Starting to get nervous

Man I hate it when everybody and their uncle picks the Packers to win. Especially when the Packers are underdogs. And on the road no less. One thing head coach Mike McCarthy’s teams have struggled with is overconfidence and all this Packers love from the media this week may go right to the team’s collective heads. Even though the Packers lost three of their last six games they appear to be the flavor of the month.

Everybody seems to think this is going to be the Packers’ breakout game like 1995 against the 49ers. I sure hope it is, the parallels are there; excellent defense and an up-and-coming quarterback with Hall of Fame potential. The ’95 team had more playoff experience though, having already made the playoffs in ’93 in and ’94. Although this year’s team has made the playoffs three-of-the last four years, they have only won one playoff game and that was before Aaron Rodgers.

I do like this matchup and I do think the Packers should win the game simply because they are the better team. For me it’s all between the ears. Can McCarthy walk that fine line between being confident and overconfident? He lost that battle in Detroit earlier this season even though that loss doesn’t look quite as bad considering the Lions haven’t lost since.

The Packers’ players have been telling everybody who will listen they are the most dangerous team in the playoffs, from A.J. Hawk on the Scott Van Pelt show to Greg Jennings and Charles Woodson on The Jim Rome Show and Rome is Burning, respectively. I don’t mind a little “we like our chances” but this is getting a little scary.

At least the Packers will have the weekend to see how things unfold. Hopefully somebody gets upset providing an early wakeup call for the Packers. My guess would be the Seahawks beating the Saints, this has been a fortunate season for the Bears, why would this week be any different with them not even playing?

The Packers are the underdogs but the Eagles are the ones talking like dogs, no pun intended, well, maybe a little. Mike Vick has had to answer questions about being benched because he can’t pick up the blitz, they lost their last two games, one of them to the lowly Vikings, everything is going wrong in Philly while the Packers are flying high. Sounds like a recipe for disaster if you ask me.

Now I have myself scared. Official prediction coming Saturday, confidence was high.

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  • Kevin

    A little swagger Is good… Like the fact they think they are winners.

  • http://www.packernet.com admin

    Now I know who that first No vote went to…hehe

  • AATP

    I’m certainly excited for our chances but it’s “Any Given Sunday” to the rescue – I know we probably have the better team right now but that doesn’t matter once you’re in the play-offs and after they dismantled the Giants with 21 points in the last 6 minutes of the game I’m confident this will end up being a shoot-out and our D can’t afford to fall asleep even if we do end up with an early lead. I say if they get ‘em down, keep the foot on the throat and hold it there till the end of the game. There can be no letup in this game – none. This is when the D has to bring to a new level of scary. These guys are good but I want to see scary good Sunday. I want to see the offense scoring TD’s in the red zone – none of this field goal crap. ST’s have come around lately (well the last couple of games) but they need to keep it up and both our punter and our kicker seem to be doing pretty damn good these days. So my worry now is the offense’s ability to maintain a drive into the end zone.

  • mel e mel

    last vs AZ Same thing We blew the doors of AZ for no reason. That ended up biting us. Got force turnovers. We cant have A-Rod chucking the ball around 50 times. We have a rookie RT Help Aaron and Bryan out Run James Starks. Cant have Kuhn and Jackson getting no yardage at all.

  • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

    I know I’m a little late on this (other things to do) but wanted to chime in. 1) Taylor, 2) Brock, 3) Green; like the others, have to do this from what I’ve seen, not the record book. It also contains personal bias. Green entitled to #2, maybe, again based on the stats, but just like BFs Ints he put the ball on the ground too much in the early years.

    Contrary to the fact of who had the best OL to run behind, Taylor was awesome power and guts to go w/ speed. Brock bulled, and bulled, and bulled and punished LBs into submission. Can’t take away from Green (other than the above) and he had more moves than either of my 1) or 2). They were all a different style from each other, and thats where individual bias comes in. Levens, tough pick – or not so tough, since as noted before we haven’t had many.

  • Larry

    Certainly not the best but I liked MacArthur Lane…did it all! IMO the Packers match up well with Philly and they know it. Jenkins health could be the key. He’s the overload guy. They’ll chip CM3, and double Raji to keep him near the line of scrimmage, if Jenkins get deep in the backfield the picks will come. He’ll also dictate the formations if he continually get loose.

    Philly going to counter with quick throws to their backs. We’ll need to wrap up!

    GO PACK!

    • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

      Considered Lane for the reasons you stated, did it all, including returns, but felt his best days were with the Cards.
      I would have figured PHI by three for home field everything else even with Vick off-setting our D. Vick got 175 passing (low) but awesome 103 run (high) but 278 total is also not going to do it. Remember, DeSean didn’t get a comp until the 3rd and Celek in the 4th qtrs, speaks volumes since D is peaking now. Thank TT for all those FBs and TEs now.
      One other thing that has not gotten a lot of play is the fact that we were down 14 to the Cards last year, so don’t jump off the bridge if we fall behind early – Vick is eratic as hell. Their rating of 2nd in O and 3rd in scoring has to be applied to 2 games with WAS, NYG, and DAL. Not as tough a Div as ours and WAS caught us napping. That won’t happen in playoffs.

    • Reid

      Jenkins needs to get pressure AND make the tackle. He whiffs alot, and Vick is elusive. He needs to wrap up.

  • jimmyus333333

    What worries me about this game is that things could look good, and then we lose in the 4th.

    Going to be anxious unless we are up by 3 scores with 1 minute left on the clock.

    • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

      jim, jim, jim, somehow I think you would worry if we had a 4th qtr lead of 21 pts in the Super Bowl. But then you would fret also if we won it, for the following year, because chances are we would’t repeat. We have come to expect no less!

    • jimmyus333333

      not true. If we were in the Superbowl, win or lose, I’d give credit who put us there.

      Of course, I’d rather win it…

      On a side note…just to keep up with LT’s expectations of my sentiments…we now have a chance to pick Luck in 2012 draft considering what our draft position will be after next season.

      Reason for optimism on the future.

      • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

        Ha, Ha, Ha, OK, ya got me! Thats rich. I’ll tell you for sure the one who has the first shot at picking him has got gold. Convinced Arod is here for the next decade, I’d sure like to trade that pick away for probably 1/2 dozen other picks.

      • jimmyus333333

        wow…there are people with a sense of humor on this blog…

        Seems so serious at times…

  • Rick

    With the first pick in the 2011 draft GB selects….

    Mark Ingram – RB Alabama

    Sorry. Just trying not to think to much on this game Sunday. There are NO simple games in the playoffs. Hasselback’s pick 6 to Harris in overtime is proof. You have to convert third downs and not have turnovers. This team has talent to beat anybody in the NFC and AFC. We just have to play mistake free.

    • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

      Not if you convert 1st and 2nd downs. Our overall first down conversion this year is not all that bad. A lot of people forget all those 2nd and 8 that we convert.

      • Rick

        Not since week 14 have we had a great 2nd down conversion rate

      • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

        Regardless, Rick, we beat PAT in 3rd downs total 11-7; NYG by 27-16, and CHI by 14-13. I frankly don’t care what down it is as long as we move the chains and control the clock.

    • BDawes

      PLEASE LET THEM GET INGRIM…

      Ok now that I have gotten that outburst out of the way, Yea, have to agree about no simple games in the playoffs. Look at last year. 2 early turnovers to the cards gave them that game. Without either of those, we don’t go to overtime, and even then, we had a chance to win if Aaron takes a lil off that ball to Jennings streaking down the field. I swear, I have never heard a building get as quiet as when that ball was in the air (Was a doosey for my first playoff game).

  • Ratpack

    The one concern I have this week is Andy Ried and his coaching staff against MM and his coaching staff. Being mentally prepared fundamentaly sound and just being out coached. Close games make me nervouse with MM on our side.

    • jimmyus333333

      …but we (still) got Dom. At least 1/3 our coaching staff will be ready. That gives us a shot.

  • Pierre

    Didn’t account for this…Forecast weather conditions in Philly call for clear skies, temps in the mid twenties, and the winds around 19 mph…not good for the passing game. Could see more balls sailing and being off target with a greater chance for more interceptions (for both QBs). Appears to be like the day of the Jets game, when Rodgers was not able to throw the ball very accurate due to the windy conditions. Could see this being a factor in the outcome of this game if Philly can run the ball significantly better than the Packers on Sunday. GB may have to accent more of the short passing game with the slants and screens. (Think they should use Swain more in this game also.) Packer receivers have got to hold on to the passes more consistently for success to be achieved. Be great if the running game could break a couple of longer runs and present a threat to the Philly defense. Still think GB can win this game, however the windy conditions could limit their passing effectiveness and they may have to rely on their defense to a greater extent to pull out this victory.

    • Ratpack

      Depends on how far the passes are. Swing passes out to the backs and timing passes between the linbackers will be key. If I am correct I think the eagles play a 4-3 defense which means the passing lanes on the linebackers should be bigger.

