14

January

My Top Ten Second Thoughts: Packers vs. 49ers

Packers 49ers Football

Kaepernick Sandwich

Having had some time to sleep on and digest the Packers’ loss to the 49ers, there are 10 things about this game I feel the need to address in a little more detail. Here goes:

Packers coaching philosophy: In the NFL, it’s all about success.  There are no style points, no points for technical brilliance. Find what is working and stick with it. If something’s not working, make adjustments. If something is killing you, throw out the caution book and try anything you can. This last aspect becomes especially true when you’re in a one & done situation like the playoffs. Did the Packers coaching staff do any of this in the 49ers game? No they did not.

DuJuan Harris: Harris had nine carries for 47 yards in the first half – that’s a 5.2 ypc average and three more yards than Frank Gore had. Nine carries in only 8 minutes of possession for the Packers offense is actually pretty impressive. This was the balanced attack McCarthy had been touting as being so important to their success. Harris was given 2 carries on the first plays of the second half (ironically when the Packer’s OL was in mild disarray with Sitton having a problem with his shoe).  He didn’t have another carry the rest of the game. Zero. Zilch. Nada.  How did that work out for the offense, Mike? An adjustment that wasn’t needed.

Jeremy Ross: This isn’t second guessing, but it needs to be addressed with what happened. I thought, said and wrote last week that McCarthy did the right thing in the Vikings game by keeping Cobb on punt returns and using Ross just on kickoff returns. I even praised McCarthy for being so smart about it. Punt and kickoff returns are two completely different animals. On punt returns, ball security trumps everything else. I assumed he would stay with this winning combination so I was shocked when I saw Ross back there to receive the punt. Why? I asked of my TV screen. Unfortunately, we got a perfect example of why not to do it.  Another adjustment that wasn’t needed.

Colin Kaepernick: I’m sure Jim Harbaugh is still trying to figure out why the Packers made no adjustments to what they were doing. To his credit, he made no unneeded adjustments (see above), he just kept doing what they were doing until the Packers did something to stop it.  As we know, there was nothing forthcoming. The Packers came out in the second half and did nothing different. They laid down the red carpet for Kaepernick to run on and he did so.  No adjustment where one was desperately needed.

Bye Week: There were plenty of attempts to explain what happened (excuses) by Packers players after the game. A lot of comments alluded to lack of adjustments, which is right on, but many were also using the bye week for SF as an excuse. Here’s one example from Dezman Moses, “They schemed us. They had two weeks off and that gives a team a long time to break you down in every phase.” I call Bullshit. The Packers had a bye week last year, didn’t they? Did they come out with the perfect game plan against the Giants because of it? No they didn’t. What Moses was really saying was, “we got our asses out-coached.” Which is a fact. Bye week had little to do with it.

Jim Harbough: Speaking of out-coaching, I have to give this guy and the 49ers offensive coaching staff due respect. In game one this year, I felt they had had designed a perfect game plan for Alex Smith to execute, which he did with precision. They maximized their strengths, identified where the weakness in the Packers’ defense was on every play, and they attacked it. It was a much different game plan this time around, necessitated by their change of quarterback mid-season. Yet, the approach was the same. Take their strengths (Kaepernick’s legs and Crabtree’s hands) and attack the Packers weaknesses (holding outside gap control and soft coverage from Tramon Williams).  Then once the Packers offense made the Packers defense stay out there WAY too long, the 49ers turned to Frank Gore for the kill. Textbook. A reluctant “well done” to the more annoying of the coaching brothers.

Tramon Williams: Where have you gone?

First half defense  was actually very good: …except for accounting for Colin Kaepernick.  At the half, Kaepernick was 11 for 23 passing. Frank Gore had 44 yds rushing.  Michael Crabtree had 5 catches and 2TDs (see Tramon Williams above), but he doesn’t get those TD chances if Kaepernick doesn’t break the defense’s back by extending drives when they had the 49ers stopped.  All the Packers had to do was find a solution for Kaepernick’s running and they would have won the game. I am totally convinced of that. It’s how I felt at halftime and it’s how I feel right now.  The game was tied halfway through the third when they let Kaepernick run for a 56 yard TD. See no adjustments above. That’s when I knew the game was over.

