Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Jay Glazer reported the story first for Fox but I prefer the local Minnesota reaction from the Star Tribune. Perhaps my favorite aspect of this is that so many Vikings fans hate Brad Childress as their coach that they're happy this is happening. The assumption being that Brad will lose all 4 games and finally get himself fired.
You can check out the local reaction here. For all of the concerns about Mike III and Teddy T I must say I'm pretty happy with these two when I get to read about the ongoing massacre of common sense that the Vikings braintrust engineers with every decision they make. I honestly think living in a town where the Packers are #1.5 is helpful because if all Packer fans compared our GM and coach to the local 11 they'd have a 100% satisfaction rating.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Rodgers was perfect once again. Cool, calm, and totally awesome dude. He plays with pain like Romo has a dumb name.
Come on, these guys were great. But to be super awesome you really got to earn it. If Jennings had 14 touchdowns then I would be impressed.
This might be a stretch, but finally Grant found the end zone. And he looked a little better, right?
Two huge touchdowns for our defense and they shut Manning down. Now if we could just shut off the ugly stick on his face.
Didn't Crosby miss a field goal and an onside kick? Ah....who cares. Victory!
Mix Master Mike did a perfect coaching job this week. He out foxed one of the lamest Viking coaches in history. He did coach for them, right?
This guys knee sack must be killin' him cause he looks like Mario out there.
Lambeau Field Crowd:
Wow. Finally I hear some real noise from the fans. Keep it up and perhaps our home field will become a factor again. Kinda like the Thunder Dome, but without all of the hillbilly fans.
Great game Pack! As long as we don't lose next week I'll be fine.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Jim Nantz and Phil Simms always seem to broadcast a game like they're in the clubhouse chatting with the bartender before heading out for the back nine don't they? They always come off sort of bemused at what's going on with the game like they've had a bloody mary or two and now all they can remember was that great drive on 7, so they're always eager and happy despite the fact they're broadcasting a blowout.
For further evidence of this just check out Nantz's comment after Don Lee scored on a quick pass right up the seam in the second quarter. Nantz comes up with the gem "Donald Lee scores and instead of doing a Lambeau Leap, he did a Lambeau Lee!" Tell me, who says that except for a slightly tipsy guy having a good time with his friends?
The only difference between him and you is your friends would mock you for hours for saying that and Phil Simms treated it like a fart and ignored it... Also, he has used more styling products on his hair than you have hairs on your head...and he's rich...and slightly famous...Okay, frankly you are not a good comparison for Jim Nantz. Way to go and ruin the whole premise of my argument. Jerk.
I kind of like the blood red of the Red Zone indicator deal that CBS employs. A) It makes real life look more like a video game, and how could that ever be a negative? B) The red looks awesome. Just a great color there. Truly. I can't decide if I should stop rambling about color choices or keep going until I get some ads from HGTV or something here.
The Run Game
The playcalls continue to be run-heavy. I'm assuming this is due once again to Aaron Rodgers' bum shoulder because Ryan Grant clearly hasn't earned this sort of trust. His 33 carries last week were great and helped us control the game, but 2.7 yards a carry isn't going to do it most weeks. Grant had an early fumble that somehow, magically, Korey Hall recovered to keep an early drive going but was otherwise solid.
A second straight game with more than 30 carries, and this time for more than 100 yards AND his first TD of the year makes me happy. Grant, just by being a vague threat, made the Colts honor the run and they got bit on a number of playaction passes as a result. Since Rodgers can only throw it 25 times a game apparently it's handy when they do go well.
I just want to reiterate something. When Grant gives us something, anything, this offense looks like it can be big time. That's a good feeling going into the bye.
The Bold Choices
Clearly the coaching staff came into this one thinking that their defense wasn't going to be up to the challenge. I'm not necessarily arguing with that assumption mind you, but Mike III's choices were bold and thoughtful and I liked them all, despite the fact that they didn't always work.
After our initial drive, and 3 points off the leg of Mason Crosby, we went for an onsides kick in the 1st quarter. It caught the Colts completely off guard, but the ball went out of bounds. At this stage in the game that's just a 5 yard penalty, so no real harm was done. I really liked the aggressiveness, even if it was because we felt the Colts were going to score whether they went 80 yards or 40.
In the 2nd quarter the coaches again went for the throat. This time, on 4th and 1 near midfield, Ryan Grant picked up 7 on the stretch to the right side. The drive ended with a touchdown and a 10 point lead for us. This team always seems to respond when challenged, I wish coaches did it more often.
As further evidence of the "Challenge = Success, Safe play = Disappointment" corollary I give you our clock management at the end of the half. With about 20 seconds to play we decided to run the clock down to 8 seconds and have Crosby try a field goal. It was just a 36 yarder, but it seems that anytime we just stop trying and say "Crosby will hit it" we virtually guarantee that he will not, in fact, hit it. He pulled it wide left. Instead of being up 20-7 against a team that scored 3 td's in 5 minutes just a few weeks ago we went into the half up by 10.
