Game Balls and Lame Calls: Packers 31, Browns 13

Packers receiver Jarrett Boykin enjoyed his first career Lambeau Leap following his fourth-quarter touchdown against the Browns.

Packers receiver Jarrett Boykin enjoyed his first career Lambeau Leap following his fourth-quarter touchdown against the Browns.

Already shorthanded on defense the previous week against the Ravens, the Green Bay Packers offense joined the club, heading into their matchup with the Cleveland Browns severely undermanned.

But despite being without receivers Randall Cobb and James Jones, quarterback Aaron Rodgers led the Packers offense up and down the field, scoring 31 points against a solid Browns defense. For Rodgers, it may have been his best performance of the season despite throwing for a modest (by his standards) 260 yards.

Unfortunately for the Packers, the injury bug continued to hang around the team Sunday, as tight end Jermichael Finley suffered a neck injury on a vicious head to the head from Browns safety Tashaun Gipson. Finley was loaded onto a stretcher and taken off the field, although he did show movement in his extremities.

Of course, just a few years after former Packers safety Nick Collins’ career was cut short by a neck injury, many will fear the worst any time a Packers suffers an injury to his head or neck. I’m not a doctor and don’t pretend to assume to know the extent of Finley’s injury, but it certainly looked bad. Originally, I assumed Finley had suffered only(?) another concussion, which would have been his second of the season, but it’s pretty clear that’s not the case.

This is a neck injury, and it’s anyone’s guess as to when he’ll return to the field. If at all.

He stayed in intensive care overnight at the hospital, but according to Mike Garafolo’s official Twitter account, Finley was up and walking as of Monday morning. Walking is a good first step for Finley, but football continues to be an afterthought in the grand scheme of his serious injury.

On the bright side, it was another dominating performance by Dom Capers and the Packers defense.

Sam Shields, once again, shut down the opponent’s No. 1 receiver, Davon House stepped up and picked up a pass on fourth down and A.J. Hawk continues to look like the All-American he was at Ohio State University. Shields, specifically, is deserving of a great deal of credit for his job on Browns receiver Josh Gordon.



Packers vs. Browns – Game Day First Impressions, Unfiltered: GB 31 CLE 13

Jermichael Finley, Jordy Nelson

Finley TD celebration…

Green Bay Packers vs. Cleveland Browns:  2013 Game 6

Unfiltered game day blog post of comments, observations and first impressions.


The walking wounded (otherwise known as your Green Bay Packers) hit the field today in their Throwback uniforms to take on the improving Browns. Cleveland has  a very good unit on defense, but the offense has struggled since Brian Hoyer went down and Brian Weeden stepped in at quarterback.

Packers wide receiving corps will consist of Jordy Nelson, Jarret Boykin and Myles White, fresh off the practice squad.

Today’s captains for the Packers: - OL Josh Sitton, DB M.D. Jennings, LB AJ Hawk.


Inactives for today:


Green Bay PackersGreen Bay Packers
29 CB Casey Hayward
44 RB James Starks
52 LB Clay Matthews
53 LB Nick Perry
59 LB Brad Jones
82 TE Ryan Taylor
89 WR James Jones

Starting lineup changes: 11 WR Jarrett Boykin starts for J. Jones, 96 LB Mike Neal for Perry, 55 LB Andy Mulumba for Matthews, 57 LB Jamari Lattimore for B. Jones.

Cleveland Browns
58 LB Brandon Magee
60 OL Patrick Lewis
64 OL Martin Wallace
65 OL Garrett Gilkey
83 TE Keavon Milton
90 DL Billy Winn

The Browns have only 52 players on their active roster, therefore they have only six inactives.


Mike McCarthy Pregame Show on 620 WTMJ:

Keep calm and carry on: Inspiration comes from my wife – has great appreciation for history. Really helps me on a personal level when the kids are being rambunctious. Very appropriate this week for our game against the Browns.


NFL requirement to dress 46: We will dress all 46. there will be a player or two on there we’d rather not play – not going to say who.

Question marks: Hayward not going to play he’s inactive.  Mike Neal is active and ready to go.

Linebackers: Malumba and Palmer have had a full week of practice. First time we’ve had all 7 DL up. Excited for Josh Boyd, he’s been working hard in practice – deserves this chance.

Receivers/TEs:  White, Stoneburner – they’re going to have opportunities to play today. I just want them to not overthink and just go out there and play football.



Packers Film Study: Can Alex Green Pass Protect?

Alex Green Packers vs. Browns

Alex Green

When Alex Green was drafted by the Packers, I have to admit, I knew little about him. My draft research at that time was focused on the Packers’ positions of primary need; outside linebacker and offensive tackle. So when the Packers selected Green in the third round, two things popped into my head.

First, if ted Thompson used a third round pick on a running back, he must really like the kid.