I Spy: Lots of talk on twitter last night about spying Kaepernick, much of it coming from me. The Packers did actually spy Kaepernick on a few plays, but always when they were in zone and Kaepernick wasn’t going to run in those situations. When they were in man and all receivers were downfield, Kaepernick took full advantage of the empty space behind the line of scrimmage and took off. Had there been a Packer there in those situations, it could have been a different story.  It certainly couldn’t have been worse.  I suppose what I am proposing would be like a “box and one” in basketball. One man as a spy, rest in zone.  But one more thing on spying; when the Packers did do it, they used linebackers. One thing we found out very quickly last night was that Kaepernick was just too fast to leave that job to a LB. I would have liked to have seen them use a DB in those situations – why not Jarett Bush?.  Or perhaps a faster linebacker like Jamari Lattimore or Terrell Manning, who have both run 40s in the 4.6-4.7 range. Again, it couldn’t have hurt.

Third downs: This has been the bane of the Packers’ existence in big games.  Whether it’s the 3-man rush soft zone we’ve seen too much in the past or straight man coverage with a deadly running quarterback, Dom Capers seems to have a mental block on third downs.  Sadly, it seems to manifest itself the most in playoff games. The Packers defense has ended the Packers playoff hopes three times in the last four years with a tidal wave of points allowed and yards surrendered. I hope to have time to examine this in more detail in a separate post.

As for McCarthy (or Rodgers, but I lay responsibility on the coach) and his propensity for throwing deep on third downs, my question is why always on third downs? I understand the need to stretch the defense, especially when you are a pass-heavy offense. But why run such a low percentage play on third downs, which mostly results in giving the ball back to the other team? Packers threw three deep balls yesterday, all on third down. One was an INT, one was incomplete and the third was the circus catch by James Jones. I just don’t like the odds of success on a down where failing means you give up the ball.

I’m sure I could keep going, but this seems like a good place to stop. I really look forward to hearing your comments, so fire away!

 

 

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Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.

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67 Responses to “My Top Ten Second Thoughts: Packers vs. 49ers”

  1. Nick Perry says:

    I love this web site and your guys insight. But to call that effort in the 1st half anything but horrible is a complete joke and I call bullshit. To give up 273 total yards, have a 3 to 1 advantage in time of possession (22 minutes to 8 minutes) is a complete but whipping. The Packers defense was pathetic from start to finish, end of story. Dump Pickett, Hawk, Finley, Tramon Williams, and Woodson and you have $27.4 million in cap space. Go get some players that aren’t stuck in the mud slow, love to tackle and don’t make average receivers look like Sterling Sharpe, can catch the ball and NOT be in the news for dumb quotes. Tell Woodson and Pickett thank you but it’s just time to go. Everybody is always clamoring that Ted T is a god, In Ted we trust, all that gooey stuff. Well we have the best QB in football that is so good he covers up the many weaknesses this team has. It’s time to get a few players to help him before he’s 38 and just one SB victory. Time for Ted T to prove he’s as great as everyone gives him credit for.

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    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      Tell me how you really feel… Go watch the first half again with an open mind. If not for a total lack of a plan to stop Kaepernick’s running, the defense would have been off the field on multiple occasions.

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      • Tarynfor12 Tarynfor12 says:

        We got torched on 3rd and longs all year,it wasn’t just Kaep that did it..he just made it look so much easier.The defense loss this one also.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

        • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

          True, but during the season, it was in a variety of way. Saturday night, it was one thing and one thing only – CK’s legs.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

          • mark says:

            I agree Al. I also watched the replay of the 49er game as sickening as it was. When CK dropped back no Packers had any pressure on him, the down field coverage was good and CK could pick his running lanes. CK was able to run untouched and unchallenged into the Packer secondary. The 49ers had a player on each Packer on the line of scrimmage and WAS DOMINATING HIM. How many sacks did we even have? To allow 579 yards of offense tells you who dominated the trenches. The Vikes also had a running qb but they didn’t control the line of scrimmage.

