Packers OK at the bye

Considering all they went through in the first nine weeks of the season the Packers have to feel OK about where they are at now that they have finally reached their bye week. The Packers have a 6-3 record in which their three losses each game by three points, the last two in overtime. Even with losing so many key players the Packers could have been 9-0 with a few good bounces.

The Packers spent the entire offseason gearing their offense around tight end Jermichael Finley only to lose him for the year after four games. It took until yesterday for the Packers to look like a real offense again. Losing Ryan Grant and Finley were major blows and only in the last few weeks as Brandon Jackson started looking like he can be a player.

The offense better have it’s act together now because the Packers have some tough games in the second half, highlighted by trips to Minnesota and New England and home against the Giants and Bears. We can’t count on the defense to shut everybody out every week, they are going to need some help along the way.

The Packers’ defense is sick. How can a unit that lost it’s starting safety, two starting linebackers and two backup linebackers, still manage to wreak so much havoc on their opponents.  Turnovers are again coming in bunches and when the offense chimes in you get what we had here last night, which is complete domination.

As far as the division is concerned I think the Packers main competition is the Vikings, the Bears just don’t have an offense. Jay Cutler is a femme and likely will have cost Lovie his job at season’s end. The Vikings have too much talent not to start winning again. In fact I fully expect them to go into Chicago next week and whip the Bears.

Hopefully the team has a quiet bye week – no Love Boat crap or anything like that and returns rested and ready to make a run to the playoffs. The break should really help guys like Donald Driver, Ryan Pickett and Clay Matthews, who need all the rest they can get. I did not like the way Matthews limped off the field after his interception return last night. The last thing that guy needed was to run 62-yards full speed and then try to do a Lambeau Leap. I’m surprised we didn’t lose him for the year right there.

I’m very happy with 6-3 even though it came in a rather unexpected way. Still, you are what you are in the NFL, and right now the Packers are tied with three other teams for the most wins in the conference. Not too shabby.

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  • Just thinking its a win at MIN because Clifton able to handle Allen, Jones more effective than DD hurt, Bulaga now playing at NFL speed, Childress becoming a joke, STs a little more reliable, and overall health of the squad. After the break we wont have the NYJ staleness because the starters will be trying to get their jobs back (other than the IRs). Our depth has not been this good since the troika was formed. I have to rely on the “any given Sunday” rule in NE due to not knowing anything about them. Bears have already played their best football this year, Cutler is reverting to type, and Forte has cooled off. Giants are a journeyman team IMO and we have them at home, but lets see what kind of a squad we have available then. We need to see if we can keep guys on the field after the bye.

    • jimmyus333333

      A little too rosy for me.

      Although the Dallas game was the first game since Buffalo that the offense showed up, Dom is the real difference maker, and the only coach we can rely on.

      • scotto

        Unfortunately we might lose him at the end of the season…probably departing for another tilt at head coach somewhere (possibly Dallas, Cincinnati????)

        • Packer’s Advocate

          I’d bet against that. They’ll be after guys like Jimmy Johnson, Dungy, Gruden, Cowher, etc. I think the push will be to lure some of them back out since they’ve all had a nice long rest now. If they don’t, then who knows??? Probably coordinators from the good teams as usual and if we’re one of those, guess DC could get on the list. My guess anyway…….

    • OK, so I’m rosy – Because: Look at our three losses, all by three points.
      CHI; Bearse only scored one TD passing/rushing. Take away the Arod and Cuttler rushes and we out rushed them when they were hot. WAS; Lost by FG in OT, but again they only had one rush TD. MIA; Another FG in OT w/ three FGs total.
      As Al put it we could very easily be 9-0 with a little more luck and less injuries. Eight FGs and only five TD against in those three games. CHI had a ST TD and that ain’t happinin agin.