  • Packer_Bob

    I agree with Al, all this swooning for the Packers in the national media makes me nervous! And we went 3-3 over the last 6 games, including a nail biter victory at home last week over a Bears team playing for nothing? I’m not trying to be down on the Pack, I’m just saying the media is overstating our case a little bit and I’d be happier coming in as the underdog with something to prove. (I realize technically we are handicapped as the underdog, but the 2.5 points last I saw we’re getting in addition to everybody falling in love with GB would lead one to think that we are the favorites. I also think that can be used as motivation by Philly.)

    Good point by Pierre about the weather on Sunday, that sure can have an impact when you can’t run the ball. I also agree that the coaching match up favors Philly.

    Can we win? Absolutely. Will we win? Let me flip this coin.

    I’ll go with Al and defer on the prediction until tomorrow when that thread opens up!

    • Rick

      On the plus side Jenkins practiced and is sore but not hampered. That should help free up either Walden, Raji, or CM III.

      Down side. Strong winds could make ST play all the more important as containing their Jackson on returns is vital.

    • dave76

      We did a great job last week with Hester on punt returns and I think we need to do the same again with Jackson. He’s too explosive to even give him a chance, especially if it might be a little lower scoring game because of the wind.
      On the O-side, maybe we could set up a few high percentage swing passes to B-Jax or even Starks. They seemed to work pretty well when we have used them. This is where I think B-Jax is at his best.

    • http://www.scotrstone.com Scot

      I have this feeling the media is promoting the Packers a lot in secret hopes they will get beat so they can tout how great Vick is. Makes me want to puke when I think about it.

  • mel e mel

    IF MM has a pass heavy gameplan Eagles 30 Packers 17.

    IF MM has a run 1st game game or balanced attack Packers 38 Eagles 13.

    • dave76

      Sorry Mel, I just don’t see any way a sputtering Eagles offense puts up 30 pts on our D
      no matter what. The last 9 games our D has given up 11.5 per game.

    • jimmyus333333

      Dom has had consistent trouble with two aspects of his game-plans this year. Screen plays, and quick/scrambling QBs.

      If he controls some of that, it could hold down the Eagle’s points.

      • Ratpack

        Thats not Capers game plan thats players being out of position. Players need to play assignment sound. like coaches always say just do your job and everything will playout.

  • PackerPete

    Game is a late start in Philly, winds will be prevalent at start, will die down as game progresses into second half.

    MM needs to use run early and get the defense ready to stomp on Philly throat early.

    Open up offense in second half and pull away as ARod exploits poor safety play which will be greatly influenced if first half has a run heavy flavor.

    Be patient my friends, expectations of a fast start may not be schematically favorable for our Pack. Keep it close and set them up in first half, then bring the hammer in second half.

  • Packer’s Advocate

    WhatIfSports simulations has the predicted score at: Pack 14.8 Eagles 20.6

    Also has the Eagles winning 66.5% of the time, to the Packer’s 33.5%

    Some FYI……

    • Packer_Bob

      Just curious PA—-Do you know how many simulations they run? I know nothing about WhatIfSports in particular, but number of simulations and how they input the data would have a lot to do with the end result they come up with.

      In general, I’m not sure how much credence to give this sort of thing. For example, what would a simulation say about Jets/Colts in SB III? I think it would have to pick the Colts and we know how that turned out. That as they say, is why they play the games.

      Thank you for the info though, it is something different to talk about.

    • Steve Cheez

      Cool, think of all the money I’ll save on DirecTV and I’ll have my Sundays free again, since I won’t have to watch any mores games- I’ll just see what the simulators say.

  • Ratpack

    I would like to see Starks lined up out wide on a trips passing play and throw a widereceiver screen to him and watch him run over people.

    • http://www.scotrstone.com Scot

      Starks needs to have a decent game in order to take pressure off Rodgers. We need that run threat, especially if the winds become a problem.

  • Larry

    Not a fan of Ingram..like the Oregon kid. Copykat league and once again NE is showing the league the value of the small/quick receivers and rb’s. We’ll have Grant and Starks in 2011 and a half dozen fullbacks. My vote is for a quick runner/good hands who returns kicks! All in favor say “Aye!”

    Read that S.D might not sign Sproles…I’m interested!

    I’m going with N.O and J-E-T-S. Put your money on Seattle and Indy!

    • Rick

      “I’m going with N.O and J-E-T-S. Put your money on Seattle and Indy!”

      That cracked me up :)

  • http://jlworden1suddenlink.net LarryTex

    I have not read, heard, nor seen anything to change my original thesis of the key to winniing this game. I’m sticking w/ 3/4 to 5/6 speed blitzes to contain Vick in the pocket and still have position to stop the run. Vick does most of his running damage after the defender has overrun him on the all-out speed blitz. Our DBs are capable of covering their WRs…..and getting that all important jump to an INT! He can only beat you with his legs not his arm.

