Packers Roll Into the Bye by Pasting Cardinals

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Randall Cobb vs. Arizona

The Green Bay Packers woke up from their slumber and did what they were supposed to do, defeating the Arizona Cardinals 31-17 to head into their bye at 6-3.

Aaron Rodgers wasn’t terribly sharp on the day — he completed only 14 of 30 passes, but he did manage to fire four touchdowns. Those went to James Jones, Tom Crabtree and Randall Cobb (twice).

Jones led the receivers with four catches for 61 yards, but Crabtree provided the day’s biggest play. His touchdown came on a 72-yard catch and run down the middle of the field in the fourth quarter that pretty much put the game away. Interestingly, the Packers starting tight end, Jermichael Finley, continued to underwhelm. Both he and Crabtree had one catch on the day, but Finley’s only went for six yards.

The biggest development of the game was the reemergence of the Packers running game. Although the Cardinals aren’t particularly good at stopping the run (21st in the league entering the game), the Packers haven’t had a back average more than three yards a carry since Cedric Benson went down. On Sunday, they had two.

James Starks led the way in his first extensive action of the season, going for 61 on 17 carries (3.5 per carry). Alex Green added 11 for 53 (4.8 per carry) and also caught two passes for 25 yards.

With his play on Sunday, Starks likely made himself the No. 1 guy going forward.

Even though the Packers won handily, not everything was rosy. They lost three more players to injury — Jordy Nelson (ankle), Bryan Bulaga (hip) and Clay Matthews (hamstring).

The defense didn’t play particularly well either.

Remember how bad we said Cardinals quarterback John Skelton was before the game? Much like the really bad quarterback the Packers faced last week, Blaine Gabbert, Skelton managed to put up more than 300 yards. He went 23 of 46 for 306, a touchdown and an interception.

Three guys had more than 70 yards receiving — Larry Fitzgerald (74), Andre Roberts (86) and the completely underwhelming Michael Floyd (80).

Last week, the Packers were a failure in zone coverage. This week, it looked like they played more man. Same result.

That probably isn’t going to get fixed by the bye week, but hopefully some of the injury problems will. It would be nice to see what this team looked like if everyone was healthy again.

About The Author

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

13 Comments on "Packers Roll Into the Bye by Pasting Cardinals"

  1. Phatgzus

    1) 300 yards on 46 passes isn’t alot.
    2). Starks fumbled the football, which is a big no-no in the Mike McCarthy offense; and he had a lower ypc avg. than green-he likely isn’t going to be the #1 back, if anything it will be a back-by-committee.
    3) The Packers didn’t paste” the Cardinals, it was 24-17 with the Cards dominating the 3rd Quarter until the TD to Crabtree.

  2. Packman

    D was fine, a few slip-ups, but without Clay I couldn’t ask for more, as Phatgzus said 300 yards on 46 passes isn’t a lot, plus he made some legitimately great plays.

    We need our receivers back its clear, but we’re doing alright considering the D we played and everything.
    We get our players back by the SB and its over for the rest of the league.

  3. “everyone healthy again?” It would be nice to see what this team looks like with just a FEW of them healthy again. Upcoming games are too tough to throw the jayvees out there week after week. 4 TD passes is nice, but there were several drops as well as several relatively simple passes where Rodgers simply missed his man. We still have a long way to go.

  4. Shawn iltarion

    If only the bye were a month…

    One week won’t get even half of these guys back. If you sat Nelson this week, he probably comes back from the bye near 100%. Instead, you play him, and he injures his ankle and may very well not come back after the bye.

    Starks immediately looked better than Green. He gets to the edge if nothing is there up the middle, and he always falls forward for extra yardage.

    Props to TJ Lang for earning some of his new contract today. He held well at right tackle.

    The Cardinals got the majority of their yardage after it was 24-7 and the Packers went back to their zone.

    In a continuing similarity with 2010, the Packers had another terrible 3rd quarter… until the final play.

    Props to the defense for getting a couple key stops after CM3 left the game. Special props to Erik Walden and Mike Neal, and to Casey Hayward, who took his lumps, but kept fighting and made a couple big plays.

    • Phatgzus

      Agree with everything you said, although Starks seems to be having issues hanging onto the pigskin, which immediately puts him behind Green in Mike McCarthy’s offense.

  5. Ivonitonvikingfans

    Another ugly win. Getting sick of the injuries. Hopefully McCarthy can channel Mr. Myagi and “ancient Japanese secret” fix some of these injuries. That might upset Greg Jennings, but whatever it takes. Starks looked good at times but he is still a turnover waiting to happen. O-line still wearing their dresses. Third and 1 may as well be third and 10 for this team. In fact, I am much less worried about third and 10 than third and 1. Of course the shit stain Bears won. Houston please do the country a favor and destroy those fuckers next week.

  6. rebelgb

    Werent the new training camp rules set up by the CBA supposed to lessen player injury and allow for players to stay fresher throughout the season? Right…..

    Is it possible some of this injury thing is related to the NFL’s continuing attempt to make these guys play 18 games? It wouldnt surprise me if some of these guys were sitting out on injuries they would normally play through.

    Its time to be very concerned about Matthews. His hamstring seems to be a career hampering injury. Much like a baseball pitcher with a lingering elbow issue. Its not looking good.

  7. Rodgers

    rebelgb, take a breath and stop overreacting like a whiny spoiled child. Matthews has been a beast throughout the duration of his carreer and has missed maybe a few games due to the hamstring. It happens, especially when you see how much matthews gives on each and every play. Shut up and enjoy.

  8. Packman

    “Is it possible some of this injury thing is related to the NFL’s continuing attempt to make these guys play 18 games? It wouldnt surprise me if some of these guys were sitting out on injuries they would normally play through.”

    You’re on drugs

  9. Shawn iltarion

    rebel, the CBA is a ten year deal. So, 18 games is pretty much off the table for the decade.

    Rather than suggesting a conspiracy, however, I would say it is not unreasonable to think that the deluge of injuries is not mere bad luck, considering that we’ve been through this before.

    The “next man up” philosophy, which has certainly worked to this point and does have a certain noble accountability to it, may help propagate the notion that “if I am not 100%, I should sit and let the next guy play.” Possibly.

    Of course, that still would not account for serious injuries, such as the one that Bulaga likely incurred (though I hope not).

    The Bloodline’s hamstring is certainly a concern. An injury I am familiar with, I was still tweaking mine for years afterwards, though I was far from the physical specimen that CM3 is.

  10. rebelgb

    Rodgers did your Mom drop you on your head too many times as a child? Are you a product of inbreeding?

    Where in my post do I critisize CM3’s ability or effort? Do you even know how to fucking read you mindless twit?

    Anyone who has suffered a lingering hamstring injury knows that it is possible for that particular injury to be a career long issue. Some people pull a hammy and it heals and isnt a problem again. However others have life long issues with re-injury.

    My point was, and still is, there is some concern that for CM3 this hamstring issue could be long term.

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