I don't know if the guys on D looked at the gameplan and thought "hey, screw this, they're basically saying we suck right now, let's go show 'em!" but man, they showed 'em. Johnny Jolly and Colin Cole swatted down at least 3 Peyton Manning passes at the line. I love it when this happens. The QB just gets that "who farted" look on his face when he realizes the wasted opportunity, the camera man always seems to fight off a seizure to keep the play in frame and I get to watch 300 pound individuals jump around like little kids. It's awesome.
With just about 6 minutes left in the game Chuck Wood was sitting in his own end zone, clearly upset with Aaron Rouse. Rouse had, at the last moment, jumped in front of Chuck and his man to try for an interception but then dropped it. I can't read lips but I'm fairly confident Chuck may have mentioned something like "Say, fellow, if you are not certain that you will intercept the wayward pass from Mr. Manning in the future please stay the heck out of my way, as I have Heisman hands and would surely have caught that ball."
Just about a minute later Rouse jumped a pass to Anthony Gonzalez in the end zone and returned it 99 yards for the score. This pretty much sealed up the game, even with the Colts ridiculous scoring bursts, and was the perfect response to Chuck's concern.
Much earlier in the game, the first drive of the second half to be exact, Nick Collins took a tipped ball from Reggie Wayne and returned it 60 yards for a TD as well. It's impressive that, despite all the injuries and shuffling and whatnots that this D continues to be a threat to score. I've been disappointed in them for a lot of things this year, but this trend is nice. We have actual playmakers in the secondary.
The Unnecessary Shot
Do you think that Derrick Frost went to his teammates this week and gave them a fiery speech? I mean, the dude is a punter who has a really, really difficult time punting well. So, instead of actual learning how to kick maybe he just convinced the fellas to play so well that his services wouldn't be needed til the 4th quarter? I'm just spitballing here but it makes some sense right? I mean, it's not like he still has the job because of his punting ability right?
Green Bay 34 - Indianapolis 14
Sunday, October 12, 2008
- Matt Hasselbeck is out for Seattle. They're down to 3rd stringer Charlie Frye today. Which sucks for them, but I'm very much ok with it.
- Aaron Rodgers is in even though he hasn't thrown a pass all week. Kregg Lumpkin was put on IR and Brandon Jackson is out with a head injury. So our old friend Deshawnn Wynn is back.
- Korey Hall is back too. He brings something to the table. Not a big something. Like, he may bring the butter, or perhaps some pickles, but the meal's better if he's involved.
11:00 - Hmm. On third and 5 Ryan Grant gets stuffed and we're punting. Rodgers' shoulder is all beat up so I understand a run-heavy playcall today, but there's a time and situation for it. We haven't run the ball well all year and I don't want to trust our O-line and Grant when it really matters.
10:40 - Instead of a punt the Packers are lining up for a 60+ yard field goal by Crosby. Did we have the yardage wrong or was this a clever ploy to get Seattle to burn a timeout? It's not really clear, but after the obligatory Seattle timeout we punt instead.
5:07 - Jordy Nelson picks up 14 and brings us down to the Seattle 22. He hasn't been amazing or even especially impressive as a rookie, but he does contribute every week. I still rank a healthy James Jones above him, but he's not just an empty jersey.
2:26 - The drive stalls, but Crosby gives 'em a push to the gas station at least. And by that I mean Mason hits a 29 yard field goal. I'm not gonna lie, I don't even know what I was going for there.
GREEN BAY 3 - SEATTLE 0
13:05 - The Seahawks just put together one heck of a drive. Despite their obvious intent to not allow Charlie Frye to ever, under any circumstances, attempt a pass more than 5 yards downfield they somehow put together a scoring series. I know our D is banged up but c'mon guys, they're telling you to just stop the run and you win.
GREEN BAY 3 - SEATTLE 3
11:40 - My nightmares consist of our O-line trying to protect for more than 2 seconds and Aarong Rodgers holding the ball for roughly 5 seconds. My nightmares also include clowns, those kids in The Shining and a neverending loop of those Coors Light commercials where they market how cold their beer is, despite the fact that the temperature of the beer is pretty much up to me and my fridge. So anywho, Rodgers holds the ball too long, fumbles, and Seattle recovers.
9:22 - AGAIN, Seattle is not even pretending to pass. True they only need to go about 30 yards this time but still, c'mon D! Nothing but 3-4 yard runs from Julius Jones and Mo Morris at this point. They've passed 6 times for a total of 12 yards.
8:17 - So the D sells out on the run and Seattle runs a playfake and Frye hits his big Tight End, John Carlson (who sounds like an accountant) for the TD. Clearly I didn't mean to ignore the pass that time! Seriously, fellas, listen!
