I know he got his shoulder too but that seemed to be a defenseless WR situation. Finley was stretched out for the catch and the guy practically took off his head. Finley will be hurting after that one – not good.
Archive for September, 2013
I think the Packers will now have a very difficult time winning this game. As I’ve said a number of times, I see this team having a terrible time playing from behind. I really hope they prove me wrong – and there is plenty of time left to do so. But this is not good. Andy Dalton looks extra focused today – not good for the Packers.
After reading my preview, Dalton marched down the field using every player he hasn’t used much this year.
Jeremy Ross will be cut. I feel badly as that may have been a tough play for him really – but he’s gone. As much as I am ticked at him for gifting Cincy an easy 14-0 lead, I do hate it when they show guys like that on the sideline and you know his career could be over.
- While I am definitely NOT a believer that the Bengals are as good of a team as many football pundits seem to think – I am finding after a couple weeks that I may need to revise my preseason picks for the AFC North. I picked Pitt to win the division – what is going on there? (I do think they’ll win this week though.) Balt to finish second – they don’t even resemble last year’s Super Bowl champion team. The Cleve third – they’ve clearly given up on the year already, dealing Trent Richardson like that. And then I picked Cincy to finish last. While I’m not sure as of this moment that I truly believe Cincy will finish last, I do think they are only playing OK now because everyone THINKS they are supposed to be good, not because they really are good. Soon the real Bengals will come out and mediocrity with reign.
- For as long as he’s been a head coach, I have believed Marvin Lewis is one of those guys with a limit as to how far he can take a team. In this way, I think of him like I thought of Norv Turner, Wade Phillips, Lovie Smith and Mary Shottenheimer – for the entirety of their careers I never once believed they could win a championship. (Sorry, just learned that Shottenheimer did win a championship – the 2011 UFL Championship, as coach of the Virginia Destroyers…after playing a shortened 4 game regular season for which Shottenheimer got paid $0 despite a personal guarantee by the team owner of a $1.1 million salary.) But what makes the situation in Cincy particularly odd, is that I see Andy Dalton as the opposite of Marvin Lewis – a guy with the tools mentally and physically to win championships. Maybe I just can’t let go of how incredibly poised and effective Dalton was in his dismantling of the Badgers in the 2011 Rose Bowl. I’m not sure. But the bottom line is that I can see Dalton winning a Super Bowl some day, but I absolutely can’t see it happening with Marvin Lewis in charge.
- The Bengals didn’t look especially good last Monday vs the Steelers. Neither team in fact looked good. Ugly game.
- Dalton relies too heavily on AJ Green. The guy is super talented and a great option and he may quietly be the league’s best WR. But in the first two games, Dalton has thrown to Green 14 times and 13 times respectively – for a total of 27 targets. That is a lot of targets in 2 games. When there is a nearly 35% chance Dalton’s going to throw to Green, a defense should be able to do SOMETHING to slow that down.
- The above point made, the TEs for Cincy are also quite involved in the passing game. Jermaine Gresham has had 14 targets in 2 games and promising rookie Tyler Eifert has had 10 targets – for a total of 24 TE targets. So if he’s not throwing to Green, Dalton will probably be throwing to his TEs.
- Interestingly, Dalton does not appear to be interested in throwing to his RBs (Green-Ellis and Giovani Bernard), as they have a total of 4 catches in 2 games.
- Dalton has thrown the ball 78 times in 2 games to 48 rushing attempts – so the balance of plays definitely favors the pass.
- I think the Packers need to jump out to an early lead again in this game. I keep saying that I know but I just think for this particular Packer team, playing with the lead is WAY more important than it has been for years. Playing catch-up, even with Rodgers at the helm, will be a particular problem for our defense.
- I would like to see James Starks go nuts Sunday. Yes, last week was nice and he totally deserves all of the praise thrown his way for being the team’s 1st 100 yard rusher in what seems like decades. But to me, this week is the true test. I think strange/outlier type things can happen once in a great while but to go right back and duplicate his effort would indicate something legit may be brewing. I never thought Starks was a BAD running back, but I’ve just never thought he has the moves to set him apart from the “just another guy” category. If Starks can go into Cincy and do some damage on the ground for the second week in a row, we could be seeing the start of a very important development for this team – the addition of a long-missing offensive dimension.
- I think Cincy will do well putting pressure on Rodgers but I also think in the end, Rodgers will carve them up.
- The Bengals do have a couple CBs who can play (or at least have shown they could play in the past) in Terrance Newman (former Cowboy) and Leon Hall. But with 4 Packer receivers/Finely to have to worry about plus now Starks catching some balls – I think the Bengal defense will be overwhelmed.
- I worry some that if Cincy gets its running game going and can manage to control the clock (assuming they are not TOO far behind), they could pull out a victory.
- But I don’t think that happens. While I’m still iffy on the 2013 Packers, I’m far iffier on the 2013 Bengals.
- Packers 33, Cincy 23.
- Not much to say except that this was a totally dominating effort.
- Offensive playcalling was fantastic.
- Rodgers was sublime. He’s just plain fun to watch. 480 yards passing, 4 TDs and 34 of 42 passing. Just outrageous.
- Starks had an incredible game. He averaged 6.6 yards per carry. Just a fantastic effort.
- The O-Line played as well as I’ve seen a Packer O-Line play in years. Outside of the first few sacks, the line, Rodgers, the receivers and runners were all in sync. Just an awesome game by the line.
- Jones and Jordy were great. We’re setting up each game to have 4 seriously quality receiving targets. Finley and Cobb have been playing great and I see this continuing for the year.
- Mike McCarthy deserves a big fat slap on the back for this game. His team was ready, they stepped on the field with a well-thought-out game plan, executed that gameplan and blew out a probably decent Redskins team. (Hard to know if the Redskins are good as they’ve play two offensive buzzsaws in weeks 1 and 2. They may be OK yet.)
- Capers also deserves some kudos after this one. His defense played hard and outside of some big runs from Morris and a big game from Garcon, the D was well-prepared and they just got the job done.
- It was nice to see Davon House have a good game today. He had a nice sack and some good special teams plays. I think that guy has some talent – and after a down camp it was nice to see him turn it around.
- Just a fantastic all around game. It was the right game at the right time for the Packers.
Moss didn’t have control of the ball and by the time he did he only had 1 foot in. That was a bad call.
This game is out of hand – and there is nothing to be gained by playing the starters at this point. Let’s let some of our backup guys get some real game NFL experience here.
After that flurry of 3 sacks in the beginning of the game, the O-Line has settled into this game. I haven’t seen Packer run-blocking like this for years. Refreshing. And the pass blocking has been excellent as well. Great effort.
Starks has had a heck of a game today. His decision-making has been top notch and he has run super hard. Great job.