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Five More Thoughts on Packers’ 37-29 Loss to Panthers

Bryan Bulaga

If we want to look on the bright side, and we might as well, at least the Green Bay Packers got some things worked out offensively. Unfortunately, their defense continues to shit the bed.

Shit the bed like that scene in Trainspotting.

In this particular metaphor, the Packers defense is Spud and we are the girlfriend’s family.

See what we’re saying?

So, on with it.

Kudos to Tom Clements
Yes, I’m starting this out with praise for someone. The Packers have been completely inflexible in their offensive playing calling in recent weeks. “No one is getting open,” Aaron Rodgers says. Well, maybe, maybe not. However, it’s clear the Packers’ receivers weren’t creating separation on a regular basis. Yet, the Packers stuck, hard-headedly, to their traditional offensive sets — spread the field, two outside receivers, individual routes, beat the match-up. Wasn’t working. We talked about it last week — the sets and plays have to be used to get your receivers open if they’re not winning their one-on-one match-ups. What did you see from the Packers on Sunday? Lots of motion, stack and bunch sets. Plays designed to get the receivers open. And they did get the receivers open. The Packers’ top two receivers — Randall Cobb and Davante Adams — each had more than 90 receiving yards. Rodgers threw for 369 yards. We’d say that transition was a success. Now, if the Packers could only run the ball, they might have something going here.

It’s the offensive line, silly
Offensively, the Packers were able to correct some things and their offense was once again able to put up some points. However, they still have issues and there’s one issue that, unlike the play calling, isn’t correctable. It’s the offensive line. We’re not entirely sure who deserves most of the blame. We can tell you center Corey Linsley had maybe his worst game as a professional on Sunday. We can tell you left tackle David Bakhtiari is below average. We can tell you right tackle Bryan Bulaga is worth nowhere near what the Packers are paying him. Bakhtiari is often the reason the pass protection breaks down. He cannot stop the bull rush even though he knows it’s coming. Before the trade deadline, I wasn’t so hot on the Packers trying to acquire 49ers tight end Vernon Davis. I wanted them to take a run at Browns left tackle Joe Thomas. Having a left tackle that could actually protect Rodgers would make a bigger difference in this offense than a tight end, receiver or anything else. Bakhtiari needs to be replaced in the offseason. As for Bulaga, the Packers have always overvalued him. The guy just isn’t athletic and will never be more than an average offensive lineman. These clowns gave up five sacks on Sunday. The Packers netted just 71 yards rushing. If you think the offensive line isn’t a major weakness for the Packers, you’re not watching the games.

The vaunted pass rush is no more
For the second week in a row, the Green Bay Packers recorded no sacks. For the first six weeks of the season, the defense had one of the best pass rushes in the league. Then, suddenly, nothing. What gives? We don’t have an easy answer for you. What we do know is that the Packers’ defensive success is predicated on the pass rush getting home. When it doesn’t get home, well, you see the results. The Packers have now given up 1,475 yards over their past three games. They’ve dropped to the 23rd-ranked unit in the league.

So long, old friend
It certainly appears as if the Packers have seen enough of Nate Palmer at inside linebacker. Palmer has been one of the weak spots on a defense full of weak spots. He’s been one of the more glaring ones, though. The Packers briefly replaced Palmer with rookie Jake Ryan in Denver. That only lasted for a few plays, though. This week, Ryan ended up playing most of the game. He finished with a team-leading 1o tackles. Ryan didn’t really do anything to distinguish himself on a terrible defensive day, but with Palmer continuing to hurt the defense, the Packers may as well give the rookie his shot. We’re sure he’ll have some gaffes, but Ryan’s upside is much higher than Palmer’s. The way to speed up his progress is to let him learn on the job. So, go to it, rook.

A blown opportunity, but the road gets easier
The Packers didn’t need to win in Denver. They needed to win in Carolina if they wanted to put themselves in position for home-field advantage in the playoffs. The Panthers now not only have a two-game edge in the standings, they hold the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Packers. The good news, if you’re the Packers, is the road is about to get much easier. The Packers’ next four games are against divisional opponents. In other words, teams the Packers have owned for the past several years. Two of those games are with the one-win Lions. It certainly appears the Packers are about to go back to their winning ways after a brutal two-game stretch. The bad thing about this is, these division games are also likely to mask some of the Packers’ issues. This is still a playoff team, folks, if only because they play in the NFC North. What it isn’t is a Super Bowl team.