GREEN BAY 3 - SEATTLE 10
6:55 - So the Seattle crowd has this lame theme where they call themselves "the 12th man". They pride themselves on causing false starts on opponents because they're so loud. They have a little counter and everything. It says "You've been 12th manned". After a Jason Spitz false start they upped the total to 74. I mention all of this because if these folks had been watching the Packers all year they'd know we haven't been "12th manned" we've been "Colledged, Spitzed, Cliftoned and Molled". We don't need your help for this Hawks fans.
1:52 - Greg Jennings first catch of the day gets us a first down at the Seattle 2. Does this guy ever not get open? Ever not make the catch?
:45 - Aaron Rodgers, bum shoulder and all, has a great QB sneak over the left side. Initially he was ruled down at the 1 inch line but the review made it clear that he had the TD easily. To be honest, it shouldn't have ever gone to review. It wasn't the worst miss by a Ref crew today, I mean the Viking-Lion game was a travesty, but still. Get it right the first time fellas!
GREEN BAY 10 - SEATTLE 10
13:50 - Hmm, Aaron Rouse is out of the game again. Charlie Peprah is in. Thankfully I don't think Seattle has the personnel to take advantage of his bad angles and mis-tackles, but this isn't ideal.
9:50 - Ok. Ryan Grant carries on 1st and 2nd down for a total of 4 yards. I appreciate the dedication to the run. I appreciate that our QB has a bad shoulder. But setting up 2nd and 9 and 3rd and 6 isn't great for the ol' throwin' arm either. The O-line is killing me. The playcalls are an accomplice to the crime. Gaaaaaaah.
5:56 - The first deep pass from either team is a beautiful one. Rodgers hits Jennings in stride for a 44 yard TD. Jennings beat the jam on the line and then just outran his guy for the score. I feel really good when Rodgers goes deep. That's one of the areas I think he's better than Favre in. There, I said it.
GREEN BAY 17 - SEATTLE 10
4:55 - Aaron Kampman beats a double team and picks up his second sack of the game. He's not perfect, and yet he's perfect for this team. Other things that are not perfect in the world but are perfect for the Packers...Donald Driver, tailgating (trust me, it's not the same anywhere else), and me.
3:30 - Another two carries on 1st and 2nd down for Grant for a total of 4 yards. He's only getting 2 yards per carry, but on the plus side it seems we'll get a chance to watch him do it 57 times today.
11:23 - That was a thing of lusciousness not normally seen outside of Scarlett Johannson's bedroom. The Packers just went on an old school, 16 play drive. It took over 8 minutes (you're welcome Scarlett!) and was almost as soulcrushing for the Seahawks defense as listening to that Johannson album of Tom Waits covers was for me! The drive also included about 19 more of those 2 yard runs by Grant, which ate clock but not much else. Rodgers hits John Kuhn for the TD when former Viking Brian Russell decided to run away rather than cover him.
GREEN BAY 24 - SEATTLE 10
10:27 - With apologies to Bill Simmons at espn.com - I wish I could bet on things like "Chuck Wood will seal the game with an interception right after a TD". But I can't. The offense doesn't accomplish anything but they didn't need to. Crosby hits from 51.
GREEN BAY 27 - SEATTLE 10
6:22 - Tramon Williams comes up with a pretty interception to seal the deal for real. It's fun because when Chuck Wood comes up with a pick it's clear that he's read the QB and showed up in a spot that he wasn't expected. When a young guy like Tramon gets a pick it's because he was athletic enough to see the ball and grab it a half second later. The highlight for me was Tramon going through a series of polite and professional handshakes with his teammates to celebrate. Classy, smart and funny. Sort of like me.
The Seaducks managed to throw on a garbage time TD with about 3 minutes left but this one was already over. This was a nice win. True Seattle was struggling, didn't have their starting QB and all that but this was an easy win on the road. It keeps us tied for first place in the division and keeps me from having to fistfight Vikings fans at work tomorrow if we had fallen behind them in the standings.
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Rodgers played with pain, and that's most awesome. Three touchdowns and one pick...if he only had the ball in his hands at the end of the game it would have ended much better.
Grant played okay for the first time all season. He actually had some burst of speed. I see potential!
Jennings and Driver were good as usual. And who was that tight end in the Sterling Sharpe jersey?
Can our defense be anymore lame?
Not lovin' you guys either. If Crosby can hit bells on top of a church why can't he make a field goal? And our punter blows.
McCarthy improved, but come on, losing to the Falcons at home? What is this, the playoffs?
All hail the kings of the New South...you can have it.
Weeeee. Look at us at 2-3 and tied for almost last. At least I'll be able to watch next weeks game in person to either see the season turn around or witness it's demise.
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Friday, October 03, 2008
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Tony Mandarich made news for the first time in 15 years admitting he used steroids and faked his pee test. This also just in...Darrel Thompson is a bust, I repeat, is a bust!
Fun Fact, Mandarich may be the biggest Guns N' Roses fan next to our very own MF Pack...who is so pathetic he just got the latest GNF'R cd, Use Your Illusion II. Move on MF!
Anyways, here's a little video on Mandarich for those of you who are too young to remember his bustyness.