinks they know is foolish right now, BUT , I will enjoy the season. stay for the ride and watch the vikings win the super bowl homeboy, that's what all my vikes friends tell me Go Packers.

on October 17th, 2016 at 12:40pm

-Enormous credit needs to be given to Jake Ryan and Rookie Blake Martinez for there solid play in the middle. Not only have those guys exceeded expectations, they are flying around the field every play, and also play special teams. -Clay Marthews seems to now be a non factor, he gets blown off the edge trying to keep outside containment on run plays to his side, and is no longer an every down guy. -The offense is flat, recievers are failing to get open. I would like to see more Janis and Montgomery. -Empty backfield on the goaline during a pivotal moment during the game, then using an obviously injured Lacy late in the game when you need to go 70 yards in 7 seconds? I'm not a "know it all" but didn't understand the mindset.

on October 18th, 2016 at 01:34pm

The Cowboys pulled the Packers' pants down to their ankles and em-barrassed them in front of a national audience, to be sure. But Dallas this year is the real deal and in a few more weeks losing to them won't be regarded as such a disgrace. Still, it's a disturbing loss and cost the Packers a strategic opportunity that will have to now be made up elsewhere. If you look at the boxcore but didn't know the outcome one might think this was a close game. The Packers put up 372 total yards, only 6 shy of 300 passing, edged Dallas in time of possession by 20 seconds and tied them in first downs. But the four turnovers were devastating and they left at least 11 points "on the field" on Rodgers' fumble at the Cowboys 5 yd. line and miss on the wide open Randall Cobb in the end zone. They would still have lost the game but 30-27 is more palatable than 30-16. If there are any "positives" that should prevent us from writing off the season with 11 games to go these might be it.

on October 18th, 2016 at 04:45am

You can't keep doing the same thing and expecting a change in the results. McCarthy has been too stubborn to adjust and it is biting the Packers on the butt. He better adjust, or expect nothing to change, sadly.

on October 18th, 2016 at 08:58pm

see Voice , TT is reading this too, listening to me and OSSG, we at least traded for a rb, Kniles Davis from kc. pretty fast back, has had some fumbling problems, let's hope the has fixed that, maybe next Ahman Green???? hahahha, at least he is fast and change of pace. Go Packers.

on October 18th, 2016 at 11:09am

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