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      • Dan says:

        Hi Jersey, Love your articles! Great job & keep it up.
        There’s lots of blame to go around for this debacle but you hit the major ones squarely on the head!
        1) MM & Capers were totally out coached. Their lack of necessary adjustments to the gameplan is the biggest reason this winnable game turned into a blowout.
        2) The 1st half time of possession is not as relevant due to the Shields interception & Ross muff. But the typical 3 & out opening drive by the offense combined with a complete lack edge contain to get off the field on 3rd down was unforgiveable. It looked way to much like the regular season finale.
        3) Our elite players looked average. CM3 made minimal impact even though he was up against an injured LT one on one on several plays. BJ was a non factor, his poorest game in the last few months. Woodson was good in short coverage but a liability deep. He should have been the designated spy. It could have made all the difference because he’s on of the few DB’s who can tackle. Tramon Williams has played poorly 2 of the last 3 games. Kuhn missed multiple blocks & allowed pressure on his QB.
        Thumbs up: James Jones was a beast. Can’t win a game by yourself but he sure tried. Sam Shields had a great game & season. He’s learned how to cover AND tackle. DuJuan Harris played playoff caliber football when the flawed gameplan allowed him to. Ryan Pickett was the only guy holding the point in the middle and did a great job.
        The O line did better than I thought they would & A rod did a fine job calling protections.
        Brad Jones played a solid game as usual.
        AJ Hawk ended up way downfield at times because his assignment was to cover the TE. Suprisingly, although he gave up the catch, he was able to almost keep up. I’m sure there are more pats on the back to hand out but these were the ones that stuck out to me.
        4) TT is a fine evaluator of talent and has done a great job in GB except for building the lines which is the cornerstone of a franchise other that an elite QB. He is particulaly weak when it comes to finding defensive line talent in the draft, and other than BJ, has made most of his draft mistakes in this area. However, due to fielding playoff caliber teams year after year, we draft 24th or lower nearly every year, which makes it tough. the 9er’s had several years of high picks to build their lines. Anyway thats it. Off to work.

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    • Nick Perry says:

      Al, how can you say IF we stop him? That’s nuts. All week long they’re talking about stopping the read option, make him throw the ball to beat you. 273 yards later, controlling the game 22 minutes to 8 minutes just in the 1st half is a ass whooping. I love my Packers but I couldn’t even find a EXCUSE for that game. Lets hope Perry, Bishop, and Worthy heal up well and quick with Perry and Worthy both making huge strides towards becoming great players.

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      • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

        Nick – I think you’re not listening because you’re still pissed and don’t want to. the Packers defense had the 49ers at 3rd and 8yds or more 6 times in the first half. if your defense is playing so awful, you’re not winning the down and distance battle like that. On five of those third downs, Kaepernick’s legs got the 49ers a first down. hence, my statement that if he were accounted for, it’s a whole different game at the half and the Packers probably win the game.

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        • mark says:

          Al I agree to a point. The Packers did win on 1st and 2nd down but on 3rd down they got their butt kicked. So they didn’t win! 3rd down IS THE BIG DOWN. It wasn’t all Colin K. If we could have pressured him and contained him with the LB and DL he wouldn’t have run like he did. This is a collapse by the DL and LB’s. Colin K isn’t some GOD. I watched an average Ram (NFL ticket)team tie and beat him and a Seattle team throttle him. The difference was Rams and Seattle controlled the trenches.They were smothering Colin when he went back. We weren’t in the vicinity of Colin. We also got our butts kicked by the Giants (as usual) who totally dominated both lines of scrimmage vs Packers.

