That was an amazing pass to Cobb but I think the Lions’ DB got his hand on that.
Second game in a row that we started off with a turnover on the first 3 plays. Not good – though this looked like more of a legitimately nice defensive play vs last week’s fumbled snap.
Could argue here that the Packers came out not prepared again but frankly our D had a nice stand there and that looked like just Lacy’s fault.
- I think this will be a very difficult game. I’m not sure what happened to the Lions last week. When I was watching them earlier in the game they actually seemed to be in control of the game – moving the ball relatively easily against a tough defense. They must have imploded like they often do but that doesn’t mean they aren’t capable of coming out today and surprising us.
- So much of this game will be determined I think by how the Packers start the game. Twice this year the Packers have come out flat – very poorly unprepared. If they come out like that in this game I think there is a fair chance the Packers lose. Detroit is a team that can put up a lot of points…and fast. If the Packers come out like they have against this kind of offense they could build the kind of lead that changes the whole face of the game.
- That said, for some reason (and certainly not a reason supported by evidence), I’m guessing the Pack comes out fired up today and jumps on the Lions. McCarthy/Rodgers and the offensive playcalling will be the key to this. If the offense can start with a sense of urgency and pick the Lions apart like they have on a few drives this year, it could be a long day for the Lions.
- I don’t need to even write this but I’m most concerned about the middle of our defense. With Reggie Bush there, and especially a bruising RB like Bell who is adept at running between the tacklesl, we could be in real trouble. I wouldn’t be surprised if Calvin Johnson is sent over the middle of the field often – that would be smart.
- But the real concern for me today, if offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi has watched any Packer film, is that this could be a break out game for Detroit’s Tight Ends. We’ve already struggled to contain Pettigrew to some extent in the past, Joseph Fauria has had a few big games in his career and perhaps most concerning, rookie TE Eric Ebron supposedly possesses Jermichael Finley type characteristics. I worry he could become better known after this game. Throwing to these guys over the middle today is the obvious thing for the Lions to do. We’ll see if they’re smart enough to figure this out.
- As I’ve been saying I’d like to see Eddie Lacy headed up-field quicker than he has been. He’s been caught running parallel to the line which has the effect of slowing him down and making him far less of a threat.
- I want Rodgers to distribute the ball today to lots of different guys. Early on we need to work in some screens and those awesome plays we sometimes run to Kuhn or whoever is in at FB – when he leaks out to the side wide open. Lets get Adams AND Boykin involved as well as Brandon Bostick.
- This is going to be a battle. I’m tempted to pick the Lions here frankly but I won’t. Packers 31, Lions 27.
Desmond Bishop resurfaced this year in Arizona but was one of the last cuts the team made heading into the season. While I can’t pretend to know his present physical condition, I do know that Desmond Bishop knows Capers’ defenses and even if he’s operating at 75% of his peak performance he would be far more effective than both AJ Hawk and Brad Jones. At least bring him in for a tryout at a position where the team is positively desperate.
The middle of our D-Line has been playing soft and I’m not keen on the guys we have there. Yes they need time to work together and figure out Capers’ changing systems. But I would think bringing Pickett back might help…at least a little. I don’t think he’s been that good in recent years but as I think about the porous middle of our defense, I’m getting a bit desperate here. Just bring him in for a tryout. We know he’s a good guy who won’t cause any locker room issues.
Jacoby Ford is a WR I’ve watched for a few years who was drafted by Oakland in 2010. He has one of the fastest 40 times in NFL history at 4.28 and he’s quick as can be. At the least he could be a quality return guy (so that Randall Cobb doesn’t have to risk injury) but I could envision him being a slot guy (perhaps a buddy slot guy with Cobb) causing fits for defenses. I don’t know what happened to him that led the lowly Oakland Raiders and then the Jets to cut him – but if he retains any of the qualities he had just a couple years ago, I think he’d be worth a gamble too.
As I indicated in my preseason picks, it is starting to look to me like the NFC West is definitely overrated. I picked San Fran to miss the playoffs and after last night, that looks quite possible. (Their win in Dallas was nothing – any team would have won that game considering how crappy Romo played and Garrett’s playcalls.) As I said last week after the Packers/Seahawks game, I suspected that Seattle’s greatness had less to do with the victory than the Packers’ crappy play. And I think I was right. Seattle got handled by the Chargers yesterday (and one of their TDs shouldn’t have even counted – should have been 30-14 (or 30-17 with a FD). Even though the Chargers are a good team, one that I picked to win the AFC West, Seattle isn’t THAT good.
This is shaping up to be one odd season – especially in the NFC. Teams like the Packers and Saints look iffy while other teams like the Cardinals and Bills look decent. I’m guessing both the Packers and Saints right the ship and the Cards and Bill eventually falter – but who knows?
