Packers XLV

Appreciating the Aarons.

Posted October 30th, 2019 @ 03:10pm

Sorry for being a couple of days late with this. I've been up north at meetings with a client for couple of long days and even longer nights, but I'm back and since we're on to LA, I'll make this quick.

Not to beat a dead horse, but we Packer fans often have to deal with the 'you guys have only won two Super Bowls in 25 years' comments slung our way. And I always answer that getting to watch the majesty of Favre and Rodgers week after week provides constant goosebumps; you never know what they'll do next.

Sunday night, we saw Rodgers make a couple of throws that take your breath away. When he threw them, they both looked like throwaways. First, the deep pass that Jake Kumerow came up with and then the touchdown pass to Jimmy Grah...I mean, Jamaal Williams. Pure artistry. When I look back at the Rodgers era, it is plays like this that I'll remember.

As for the game, the Packers punched hard in the first quarter and the Chiefs counterpunched in the second. What I really like is that the Pack made the necessary adjustments at halftime and Mike Pettine's squad held the Chiefs to just over 100 yards of offense in the second half. And LaFleur found the perfect blend of Aaron Jones on the ground and through the air to keep the Chiefs guessing.

What I loved was the final five minutes. With the Pack backed up at the two, five minutes on the clock and nursing a seven point lead, they were able to run out the clock, with Jones running hard and LaFleur telling Rodgers on third and five to 'go win the game.' The pass to Jones in the flat put the game on ice. Packer teams in the recent past would have punted there and faced one last drive by their opponent.

Jones' emergence as a dual threat, along with the expected return of Davante Adams allows us to dream that this offense hasn't yet hit its stride, despite being a top five offense in October without Adams on the field. The emergence of Allen Lazard and Jake Kumerow lessened the Pack's need to add a receiver at the trade deadline--this offense will feature backs and tight ends as well as receivers, depending on the matchup. There's enough talent on offense to win any game. Might they look to add an early pick or veteran next season? Sure, but it's not a priority in 2019. It'll be interesting to see if rookie Jace Sternberger, who will be activated soon, can be a factor in the offense coming out of the bye in a few weeks.

I'm not going to get too worked up about a win over the Chiefs without Mahomes and five other key starters. But this is a talented team with a lot of explosive playmakers that had ten days to prepare and were trying to avoid a third straight home loss. And playing in that environment, especially in prime time, is never easy. It was a solid win and this team has yet to lose on the road or in the division at the halfway point. That's much more than we could have hoped for when the season started.

The biggest thing that needs to get fixed right now is the return game and they made the move on Tuesday, activating Tremon Smith from the practice squad and releasing Darrius Shepherd (I hope he ends up on the Pack's practice squad, but another team might be interested). Smith will handle kick returns and my guess is Tramon Williams takes over as punt returner. Sure, he's a bit long in the tooth for the job, but he's dependable and I'd rather not put Jaire in harm's way there.

I'll be back in a couple days to preview the Chargers game, a 'road' game in LA, where I'm guessing at least 75% of the fans are Packer backers.

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Comments (7):

Hi dave, love the show and your packers blog. Even though we have been lucky with some calls in the Lions game and not having to play Mahomes, it sure is refreshing to see the new offense Lafleur has put together. There are weekly and in game changes that really takes advantage of our playmaker and game flow. Hope defense can tighten up in a few weeks. We may not be the best team in the nfc or even the north, but we sure are much improved from last year and the future sure looms bright for the first time in a long time!!

on November 1st, 2019 at 08:46pm

You're not supposed to count your chickens before they hatch but it's hard not to admire the basket the Packers are holding. At midpoint of the season they're halfway toward returning to the playoffs after a 2 year absence. They've got the inside track in the Division and are in the thick of the race for a one or two "seed" in the NFC. There is still a long way to go, of course. An upset or two in games they're expected to win could happen. Injuries are probably the big "x" factor as we saw with our recent opponent. But if things shake out as expected, the Pack should win at least 4 of the next 5 with San Fran. on the road standing as the stiffest test. That will put them at 11-2 at worst heading into Minisota. With the Queens heading for some tough road games at KC, Dallas and Seattle there could be some separation coming in the NFC North. The 49ers are unbeaten but their schedule toughens in the second half. Besides the Packers they play Seattle twice, the Rams, Colts and visit the Saints. New Orleans, though, may not be beatable in the NFC this year.

on November 2nd, 2019 at 06:10am

It seems like a change of coach did aaron and the defense well! 49ers will be a real test. Go PACK!

on November 2nd, 2019 at 07:43pm

Glad to see the Active 53-Man Roster is in reasonably good health. Sure different than in past years. Hope it continues!

on November 2nd, 2019 at 08:01am

The critics will call the Packers a paper tiger if they win in the playoffs this year. It's been quite a ride, especially for a rookie coach. This team is coming together nicely and we'll see how far they go. It may end up that it was the defense that still need a little more help to put us over the top. I expect the defense and ILB will feature prominently in next years draft. That is not to the unit is devoid of talent, but it seams more plucky than all pro. With any luck, Gary will also emerge a bit more and we can have something really special at the end positions, 3 guys. Even without Mahomes to extend the play, few teams have speed the Chiefs do and after a second quarter, the defense did respond as THC said. As for the wasted years, my response has always been closer to , "How do I feel on Monday?" The Packers have consistently given me more reasons to be happy vs. disappointed. That's how I've chosen to judge them.

on October 31st, 2019 at 08:46am

Great observation lynndickeyfan,Vikings fans have been really sad on Monday’s for years!!

on October 31st, 2019 at 11:03am

I was a little disappointed Gutey could not find us a veteran receiver or at least a decent inside LB. If want to make a run in the playoffs this is where veterans step up. You see it in all pro sports. I 'm sure he tried and he has to weigh the risk/reward and nobody really in the league made any worthwhile moves on the deadline. Adams coming back is huge....but we need those free agents to step up and help. Putting Jones or Williams out wide has been efficient but defenses will start sceming for this. That said....we will take 7-1 and think how close to 8-0 if we could have scored on 4th and 1(remember the 4 straight incompletions) in the Philly game. Lets see if some of our rookies like Gary and Sternberger can contribute in the second half. While Savage has been our flashiest rookie Jenkins has been far away our most solid. GO PACK GO !!

on October 31st, 2019 at 11:22am

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