  • dave76

    Off the subject, but I just have to say I hope the Colts and Manning destroy the Jets. Rex (Buddy) Ryan is such an annoying blabbermouth. Controversial, one way or another, from day 1 this season. And oh yeah, that little QB from USC who has come back down to earth. USC….Bush stripped, probation for the program, Carrol busted bolts for Seahawks….Go Manning and Colts!! There, got that off my chest.

    Also, the Packers are going to win and there are going to be 2 new believers in Aaron Rodgers..the man! lol

  • Kevin

    Back to the Pack. Will DD be a big piece on Sunday? Quick slant plays…over the middle, of course you got to catch the ball or his he getting to ole to be the game changer?

    • Packer_Bob

      It would be nice if DD would be a big playmaker for us on Sunday. He’s one of my all time favorite Packer receivers—-making something of himself as a late round pick, a hard worker, not the most talented receiver in the world. His work ethic, toughness and longevity are so admirable!

      But he fumbled in the wild card last year and fumbled last week. It seems like he hasn’t played his best in big games lately, hopefully that will change tomorrow!

  • http://www.scotrstone.com Scot

    Don’t be surprised if the Eagles defense shows up to play. Not everyone is giving them much of a chance against the Packers O. I think the real difference will be on special teams. With the way Masthay is punting, and if he can continue it, we could take advantage of good field position all day. And, of course, keep the ball out of DeSean Jackson’s hands like we did with Hester. It’s time to avenge the fourth and 26!

    • Packer_Bob

      Amen!

  • Kevin

    If pack can play like seahawks where going win like Flynn

    • Rick

      ??

  • Kevin

    Not much seperation between them in my mind. One has a chance other is a reserve look at hasselback what if we would if kept him and delt favre? He was mr. Preseason. In gb.

  • http://packernet.com Call Me Steve

    Just a note about your poll. I don’t think Rodgers gets his first playoff win, I think the Packers win. One guy doesn’t win a game.

  • PackerPete

    we sure didnt need anyone like Marshawn Lynch

  • Kevin

    Lynch ????????????????? Anyone

  • http://Orlando Mark

    This isn’t hindsight I thought at the time we could use Lynch. He would do better with us than anyone else because of our passing game. We know what he cost the Seahawks( I believe a 4th rounder). What we don’t know is how many of our close losses would have been wins with a decent RB.

  • Kevin

    Your right on with 6 losses a little over 3 points maybe we got homefield who knows?

  • sammy

    To Rocky, Larry, and others who thought M. Lynch would not help the Packers. Lynch just took over this game and beat the World Champion Saints. He went to a mediocre team like the Seahawks…..what would he have done with the Packers…and only a 4th round draft pick for his services…C’mon man!!!!!!!!!!!! He has a lot of leg left in him and can really move the sled unlike some other high draft pick back the Packers have had to deal with. (B. Jackson) just in case you weren’t paying attention.

  • sammy

    To Rocky, Larry, and others who thought M. Lynch would not help the Packers. Lynch just took over this game and beat the World Champion Saints. He went to a mediocre team like the Seahawks…..what would he have done with the Packers…and only a 4th round draft pick for his services…C’mon man!!!!!!!!!!!! He has a lot of leg left in him and can really move the sled unlike some other high draft pick back the Packers have had to deal with. (B. Jackson) just in case you weren’t paying attention!! Packers 27 Eagles 24.

    • dave76

      Lynch had 573 yds with a 3.5 ave and B-jax had a little over 700 yds with a 3.7 ave. I still say he would not have helped, Grant will next year. 1 game for Lynch doesn’t convince me, Saints D played terrible today.Especially on the 64 yd, 6 missed tackle run.

      • http://Orlando Mark

        Dave, Lynch had 573 yds with the Seahawks. Who had the worst rushing attack in the league before he got there and ended up #31. Even we ran better than them.

  • Kevin

    All spilled milk now anyway. We just watched the big upset of the weeekend -10. I actually blame murphy on that one what does he do anyway?

  • Packer’s Advocate

    The Colts would have won if they had M. Lynch…….

  • iccyfan

    What’s with this resurrected Marshawn Lynch talk? He doesn’t play for the Packers now and he likely won’t in the future. Take some advice from Steven Stills; “if you can’t be with the one you love, Sammy, love the one you’re with!” Gotta love the Seahags, aka Packers West, taking down the ‘Aints. I’m still not sure why we kept Brett Swain over Ruvell Martin and it’s good to see Ruvell playing well…

    I’m scared to death of Vick, McCoy & Maclin, and since I’m almost universally wrong, the Packers should romp. Packers 34 – Beagles 23