- Our coaches were once again, not prepared. This keeps happening. It happened last year several times and it’s happened this year now twice. Fortunately some adjustments were made and things worked out today. But that doesn’t excuse McCarthy and Capers from the fact that as coaches they are charged with making sure our guys are ready to play. They looked totally disorganized out there and completed surprised by whatever the Jets were doing. It wasn’t good at all – for the offense or defense.
- Rodgers was awful in the 1st quarter – concerning for a bit – but then fantastic the last 3 quarters. I was very relieved to see him scramble and run for a few first downs. That was just huge. It showed me that he wanted to win and was ready to open up his skillset to make sure that we did. He was very, very good after the 1st quarter – it seemed as the team leader he was taking responsibility for the deficit the team faced. Rodgers really played a great game today.
- Jordy Nelson is really good. It has been really fun to watch him develop the last few years to the point where he can make positively ridiculous catches right over DBs playing him super tight. Throw in a football sense – just an awareness for where he is and where he needs to be – and you have one of the top 5 WRs in the NFL. Seriously.
- I don’t know why McCarthy doesn’t just keep his foot on the gas pedal when the offense kicks into gear. I know the no huddle can be tiring and difficult to manage logistically because it happens so fast. But when things are going well and Rodgers is picking the other team apart, it seems McCarthy is content drifting back to a slower offensive speed. He did this toward the beginning of the third quarter. Almost, it seems, to let the defense catch up. That happened last week and again today – fortunately Rodgers and Jordy made a few plays to keep drives alive in the second half today. But I want McCarthy to just be aggressive and not let up.
- The middle of our defense still sucks. Even in the second half when the team played at a much higher level overall, the middle of our defense was exposed time and time again. I just don’t understand why the coaches don’t see that. Hawk does nothing out there. I don’t care if he’s the “defensive QB” and “assignment sure” and all that other nonsense. He just doesn’t make plays. Lattimore didn’t offer much, though I noticed on what seemed like a huge number of plays the Packers were only playing 1 ILB and bringing DBs in there.
- TT needs to address our ILB situation. Brad Jones is terrible and Hawk is no good. If he doesn’t do that, teams will continue to run up the middle or, like the Jets did today on a key 3rd down play, make easy passes to TEs right over the middle. Other teams know there is nobody there.
- The defense really stepped up in the second half and did in fact make some huge plays. But we have to remember – our defense got completely used by a weak Jets offense in that first half. Last week we played a fairly bland (though quality in its execution) Seattle offense and got hammered. I am really concerned about playing teams with serious offensive firepower – could just get blown out.
- I was happy to see Davante Adams get involved. He was a real factor today. We need at least one more viable target out there as defenses really just focus on Cobb and Jordy. I did notice one issue with Adams though. On one play in the second half in the red zone Rodgers was out of the pocket running around and Adams stood there like we all used to in 3rd grade on the playground waiving his arms and probably screaming “I’m wide…I’m wide!!!” – only he wasn’t. Meanwhile Cobb was running all over the end zone trying to slip into a hole. It was an interesting play if for no other reason than that it highlighted the difference between a rookie and a guy who has been in the league a few years.
- I was happy to see Crosby nail that 55 yarder. That was a huge kick and he made it easily. He had a good game today.
- Masthay was a bit up and down but had a huge punt at a huge moment in the game.
- I thought Mike Daniels had a good game today. He was active and came up with a few huge plays – including the sack that led to a pick.
- Peppers had a great play in coverage. Even though he should have had a pick there, just the fact that he recognized the need to drop into coverage and be there was big. If he didn’t make that play that would have been a costly play.
- The Packers have to work with the O-Line and Lacy on getting him going up field sooner. Last week and again today, Lacy was turning parallel to the line of scrimmage for too long a period of time, which seems to slow him down/allow the defense to catch him. And it usually results in 0 or 1 yard gains. He need to either head sideways immediately and then make one cut heading up field, or head up field immediately and only cut after getting past the first level.
- I don’t know what the tape will reveal, but it looked to me like Sherrod was getting beaten with regularity. I’m just not sure he’s the answer over there. Still hard to believe he was a first round pick.
- Still, the team won and I’m hoping we’ll even take a bit of momentum from that second half with us to Detroit next week. The Lions are off to a weird start – watched some of that game today and then tuned out for a while and was really surprised to see how badly they were beaten. It seemed like a lot closer game when I had been watching. Calvin is still a major problem and Bush is still trouble in the open field. But I definitely came away unimpressed by the Lions D and their other offensive players. If I’m the Lions, I come into the Packers game with 1 playcall – Calvin Johnson over the middle.