23

September

Packers Fan Panic – Looking at the reasons

Packers Fan Panic - Looking at the reasons

Packers Fan panic – why?

After a tough week 1 loss to the 49ers, Packer fans took to every medium possible and were ready to jump off the ledge.After a tough week 1 loss to the 49ers, Packer fans took to every medium possible and were ready to jump off the ledge.While it surely doesn’t happen often in season openers, let alone home season openers, it does happen. Now to be fair and for those of you who follow and hopefully will now follow me on Twitter, I definitely was waving the white flag a bit early in the 49ers game. Reason? I have watched this team and their tendencies since Aaron Rodgers took over at QB. They don’t tend to play as well when having to come from behind. They haven’t taken well to being out muscled and don’t have many last minute wins under their belt so the situation just didn’t seem ripe for a comeback. Now I’m not saying they can’t win a game in the last minute. I wouldn’t put anything past Aaron Rodgers and after all he is the reigning NFL MVP.

I can understand the reason for concern. Last year’s team put up points in their sleep. It seemed they were already up 14-0 at the opening kickoff every week and along came week 13 and the Pack hadn’t lost a game. Would they? Brash fans took to Twitter, Facebook, radio talk shows and proclaimed their team’s dominance. They were surely primed for another championship run. Then came the abrupt end to the season and 7 months to stew over it. Was it a fluke? 2012 season opener comes and another loss at home. Now surely the sky is falling, right? No! Now, yes I did pick the Bears and I had a feeling the Pack would come out flat. All the Packers did was show me that I have a lot to learn about the 2012 team. I can admit it and I challenge the ney sayers to as well.

They do have the ability to bounce back after a tough outing. I’m not taking anything away from how well the 49ers played in week 1 but maybe that first game was somewhat of a fluke. In game 2, the Pack came back and were able to run the ball, rush the passer and defend the pass much better than they had the week before. Two different teams the 49ers and Bears are, but this at least shows that they prepared and came ready to play.

18

December

Packers Lose to the Chiefs. What Happened?

Packers lose to the Chiefs - Quest for undefeated season is over

Packers are undefeated no more

The Packers’ undefeated season is over. Exactly 364 days from their last loss, the Packers were soundly defeated by the 5-8 Chiefs, a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I say soundly because this game was nowhere near as close as the final score might indicate.

The Packers were dominated by the Chiefs. New head coach Romeo Crennel came up with an extremely efficient  game plan to send the Packers to their first loss of 2011. . On offense, he kept things simple and short for Kyle Orton. He put him in the best possible situations for success. On defense, he did everything possible to disrupt the Packers flow. As Mike McCarthy said after the game, “they pressed us from the minute we got off the bus.”

Despite their record, I think we all knew the Packers were not a team without flaws. Yet they had enjoyed 13 straight games worth of success (19 including last year) thanks to two main things: Creating turnovers on defense and making big plays on offense. In this game, they got neither.

DEFENSE:

The Packers’ defense was it’s usual yardage sieve, giving up 438 yards to the Chiefs, and allowing them a 36 minute to 24 minute time of possession advantage. Limit the amount of time Aaron Rodgers has the ball is  priority #1 for any team wanting to beat the Packers.

As is also the case, the Packers defense stiffened when it needed to. But how many times can you let a team inside your five yard line and keep them out of the end zone? For the Packers, the magic number was four, as Denver was finally able to cross the goal line on their fifth try.

More than criticize the Packers defense, I think we need to give credit where credit is due – the Chiefs did their home work and devised a perfect game plan for the Packers.  They mixed the pass and the run beautifully, and killed the Packers with the screen pass in the first half.  They seemed to anticipate when the Packers would be bringing pressure, and had the screen pass call at the ready.

The Packers defense has pretty much been the same all season. We knew what we had (and didn’t have). We also knew that eventually, they would not come up with the big turnover, costing them a game. Let’s just be glad it happened now, rather than in the playoffs.

12

December

Packers 3, Detroit 7: Stupidity Rules

The Packers inexplicably fell to the Detroit Lions today, in what I can honestly say was some of the stupidest football playing I’ve seen in awhile.

It was an UGLY start for the Green Bay Packers today, with a scoreless first half a gift to the Packers thanks to  Drew Stanton and his two interceptions.

Things only got worse as Aaron Rodgers stupidly refused to slide after having already picked up a first down and got knocked out of the game with a concussion.

Not surprisingly, Matt Flynn had limited success, doing SOME good things but ultimately failing when the Packers needed it most. I don’t blame Flynn for the loss, however. Matt Flynn is who I thought he was.

My game day impressions:

PREGAME:

The whole trap game concept has been discussed thoroughly here and here. While I do believe in the concept of a trap game, I think the particular circumstances of each such game have to be taken into account.

In a case like this game today, with the Packers fighting for a playoff spot, needing division wins and only four games left in the season, I just don’t think it’s possible the Packers will take this game lightly.

MY KEY TO THE GAME: If I had to pick JUST ONE thing, it would be this: Get after Drew Stanton. Detroit has the weapons at wide receiver to give any team a tough time. Give Stanton the time to throw it up there to Calvin Johnson & Co., and you’re just asking for trouble. Make Stanton’s life difficult from the first play, and the turnovers will follow.

My 1A key to the game is to take the same approach on offense as they did against the 49ers. Throw the ball downfield and take advantage of the very week Detroit secondary. Of course, the offensive line will need to give Rodgers some time to do so.

Lions had 431 yards of offense in their last meeting….

Inactive for Green Bay on Sunday: Bigby, P. Lee, Smith, Hall, Wilhelm, McDonald, Newhouse and Jenkins.

No surprises this week. Still pretty sad to see Jenkins’ name there…

Once again, all three fullbacks are active.

MM Comments on WTMJ Pregame show:

It’s a good day to be inside…