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Monty McMahon

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

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23 Comments

  1. Salazar November 9, 2015

    I really have nothing to add here. This is year best article in months, Monty!

    1. PF4L November 9, 2015

      I concur.

      1. knucklehead November 9, 2015

        Yes, this is just like when a relator shows you a bunch of garbage properties, then shows you something normal and you think it’s the greatest thing in the world. You’ve been conditioned to want anything that isn’t a burning, rotten wreck.

        So first thing you see by comparison, that is not a hell hole, looks like your dream house.

  2. john smith November 9, 2015

    Packers will be at least 8-4 or 9-3 in the next 4 games. Just BC they play the bears and the lions, twice. They need to get hot in December, that’s when super bowl teams are made. You pretty much have a clear idea of who is going deep in the playoff by that point.

  3. MGP November 9, 2015

    “This is still a playoff team, folks, if only because they play in the NFC North. What it isn’t is a Super Bowl team”.

    Indeed…

  4. MMTTDCSUCK November 9, 2015

    Yep . . . Just good enough to continue to play also rans’. Then get another low level 1st rounder as usual that NEVER performs good (sans Rodgers who fell into their laps of course). Then pick more trash players that everyone scratches their heads over. Year after fucking year, the same thing! Good enough to make a run to the playoffs, then get shit for draft choices. With this scenario the fucktard TT needs to supplement his drafting with a free agent (because low level first rounders’) are usually not nearly as good as the first 15 selected. Each year we become further removed from a collective of “blue chip players”! Think about it! They ( The Packers brain trust)obviously have not . . .

  5. Fritz fm WI November 9, 2015

    The packers are not a SB team? i think you are on to something. They were definitely considered a SB team at this point in the regular season for all four years past. you have to go back to 2010 to the most recent season that they were NOT considered a fav to go to the SB, the “miracle wild card run” to the Lombardi!

    your article should remind everyone, that the teams that suffer adversity and have to continually improve to get into peak form and compete in the POST SEASON are NOT usually the smugly complacent teams who “coast” er, “r-e-l-a-x” into the playoffs.

    MM seems to think that winning a “historic” number of consecutive div ch. in the NFC North is somehow deserving of a coronation. but then, MM never was a whiz at math. did anyone see the televised “victory” speech he gave in the Locker room last year after winning “a fourth straight div. ch.” as well as the undershelming cheers in response to the ironic boast [the irony is that he didn’t mention that the none of those “championship” years (2011-2014) include a higher ch. trophy, LOL.

  6. Skinny November 9, 2015

    I cant wrap my mind around Minnesota being the number two seed in the NFC. But sure as shit they might end be. Assuming the Pack makes the playoffs still and they should, I cant see any potential NFC playoff teams home field being any sort of house of horrors to win at, that’s the good news.

  7. jtmax November 9, 2015

    Minnesota has been playing with heart and grit. We have more talent but we have not.

  8. jtmax November 9, 2015

    Yes we are not a SB team but we have the talent to be so that’s the good news. The coaches need to get better and the players need to play up to their potential. The biggest factor is health. The playoff team blessed with best health will have the best chance. If AR and Lacy can play up to their potential and we get Shields healthy and Capers let the best players play (Ryan, Gunther, Rollins) then we have a chance. Palmer and Goodson need to be cut. Ryan need to start. Gunther and Rollins play over Haward and Hyde. Pick up some some PS players with speed to bolster the ILB and CB position.

  9. Big Gay Clay November 9, 2015

    Was that Carolina team good or are we just bad? I’m picking the latter of the two. I’ll say this though I’m still not worried about that Carolina team. We will beat them in the playoffs this year (if we remove our heads from our asses).

    1. Lynn Fuckin' Dickey November 9, 2015

      Carolina is good, but they are not that good. They’ve had a very soft schedule, and sadly, we were part of that. Cam tried to give us the game by overthrowing wide open receivers and throwing a pick to let the Pack in it at the very end. The Pack are a talented team not playing well which to me suggests some coaching issues.