      • Monty

        maybe drunk on the koolaid is a better way to put it Larry lol…yeah i keep thinking like AL different results on two plays and we are 8-1, the Jones fumble if he had carried it correctly, and the donk by Crosby against the Redskins. I dont know about Minny, its hard to win at the Humphrey Dome anytime. I think they need 10 wins to clinch the division, thats why the two losses hurt, wed only be 2 away. If we had a stud like Cleveland I think NE might be a possibility. I think the Giants are the team to beat right now in the NFC, that wont be easy, they are very balanced again with a big time run game and “Jet Blue”. Im still sticking with my 8-8 until they can show me either with getting another back or using Starks to spark a run game. Jones was OK against Dallas, he and Nelson have still been too inconsistent, neither one has grabbed the second or third wideout yet. I like Sam Shied, he was a good pick up and has developed nicely. CB was once a weakness, so far its been a strength with him in the nickel and I hope he doesnt get hurt on ST. Hold on to your A$$es cuz its gonna be an interesting finish!

      • I much prefer Tea to Kool-Aid which I suppose brought me back to my usual “Rosy” self. I just think we are better than our record based on how we lost. No excuse, at the time I came down on the players more than the coach and GM, but in either case I think the last three games proved something to me. We had a lot of talent on the bench that needed to play. Done!
        Gosh, I find it hard you really believe 8-8, but I agree MIN looks to be the toughest to me. Eighty yards on the ground a game yields a 1300 yard season – what difference does it make if it comes from one or two guys, if its only to set up the pass anyway?

    • jimmyus333333

      After some thought, I suppose I just think you are too rosy about the things that haven’t been working consistently(O & ST), and say nothing about the things that do work(D), which is our saving grace.

      • D speaks for itself and the O and ST have been pretty good the last three.

      • jimmyus333333

        Grest this past week….a bit of an exaggeration about the other twof of the “pretty good the last three” part.

        The D is the only thing worth speaking about, frankly.

  • Zach

    Seriously hoping that Clay was ‘limping’ due to him sucking some serious wind after the return…here’s to hoping he’s ok.

  • Scot

    Anybody hear what’s going to happen with James Starks?

  • Pierre

    Look for Shields to add a new dynamic dimension to the kickoff return game. As long as he catches and secures the ball, he will make each opponent kickoff an exciting venture and should add to the starting field position. Punting and ST play is definitely on the rise the past two games. Only two punts needed against Dallas with Mathsey getting a 49.5 yards average. Rodgers may have been relying on throwing the ball up to Finley too much early on and now is adjusting to spreading the ball around to more receivers; seeing this as a positive change going forth as defenses will not be concentrating on stopping that one ‘go to’ receiver. David Garrard also shredded the Dallas defense with a fantastic passing performance so Rodgers doing well against the Cowboys doesn’t say too much. He will need to show he can be as proficient passing and leading the offense to TDs and a victory against Minnesota. A road win there will reveal how much potential this team has to make the playoffs and to make a deep run towards the SB this season. Defense already seems to be playing at a level that can compete with all of the other top defenses in the NFL.

  • Pierre

    Just a thought…moving up in the draft to select Clay Matthews has to be one of the best moves that ANY general manager has made in an NFL draft…to get a player of his caliber, with the impact he can have on an opponents’ offense…can only be described as a stroke of genius.

    • A lot of people on this board were crying about how bad Matthews looked in his first training camp. Even the best players like Bulaga take time to learn to play well in the NFL. Finley took time. They all do, it’s a fact of life, and we have to pay in losses while they learn on the job. I hope someday TT will stop the merry-go-round of having the youngest team in the league and instead try to have the best team in the league. Has anyone ever heard of the youngest team winning anything. Please let me know if you can find that, Rick, Rocky, anyone.

  • Packer’s Advocate

    I can’t wait to see what happens w/that 3 FB wishbone package they run. Obviously they’ve been running it in a pretty basic form so the NFL (and myself) have to be waiting to see what they do w/it. I could see an “o’fuck” sweep coming from it. Pull the guard along w/the two FB’s leading the other one and that’s alot of beef coming at ya. Even yet, send all four to block and run a QB keep behind them. That’s over a 1000 lbs. of blocking coming around the corner. Could be a play that’s hard to stop even if you know it’s coming. Wouldn’t hurt to have a WR down feild for a QB pass/run option also. Also allows for nakeds if the Pack got real good at it. Could be handy come winter in Wisc.