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  2. lee says:

    I too was yelling at the TV in the second half at the idiot mccarthy’s decisions. All season we have seen just bad play calling on both sides of the ball. I don’t know Why they stopped the winning formula of a balanced attack on offense. Harris was doing awesome by getting yards, keep the defense honest, and Rodgers upright. Defensively I can’t understand why aj hawk was in deep coverage against their best receivers. Also, what the hell is up with our d-line. The guys can’t rush. They attempted blitzes several times with 6 guys and gained absolutely nothing (its a sorry looking group)

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    • Steve0 says:

      Not absolutely sure, but it looked to me like Tramon Williams should/could have picked up coverage from Hawk on VD, but he turned away from it. Another example of TW “voting present?”

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  3. Adam Czech says:

    Obviously, everything that’s been said about the defense’s horrible effort and lack of adjustments is true. But these playoff losses still come down to turnovers. If the Packers don’t commit two silly turnovers in the first half, they would have been in that game right to the end even with Kaepernick running wild. The Packers were lucky that they didn’t lose two more fumbles during that game.

    For whatever reason, the Packers take excellent care of the football in the regular season, but have choked it away in the postseason.

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  4. Pete Kliman says:

    First of all ,it was a very good season considering all the injuries we had. I know everybody has them, but we had key players missing an enormous amount of time.On to the game. We could have spied him, but if our OLB’s played smarter there would have been no need. However,I still put the majority of the blame on the O line. We needed our offense to play a great game ,instead Rogers was never allowed to set his feet and was under pressure constantly,Many times with only a FOUR man rush.It was only a matter of time before the D would tire because of the time of possession. As far as running the ball not with this O line.

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    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      Pete, I know you’re a critic of the offensive line, and while by no means is this an outstanding group, they played a good game against a top-3 front seven in the league. One sack from a Willis inside blitz, no pressure from the Smiths and when the Packers did choose to run, there were some holes there. This loss is totally on the defense, in my opinion.

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      • Steve0 says:

        How many #1s or 2-3′s have the Packers got on their OL? What has Campen done to make them better players?

        I rest my case.

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        • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

          Two #1s, but neither were playing on Saturday.

          I’ve questioned Campen for a long time…

          Anyway, offensive line had little to do with the Packers losing this game.

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      • GBslacker says:

        Justin Smith was not 100%, and after his injury it took away from Aldon Smith’s impact — a possible factor in why the oLine played better than I expected.

        However, there were times when AR didn’t look like he had enough time, or was in a comfort zone.

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      • mark says:

        I agree. The offensive line played well against a great 49er D line.

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  5. Kelly says:

    Speaking of spies and coaching.

    1. Where was the spy OR the coach helping with evaluating with Kaepernick’s body language? He is not subtle. His body language changes dramatically when he hangs on to the ball either for a play action pass or when he hangs on to the ball.

    2. Capers biggest problem is his refusal to adjust and evolve. If he is waiting for the next Bill Walsh devotee to unwrap his newest version of the West Coast Offense, it just isn’t happening. And that is what his antiquated defensive schemes were best utilized.

    On the flipside, where was an effective coach calming a very frantic QB down? Just like the playoff game last year, Rodgers gets very frantic, desperate and takes the entire burden on his shoulders. He starts forcing desperate plays or starts running in the open field where he is vulnerable for a Griffin-like injury because he is so exposed. He plays scared, and he needs someone calming him down on the sidelines so he doesn’t go into panic mode. At the end he was playing like a kid taking the SAT who realizes he has two minutes left and fifty questions to answer.

    Capers may be the goat (deservedly so on many levels) but I think coaches failed the team on both sides of the ball.

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  6. Tarynfor12 Tarynfor12 says:

    What are some of the GOOD things that came out of this game?

    1)James Jones has been awarded’Circus Man or The Juggler’and needs to be extended immediately.I said before he is the MVP for the team and got bombed for it..c’mon.
    2)DuJuan Harris hasn’t reared his ugly side yet,and hopefully he doesn’t have one.
    3)Deniabilty has been taken off the table…no matter how hard one might try,seeing is believing was at epic proportions.
    4)The realization (always a good thing) that two careers are on the cusp of taking a bad turn…Rodgers getting hammered and CM3 getting tread wear faster than need be…nobody looked more physically and mentally exhuasted.
    5)Keeping players for adorations sake is road to nowhere..DD/CW/JF/JK and GJ possibly next season.
    6)Our front seven enbodies the conception about a team with too many QBs on it…you have none!