  10. PF4L November 9, 2015

    Again, very precise and accurate article. Here’s how i see it.

    The running backs gained 49 yards. I don’t know whats going on with the so-called beast lately, gaining 2 yards per carry. My guess is it’s part Lacy and part 0 line. We all know that Lacy can do some damage, but that usually happens when the line can create a hole to give Lacy some steam to run people the fuck over.

    The offensive line, frankly, has looked like a joke lately. Rodgers is getting his ass kicked back there. I’m surprised he hasn’t got hurt yet. but if this continues, the risk of injury increases just based on the law of averages. I think Bulaga’s days might be numbered. Ealy made him look like a punching bag, it was brutal to watch. I don’t think that Linsley is playing any better. Personally, i still think we haven’t had a good center since Scott Wells. I like Bakhtiari, but i think he would be best used at right tackle, which leaves us with 2 holes, LT and center. But for the love of God, even as good as Rodgers is, he can’t always overcome this turnstyle of an off. line. This line was allegedly one of the best in the NFL? If anyone really believes that i have a bridge to sell you.

    The good news….or, my hope.

    The dust up between players can fire up this team, because i don’t think this current coaching staff has that capability.
    I’m going to start a petition :) to hire Kevin Green back as Def. coordinator. this defense needs some identity and some fucking passion on the sidelines. Enough of these shots of a ho hum D. Capers sipping his grape kool-aid up in his climate controlled suite. Just how many epic embarrassing performances have to happen, before someone is held accountable? We could always wait to hear what Capers has to say about the defense’s performance after a game, IF he EVER made himself available for questions….Enough of this clown act. thank you for 2010, now have a nice day fucker.

    If the defense and defensive pass rush picks up the play that they displayed in the 1st 5 weeks of the season. If the offense makes adjustments like they did yesterday, albeit too late. If those things happen, i still believe that this team can make a Superbowl run.

  11. PF4L November 9, 2015

    The picture under the headline of this article kind of tells you all you need to know about Bulaga.

    1. rebelgb November 9, 2015

      Haha yeah it really really does!

  12. Zwoeger November 9, 2015

    Carolina isn’t that good they could only get so many points against Tampa and …..us.
    Is Mastay finaly punting well are ST slow to get to the receiver.
    When does Rodgers stops taking TO’s. Well he missed one hence delay off game. I’m realy sick and tiered of that.

  13. Zwoeger November 9, 2015

    O and maybe we can use Lacey to help Bakthiari out. Saw him make some good blocks.

  14. xlvordie November 9, 2015

    We want Harbaugh!!!!

  15. Chris Restivo November 9, 2015

    Faggots. We are coming for that ass!!!!!! We will own your ass bitch. SKOL VIKINGS!!!!

  16. elafave November 9, 2015

    ^^^A little fixated on booty, Queenyboy? You prolly listen to Young Thug and watch gay porn while simultaneously watching the PURPLE FAGGOTS play. You got a Lombardi in your case? And I’m not talking about dildo lodged inside of you. If you ever win a Championship, you can brag when you win 12 more. Clown.

    1. Lynn Fuckin' Dickey November 10, 2015

      Don’t reply to Chris Restivo, he’s a mentally handicapped young man with a fat blob of a girlfriend, and he lives with his grandmother because his biological mother is a drug addict and his father went out for a pack of smokes when he was three and never came back. He’s a sad dude, I’m crying just recounting his life story.

  17. Vano Lucas November 9, 2015

    During this backsliding, Rodgers is running for his life due to a substandard O-line. When he’s not getting sacked, he’s getting knocked down. It tells us more than QB protection, though; it also tells us receivers (for whatever reason) can’t get open or create any separation. That’s a really bad combination for an offense that’s supposed to be (and has been) extremely effective. Maybe McCarthy needs to start calling the plays again. The shift to Clements is coinciding with this offensive backsliding.

  18. Majic November 9, 2015

    I’d rather have the collapse happen in November than in January, this way my Sunday afternoons are free.