- This was one of the first games I can remember that there were obvious/clear halftime adjustments. Getting Kuhn involved when he hasn’t done much this year at all was huge at the times they got him involved. And the defense came out and just played smash-mouth football right away to set the tone. While this should have been a much bigger blowout, I’m most pleased with the fact that the Packers/McCarthy finally made halftime adjustments that directed influenced the outcome of the game. Nicely done Mike McCarthy and staff.
- The 49ers defense played inspired football today. I think it’s important to give them credit for dialing up a fairly impressive defensive game plan. But I am hoping that Clements with McCarthy/Rodger’s help can better figure out ways to unlock a defense that is playing well against them. Clements definitely had some good moments but this game was choppier than the others in terms of the flow and consistency of the offense. There were times in the middle part of the game that I really started to wonder what Clements was envisioning with the playcalls, but in the second half, he pretty much redeemed himself by calling that goal-line hand off to Kuhn. I thought that was the call of the game.
- This Packers defense is developing into an elite group. I hesitate to say that but the truth is, they are really coming out and playing stellar defense and making stops at big moments. But I’m not surprised. After we decided to get rid of Hawk, I had a feeling our defense would open up. Hawk was never a major contributor to the defense and I was always dumbfounded when people would say things like “Hawk is ‘assignment-sure’ or that he was the ‘defensive QB’.” How can any player be asked to simply not do much? He didn’t make big plays – hardly ever. So now, without him there, we have guys that can make plays and move around and be disruptive. And that’s exactly what’s happening. It’s also opened up a roster spot for other guys like Elliott that contribute at a simply unbelievable level.
- Again, at the risk of giving too much credit to Mike McCarthy, I really do wonder if he is helping more on the defensive side of the ball. I think the decision to take away playcalling from him was two-pronged: find someone else who knows the offense (Clements) who won’t be timid at moments when we need to be bold; and let McCarthy help Capers with defensive game planning and playcalling. Capers has struggled throughout the years. He may be the longest tenured D Coordinator but it’s not because he’s the best. He’s not. He has some very good defensive ideas and has put together some of the most brilliant gameplans imaginable – that’s for sure. But overall, he’s not been much better than average as a defensive playcaller for the Packers. With McCarthy’s help, he might just become more effective. And I genuinely believe McCarthy can help with the defense because he’s knows offensive scheming so well. I really like this new set up and I think it’s working really well – as evidenced by both some super impressive offensive games and even more impressive defensive gameplans.
- I continue to be so pleased with the acquisition of James Jones. He has been so good for this team. What a sensible move really. He is a team type guy, good guy and out of nowhere, he suddenly has the best hands in the NFL. Just awesome to watch.
- I also want to give long overdue credit to the defensive line. This group has been so incredibly impressive. Raji is a beast now that he’s in shape and playing strong instead of filling space as a fat guy. But Daniels also has been a revelation this year. I am really impressed by their play in part because I think they are deciding games early on with their dominance.
- Don Barclay needs some work. He’s not filling in for Bulaga very well at the moment. We might need to think about alternatives if he can’t get his act together. He almost got Rodgers killed on that one sack.
- The secondary looked solid today. I know they were playing a rotten QB who presently has zero confidence but they were solid both in the passing game and stopping Hyde – who has run over a few other teams.
- Matthews is a beast. I honestly think he’s playing at nearly an MVP type level. From pressuring QBs, to sacking them to making great run stops – he is just all over the place.
- It’s interesting – when Randall gets beat – as he often does because everyone is picking on him – he’s usually right there. I think he’s just getting a tough intro to the NFL, but I like how he plays. I think he could be really good.
- Joe Thomas could be a beast. There was a play tonight when he prevented Kaepernick from scrambling for a first down by forcing him out, but I thought if Kaepernick hadn’t gone out, he’d have been drilled. Thomas is a big hitter with instinct. I like the guy.
- Elliott has to be among the league leaders in sacks. Extraordinary. He would have had 2 today if he hadn’t been so egregiously held on that one play. One of the most instinctive young defensive players I’ve ever seen. Whoever scouted that guy out of Toledo is owed at least a case of some New Glarus brew.
- Shields interception was a thing of beauty. He read that perfectly, closed so fast and made a super athletic play to make that pick. Just a great play.
- The Packers may need to bring in another punter. I’m all for continuity and hanging onto guys for locker room purposes (and holding purposes in Masthay’s case), but at some point we need to look at Masthay’s numbers and come to terms with the fact that he’s just not been anywhere close to even being mediocre (31st in 2014 and bottom 7 this year in net average). He’s not good enough and I worry that he could hurt this team at a big moment.
- Overall, despite feeling like we should have won by 30 points today, I feel satisfied with this win. It’s never easy to go on the road in the NFL, against a team that has owned you the last 3 times no less. But the team played hard, the staff made some great halftime adjustments and the Packers really just dominated. I really like what I see this year. Keep it up fellas!
Just awesome. Again, San Fran’s offense is really pathetic but a brilliant playcall by Capers there. The Packers defense looks so impressive it’s just plain comforting. I love it.
are teams picking on him.
He’s had some iffy games recently – but he wasn’t going to let go on that one. Nicely done. Let’s see some more of that – otherwise Elliott will take your place!
I continue to be concerned about his play. He was really poor last year and he’s had a few really bad punts again this year at times when a big punt was needed. Like just now. Concerned.
It’s odd to me that they don’t ever get one of those guys. I think that a guy like that could be huge for Rodgers.
But Troy Aikman is right, the defense is playing really well.