    Before the rants about CM3 are dictated to me,understand that as good/great as he may be,it all falls to naught when the others are already nothing.He becomes guilty by association..not justifiable via individual play but true none the less via group play.

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    • Mudduckcheesehead says:

      Right on, Taryn. We’ve got guys working their tails off like JJ and Brad Jones, and we’ve got some exciting young guys like Harris, Cobb, Hayward, Shields, et al. Add to that a ton of talent currently on IR, and you’ve got a heck of a supporting cast for AR and CM3.

      TT needs to jettison those aged and expensive veterans and get young, big, fast and mean in this year’s draft and maybe also in FA. And if MM and DC can’t manage that talent, Ted needs to find someone who can.

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  7. Hrourke says:

    Over-performed: o-line, Harris
    Under-performed: offensive play calling (see third down passing comments above) and linebackers. Besides turnovers, what happens If DH gets more carries, moves the chains, and runs time off the clock to keep our D off the field? Also, why the no huddle when your D is getting smoked and needs rest? But my biggest surprise was how well the O line played. Not sure how you could blame this loss on them.

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  8. NYPACKER says:

    Was it my imagination but did we have Walden as the “spy in middle of the field on one of Kapaernick’s runs? Allowing a guy who runs from contact,. as Williams does, to be on your defense does not build a culture of aggressiveness & toughness with your defense….gotta have a culture change…could kevin Greene do it?

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  9. Bearmeat Bearmeat says:

    I didn’t know Dom’s contract was up. I don’t know who runs the 3/4 better than him that’s available, but MM has GOT to look around.

    Oh, and MM – FRIGGEN RUN THE BALL, especially when you HAVE been running it successfully and are only down 3 at halftime.

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  10. Mike says:

    I love this site. I find myself coming here before the journal or press gazette. Anyway, why when it was evident our defense was having issues, do we continue to run a no huddle instead of trying to sustain some long drives and keep Kaepernick off the field.

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  11. xuyee says:

    It’s time to say it: Rodgers is not as good as Brady. ARod’s got the fastest, tightest spiral in the NFL, but the 3rd down ‘arm punt’ is getting old.

    Watch a Patriots game. Brady always seems to find Welker (who’s not as good as Cobb) or a tight end for 9 yards to convert a third and long. He’s content to march down the field, and that’s actually a change in his game from the year he tore it up with Randy Moss downfield. With some adjustments, ARod could dominate the NFC for ten years.

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    • DChairtonic says:

      The difference between Brady and Rodgers? Rodgers doesn’t take a risk very often, the wr’s need to be completely open before he will throw to them, never trusting they will make the play. This is a chicken/egg scenario though. Does he cause this problem, or do the WR’s but not getting open.

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    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      If you look at those long sideline routes they both throw, compare the trajectory. Brady has learned to put more air under the ball, allowing for adjustments by his receiver.Rogers tend to throw more of a line drive, so it’s more prone to the overthrow. I think Rodgers has fallen in love a bit with his ability to put the ball where he wants with velocity and would be better served by putting more loft on those long throws.

      And of course, this is major nitpicking here, not complaining. Just discussing for fun…

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      • GBslacker says:

        Something I’ve seen from Tom Brady is good play-action. When TB drops back, you don’t really know if he’ll hand off, or snap his body 180 degrees and throw the ball. When he does throw, it’s rhythm and trust in route-running.

        When Rodgers hands-off, it’s usually “telegraphed” — there seems more lean to his body, and the ball is further from his body. This is something I think the defense can key on.

        When Rodgers scans the field on a delayed hand-off, it’s a cursory thing when he scans one way, then the other. It’s much faster compared to when he’s really looking to throw it. Again, I think this is something the defense can key on.

        And as you mention, he’ll never throw it unless he’s sure of a completion. This leads to more sacks, as defenses know that he is loathe to dump off. For some reason, McCarthy is reluctant to let RBs or TEs leak past pass-pro/chip-assignments to become candidates for 5-6yd completions.

