Thursday, November 29, 2007

Recap! Green Bay Packers (10-1) at Dallas Cowboys (10-1)

NFL Network - Cris Collinsworth and Bryant Gumbel

Collinsworth is a decent announcer. He takes shots at players that are sometimes unwarranted, but at least he takes them. Most guys are afraid to mention anyone in the NFL is capable of a mistake. Gumbel is terrible. He makes mistakes constantly, refers to the wrong team/player/spot of the ball repeatedly and in general just doesn't seem to be up to speed on the teams.

I'm not up to the normal recap tonight. There were a number of points of interest tonight and I want to focus on them, not on how awesome a certain play was. Sorry if you were hoping to read more about my awkward non-sexual mancrush on Don Driver. So, without further nonsense, my POINTS...OF...INTEREST...

  1. Mason Crosby has ice in his veins. Or blood. Probably blood. But icy. Coldblooded? No, he's a warm-blooded mammal. Focused blood! Yes! Focused! He hit from 47 and 52. Both no-doubters. Good to see from the Rook on the road in his first high pressure game.
  2. KGB and Chuck Woodson are kinda important to our success. It took awhile for the Packers defense to really step up in this game. In fact, it really hasn't happened yet. The absence of Chuck, KGB (and Jolly, Cole, Rouse...) certainly showed up in the game. Romo had time (KGB) and open receivers (Chuck).
  3. Jarret Bush was postively Ahmad Carroll-esque. He pretty much singlehandedly gave up 3 touchdowns. Two literally (including one to Anthony Fasano, who is about as athletic as a turkey sandwich) and one thanks to a pass interference call on the 5 when he was beaten like a redheaded stepchild by Pat Crayton.
  4. The O-line needs some help. Again injuries played a part. Tauscher may as well have been rocking a pegleg thanks to his bum ankle. He was tough, but he was also slow. Some blitzes weren't picked up at all, some just weren't blocked.
  5. Brett Favre got hurt. It looked painful as hell. A Cowboy DB hit him in the elbow with his helmet as he was throwing. He left the game in the 2nd quarter and did not return. Hopefully he's going to show his resiliency and bounce back yet again for next week.
  6. The offensive playcalling was a complete nightmare for the first 20 minutes or so of the game. Much like the abomination that was the Washington game we repeatedly had deep passes called and absolutely no rhythm going thanks to those long incompletions. There were two factors that lead directly to this loss, the playcalling early in the game is one of them.
  7. Al Harris got fucked on national TV. Terrell Owens made a catch on the sideline and Al took the ball from him and went out of bounds. It was clear in the replays that it should have been Packer ball on their own 35 or so. The refs stated that Owens was stopped with forward progress. Despite the fact that the play sequence went like this...Owens jumps, catches, comes down, gets stripped, end of play. The refs tacked on a delay of game penalty after the play too. Of course Al ran around like an idiot! He just got fucked on national TV! Also, the ref reviewed the play and upheld it. He should have been fired on the spot. The refs are the second big reason this was a loss. Beyond missing an obvious turnover early in the game they also called Tramon Williams for pass interference with 5 minutes to play on the Packer 5 yard line. It was a terrible call. The ref was 10 feet away and initially signaled no penalty but was overruled by the side judge who was 20 yards away. Topnotch work gents! Why not let the players decide the game?
  8. While the coaching staff gets an F for their early game playcalls they get an A for changing their plans mid-game. Bush gets lit up for 3 td's? Out of the game, hello Tramon. O-Line can't hold a block, Colledge comes out. Deep passes not getting completed? Mix up the run and the short pass. If we had done this from the start we probably win this game.
  9. Good News! We have a player! Ryan Grant continues to run well in his few opportunities. I particularly enjoyed his 62 yard TD run on 3rd and 1 in the second quarter. He broke through the line and the safeties in 2 seconds and then covered up and completely sprinted to the back of the end zone. No jogging, no highstepping, just cover up and run.
  10. Good News 2! We have a player! After Favre went down I think most people in the country assumed the game was over. If nothing else people were interested to see what Aaron Rodgers could do. Hoping for a field goal or two at least. He was excellent. Sure he had some issues with a few busted plays but he had no turnovers, 200+ yards passing, a completion percentage around 70% and he picked up 30 yards with his feet, which I'm sure Dallas didn't gameplan for.

I think we've learned a lot from this game. Assuming Favre is okay I actually feel better about our chances now then I did prior to tonight. Frankly, if the offensive playcalling had been good the whole game and the defense had KGB, Chuck and Jolly back I think we win this one. I know the D looked bad at times but most of that can be attributed to the extended playing time of Bush as the #2 and little pressure on Romo. I don't see that being the case in a rematch.

We lost 37-27. Bush looked terrible. The playcalling was atrocious early. That's the bad news. The good news? Even with our backup QB, backups along the O-line, backups on the D-line and secondary we still pushed them hard. If not for a bullshit pass interference call late in the game we could have won this thing. We're 10-2. Most of us gave this team a chance to win 8 or 9 all year. Let's enjoy the fact that we know who the Cowboys are. They have no idea who the Packers are.


Packer487 said...

I'll go you one better. He was overruled by the side judge 20 yards away who didn't think to throw a flag on the play EITHER! Worst call I've seen in a long, long time. The officiating was stellar tonight.

Completely agree with you about feeling better about a potential rematch now. Bush and Colledge aren't seeing the field again this year barring injury. Give me Woodson, Jolly, KGB, Rouse, Franks, a healthy Tauscher, and Favre (even though Rodgers was fantastic), along with a better gameplan (SHORT PASSING GAME!) and we're taking that team down.

Hard to believe Dallas could play much better than they did tonight, that Favre and Harris could play much worse, and that we could get screwed by the refs any worse (though I'm scared to say that).

We all knew it was going to be a tough game anyway, but to take out all those starters/contributors and add in the unreal was close to a "No way in Hell" game and we still nearly pulled it off.

Anonymous said...

What about the faceguarding penalty in the 1st half against Driver in the end zone that wasn't called? Collingsworth didn't even mention it. The officiating was atrocious. Your summary is excellent.


MF said...

I completely agree. They came in shorthanded, got effed by the refs early and often, lost their QB and still made a game of it. This team is gutty as hell.

This game to me almost feels like a preseason matchup where our coach didn't want to show any of our "real" plays. We had the goofy playcalls early, a bunch of backups on D, etc. I feel like we know exactly what Dallas can do and they have no idea what we're capable of. I like that.

Majikman said...

Hopefully we can regroup, dominate the end of the season, and put together a better game plan for the rematch.

Anonymous said...

Well--the thing to remember is that when they play again--Green Bay WILL be better. I don't think the 'pokes can say that with certainty

Butch said...

Hopefully the Cowboys will still be wasting Marion Barber in the fourth quarter. The worst thing that could happen to us would be an injury to Julius Jones.