Second, I better go find tape and see what this kid is all about.

Soon after, I fell in love… you know, from a rabid Packer fan’s perspective. Here was a big back (220lbs.) with excellent leg drive that could make tacklers miss, had a good burst and was a weapon as a receiver out of the backfield. I also did a quick check of the official NFL Scouting report on Green, which suggested he may be one of the more underrated ball carriers in the nation. Here are some excerpts from that report:

Green is an excellent downhill runner, a pounder who runs with a low pad level and shows good leg drive and short area burst past the line of scrimmage.

The thing that you notice on film is his ability to generate in-stride quickness when adjusting and changing direction. He has that short area burst, along with the ability to take a side to avoid low blocks.

He is a pure power runner with above average downhill ability. He does a good job of lowering his shoulder and driving through initial tackles.

He does a good job of looking the ball in with his hands and can gain yardage after the catch.

As a third down back, he is capable of getting to the flares, arrows and comebacks, as his route regimen is not limited like most college backs.

Green is a good cut blocker and is alert to blitzes and stunts, showing the ability to face up, but he needs to sustain his blocks longer.

That last line floored me when I went back to that report. It’s so on the money with what I’ve seen from Green, you might think it was written this week. Lets take a look at a few videos to show you what I mean:




Pigskin Paul on the State of the Packers after Preseason Game 2

Graham Harrell Packers vs. Browns

Why are these guys smiling?

Time I think, for a bit more PACKERS talk with Game 2 of the Pre-Season in the books and still not a lot to get excited about from their on-field performances overall. Week two started out fairly well until AARON RODGERS went to the bench. Then it got scary and ugly thanks primarily to their lack of a back-up QB.

It’s not time for THOMPSON/McCARTHY to panic, but they had better be concerned and considering other options effective now. GRAHAM HARRELL ain’t no MATT FLYNN, and shows no signs of becoming him. He’s been studying under McCARTHY & CLEMENTS for several years and looks no more able to handle things out on the grass than a raw Rookie. He does not look to be able to read the D quickly enough to take advantage of opportunities in a small window of time. His delivery is too deliberate and his arm strength is just not of NFL caliber.

And I’m gonna question his attitude, at least as it is portrayed by the camera in his sideline demeanor. I don’t want to see a petulant, sullen guy like CUTLER on the Green Bay sideline, but I don’t want a seemingly indifferent, vacantly smiling guy either. Look like it means something to you and get your face into the photo sheet that shows what the Defense was doing against you last possession when you went three and out… again. If RODGERS goes down for any length of time, and HARRELL is the back-up option, this team will be Drafting in the Top 5 next April, just like COLTS this year.

The WR corps looks solid from top to bottom, if/when it’s healthy. But young guys like BOREL & GURLEY have got to be available more than they have been recently. I still wish JAMES JONES didn’t have such a big Cap number (thanks again A-RODGE). He might be tradable to say Miami for MATT MOORE next week. Not so sure I love the JONES to Seattle for T. JACKSON rumors much. But then again JACKSON has some talent (certainly more than HARRELL) and NFL playing experience.



Packers – Browns & Preseason Perspectives

Packers Preseason Perspectives - Packers - Browns

Packers Preseason Perspectives

There is no getting around the fact that last week’s Packers – Browns game was ugly (for the Packers). Yes the Browns played their starters much longer than the Packers did, and yes the Packers had 18 players out with injuries, so excuses are readily available.  But the bottom line is, the Packers team on the field that night, did not look like the Super Bowl contenders we know they are.

The “chicken littles” were out in force, clucking that the Packers have not resolved their issues from last season. Never mind that it’s preseason game 2 and the Packers’ coaches mainly used this game to get tape on players to help their personnel decisions in a few weeks. Hell, we even saw some of the Ted Thompson haters crawl out of their caves.

But now that the dust has settled and we can perhaps look more calmly at the situation, here’s a selection of views on the Brown game, what it means or doesn’t mean and where the Packers go from here:

Over at Acme Packing Company the writer known as PackApologist was left feeling “sick” about the Packer’s performance Thursday Night.

Looking at this game from the Browns’ perspective, the commenters seem absolutely giddy about the Browns’ performance over at waitingfornextyear.com, a blog dedicated to Ohio sports teams.

Over at CheeseheadTV, in the aftermath of the Browns game, C.D. Angeli dares to ask the question: Have the Packers peaked?”

Kevin Seifert of the ESPN NFC Nort Blog, examines the Packers backup QB situation and wonders if the Browns’ Colt McCoy could be the solution.

Over at JSOnline, the venerable Bob McGinn, usually quick and ruthless with his criticism, seems to go easy on the Packers this time.

Plenty of quotes from Graham Harrell about his performance in this article over at Madison.com

John Rehor of Eat More Cheese has a gift for all the packers fans in a tizzy over the preseason performance.



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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.