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    • Barutan Seijin says:

      Brady plays smarter than Rodgers. I get the feeling that Rodgers is reluctant to adjust; he wants to play the game his way. He’ll get visibly frustrated when it doesn’t work out. Brady has a cooler head & isn’t too proud to throw short when he has to.

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    • Pete Kliman says:

      Ha ha ha, Come on. Now we’re getting on Rogers. Brady has no mobility and still has so much time to go to the second and third rec. If AR had that type of blocking the Pack would of scored 50. I don’t understand why so many of you are surprised that the D didn’t play better. It has been like this for two years,especially against very good opponents. However, I put more blame on the O line because our passing attack has been world class. Even though Rogers was not sacked he could not get his feet settled in order to thread the needle against 7 men in coverage. Niners and Giants were collapsing the pocket with 4 rushers many times.

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    • skyler says:

      Brady is older and more experienced. Plus and a big Plus is that Bill B. running a much more balance plan of attack. Bill B (like him or hate him) is an excellent coach. Mike M is not there yet.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  12. Ron LC says:

    Al, can’t disagree with any of the points you’ve made. The big question is why they did what they did?

    The defensive scheme has failed miserably against a certain type of team. That team has a big, aggressive front that handles the GB’s defensive front one on one. Add to that RB’s that can run at 100+ yards without any problem. And,lately, the final nail, the zone/read QB. If it weren’t for the fact that Webb couldn’t hit the side of a barn passing, they may not have gotten to SF in the first place. Minn’s first drive turned out to be a precurssor to the SF debacle.

    I think MM looked at the 22 to 8 minute disparity in the first half and went to an all or nothing attitude in the 2nd half. Way too soon in my opinion.

    There is a serious problem with the Packer defense that must be addressed in the off-season. Is Capers the guy to fix it? I don’t know but the status quo is not the answer.

    The good news is that the type of team that gives GB fits is rare. The number is probably 3 or 4. But that number is growing. GB needs to get more physical on both sides of the ball. Time for the Dline to penetrate and get their butts into the enemy backfield. And, my major obsession, the damn zone blocking scheme should be scrapped and get some big nasties on the field. More Sittons and fewer EDS’s would be fine.

    With some key additions in the draft and hopefully an FA or two in key spots, these deficiencies can be corrected. As long as AR is there, the attitude going into the 2013 season should be Super Bowl or Bust. It is not easy to win the SB, or even get into it, so when you have the base in place add what’s needed to fix the problems and go all out from game 1 next year.

    Go Pack!

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    • skyler says:

      History shows we are not going to get even to a Championship game let alone the SB. WE HAVE A MAJOR PROBLEM – LITTLE OR NO DEFENSE. When a playoff team can rack up almost 600 yards of offensive, you have no shot proceeding to the next level. We had timing and desire in 2010. That SB run was magic. When it counts, 2009, 2011, and 2012, our defense was nowhere to be found. In the mid and last 1990, we got to the NFC championship and beyond (mini dinasty) by have Favre and a great Defense (White, Butler, Gilbert Brown, etc). It will take two more year to fix this Defense (new DC and Players)

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  13. Since '61 says:

    Al – more good thoughts and comments from you as usual. I love this site because being a Packer fan Since ’61 and living in either NYC or NJ gives me little opportunity to speak with fellow GBP fans on a regular basis. This site helps make up for that and provides really great comments and feedback from writers and fans alike. I’ve previously commented on the SF game and the Packers consistently drafting in the lower rounds (due to their consistent playoff runs) now facing teams which had been losing and drafting in higher rounds. The difference in quality becomes exposed in playoff games. To me the bottom line is that winning and losing begins with those five guys on the offensive line and the Niners Offensive line is a very good to excellent O-line, one of the best in the league. When you have a great O-line you can run and pass pretty much at will and control the game as SF obviously did against the Pack on Saturday. Therefore to me this loss is on the defense because they did not win the individual battles against the SF O-line and they stayed on the field as a result of it. Could the defensive game plan be better, possibly, yes. Could adjustments have been made, yes. Some probably were but not executed well. Also, remember, SF is making adjustments as well amd their O-line is outexcuting our D-line. It’s not just coaching and game planning, it’s players not plays. These losses are disappointing and many fans call for changes and firings, but remember that the Pack is 51 – 21 with an SB win including the playoffs during the last 4 seasons (09-12), the Capers years BTW. We have had a lot to cheer about lately and really since the ’92 season it’s been a good long run and will continue thanks to Aaron Rodgers and yes, MM and TT. Better than the 70′s and 80′s. And God forbid we could be like the Jets, the local NFL joke and disaster in the northeast. In spite of this loss it was good season overcoming the injuries, the robbery in Seattle, etc… See ya’ in September, or maybe during the draft. Thanks, Since ’61