    • jimmyus333333

      I saw those plays as “Sticking it into the eye of Jerry Jones.”

      Once was funny, the second time showed it didn’t work, or better yet, just giving Dallas the finger anyway.

      • Heh, heh, heh; nah, we were just not trying to run up the score and embarass him….!
        At any rate they are not going anywhere w/ Jason Garrett. You think MM doesn’t know anything about D, try openning Garrett’s head (Duh, whats D, oh, the guys over there?).

      • ScottS

        The ultimate finger to Dallas will be when the Pack wins the first Superbowl in that billion dollar “Gem of NFL stadiums”.

  • roy jamison

    If Jerry Jones’ plastic surgery doesn’t hold up, he’s gonna look like Al Davis.

  • AATP

    Living in Dallas all I can say is this has been a sweet week all the way around. Love to hear all the negativity and bandwagoners ejecting from their seat on the wagon. Someone on the local news this morning said something about the Cowboys are still “America’s” team and they’ll be back… I believe they coined that phrase themselves, it wasn’t given to them by the media or the fans, it was given to them by themselves – vain or what? Right now they are the bottom dwellers with a ton of talent but a Jerry Jones run organization which will inevitably be the reason his plastic surgery melts into a pile at his feet… he looks like skeletor…

  • packer_bob

    I’m as happy as anyone that we thrashed the Cowboys on national TV, but that game has nothing to do with how I feel about where we are going into the bye. Jones is reaping what his ego has sown, so I love watching them self-destruct, but we beat the snot out of a reeling team that has quit and is without their starting QB. We did what we were supposed to do, nothing more and nothing less.

    The road win against the Jets and the victory over the Vikings are what I’m pointing to as quality wins heading into the bye. Losing that game against the Vikings could have been disastrous, but the win has given us momentum. The O-line has played better in pass protection, the offense has been coming around and the self-immolation plays (ST problems, penalties, etc.) have ceased the last three weeks.

    Capers deserves a great deal of credit for the way this D is playing missing so many players, but I give a great deal of credit to MM and Slocum for correcting some problems that had been perpetual for the early part of the year. We obviously have a great deal of depth, and though I wish TT would make more moves you have to give him a lot of credit for finding talent. We have hit the bye in great shape considering what could have happened if we don’t get by the Vikes and Jets, and how easily this team could lose and chalk it up to injuries. Again, MM deserves credit for keeping the team on track and playing hard.

    It’s scary what this team can do after the bye if they can keep playing D, keep the ST’s on track and the mistakes to a minimum, and get the OFFENSE rolling to anything close to the level we all think they are capable of, even without Finley. I believe the Bears are a fraud, so let’s hope they can find a way to beat Minny before their inevitable collapse. Minnesota getting hot is our only challenge left in this division the way I see it.

    This is the most confidant I have been about this team since the 2007 season! (But LT, the Giants are “journeyman team?” Right now they are the scariest team in the NFC! Other than them, I say we take a back seat to no one in the NFC right now!)

    • Journeyman IMO comes from my thinking they’re overrated. They are in the top 5-10 stat categorys, true, but five of their six wins are against CAR, CHI, DET, DAL, and SEA; not the toughest of schedule so far. PHI, WAS, DAL not really a tough division this year.
      They have an eight sack guy, and a strong O but while their top rush guy has 765 yds their WRs are 7th and 19th which plays into our strong CBs. TEs give us fits, but theirs isn’t in the top 50.
      Their strength (O w/Manning) plays into our strength and I like the match ups.
      We get them at home. If we come out of MIN healthy (I think a tougher game for us) I think we win – again, the injury report after the MIN game will most greatly affect my feelings.

  • Dan

    The Packers are looking great and given the remaining schedule, the Packers are in great shape to win the division.

    I agree with others on the Giants being right there with the Pack, but I would also add the Saints to the mix. The Saints are expected to get their RBs back, making them a dangerous team to face in the playoffs.

  • Jeff

    The Bear game in January will not be tough , the Bears got every break and every call in Chicago and we still should have won , they will noy get those calls in Lambeau and Cutler teams never win late in the year.