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    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      Thanks for the kind words – did you used to get the PackerReport mailed to you back in the day like I did?

      Don’t be a stranger. We’ll be doing player evaluations and a ton of draft-related stuff…

      AL

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      • Since '61 says:

        Al – yes! I was a subscriber to the Packer Report for years. I have still have the issues from the 1996 Super bowl and the issues which covered the passing of Nitschke (Didn’t have a nick name, didn’t need one). Of course, once the internet came along the old Packer Report became obsolete. Of course, way back in the ’60s I depended on CBS NFL Today on Sundays, Sport Illustrated, (my older brother was a subscriber) and the occasional article in the NY area newspapers. Fortunately, the Pack was frequently in the papers and the highlight reels in the Lombardi days.

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  14. Big T says:

    sheesh, I have said it all year long… EGO is getting in MM and TT’s way… Just look to the Patriots if you want to see a real coach in action. We could have 5 superbowl rings in a row…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      As far as MM / Belichik goes, I kind of agree with you. BB is never afraid to change his approach from week to week, depending on the opponent. MM is too convinced that his methodology will work regardless of the other team. Like him or not, BB is by far the best coach of this era.

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  15. ThomasMagnumPI ThomasMagnumPI says:

    Spy with Chuck and play man behind it was my initial thought, but that does present the problem of most likely having to put a LB on Vern Davis (not good). You would have to think that putting a LB on Davis with Burnett over the top would have gotten the job done though.

    That was one of the most frustrating games to watch, especially the second half, and I really don’t understand why Capers failed to make any obvious adjustments. Even if he did adjust and I just didn’t see it, those adjustments were simply not effective. Maybe he’s great at the Xs and Os, but he sure does make me question his ability to adjust his defense, as well as scheming for specific players and teams.

    Also, I was not happy about MM going away from Harris in the 2nd half. A little time of possession to at least keep the D off the field couldn’t have hurt. It’s not like he was ineffective either.

    Vent over, time to get ready for the draft. . .

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  16. Savage57 says:

    First off, thanks Al for the place to learn and, when needed, vent.

    - Goodbye Tramon, and your terminal case of contractitis

    - Goodbye Dom, and your “I am incapable of adjusting’ defense.

    - Goodbye Aaron, Clay and Greg J’s commercials. It’s time to start paying more attention to football, less to trying to become Brett Favre.

    - Goodbye DD, we will miss your class and your smile.

    - Goodbye John Dorsey. Would the last person left in personnel besides TT please turn off the light?

    - Goodbye Chuck, thanks for the years and the attitiude. I think you helped make this team a winner again.

    - Goodbye MM’s play card. Time for you to either give the play calling to Clements (if he’s still here) or hire someone else and let them do it. You are a great HC, but your play calling has a level of creative depth commensurate with paper.

    - Hello, draft day. What surprises do you hold for us this year?

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  17. marquipooh Marquipooh says:

    Who’s really to blame!
    http://imgur.com/V3cPt

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  18. Justin from Winnipeg says:

    Great blog you have, and you do a great job breaking it down.

    For the most part I like Mike McCarthy as a head coach.. One area I just feel he lacks in his ability to evolve. What I mean is when you look at a team like the Patriots and 49ers, their head coaches are always evolving their offence and defence every year. Always new wrinkles and formations.. I feel MM and Dom Capers have really lacked in this department.

    Is it just me or does it seem like we don’t run many crossing routes? I think teams like New England do a great job at clearing out the middle of the field for guys to run through and hit that nice intermediate 10-15 yard crossing route. It seems like our offence always wants to go vertical all the time or throw outside the numbers.

    As for the defence I agree we cannot just maintain business as usual. All of the playoff losses since 2009 have been horrendous defensive outputs.. But who replaces Capers? Maybe Rob Ryan who runs a 3-4? He at least brings the intensity and attitude I think the defence needs but he does run his mouth a lot in the media for my liking, and not sure if he would get along with the MM.

    Anyway I could write more but will leave it at that, I look forward to reading and commenting here in the future, keep up the nice work!

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  19. NYPACKER says:

    Rob Ryan’s defenses have only ranked in the top half of the league once in 9 years as DC, for points allowed.

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  20. wim says:

    back in the 50s when my dad took me to the games under his coat, he would always say you can tell a good coach by the changes that are made, if they need to be made, at half. well we failed that test, but worse it was already apparent what adjustments need to be made after the second QB run. you just call down from the press box and make the adjustment that they should have been working on given film study. but NO, nada. that the game was 24-24. please lord give us some linebackers and a D coach.

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  21. hotpockets says:

    I really agree with comment above describing Cly’s fatigue. I hope with a healthy Perry and timely substitutuions with Walden and Moses that our OLB’s can stay fresh and make more plays next year.

    I love A-Rod, but I have a real problem with his association with efficiency? His nombers may show it, but the way he operates the offense to win games is not efficient. He seldom takes the open underneath routes to convert third down or even to try to get some type of offensive rythem. He audibles out of running plays to try to make a big play with his arm and often finds himself taking a sack or throwing the ball away when his recievers are covered deep. I wish they would start looking at more positive plays with less flash. I could go on and on today, but I’ll stop there.

    GO PACK

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    • NYPACKER says:

      Offense in the SF game was really about as good as I expected. They are one of the best defenses in football with 2 weeks to prepare, scoring 24 off them in limited opportunities was as much or more than expected.

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  22. ILGBPfan says:

    Al–love your website. I ,too, start here when looking for information/articles on the Pack. Remember my dad getting Packer Report and reading it cover to cover. Just barely remember the Ice Bowl. I agree with every point you made in this article. You wrote many things I’ve been saying and thinking for a long time.

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  23. Jason Perone Jason Perone says:

    Al, I know this is your piece but if I may for a quick moment: WOW! We have some great fans on this site. Thank you all for the support! Every one of you (even Cow), makes for some interesting reading and thought.

    I know we’re all stung by the loss. Let’s face it, as long as Rodgers is quarterback, we expect to be playing for a trophy every time. There was earlier mention of success since ’92 and that was spot on. Goes with what Adam Czech said earlier this season: we’ve become spoiled. I myself am guilty! I started following this team in ’86 so I ESPECIALLY have nothing to complain about. I had to wait only 4 seasons to get above .500 and another 4 to get into the playoffs. 3 after that, a Super Bowl winner. Yes, this team disappointed us thoroughly in San Francisco, no 2 ways around it. But only 1 out of 32 teams wins it every year. Today, someone asked me if I’d take a job that I only had a 1 in 32 chance of succeeding at every year. Great point! As much as we want to admire BB in New England, let’s not forget his team hasn’t won a SB in nearly 10 years. Sure they appeared in plenty, but so did the Buffalo Bills in the early 90′s. Point is, every new season brings new hope.

    Look forward to the next 6 months and some of the changes that come with it!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

    • Jersey Al Jersey Al says:

      Gee, when I saw WOW, I though you were blown away by my incredible writing skills! Now I;m so disappointed…

      But seriously, what’s exciting for me is that there are new “faces” in here telling us how much they like us. Can’t tell you how much that means to me. And I hope to see them all more often!

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  24. GBPDAN says:

    Musclehead Mike failed us again

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